Category Archives: Meditation
Mind-body interventions (MBIs), such as meditation, yoga and tai chi, don’t just relax us. According to a new study, they can reverse the molecular reactions in our DNA that cause ill health and depression. The research, published in the journal Frontiers in Immunology, reviews over a decade of studies analyzing how the behavior of our […]
What do Gisele Bundchen, Jerry Seinfeld, and David Lynch have in common? At first glance, almost nearly nothing, but a deeper dive reveals they are all hardcore advocates for Transcendental Meditation, an ancient practice—with statistically proven benefits—that first gained popularity when the Beatles tapped into their Eastern side in the late ’60s, and George Harrison […]
The latest wellness trend spreading throughout the U.S has nothing to do with exercise or nutrition. Instead, people are heading to studios to sit with their breath and their thoughts. Yes, meditation is drawing crowds, according to this Washington Post piece. In Washington D.C. alone, three new meditation centers have opened in the last few […]
While many studies have focused on how mindfulness meditation affects newcomers to the practice, a new study out of the University of Pittsburgh examined the brains of long-time meditators specifically when they were not meditating. “MRI scans show that after an eight-week course of mindfulness practice, the brain’s ‘fight or flight’ center, the amygdala, appears […]
Mind-body interventions (MBIs), such as meditation, yoga and tai chi, don’t just relax us. According to a new study, they can reverse the molecular reactions in our DNA that cause ill health and depression.
Meditation is just as effective as painkillers in alleviating discomfort in the human body, a new study has found.
Walking can be another wonderful opportunity to cultivate mindfulness. Movement can strengthen our awareness and sometimes is a more accessible object for meditation than the breath.
We’re not always fans of the health practices Gwyneth Paltrow endorses (remember that whole jade egg thing?!). But last weekend at her Goop Health Summit, Paltrow and her friends did discuss some pretty interesting topics. Among them? Orgasmic meditation.
Zen, mindfulness, and meditation in general are believed to promote psychological and physical well-being. But why? An emerging generation of neuroscientists is fast unveiling the hidden workings of meditation.
“Greater than the tread of mighty armies is an idea whose time has come.” ~ Victor Hugo You’ve probably noticed that talk about mindfulness meditation is much more common today than it was just a few years ago. Nowadays, I hear about mindfulness meditation from a variety of different sources: on the news, television talk […]
When was the last time you sat quietly at your desk and did nothing but think? How would you react if you observed a peer, employee, or manager doing so? Encouraging employees to slow down to focus on the present can seem at odds with a corporate culture of speed and goal attainment.
When it comes to managing stress, the Eastern traditions may be especially effective. The Western health model is based on diagnosing the underlying cause of a problem and then finding an active medical or behavioral intervention to remove it. People with chronic illness are often urged to “stay strong,” or to have “a fighting spirit.”
Over the past year or so I’ve become increasingly meditation curious. “Do you meditate?” I ask friends and new acquaintances. (I’m always surprised by who says “yes.”) My interest was sparked last July when I spent a weekend with two close college friends. We had a gray-shingled beach house to ourselves—no husbands, no kids, no […]
If you’re pregnant, chances are you’re more than a little bit anxious about childbirth. But according to a new study, a simple practice could make both your experience in the delivery room and your early days as a mother more pleasant.
Your heart is a muscle, and just like any other, you have to work it out to keep it strong. (And by that, we don’t mean heart rate-boosting cardio, though that helps too.) Whether you’re “training” your heart for romantic love, self love, or food love, the best way to flex those heart-warming muscles is […]
The diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer can come with a lot of anxiety, depression and other symptoms that affect quality of life. But mind-body therapies, such as yoga or meditation, may help ease these troubling concerns, a new study suggests.
In our first installment of the Meditation How-Tos marriage advice series, the Kundalini guide behind Benshen, Desiree Pais, gives you the step-by-step methods you need to practice to stay focused and calm before, during, and after you tie the knot. I’m about to tell you the secret to planning the best wedding of your life.
Although I teach and study mindfulness — we all have our moments. I just gave the biggest speech of my life, for TEDx Athens, and… I procrastinated on writing it. I procrastinated so much I finished a 33-page book proposal instead of writing the talk!
When Rob Stephens, a 22-year-old senior, walks into the Mindfulness Room at Carnegie Mellon University, he leaves his homework and stress at the door. He is surrounded by a waterfall wall, plants, lots of natural light and an open space with cushions on the floor — a 24/7 space is set aside for meditation or […]
Nowadays, mindfulness and meditation are often used to mean the same thing, which can be confusing, while not many are clear on what ‘mindfulness meditation’ is and how it differs from either of the above. So here’s our version: Mindfulness is being aware. It’s noticing and paying attention to thoughts, feelings, behavior, and everything else. […]
Fairly quickly, it can produce beneficial results for many mental health challenges, ranging from depression and anxiety to age-related decline. Meditation has proven especially helpful in recovery from addiction and in preventing relapse.
