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Meditation, which has been practiced for thousands of years, is an effective means of treating stress and managing pain. Broadly defined, meditation is an activity that calms the mind and keeps it focused on the present. In the meditative state, the mind is not cluttered with thoughts or memories of the past, nor is it concerned with future events.
Meditation has its origins in many different religious traditions. Perhaps the best-known meditative technique is yoga, which originated as part of the Hindu religion. No matter what the origin, however, all forms of meditation share a common goal: To achieve a stated devoid of thought. Called "centering," this is the highest expression of spiritual contemplation, and it can be achieved through a variety of means. For instance, reciting words, or mantras, controlling breathing patterns or engaging in physically active meditations, such as the trance dance, can all help people let go of everyday concerns. Modern science has shown that relaxation of the mind has a healing effect on the body, helping people to reduce stress and, in turn to prevent disease. People who meditate regularly feel more intensely that body, mind and soul are one.
There are hundreds of meditation techniques, most of which fall into one or two categories:
- Concentrative Meditation - During concentrative meditation, attention is focused on a single sound, an object, or one's breath, to bring about a calm, tranquil mind. One simple, common technique involves sitting or lying comfortably in a quiet environment, closing your eyes, and focusing attention on your breath as you inhale through your nose for a count of three, then exhale through your mouth for a count of five. This focus on your breathing rhythm - slow, deep, regular breaths - allows your mind to become tranquil and aware.
- Mindfulness Meditation - During mindfulness meditation, the mind becomes aware of but does not react to the wide variety of sensations, feelings, and images tied in with a current activity. By sitting quietly and allowing the images of your surroundings to pass through your mind without reacting to or becoming involved with them, you can attain a calm state of mind.
Much research has been done on Transcendental Meditation (TM). TM brings about a state of deep relaxation in which the body is totally at rest, but the mind is highly alert. Studies show that meditation, especially TM, is effective in controlling anxiety, enhancing the immune system, and reducing conditions such as high blood pressure. Meditation has also been used successfully to treat chronic pain and to control substance abuse.
Meditation is an effective self-care technique that can be a useful part of your health care program. However, it is not an alternative to recommended medical attention.
PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT
Meditation exercises should be practiced regularly, preferably daily. The more frequently you practice, the more easily you will approach complete inner peace. Your meditative sessions need not be long to be successful, but you must be willing to let go of your everyday concerns and focus on relaxation.
MEDITATION - THE TREATMENT: Meditate at the same time of day and in the same place - preferably in a comfortable area where you will not be disturbed. Stick to one routine for several weeks before you try another. For specific instruction on a particular form of meditation, sign up for a class or workshop.
THE EFFECT OF MEDITATION: In a meditative state, metabolic processes, including respiration and blood flow, slow down. Scientists have documented this effect by measuring brain activity. In the waking brain, activity measures 13 to 30 Hertz (beta waves); during meditation, which mimics sleep, it is only 8-12 Hertz (alpha waves).
THE VIEW OF MAINSTREAM MEDICINE: The positive effect of meditation on the autonomic nervous system is not disputed. Neurological tests reveal that regular oscillation patterns occur in brain waves during meditation, reflecting deep relaxation. Meditation has been proven to ease stress, high blood pressure, emotional imbalance and depression; boosts energy; improves concentration; and helps strengthen the immune system.
A Little Lore - In traditional meditation, the mantra "om," from the Sanskrit language, is believed to contain sounds that encompass Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva - the Hindu Gods of Creation, Preservation & Destruction. Meditators all over the world use the mantra.
Guided imagery with meditation or relaxation tapes can be beneficial while practicing yoga. Soft music and vivid stories take the listener away from everyday concerns and makes it simpler to reach a relaxed state. Other aids include concentrating on a specific object or reciting a mantra - pleasant sounding words that may or may not have significance.
The typical pose for meditation exercises is the lotus position, which is used in yoga. Sit on the floor and cross your right foot over your left thigh and your left foot over your right thigh. Your knees should touch the floor. Rest your hands on your thighs with your palms facing upward. This position requires a lot of flexibility, so novices may prefer sitting "Indian" style, with their knees bent and feet crossed at the ankles. Whatever position you prefer, make sure it allows you to fully relax.
