For someone starting to meditate it can be helpful to have a mantra (a particular sacred word or phrase) to repeat rhythmically, or else to count the breaths up to eight and then start again. But there will come a time when all that is needed is to sit quietly at the threshold of silence, gently breathing in and out, not attempting to cross the threshold or imagine what lies beyond, but simply waiting. Into that silence, from time to time, may come certain insights which arise from a deep source of wisdom within us. Such insights, when they come, are the fruits of meditation.
The practice of meditation is essentially a solitary one, but meditating with others on a regular basis, perhaps once a month, is a variation that brings a different experience. When a group shares in silence there can sometimes be a very deep sense of another presence in our midst. It was when the disciples were gathered together that the Spirit descended on them like tongues of fire. Such a shared silence begets a deep connection, and out of such groups strong friendships often develop. There is a sense of being part of a community, something that may be lacking in church services.