Many Varieties of Meditation are Available for Stress, Disease, and Depression Through Relaxation
Most of us who have never meditated or who have always practiced it in a very prescribed manner can learn a great deal by moving beyond our rigid precepts. Beyond the spiritual, there is mounting documentation that regular meditation can reduce stress and support longevity. It’s no longer uncommon for health care professionals like physicians, psychologists, and massage therapists to recommend various types of meditation to their patients and clients.
Courses are available at seminars, retreats, colleges and on-line suggesting that we all need to find a way to expand our inner connection while moving outward into the unknown. We live in a stress-producing society and are often much less physically active than our ancestors. Most of us need to find a way to unwind.
One group, Vipassana, offers free retreats that last ten days and require ten hours a day of meditation. If you know anyone who does that type of inner work you have probably noticed that they look very different “after: than they did “before”…and keep going back. That says something for such a rigorous ritual.
Transcendental Meditation (TM) can be researched on the web and studied to great advantage according to its proponents. Many have been at it for decades and wouldn’t want to have a day go by without “connecting” in a deep and powerful way.
HeartMath has carefully documented statistics about what can be done to regulate heart rate, blood pressure and even body temperature through their method of meditation. Their system is more data oriented than metaphysical and consistently delivers to those who follow its guidelines.
Some groups are deeply religious in their presentation of meditation. The Catholic Church offers the age-old, Centering Prayer, Buddhists have many differing applications and the Self Realization Fellowship offers a unique mix of Christianity and Hinduism in their Lessons that lead to Kriya Yoga meditation.
The web offers a new student a large selection of options to consider. Many include free instruction and also have local groups for continued support. An overwhelming number of books on the subject are available, also, that can help the neophyte compare meditation methods before establishing affiliation.
To eclectic students, there is the possibility of learning several different methods of meditation and even combining them as they see fit. It can be a very personal process.
Not only can meditation be directed toward individual growth and expansion, there are methods, like the Buddhist Tonglen practice, that take on the job of working toward the healing and well-being of others. Monasteries and convents, both Christian and non-Christian, have meditated for world peace and individualized emancipation for centuries.
The opportunity for all of us to take a closer look at mediation and how it might enhance our lives and improve our health is definitely out there. Start small, shop around, and talk it up. What you come up with could radically change your life.