Since “change” is part of the theme for this month and meditation is one of the most popular topics to my subscribers, I thought I’d put the two together and list the incredible changes that have been documented on the benefits of meditation.
But for now, read this incredible list of changes that can occur in the body, mind and soul when you spend even a little bit of time in meditation!
I’m about to get a little more scientific than usual, but sometimes it’s good to see some concrete facts! An expert panel at the National Institute of Health found that the practice of meditating has also been linked with many favorable outcomes. Findings included “effective functioning in the areas of academic performance, concentration, perceptual sensitivity, reaction time, memory, self-control, empathy and self-esteem.” When they evaluated the effects of two meditation-based programs, they were able to conclude that meditating had definite stress-reducing effects AND also increased forgiveness!
There is a definable state of calm and peacefulness that emerges as you come out of your meditative state. Your pulse and heart rate have slowed down and a feeling that has been described by many as serene, tranquil and not feeling as concerned about the things that had previously bothered them.
Researchers at the University of Massachusetts found that those who meditated about 30-minutes per day over an eight-week period reported feeling a “heightened awareness and a keen sense of observation” at the end of this period. Participants in the study also said that they felt non-judgmental! Other benefits also included reduced anxiety, depression, headaches and pain.
A study recently published in Psychological Science actually suggests that meditation may increase attention spans. Research indicates that practicing meditation can result in better task-related activities and sustained attention.
There are thousands of studies related to meditation and its mind, body and spirit connection. But I think that the Dalai Lama phrased it the best!
“We all have the Buddha nature and thus already have within us the substances through which, when we meet with the proper conditions, we can turn into a fully enlightened being having all beneficial attributes and devoid of all faults. The very root of failure in our lives is to think, “Oh, how useless and powerless I am!” It is important to have a strong force of mind thinking, “I can do it,” this not being mixed with pride or any other afflictive emotions.”
“Moderate effort over a long period of time is important, no matter what you are trying to do. One brings failure on oneself by working extremely hard at the beginning, attempting to do too much and then giving it all up after a short time. A constant stream of moderate effort is needed. Similarly, when meditating, you need to be skillful by having frequent, short sessions; it is more important that the session be good quality than it be long.”
“When you have such effort, you have the necessary “substances” for developing concentration. Concentration is a matter of channeling this mind which is presently distracted in a great many directions. A scattered mind does not have much power. When channeled, no matter what the object of observation is, the mind is very powerful.”
So spend a little bit of time or a longer one in meditation and reap the many changes that can take place!