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Striving for Mellow?

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Striving for Mellow?

Take some meditations.
Deborah  King
Deborah King More by this author
Dec 09, 2011 at 09:00 AM

You hear about meditation everywhere these days—from health centers like the Mayo Clinic to your corner yoga studio to the TV and movie stars who say they can’t function without it. Why is meditation such a hot topic? Because everyone is stressed out.

Why is everyone so stressed out these days?

The pace of modern life and the onslaught you face each day from over 6.6 billion people on the planet and the ever-present sound and fury of media are enough to send anyone scrambling for anti-anxiety meds. And that’s just the external stimuli. Then there are the inner emotional issues and physical stresses you’ve collected over the course of a lifetime.

How does anyone get back into harmony and enjoy good health?

There is a way to do all that . . . and more. I know. When I was diagnosed with cancer at the age of 25, I had to turn around years of addictive behavior—smoking, drinking, popping pills, obsessive dieting, and promiscuity—which followed an extremely traumatic childhood of sexual and emotional abuse. I needed to clean up my act fast, and I did it with the help of daily meditation practice. Just 20 minutes, morning and night, helped keep me on track with a 12-step program, contributed to healing the cancer, and put me on course to become the teacher and healer I am today.

What does science say about meditation?

Science backs me up on this. There have been numerous studies that show the benefits of meditation, including the way it decreases stress and improves a host of physical conditions. The Mayo Clinic says meditation may help allergies, anxiety disorders, asthma, binge eating, cancer, depression, fatigue, heart disease, high blood pressure, pain, and sleep problems.

It also fosters peace of mind and brain health. A recent study from Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston tracked people who used mindfulness meditation for stress reduction for 30 minutes a day, then took MRI brain scans several months later. The scans indicated significant growth of gray matter density in the brain centers involved in memory and learning, empathy and compassion, emotional regulation and sense of self. A senior author of the study, Sara Lazar, a psychology instructor at Harvard Medical School, said, “This is proof that it’s really meditation that’s making the difference. And it doesn’t take long to get there.”

Why is meditation considered so beneficial in reducing stress?

Meditation is a powerful technique for reducing the stress that creates a lot of our physical and emotional problems because it works at a deep level of consciousness. Basically, we have four levels of awareness: waking, sleeping, dreaming, and the meditative state, which is a much more expansive type of awareness. In the spaciousness of meditation, we can leave behind the chaotic ramblings of our mind and slip into the gap that exists between thoughts—the entrance to the infinite universe, called by many names: Spirit, Source, God, or simply the Unified Field. The noise of daily life abates and our minds and hearts and bodies can come into balance. Even 20 minutes of meditation refreshes as much as several hours of sleep.

What is the effect of meditation on emotions?

The clarity you receive from meditation can bring startling insights that can resolve many of your emotional issues. Meditation is like a giant broom for sweeping away any stagnant or blocked energy that you may have buried deep in your body. In the space of meditation, anger and bitterness dissolve. You see things in a new and much brighter light, let go of feelings of being a victim, and forgive.

Are there any side effects to watch out for?

There are no negatives to meditation. For such a small expenditure of time, you reap enormous rewards. There are many different types of meditation practice, and not all of them work equally well for everyone, so please learn how to meditate from a qualified teacher, not from a book or a CD. For more information on meditation, check out my Facebook  page where I give you tips on how to get started.

How does meditation help with the big picture?

This is perhaps the most vital aspect of meditation: by sitting in silence and elevating your consciousness, you are, in fact, bringing more peace and harmony into the universe. By doing something that is so good for your own well-being, at the same time you are helping everyone else on the planet. Your energy reaches out, spreading across the globe like the ripples from the proverbial pebble dropped in a pond. It’s by far the most effective way to give peace a chance.

About Author
Deborah  King
New York Times best-selling author, health & wellness expert, and spiritual teacher Deborah King was a successful attorney in her twenties when she was diagnosed with cancer, which began a quest for healing that would radically change Continue reading