I want to write about meditation, it’s benefits in today’s world. I started teaching meditation about fifteen years ago and today it is even more relevant in our fast paced lives. We are all running around doing a million things a day and a lot of what we do is on auto pilot. Unless we are someone who meditates regularly we never have the opportunity to be still and go within which as a human being is important for all sorts of reasons.
Last year I went on a silent meditation retreat for a week with my daughter which was very interesting. We meditated twice a day in the early morning and in the evening. In the day we had lessons on philosophy and also on how to do their particular meditation. They used a mantra which is a word that you say in your mind and keep repeating to yourself. This keeps your mind from wandering and takes you into an altered state of awareness. I really enjoyed the week and the discipline which was easy to do as we had the whole week to focus on ourselves. When we left the meditation centre both my daughter and I felt amazing. We felt very relaxed and as though we were invisible to the outside world. We felt very light and almost as though we were floating. We both commented on that fabulous feeling we were both experiencing. The people who live at the retreat must feel like that all the time. So now I understand how valuable it is to meditate.
There are lots of different ways to meditate and you have to have one that you feel comfortable with. Guided meditation is very popular; where you are taken on a journey and you follow someone’s voice. You may prefer a mantra which is a word you say over and over again to yourself or you may follow each in and out breath. You may like to follow sounds like drumming or music and you may attend weekly group meditation meetings. As just mentioned there are also lots of meditation retreats around, just like the one I went to with my daughter. Vispassana is a meditation centre that is not only in the UK but is also world wide. Here you can learn philosophy and practice meditation.
So what happens to you when you meditate? Well scientists have now discovered by using modern technology like MRI scans that when we meditate our brains stop processing and we start to show a decrease in beta waves. Also that during meditation the frontal cortex tends to go off line and the parietal lobe slows down and the thalamus reduces the flow of incoming information to a trickle.
Meditation, it’s benefits in today’s world
- Find a place in your home where you can be comfortable and will not be disturbed. You will find that you will enjoy the time you spend going within yourself. If you have not got lots of time to spare see if you can do 10 minutes a day. Ten minutes of meditation will give you more energy to do more with the rest of the time in your day.
- Try and do your meditation at the same time every day. Lots of people meditate in the morning as this is a great preparation for the rest of the day.
- Try not to force your mind to concentrate. Let thoughts come and go as though they were on a cloud. Go with the flow as it is natural for thoughts to come into your head. You are aiming to find gaps of nothingness.
- Practice makes perfect and it takes twenty eight days to form a new habit. If you do continue with a daily meditation practice you will find you will have more focus in your life. Meditation is about learning to focus your attention so developing it regularly will improve your focus when you are not meditating, in other words it will have an affect on other areas of your life.
- If you suffer from anxiety then meditation will help with that too. This is due to the fact that while meditating we change the connections of the neural pathways. Then whatever we get anxious about is no longer relevant and we become more rational about whatever we were anxious about in the first place.
- Saying a mantra like “I am love” or “ I am at peace” over and over again will help you focus. While meditating every cell in your body will be filled with more energy bringing you more peace, love joy and enthusiasm which can only be a good thing.
- Light a candle (make sure it is a non toxic candle) which has a lovely smell and this will help you relax more quickly. Regular meditation will lower high blood pressure and improve the immune system.
Try meditation for yourself as I know it will really help you in your life. With regular meditation your mind will become more focused and with regular practice your happiness will increase, you will become more creative, intuitive and your life will transform.
Bye for now