CANDLE MEDITATION TECHNIQUE
One special type of meditation entails watching a burning candle. Sit in a darkened room and fix your attention on the flame.
1. Sit in a comfortable position that allows you to relax. Stare deeply and concentrate on the flame of the candle in front of you.
2. Relax and breathe softly and slowly through your nose. Take a few moments to think about nothing. Concentrate on how your abdomen slowly rises and falls with every breath and how the air flows through your entire body. A hand on your stomach may help awareness.
3. Allow your thoughts to wander serenely. Welcome every new thought like a good friend, but do not dwell on it. The calming light emitted by the candle will allow you to forget your everyday problems. You will feel less tension in your body and mental composure will result from this exercise.
I have also done this type of meditation using fireplace or campfire embers. I watch the hot coals dance. Watching snow fall is another suggestion. I have also meditated by a creek at night with a full moon and watch the sparks of moonlight on the ripples as a way to meditate. All of these can be very mesmerizing and helps one to go into an alpha meditative state.
Transcendental Meditation (TM) Program - Official U.S. Website
World Wide Online Meditation Center
Meditation Handbook - How To Meditate
PAIN CONTROL LINKS
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Pain Control
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Acupressure
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Acupuncture
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Biofeedback
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Chiropractic Care
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Guided Imagery
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Heat & Cold Therapy
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Herbal Pain Relievers
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Hypnotherapy
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Massage
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Medication
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Meditation
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: Relaxation Techniques
MoonDragon's Health Therapy: TENS Therapy
MEDITATION RELATED PRODUCTS
QUALITY SUPPLIES & PRODUCTS
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MEDITATION & CHAKRA CANDLE PRODUCTS
Keeping a selection of colored tapers, pillar, and mini candles are ideal for affirmations, meditations, and visualizations. Candles are available in 10 vibrant colors to relate to your individual needs and to open each Chakra. These are often used for Chakra Therapy or Chakra Meditation.
COLORS & CANDLES:
- CRANBERRY RED: Love, passion, energy, enthusiasm, courage (1st Chakra)
- ORANGE: Strength, authority, attraction, success, joy (2nd Chakra)
- YELLOW: Clairvoyance, learning, mind, communication (3rd Chakra)
- GREEN: Healing, money, prosperity, luck, fertility (4th Chakra)
- BLUE: Healing, meditation, tranquility, forgiveness (5th Chakra)
- PURPLE & LAVENDER: Spirituality, wisdom, psychic awareness (6th Chakra)
- WHITE: Protection, peace, purity, truth (7th Chakra)
- PINK: Emotional love, friendships, affection, harmony (4th Chakra)
- CHERRY RED: Self love, enhancing relationships (4th Chakra)
- BLACK: Absorption & destruction of negative energy (1st Chakra)
Amazon: Lavender Color & Scent Candle Products
Amazon: Violet Chakra Candle Products
Amazon: Indigo Chakra Candle Products
Amazon: Blue Chakra Candle Products
Amazon: Green Chakra Candle Products
Amazon: Yellow Chakra Candle Products
Amazon: Orange Chakra Candle Products
Amazon: Red Chakra Candle Products
Amazon: Cranberry Red Candle Products
Amazon: Cherry Red Candle Products
Amazon: Pink Candle Products
Amazon: White Chakra Candle Products
Amazon: Black Candle Products
Amazon: 7-Color Candle Products
Amazon: Aromatherapy Candle Products
Amazon: Silver Candle Products
Amazon: Gold Candle Products
Amazon: Meditation Books Products
Amazon: Meditation New Age CDs & Vinyl Products
Amazon: Meditation Candle Products
AROMATHERAPY: ESSENTIAL OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES
Allspice Leaf Oil Angelica Oil Anise Oil Baobab Oil Basil Oil Bay Laurel Oil Bay Oil Benzoin Oil Bergamot Oil Black Pepper Oil Chamomile (German) Oil Cajuput Oil Calamus Oil Camphor (White) Oil Caraway Oil Cardamom Oil Carrot Seed Oil Catnip Oil Cedarwood Oil Chamomile Oil Cinnamon Oil Citronella Oil Clary-Sage Oil Clove Oil Coriander Oil Cypress Oil Dill Oil Eucalyptus Oil Fennel Oil Fir Needle Oil Frankincense Oil Geranium Oil German Chamomile Oil Ginger Oil Grapefruit Oil Helichrysum Oil Hyssop Oil Iris-Root Oil Jasmine Oil Juniper Oil Labdanum Oil Lavender Oil Lemon-Balm Oil Lemongrass Oil Lemon Oil Lime Oil Longleaf-Pine Oil Mandarin Oil Marjoram Oil Mimosa Oil Myrrh Oil Myrtle Oil Neroli Oil Niaouli Oil Nutmeg Oil Orange Oil Oregano Oil Palmarosa Oil Patchouli Oil Peppermint Oil Peru-Balsam Oil Petitgrain Oil Pine-Long Leaf Oil Pine-Needle Oil Pine-Swiss Oil Rosemary Oil Rose Oil Rosewood Oil Sage Oil Sandalwood Oil Savory Oil Spearmint Oil Spikenard Oil Swiss-Pine Oil Tangerine Oil Tea-Tree Oil Thyme Oil Vanilla Oil Verbena Oil Vetiver Oil Violet Oil White-Camphor Oil Yarrow Oil Ylang-Ylang Oil Aromatherapy
Healing Baths For Colds
Using Essential Oils
