TEN REASONS TO MEDITATE
(adapted from Top Ten Reasons to Meditate by Yogacharya Ellen Grace O'Brian)
While meditation is not a cure all, its positive benefits are well known. Remind yourself to be good to yourself by meditating today and everyday.
- Reduce stress. Meditation has been proven to reduce stress by lowering cortisol and lactate levels in the blood. It induces deep relaxation, removing physical tension and anxiety.
- Improve your sense of health and well-being. The stress reducing ability of meditation is the primary factor contributing to better health. Our blood pressure can be normalized and our immune system is strengthened by our meditation practice. Our increased mental clarity and emotional calm, derived from a regular meditation practice supports our mind body connection, help us make better choices related to our overall health.
- Improved relationships. Meditation clarifies the mental field which contributes to inner peace and aids our discernment process. When we are feeling more peaceful and our thought processes are more orderly, we are less likely to be reactive. We can approach our relationships with more presence, calm and caring.
- Live a more disciplined, purposeful life. The discipline of having a regular, daily meditation practice provides us with a tangible foundation for purposeful living. Starting the day by investing in our highest priority—being Self-realized—and then living from that center of our being throughout the day, establishes a baseline for the inevitable choices we need to make.
- Have more energy. Long-term meditators exhibit signs of reduced biological aging and have higher energy levels. The biological age of long-term meditators is generally several years younger than their calendar age, demonstrated by higher energy levels, strong interest in life and learning, faster reaction times, stronger immune system and often better eyesight and hearing.
- Have a sharp mind and healthy brain. The concentration that is required to move our attention into meditation, exercises the mind and brain, enhancing our ability to focus and think clearly. Meditation has been shown to improve neuro-plasticity and increase grey matter in the cortex of the brain.
- Be more intuitive. Meditation quiets the incessant flow of thoughts and allows us to access the deeper wisdom that is not dependent on mental processes. Intuition is soul-knowing that is directly perceived.
- Be happier. As units of the One Reality that some call God, at the core of our being we are already whole and complete. We are already joyful. When the restless nature of the mind clears, we experience this wholeness. This experience reveals our innate contentment, the source of unconditional happiness.
- Experience prosperity. Our innate wholeness is revealed in meditation when awareness is removed from limiting conditions. Experiencing our unbounded essential nature opens us up to possibilities. With this inner experience of sufficiency we are better able to respond to opportunities that present themselves.
- Be Self- and God-realized. When restless activity of thought subsides during meditation, our attention and awareness can rest in our essential nature which is Supreme Consciousness—beyond ordinary thought activity. When awareness is no longer identified with changes in the mental field but instead, abides in the Self, we realize (know and experience) that which we are.
©Ellen Grace O'Brian