THE ART OF MEDITATION: –
As meditation is demystified and mainstreamed, the methods have become more streamlined. There is less incense burning today, but there remains a nugget of Buddhist philosophy: the belief that by sitting in silence for 10 minutes to 40 minutes a day and actively concentrating on breath or a word or an image, you can train yourself to focus on the present over the past and the future, transcending reality by fully accepting it. In its most modern form, it has dropped the creepy mantras that have you memorize a secret phrase or syllable; instead you focus on a sound or on your breathing. The brain like the body also undergoes subtle changes during deep meditation. The first scientific studies in ‘60s and ‘70s basically proved that meditators are really, really focused.
How to Meditate: –
- Find a quiet place, turn off the lights. The fewer distractions you have, the easier it will be to concentrate.
- Close your eyes. The idea is to shut out the outside world, so your brain can stop actively processing information coming from the senses.
- Pick a word any word. Find a word or phrase that means something to you, whose sound or rhythm is soothing when repeated.
- Say it again and again. Try saying your word or phrase to yourself with every out breath. The monotony will help you focus.
Which Form of God should we meditate?
Fix your attention on that form which appeals to you most: but know for certain that all forms are the forms of ONE GOD alone. He is blessed indeed who has known all as one.
Scientific Discovery: –
What scientists are discovering through these studies is that with enough practice, the neurons in the brain will adapt themselves to direct activity in that frontal. Concentration- oriented area of the brain.
Frontal Lobe: This is the most highly evolved part of the brain, responsible for reasoning, planning, emotions and self-conscious awareness. During meditation, the frontal cortex tends to go offline.
Parietal Lobe: This part of the brain processes the sensory in formation about the surrounding world, orienting you in time and space. During meditation, activity in the parietal lobe slows down.
Thalamus: The gatekeeper for the senses, this organ focuses your attention by funneling some sensory data deeper in to the brain and stopping other signals in their tracks. Meditation reduces the flow of incoming information to a trickle.
Reticular Formation: As the brain’s sentry, this structure receives incoming stimuli and puts the brain on alert, ready to respond. Meditating dials back the arousal signal.
Meditation Flavors: –
The meditation practice itself comes in many flavors, from the purely spiritual to mostly physical.
Concentrative: Meditative technique that directs the mind to a single focus, such as on breath or mantra.
Mindfulness: Teaches an evenhanded, accepting awareness of whatever arises in the senses.
Movement: heightens the awareness of sensations of movement, such as in walking or Tai Chi.
Visualization: Generates a mental image, from simple crosses or a single square of color to complex symbols such as the elaborate mandalas of Tibetan Buddhism.
Loving-kindness: Cultivates a positive mood or beneficent outlook through the contemplation of such feeling as compassion for all people.
Transformation: Seeks Solace or the solution to specific problems by turning negative emotions in to positive energies.