The problem of artificial reflections from grid boundaries in the numerical discretization of elastic and acoustic wave equations has long plagued geophysicists. Even if modern computers have made it possible to extend the synthetics over more wavelengths (equivalent to larger propagation distances), efficient absorption methods are still needed to minimize interference from unwanted reflections from the numerical grid boundaries. In this study, we examine applicabilities and stabilities of the optimal absorbing boundary condition (OABC) of Peng and Toksoez (1994, 1995) for 2-D and 3-D acoustic and elastic wave modeling. As a basis for comparison, we use exponential damping (ED) (Cerjan et. al., 1985), in which velocities and stresses are multiplied by progressively decreasing terms when approaching the boundaries of the numerical grid.