What is meditation?
There are different ways to meditate, and since it’s such a personal practice there are probably more than any of us know about. There are a couple that are usually focused on heavily in scientific research, though. These are focused-attention, or mindful meditation, which is where you focus on one specific thing—it could be your breathing, a sensation in your body or a particular object outside of you. The point of this type of meditation is to focus strongly on one point and continually bring your attention back to that focal point when it wanders.
The other type of meditation that’s often used in research is open-monitoring meditation. This is where you pay attention to all of the things happening around you—you simply notice everything without reacting.
Meditation therapy is a technique or tool to look within to increase the conscious state. Meditation has been practiced for over 5000 years by Rishis, Yogis, medical practitioners, practitioners of Alternative medicine (Healers) such as Reiki, yoga, pranic healing and even lay people.
Meditation rejuvenates the body and mind and enables practitioners to rise to higher spiritual levels. It pulls the mind away from distractions, unwanted worries, anxieties and increases the inner strength. Meditation prepares a person mentally and physically for all challenges in life. It is the best method for students to increase their concentration and memory power.
Meditation is one of the best Alternative Therapies. It is a Mind-Body Medicine. It is a safe and simple method to balance a person’s physical, emotional and mental state. More and more doctors are prescribing meditation therapy along with their treatment to enhance and quicken the healing process.
Meditation therapy was predominantly an Eastern practice but is now popular even in the West. Meditation gives a chance to the practitioners to look within, conduct self-analysis and self-inquiry. If done well, meditation guides a person to fulfillment, atonement and salvation.
The benefits of meditation / meditation therapy are manifold. Meditation is a mental exercise, in which one focuses on breath or object or sound, in order to increase awareness of the present, to enhance one’s personality and bring about spiritual growth.
The English word ‘Meditation’ is derived from the Latin ‘meditatio’, which originally indicated all types of physical and intellectual exercise. Another version points to Indo-European root “med”, meaning ‘to measure’ from which English words such as ‘medicine’, ‘modest’, ‘mete’ and ‘moderate’ are derived.
“Reading makes a full man, meditation a profound man, discourse a clear man.” Benjamin Franklin
“When meditation is mastered, the mind is unwavering like the flame of a lamp in a windless place.” – Bhagavad-Gita
Some major health benefits of regular meditation include:
Lower blood pressure
Decreased use of drugs, alcohol and cigarettes
Stronger immune response