AROMATHERAPY: HERBAL & CARRIER OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES
Almond, Sweet Oil Apricot Kernel Oil Argan Oil Arnica Oil Avocado Oil Baobab Oil Black Cumin Oil Black Currant Oil Black Seed Oil Borage Seed Oil Calendula Oil Camelina Oil Castor Oil Coconut Oil Comfrey Oil Evening Primrose Oil Flaxseed Oil Grapeseed Oil Hazelnut Oil Hemp Seed Oil Jojoba Oil Kukui Nut Oil Macadamia Nut Oil Meadowfoam Seed Oil Mullein Oil Neem Oil Olive Oil Palm Oil Plantain Oil Plum Kernel Oil Poke Root Oil Pomegranate Seed Oil Pumpkin Seed Oil Rosehip Seed Oil Safflower Oil Sea Buckthorn Oil Sesame Seed Oil Shea Nut Oil Soybean Oil St. Johns Wort Oil Sunflower Oil Tamanu Oil Vitamin E Oil Wheat Germ Oil
HELPFUL RELATED MOONDRAGON NUTRITION BASICS LINKS
MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Amino Acids Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Antioxidants Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Enzymes Information MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Herbs Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Homeopathics Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Hydrosols Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Minerals Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Mineral Introduction MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Dietary & Cosmetic Supplements Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Dietary Supplements Introduction MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Specialty Supplements MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Vitamins Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Vitamins Introduction
NUTRITION BASICS ARTICLES
MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: 4 Basic Nutrients MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Avoid Foods That Contain Additives & Artificial Ingredients MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Is Aspartame A Safe Sugar Substitute? MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Guidelines For Selecting & Preparing Foods MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Foods That Destroy MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Foods That Heal MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: The Micronutrients: Vitamins & Minerals MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Avoid Overcooking Your Foods MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Phytochemicals MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Increase Your Consumption of Raw Produce MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Limit Your Use of Salt MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Use Proper Cooking Utensils MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Choosing The Best Water & Types of Water
RELATED MOONDRAGON HEALTH LINKS & INFORMATION
MoonDragon's Nutrition Information Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Therapy Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Analysis Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Diet Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Recipe Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Therapy: Preparing Produce for Juicing MoonDragon's Nutrition Information: Food Additives Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Information: Food Safety Links MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Index MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Articles MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Back Pain MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Labor & Birth MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Blending Chart MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Essential Oil Details MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Links MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Miscarriage MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Post Partum MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Childbearing MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Problems in Pregnancy & Birthing MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #1 MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #2 MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Tips MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Uses MoonDragon's Alternative Health Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health Information Overview MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Touch & Movement Therapies Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy: Touch & Movement: Aromatherapy MoonDragon's Alternative Therapy: Touch & Movement - Massage Therapy MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Therapeutic Massage MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 1 MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 2 MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Nutrition Basics Index MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy Index MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Massage Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Hydrotherapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Pain Control Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Relaxation Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Steam Inhalation Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy - Herbal Oils Index
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