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Thoughts about Meditation and the Brain
I just can't sit still without commenting on the findings in this article from USAToday.com - "Say 'om': Meditation may aid in brain function" http://www.usatoday.com/tech/science/discoveries/2005-11-13-meditation-study_x.htm
I've been practicing mantra meditation for more than 25 years and can attest to the fact that it does have the benefit of calming me in a way that I can think more clearly about situations at hand.
My opinion is that if we all were able to think out our personal situations clearly for the greatest good, that together as one humanity we could work out how to solve problems facing our world as a whole.
It is my opinion that considering meditation to be mixing science and religion is not the case as there is no "religious" dogma in meditation. Rather, I find that even breathing combined with concentration on a syllable or group of syllables in repetition calms my thoughts when I'm feeling agitated. What's religious about that?
Here is a mantra or Om meditation that I find practical for everyday use
Sitting or walking take a deep cleansing breath such as 3 counts to breathe in and 3 counts to breathe out. Then do one minute of regular even breathing in a pattern like 1 count to breathe in and 1 count to breathe out.
Now, while continuing to breathe evenly, begin either saying or thinking your mantra or the Om syllable.
A mantra is usually what you consider an uplifting word you are comfortable with. Many people use the word "peace" or "love." One of my favorites is "peace reveal."
If your thoughts stray while doing the repetition gently bring your attention back to your mantra. Do not strain in your efforts!
To use Om as your mantra take a breath in, and on the out breath say or think Om and let the "m" part of the Om continue out longer than the "o" part.
Example: Ommmmmmmmm …
Practice your mantra or Om meditation a couple of minutes - long enough to feel the effects in your body and mind as feeling more physically easeful, and mentally or emotionally more peaceful or uplifted.
To finish mantra meditation take a final deep breath and release it and continue on with your day.
Cyber Group Meditation for World Peace
Practicing Peace Meditation
Beginning Sitting Meditation for Kids
Article and photo credit - Susan Helene Kramer
For offline reading
Meditation Lessons for Teens and Adults
More than 70 offerings, from guided meditation techniques to on-the-go stress relief and relationship meditations interspersed with verse, and a section of special occasion prayers. 114 pages.
Meditation for all Kids
Sitting, walking, dance and group circle meditations, along with positive affirmations, verses and benefits of meditation for kids of all ages and abilities in a 100 page book with illustrations.
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