Are you trying to find your true Zen? Want a more peaceful perspective? Need a creative boost? Meditation just might be the answer. Here are five reasons why:
Those who sit perfectly physically usually take more time to obtain the true way of Zen. – Shunryu Suzuki, Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind
- It is easier to concentrate when you meditate. The effects are even more noticeable in creative endeavors, like writing music, and poetry, or painting a masterpiece. Many master artists and musicians, top-tier athletes and others who are considered ‘genius’ in their fields meditate. This is because the act gives you greater focus, more clarity and calmness, and instills creative ideas with more magnitude. Meditation also gives you patience, insight and perspective – all important brain states when you are trying to make something out of nothing.
One hour’s meditation on the work of the Creator is better than seventy years of prayer. – Muhammad
- You won’t sweat the small stuff as much. When you meditate consistently,things that used to easily upset you seem to be ‘no big deal.’ You will find yourself reacting less to things and observing them more, with enough space between the ’cause,’ and your choice of ‘effects’. It is in this more mindful state that you can respond to life on different terms, and affect different outcomes. If someone is acting grouchy, you won’t as easily feel compelled to get pulled into their emotional state, and can instead, either neutralize it, or even better, lift them to a higher state of awareness, like joy, happiness, or pride.
- You’ll be less stressed in general. There are numerous studies which definitively outline the reduction in stress for those who are consistent meditators. The Mayo Clinic even talks about meditation as a stress reducer as well as an effective combatant to seasonal allergies. (Who can be calm when sneezing twenty times in a row?) You will reduce the fight or flight-response of the nervous system, and make more mood-boosting hormones like melatonin and seratonin when you meditate. High stress levels lead to a shortened life span and lots of health risks. Meditation combats both.
- You’ll experience better health and recover more easily from addictions. There is proof that meditation lowers high blood pressure, reduces cardiovascular disease, improves depression symptoms and turns back the clock on many physiological age factors. It is like the fountain of youth. It can even help you stop smoking or quit other destructive habits that you have had a hard time resisting with will-power alone.
- You’ll get to know the real you better. You often see yourself as a mother, a father, a sister, a friend, a baseball player, a musician, a lawyer, or a worrier. The list is endless, but it still can’t begin to cover the expansiveness of who you really are. These are all just labels that don’t really describe the true you. When you meditate, you peel back infinite layers of ‘stuff’ that aren’t really your essence. You get to know your inner self in ways that profoundly affect your ‘outer’ self, or the self composed of labels. When you touch this deep inner knowing of who you are as a more Infinite being, it changes everything. Benjamin Franklin once said, “Reading makes a full man, meditation a profound man, discourse a clear man.”
Meditation brings wisdom; lack of mediation leaves ignorance. Know well what leads you forward and what hold you back, and choose the path that leads to wisdom. – Buddha
About the Author
Christina Sarich is a musician, yogi, humanitarian and freelance writer who channels many hours of studying Lao Tzu, Paramahansa Yogananda, Rob Brezny, Miles Davis, and Tom Robbins into interesting tidbits to help you Wake up Your Sleepy Little Head, and See the Big Picture. Her blog is Yoga for the New World.
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