Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To train, calm, or empty the mind, often by achieving an altered state, as by focusing on a single object, especially as a form of religious practice in Buddhism or Hinduism.
  • intransitive verb To engage in focused thought on scriptural passages or on particular doctrines or mysteries of a religion, especially Christianity.
  • intransitive verb To engage in devotional contemplation, especially prayer.
  • intransitive verb To think or reflect, especially in a calm and deliberate manner.
  • intransitive verb To engage in meditation regarding (a religious mystery, for example).
  • intransitive verb To plan in the mind; intend.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To think abstractedly; engage in mental contemplation; revolve a subject in the mind; cogitate; ruminate.
  • To think out a plan or method; engage in planning or contriving; fix one's thoughts with reference to a result or conclusion: followed by on or upon.
  • Synonyms To consider, reflect. See list under contemplate, v. t.
  • To plan; design; intend.
  • To think on; revolve in the mind; consider.
  • To observe thoughtfully or intently; contemplate vigilantly; watch.
  • Synonyms To devise, concoct.
  • To contemplate, ruminate, revolve, study.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • intransitive verb To keep the mind in a state of contemplation; to dwell on anything in thought; to think seriously; to muse; to cogitate; to reflect.
  • transitive verb To contemplate; to keep the mind fixed upon; to study.
  • transitive verb To purpose; to intend; to design; to plan by revolving in the mind.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb To contemplate; to keep the mind fixed upon; to study.
  • verb To sit or lie down and come to a deep rest while still remaining conscious.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb reflect deeply on a subject
  • verb think intently and at length, as for spiritual purposes

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Latin meditārī, meditāt-; see med- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin meditatus, past participle of meditari ("to think or reflect upon, consider, design, purpose, intend"), in form as if frequentative of mederi ("to heal, to cure, to remedy"); in sense and in form near to Greek μελεταν (meletan, "to care for, attend to, study, practise, etc.")

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