3 April 2012
Meditation is universal, appearing in every culture all over the world. It has been around for thousands of years but just recently has been becoming popular as a valuable resource to achieve inner peace in the United States. Over the last 35 years the United States has completed a lot of research regarding meditation and the benefits a regular practice provides. The practice of meditation, any form of training one’s mind, originated in India thousands of years ago then the teachings were brought to Tibet where they continue to grow.
Meditation is a skill that helps to control our minds. In the United States we train for many different reasons; we train our bodies to perform physical activities; we train our minds to perform intellectual duties and we train ourselves to run technical devices but we are now just starting to train our minds for control. Our minds are multitasking all of the time. The Tibetan Book of Meditation, (Lama Christie McNally, 2009), states that “our mind is making 65 mental imprints per minute.” Thousands of thoughts coupled with emotions control what we say and do. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out how life altering controlling these thoughts would be. Learning how to concentrate and focus, even on nothing creates a space where peace can be found. Regular meditation practice provides us with the self-control to ignore our senses, which normally control our decisions. Our senses, quite frequently, don’t have our best interest in mind. Contrary to popular belief, instant gratification is not the way to find joy. One must meditate daily to learn how to focus the mind on one specific thought, detach from emotions and make decisions rationally for the moment.
Modern scientific techniques and instruments, such as fMRI and EEG, have been used to see what happens in the body of people when they meditate and the effects it has on one’s overall health in the long run. Meditation...