is powered by readers. When you purchase items from links on our website, we may earn a commission. Learn more


Contemplative and Meditative Prayer Differences

Sharing is caring!

Bible by the Window.

We’re here to explore two types of prayer: contemplative and meditative. Let’s break down what each means and spotlight how they differ. We will look at methods you can use in each.

Understanding these helps deepen your spiritual life. Let’s begin this enlightening journey through contemplative and meditative prayer.

What Contemplative Prayer Is

Contemplative prayer is about silent connection with a higher power. It helps you build a deeper bond through stillness and inner focus. You don’t ask for things or say set prayers. Instead, you make space for the higher power to speak to you.

This requires patience, discipline, and a willingness to let go of your own wants. It leads to a deep sense of peace and spiritual guidance.

What Meditative Prayer Is

Meditative prayer focuses on intentional thinking about a higher power. It quiets the mind, removes distractions, and turns inward. Techniques like deep breathing, visualizing, or repeating sacred words help you find stillness.

Meditative prayer opens you up to spiritual wisdom and healing. It’s a strong tool for self-understanding and spiritual growth.

How They Differ

Both types aim for a quiet mind and inner focus, but they differ in important ways. Contemplative prayer is more about being present and open. Meditative prayer has an active focus like a word or image.

In short, contemplative prayer is about being, and meditative prayer is about doing. Both can deepen your spiritual connection, but they take different routes.

Methods for Contemplative Prayer

Here are some methods for contemplative prayer. One is centering prayer, using a sacred word to quiet your mind. Another is breath prayer, focusing on your breathing and using a short prayer with each breath.

Reading and reflecting on spiritual texts is another method. Imaginative prayer involves visualizing a sacred scene. Walking prayer involves a slow, mindful walk while connecting with a higher power.

These methods can help deepen your experience with contemplative prayer.

Methods for Meditative Prayer

Now, let’s look at methods for meditative prayer. One common method is using a mantra, a repeated word or phrase, to reach deep focus. Another is focused breathing, using your breath to calm your mind.

Visualization is also effective, making mental pictures that bring feelings of peace or love.

These methods offer various ways to engage in meditative prayer and deepen your spiritual connection.


In summary, contemplative and meditative prayer both aim for deep spiritual connection but use different approaches. Contemplative is about simply being present, while meditative involves active focus.

Both are powerful for spiritual growth. Choose the one that fits you or use both to enrich your spiritual life.

Posts related to Contemplative and Meditative Prayer: