The Power of Meditation in a Fast Society
by Carl Benjamin, AssociatedContent.com, May 21, 2007
Bunker Hill, IL (USA) -- Feeling stressed, over-worked, things spiraling out of control? Then Meditation might be for you. Let's face it. In today's world, our brain, emotions, and body are being over charged. This even occurs when we are trying to sleep at night. How many times have you went to bed with worries or concerns on your mind? You lay there thinking about the days' events and tomorrows challenges.
This tends to make us unhappy, frustrated, and impatient. This even affects those that are closest to us. We snap back at others over a simple question or remark. If you are facing this type of lifestyle, it is time to take action.
Meditation can help us relax, understand ourselves, and how we react to certain things. It can help us to change negative responses into positive actions. It got it's start in Buddhist tradition. The good part is that you don't have to be a Buddhist to use the technique.
The first stage of meditation is that of stopping distractions and clearing your mind. This can be accomplished through simple breathing patterns. Choose a quiet and peaceful place to sit. You may or may not cross your legs. Keep your back straight, so you don't become sleepy. Concentrate on breathing through the nose. Don't exaggerate it. Just focus on breathing normally and maybe a little deeper than normal. At first you will think that you are just adding more to your thought process. As you get better on your focus though, you will feel more relaxed. Your mind will be tempted to think about other things. When this happens, just go back to your focus on breathing.
Relaxation of the muscles is very important. That is why many times you see a person with one hand open on top of the other hand. Sometimes the thumb will slightly touch the middle finger with the palms up. The tongue touches the back of the teeth. The head is tipped slightly forward. Your eyes should be partly closed but, also slightly opened. Your focus should be down towards the end of your nose. Your shoulders are level and elbows are out from the body to let air circulate around your body.
Gradually we will begin to feel a sense of inner peace. Our mind will become more clear from our daily distractions. So much of our stress comes from our mind. We are trying to eliminate those thoughts and stress. Breathing is a great way to start this process. It can be very powerful. It let's us control our thoughts.
When our mind is peaceful, then we are free from bad thoughts or worries. There are two types of mediation. they are analytical and placement meditation. Analytical meditation is the meaning of a Dharma instruction that we have heard or read. This thought process now moves us to a single object of our concentration or a placement meditation. Analytical is sometimes called contemplation. Placement depends on contemplation. And contemplation depends on listening or reading Dharma instruction.
Since the majority of us aren't Buddhist, we won't understand the meaning of Dharma instruction or reading. However, meditation can still give us a great since of relief. When we enter into a state of relaxation, we can then think freely about the things that distract our lives and how insignificant they truly are. The time one meditates usually depends on the individual. If you start getting tired from sitting straight, then it is time to start leaving the meditation state.
Meditation not only clears our mind and emotions, but the focus on breathing helps get oxygen to the cells in our body. Mediation puts us back in control. It also helps us to focus on better decision making.
Each person has to find the best time of the day to meditate. For some, it is in the early morning hours. Still others like the lunch time because it is in the middle of the work day.
In our fast society, we all need time to focus and relax. Meditation does that.