May 28

What Meditation Can Do For You

Many of you have probably heard of it, especially in movies. If you study any of the Martial Disciplines under a true sensei they will undoubtedly have you begin and likely end, every day with meditation. I know that Yogi’s teach meditation, as do some of the mystical religions and practices. What I’ve always found curious, though, is that though they teach you that you need to meditate, they don’t explain why, or what it does for you. So let us talk about those things for a moment.

Why Meditate Daily:

 
   For the moment let us put aside what we think we may or may not know about our religion, mystical practices, beliefs, and even ourselves. These things right now can only hinder our understanding of what we are discussing here, and that’s not what we want. Instead, let’s talk about why we could possibly want to meditate on a daily basis.
   If we live or work in high-stress environments, then daily meditation is almost necessary. In addition to relaxing the mind, meditation can reduce the side-effects of physical stress as well. One of the leading effects of physical stress is weight gain. That stubborn weight that you can’t seem to drop or even that you’ve put on over the last couple of months, all started with stress that you’ve refused to address. Meditation can allow us to address the stress and be rid of it before it comes to being a physical as well as a mental burden.
   Do you suffer from nightmares or night terrors? Believe it or not, daily meditation can alleviate or even get rid of them. Psychology (the study of the human brain and how it works) teaches that dreams, be they bad or good, are sent by the subconscious as a way of dealing with things that have happened to you, or in very rare cases, things that are going to happen to you. With this knowledge, it stands to reason that we have nightmares and night terrors because of things we are unable to deal with while awake that are bothering us. Using meditation, we can process our entire day. We can process those things that are bothering us, even if they are scary, while still awake and sleep more peacefully as a result.
   Have you or others noticed that you are agitated and/or irritated a lot? This is something that is actually really common in people switching jobs, starting a new job, or even students in college when it comes to testing times. The waking mind can only process so much information at a time, and as we try to cram more and more into it, we tend to get agitated, irritated, and for some people outright angry. Since during meditation we shut down our minds alpha waves (full conscious wavelength), we can then process the new information and add to it!
   Lastly, at least for this part, have you ever been working on a project and needed a fresh perspective on it because everything kept going wrong? Almost everyone has, it’s normal right? Some people end up leaving projects unfinished or leave them set for days at a time to try and get a fresh perspective. However, you can also meditate for an hour or so while thinking on the project to gain new insights into it. This can end up providing you with not only the answer to the current problem but answers to possible future problems as well. Thus you can complete your project more quickly than you might have otherwise.

What Meditation Does For You:

   So the big question for everyone I guess, would be what can meditation do for me? Well even if you don’t have any of the aforementioned issues, there is still a lot that meditation can do for you. It may not seem like it, but of course, if all truths were self-evident then we wouldn’t need to learn anything.
   So one of the things that meditation can do is relax you. Generally speaking when you think of relaxation you think of stress. However, that is not necessarily that case. Relaxation can overcome fear, anger, stress, depression, and many other emotional issues. In addition, if you have an injury you can heal faster, deal with the pain (if any) from cuts, and so much more just by forcing yourself to relax. Learning to meditate anywhere at any time, can be very beneficial in this area.
   So what else can meditation do for you then? Meditation can help you order your thoughts. When we get busy we have a tendency to forget about things. It’s not that we do it on purpose or anything, we just happen to forget something in lieu of doing other things. I personally memorized a piece of piano music years ago and when I have a lot going on and need to make sure I’m not forgetting something I’ll take a breather and meditate for a minute or two on that piece of music. In doing so if I have forgotten something, I will suddenly remember it and it will become the first task on my list instead of forgotten on another list somewhere else in my head. You can do this for all sorts of things.
   I’ve talked a lot about day to day stuff throughout this post. Let me now talk about something from the mystical side of things. In western philosophies, meditation is normally used as a way to center and ground yourself before meddling with energy. In eastern philosophies, however, meditation can be used as a way to access precognitive abilities and other forms of ESP. In fact, many visions and prophecies came to eastern philosophers during their meditations when they could calm their mind the most.

Types of Meditation:

   Now we come to the various types of meditation. Each type can be used for a different purpose, however, you can also use each type the same way. Everyone is different, so you’ll need to find which way works best for you, and go with it. I find that they are all useful in different situations, and so I generally use all 3.
   The first type of meditation is known as prone or relaxed meditation. This is one of the more difficult ones for people to master because they have the tendency to actually fall asleep. However, it is also the most common among the Martial Disciplines to see used. When using it you are either sitting, kneeling or laying flat. Hence the tendency to fall asleep. Generally, this type of meditation is used it clearing the mind, relaxation, and/or speeding up the healing process.
   The second type of meditation is known as melodic meditation. For this piece of meditation, one will normally relate a piece of music to something specific. Commonly it has been used by those in school when studying for tests. They remember the piece of music during the test and then remember the answer. I pointed out earlier that I also use this when I’m multi-tasking. It is probably the most commonly used if underrated, form of meditation.

   Finally, we come to the last known form of meditation, moving meditation. The most common form of this is called Tai-Chi. It is great for relaxation and muscle stimulation, especially if combating an injury. Though this form if studied tends to focus more on the energy system of the body it can be used in several ways. You can come up with your own form of moving meditation as well, such as a walk to clear your head, or perhaps you move a lot at work and can your thinking and such done there? This form of meditation is perhaps the most versatile of the three.

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