Meditation. If you believe leading research scientists, it's as close to a magic pill as we can get! Here are 10 Tips on How to Do It and 5 Reasons Why You Should!
We all ultimately wish for peace. The trouble is that we are taught to believe that battles need to be fought and won to earn it. But what if our steps towards peace were instead steps of studying and dismantling those battles? To do this, it is best to start with the most intimate ones we know and the ones we least want to address, the burning and entangled battles within ourselves. What are yours? Conversely, how are you stepping toward inner peace?
Our minds tend to spin into different emotional states throughout the day. For thousands of years, eastern traditions have recognized how the mind goes from extreme states of joy, to extreme states of sadness and worry. Monks from eastern traditions, where essentially scientist; they recognized that a wild mind could adversely affect our health. So they used meditation as a way to stay in balance throughout the day. One thing we know for sure is that stress is extremely damaging to our health. It’s estimated that somewhere around 70% of hospital visit are stress related.
What is spiritual practice? Furthermore, do you have one? Simply put, I define spiritual practice as something you do every single day that draws you deeper into who you really are by connecting you with your divine self. Please don't be put off by the word spiritual here! Spiritual doesn't have to entail -- though it often does -- meditation cushions, prayer beads, chant books, yoga mats or any other such paraphernalia. A spiritual practice might be baking, gardening, running, knitting, playing piano, painting, hiking, meditating, golfing, doing yoga, tai chi or calligraphy. It is not so much about the form but about the profound and connective quality of the time spent within it.
Matthieu Ricard is a Buddhist monk who had a promising career in cellular genetics before leaving France to study Buddhism in the Himalayas 37 years ago. He is a bestselling author, translator, and photographer; and an active participant in current scientific research on the effects of meditation on the brain. Wherever he goes, he is asked to explain what meditation is, how it is done, and what it can achieve. In this elegant, authoritative, and entirely accessible book, he sets out to answer these questions.
One of the greatest tools for happiness and a positive state of mind is meditation, there’s a reason why it’s been used for thousands of years by eastern cultures. Over and over again in countless scientific studies, meditation has been shown to strengthen the immune system, lower blood pressure, and build strong positive emotions. I hear people saying all the time, “I would love to do meditation, but I don’t have the time.” You come home from work, and then all of the sudden your kids are telling you they need to be taken to soccer practice. So you cook them dinner and then rush them to practice. I suggest you develop a strategy of incorporating small two minute meditation’s into your life.
What's your relationship like to your breath? Do you have one? There are days that go by when I think I take about two full breaths. Sound familiar? I have a magnet on my vision board that reminds me to breathe, and a huge "Inhale, Exhale" card obviously doing the same. But it's still not enough. I mean, how many reminders do we need? We're basically lazy when it comes to breathing, don't you think? We are so used to the breath always being with us, that we unequivocally take it for granted. We're too so often checked out of our bodies, that we believe we breathe with our brains.
What’s your relationship to your breath? Do you have one? There are days that go by when I take about two full breaths. Sound familiar? I have a magnet on my vision board that reminds me to BREATHE and a huge Inhale, Exhale card obviously doing the same. But it’s still not enough. I mean, how many reminders do we need? We’re basically lazy when it comes to breathing, don’t you think? We are so used to the breath always being with us, that we unequivocally take it for granted. Additionally, we’re often so checked out of our bodies that we actually believe we breathe with our brains.
My mom recently asked me about meditation. I had three minutes to communicate this practice to her, over the phone, in a way that would both serve AND inspire her to continue a practice on her own. I was nervous and had no plan, but this is what I shared, and it feels right to share it here. Lightning-fast meditation to balance your head and your heart -- an actual, factual balance. Right now, as you read, feel how much energy it's taking to read and process these words in your brain. Now bring an equal amount of attention down into your heart. Even though we read and compute first with our minds, play with this for a few seconds. Close your eyes and feel the resonance in your heart as equal to the resonance in your mind.
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http://www.amazon.com/Why-Meditate-Working-Thoughts-Emotions/dp/1401926630/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1282906298&sr=1-1 Matthieu Ricard is a Buddhist monk who had a promising career in cellular genetics before leaving France to study... View Article