Now, and everytime, it is important for us to meditate. For many of us, meditation may come across as esoteric, only done by the spiritual. But such is not the case. After all, aren’t we spiritual?
The science is clear. Many studies have shown that those who meditate are more relaxed, more creative, less stressed, more attuned to their feelings and that of others, and suffer fewer mental problems.
In my practice as a clinical psychologist, meditation is part of the core treatments I recommend and practice with my clients. For some, trying it makes them uncomfortable at first, but majority easily catch up and go with the flow.
There are many variations of meditation, but the goals are the same: train attention and awareness, and achieve a mentally clear and emotionally calm stable state. This mental and emotional condition immediately creates physiological changes and effects.
It is believed that meditation has its beginnings in Ayurvedic philosophy, a natural system of medicine which originated in India more than 3,000 years ago. In Sanskrit, ayur means life and veda, science. So, literally it means the science of life.
How does meditation work? Following Ayurvedic theory, we have a small self (s) and a big Self (S). The “s” consists of our sensations, feelings, our memories, and these are all objects of our perceptions. The “S” is that core which is our true self. In between the “S”and the “s”, is the process of perception.
To explain, I am a clinical psychologist, a teacher, an administrator. I am also a father. A husband as well. All these things that “I am” are things I see in myself. But behind these things that I am is my Self, the subject of who I am. Those that I see as I am i.e. father, husband, are objects of my perception.
In meditation, the process leads us to connecting with the greater Self, which results to a deep state of relaxation and healing the meditator’s mind and body, or the little “s”.
This is very similar to Christian tradition. We believe we have a Spirit, Soul, and Body. Our soul and body are objects of our perceptions but our Spirit is where every blessing, peace, and beauty abound, incorruptible of our daily hassles and problems.
Constantly coming into contact with our Spirit provides us with the serenity and healing that our souls and bodies need. Indeed, meditators find the process calming and give them tranquility in facing their issues. And as said, multiple studies have confirmed its effect, regardless of the philosophy. The method works and works well.
In our next issue, I will share some simple methods on how to meditate which can be used by anyone anywhere.
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