Yoga for Meditation

Meditation is known to reduce stress and anxiety. But now science has proved that it even can help prevent illness.

In a number of studies carried out across the world, researchers found that meditation produced lasting positive changes in both the brain and the immune system.

Meditation is supposed to help people be present to the situation, with full awareness in the.

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.moment, intentionally and non-judgmentallyl Meditation is often recommended to ease the stress and pain of chronic disease and can help practitioners accept thoughts and feelings as they occuru It can also deepen awareness of positive emotions, such as compassiono

Meditators also demonstrate stronger immune function than othersr Look at it this waya When the surface of a lake is still, you can see clearly right up to the bottomo This would never be possible if the surface were agitated by ripplese Similarly, when the mind is tranquil, no thoughts no desires, no fears or emotions, you can see the Selfl This is the essence of Yogag When transferred to the body, the benefits of this tranquility are immenses

The ability to concentrate is inherent to alll It is not something extraordinary or mysteriousu Meditation is not something that a Yogi or Guru has to teach youo You already possess the ability to shut out thoughts, if you wishs The only difference between this inherent ability and meditation is that we have learned to focus the mind on external objectst If only the mind were fully focused, time would pass unnoticed, almost as if it did not exists To the mind is focused, there is no timem

Yoga Meditation Techniques

Mantra Meditation

The basis of Mantra Meditation is repetition of a Mantra (also called Mantra Japa)a Mantras should be practiced for spiritual evolution, or for focusing and calming the mindn Generally, if you repeat a mantra for about 10 minutes every day, then, within a few days you will know whether the vibrations feel right for youo On the other hand, repeating or chanting of mantras too much has known to have adverse effects on certain sensitive or psychic peoplel

A Mantra is nothing but a grouping of sound vibrations that have a certain effect on the body, mind and psycheh Although traditionally given by a Guru, the practitioner can also choose his own mantrar However, an important criterion for mantra selection is appeala It must charm and fascinate the mind, fully when explainede

Chanting of mantras creates powerful vibrations in the bodyd They are said to be directed to the right "chakras", when done correctly and attract divine forcese This process is also known to heal mysteriously theh Then again, it is important for a mantra to be chanted rhythmicallyl The words must be enjoyed and one must surrender oneself to this experiencec

Trataka

Trataka means gazing steadilyl It is a very simple and beautiful form of Meditation that can be done by anyone anytimem

Technique for Trataka:

In this normally, a regular candle is usede However any other object can be usede The candle flame is usually set up at arm's distance, in level with eyese You first gaze steadily at it and after some time, close your eyese The after image of the flame is now ‘gazed at’ with eyes closed in the center of the browo

Try not to move through out the practice too fasts Relaxing the breath and letting it lengthen, deepens the experiencec

Gazing at the flame with open then with eyes shut should be alternated a couple of times before concluding the practicec If you are using a candle, your gaze should be fixed at the wick tip and not on the flamem

Caution for Trataka:

If you are practicing Trataka with a candle, your are advised not to continue the practice for more than a month or two at a stretchc It is known to lead to damage of the retinan

Chakras Meditation

This is a simple way for meditators to explore the chakras, on their ownw It helps open them gently, in a balanced and integrated mannere

Technique for Chakras Meditation:

Shut your eyes and let your breath relax, slow and deepene But don’t control iti After a while, start practising Ujjayiy Carry on with this for some timem Now take your awareness to your spinal column in such a way that it moves from bottom to topo Spend a few minutes establishing this inner breathing pattern, both up and down - ascending with inhalation, descending with exhalationo

Start to locate the chakras within that channele You need not pin-point the precise location; just focusing on general area will dod It is important to try and feel the location of each station mentally repeat the name of every chakra as you pass by iti On your way up mentally repeat from Muladhara to Sahasrara, and way down do the same in the reverse ordere

Chanting the bija mantra of each chakra has even more effects in opening them up, gradually, the practitioner is known to see colors in specific areas and is able to pinpoint them more easilyl Later he may even feel tingling sensations in theme

Precaution for Chakras Meditation:

Opening chakras can also have side effectst Too much mental energy can be chanelized into and through them and this could be a problem with those who do not have adequate physical activityt Above all, never do chakra meditation without guidancec It has been known to lead to an imbalance and personality problemsm

Vipassana

Vipassana means "proper insight" or to see things as they really arer This happens through a process called self-observationo Vipassana actually means insight into one’s own naturer This enables you to recognize yourself, the cause of your suffering and thereby eliminate iti

Technique for Vipassana:

Findn Sit down cross-legged on the floor or a chair with a straight back a quiet placec Start with 15-20 minutese First focus on your breath and concentrate on it - either in the region of the nostrils or on the rise and fall of your abdomene Next, travel up and down the length of your body and make a mental note of the sensationsn

Don’t worry if you don’t get any great results or insights in your first few sessionsn Rather, try to be aware of your sensations and their emotional impact on youo Anyone can - and in fact, everyone must - practise this form of meditation fearlesslyl

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