Category: Meditation

Meditation: Science adds facts to faith

Wellness/The mind: Those who meditate have long believed in its healing power, and now science is adding facts to faith This is your brain: shallow, squiggly, erratic lines. This is your brain on meditation: deep, graceful, synchronized lines. With an electroencephalograph and a willing subject, Alarik Arenander demonstrates the effects meditation has on brainwaves to a curious crowd gathered at a Portland hotel. “See that?” Arenander asks, pointing excitedly to lines dancing on a screen. “The bigger they get, the more parts of the brain are working together.” Arenander, who has a doctorate in neuroscience and teaches at Maharishi University

Spiritual meditation ‘may reduce pain’

Meditation makes people more relaxed and able to withstand pain if it has a spiritual basis, say scientists. Student volunteers were put into three groups, one asked to concentrate on a phrase such as “God is love” or “God is peace” as they meditated, another to focus on messages such as “I am happy” or “I am joyful” and a third were simply told to relax. They were instructed to practise their technique for 20 minutes a day for two weeks. The researchers used psychological profiling to assess their mood at the beginning and end of each week. They also

Meditation ‘brain training’ clues

Meditating monks are giving clues about how the brain’s basic responses can be overridden, researchers say. Australian scientists gave Buddhist monks vision tests, where each eye was concurrently shown a different image. Most people’s attention would automatically fluctuate – but the monks were able to focus on just one image. Writing in Current Biology, the scientists say their ability to override this basic mental response indicates how the brain can be trained. Researchers from the University of Queensland and the University of California, Berkley, studied 76 Tibetan Buddhist monks at mountain retreats in India. The monks had undergone between five

Meditation Gives Brain a Charge, Study Finds

Brain research is beginning to produce concrete evidence for something that Buddhist practitioners of meditation have maintained for centuries: Mental discipline and meditative practice can change the workings of the brain and allow people to achieve different levels of awareness. Those transformed states have traditionally been understood in transcendent terms, as something outside the world of physical measurement and objective evaluation. But over the past few years, researchers at the University of Wisconsin working with Tibetan monks have been able to translate those mental experiences into the scientific language of high-frequency gamma waves and brain synchrony, or coordination. And they

Why chilling out is the new cool

Hollywood celebrities are doing it, and swear by its results. But meditation makes everyone feel better, writes Sal Morgan. A decade ago it was boozing and sex. Then came drugs and bingeing. Later, dieting and hard-core gym workouts. Lately though, Hollywood stars have been slowing down and waxing lyrical in interviews about stopping to smell the roses. Clearly a bit of calm is needed to cope with a celebrity pace of life. Initially, yoga was the answer to celebrity wellness. Christy Turlington and Madonna were the first to strike a pose, followed by Gwyneth Paltrow, Sting, Ricky Martin and Meg

Meditate and cut crime

Will the citizens of the country ever enjoy a crime-free environment? Will this world ever find peace? These are some of the questions that drove the Brahma Kumaris Raja Yoga Centre to publicly launch World Peace Hour recently at its Chaguanas branch. The centre hopes to spread, through prayer and meditation, a peaceful attitude that will help reduce crime. Attendees included co-ordinator of the Divali Nagar, Deokinanan Sharma, and feature speaker, Assistant Commissioner of Police for South and Central, Dennis Graham. Most people do not take seriously thoughts on meditation, much less as a way to bring more order to

A ‘spiritual path’ in our own neighborhood

Many people take up meditation for spiritual enlightenment and to improve their health, both physical and mental Seated quietly in a large, darkened room at the Spiritual Path Holistic Center, Willowbrook, Blanca Greenberg, a certified spiritual counselor, leads a small class in meditation. Her students sit facing her on the floor, on blankets. The room is silent, except for the tranquil sounds of a CD player playing softly at the back of room and a small water fountain trickling down on the opposite side of the space. The class begins with what Ms. Greenberg calls a circle of healing, which

Clear the mind, treat the body

Meditation is gaining support for relieving stress and easing symptoms • Eat a balanced diet. • Get 30 minutes of aerobic exercise a day. • Meditate. More and more people are adding meditation to their healthy lifestyle checklist. June Pittleman of Louisville did just that when she started experiencing nausea, headaches and dizziness but regular medical diagnostic tests didn’t reveal any source of the problem. Gradually, as she practiced meditation, the symptoms abated. Now her physicians know meditation is part of her daily life. So recently, when she was at the hospital for an outpatient procedure and her blood pressure

Mindful therapy

In the middle of the night, Dale Lechtman wakes up, all kinds of thoughts crowding sleep out of her mind. But Lechtman uses meditation to handle insomnia. Lying in bed, she focuses on breathing. She takes in air deeply. Then, she expels it through her nose and mouth slowly, as though she were trying to make a feather float on her breath. Thoughts relentlessly pound at her mind’s door, but in time, they are no match for Lechtman’s skills. They disintegrate harmlessly into darkness, and, finally, the 62-year-old nurse from Westminster is relaxed enough to resume sleeping. Meditation Meditation: Entering