During yoga pranayama exercises people practice controlling the breath, or prana, to induce a state of calm and focus. Paying attention to breathing and slowing down respiration is a core component of many mindfulness practices. Research suggests the practice has multiple benefits—it induces an overall sense of well-being while reducing anxiety and improved sleep.
India is known to be the land of ascetics and meditative dispositions. The art of mediation has been proven, time and again, to offer benefits that go much beyond just improvements in mental health.
Many of us have heard of meditation’s benefits. We may have even tried meditation once or twice. And many of us will have found it hard and concluded that “meditation is not for me.” But wait! Did you know there are many forms of meditation? There are mantra meditations, visualization meditations, open-focus meditations, breath-based meditations, […]
Take a deep breath, clear your mind and be aware of your breathing. These instructions, while seemingly simple, are often easier said than done. Yet with practice, this mental exercise derived from meditation and mindfulness can improve cognitive function and overall wellbeing.
Have you always wanted to start meditating, but don’t know how? Or started a meditation practice and quickly fallen off the wagon? It takes a little instruction, but it’s simpler and easier than you may think. As yogis have known for centuries, and scientists have more recently confirmed, the benefits of meditation are profound. Studies […]
I don’t believe in magic. But I believe in the power of positive intent. And I also believe if you’re committed to accomplishing a goal, and are consistently looking for ways to advance this goal, and signals the world is supporting you in making it happen — that this will help to manifest your dreams.
Mornings can be stressful. From the moment the alarm goes off until the second you’re running out the door, worry may often flood your mind. Meditation—the act of spending time in quiet thought—has the power to slow things down during your hectic morning, reduce anxiety, and refresh your mind for the day ahead.
Meditation has been shown to be an effective way to wind down and get to sleep—something that’s especially useful after a harried day of work. Mindfulness techniques have been shown to improve sleep quality, fatigue and insomnia in people who have trouble sleeping—possibly by helping them relax more and let go of stress.
The final step in integrating meditation into your awareness is to use the stuff of daily life as part of your meditation. There are ways of perceiving the world and the way you live in it such that each experience brings you more deeply into the meditative space. At the same time, however, this kind […]
In Chapter Three of the Yoga Sutras, “Vibhuti Padah,” Patanjali defines meditation as sustained concentration. Meditation is both a process and a state of being. Simply put, it is moving from distraction to attention, to sustained attention or concentration. As children learn about their bodies through yoga postures, they learn about their minds through meditation. […]
When it comes to meditation, I’m a hardgainer. I’ve continuously tried and failed to train my brain to sit quietly, slowly striving closer and closer towards nirvana. I’m a yoga teacher. This sort of thing is supposed to come easily to me,
As America’s most honest and ethical profession, nurses assume many different and unique roles—caregiver, teacher, patient advocate, and a listening ear. Now, nurses are taking on an even greater role helping their patients, families and communities lead a healthier life. HuffPost.com
Mindfulness gurus share the two-minute techniques that will help you zap stress wherever you are. While fitting an hour-long meditation session into your schedule might seem impossible, taking time out for yourself—even for mere minutes—to get in touch with your emotions is huge for your physical health and well-being.
Just 10 minutes of daily mindful mediation can help prevent your mind from wandering and is particularly effective if you tend to have repetitive, anxious thoughts, according to a study from the University of Waterloo.
I like to say that India changed my life twice. The first time I was 24. An English major at the University of California, Berkeley, I’d turned down a job offer from McKinsey Consulting in my senior year—I want to change the world, I said, and make music. But a few years of doggy-paddling at […]
Jennifer Fisher has been designing jewelry for more than 10 years—her fun, personal pieces are adored by celebs and editors alike. But, she says, it was an entirely different product of her making that garnered truly massive praise. “I have never gotten more thank-you notes than when I sent people salt for Christmas a couple […]
A team of researchers led by Dr. Lazar, a neurologist and instructor at Harvard medical school, has discovered that meditating for just 8 weeks can fuel grey-matter in the hippocampus and promote brain ‘growth’. More specifically, the practice of meditation can spark measurable changes in brain regions associated with memory, sense of self, empathy, and […]
We’re living and working during some pretty challenging times. In our culture, stress is the norm. Too often, our working lives are typified by long days, late-night emails, and unused vacation time. But, more and more, we’re beginning to understand the positive impact of wellness and mindfulness practices.
Awe is the experience we have when we encounter things that are vast and large and that transcend our current understanding of the world. The Greek philosopher Protagoras believed that our capacity for awe is our defining strength, the engine of creativity, discovery, purpose, and health.
This systematic review adds to the growing literature on integrative therapies for patients with breast cancer and other cancer populations. The latest results are published online and in print in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians, a publication of the American Cancer Society.
We’ve all done things we’re not proud of. Some of us have even done things we’re downright ashamed of. The feelings of guilt, shame, and remorse can be major obstacles to our spiritual development. The good news is that through the practice of mindfulness meditation, we can learn to forgive ourselves and to let go […]
Meditation and yoga practices help us to work toward becoming happier and peaceful human beings. This is an ongoing process and can take a lifetime. Sometimes you may wonder if your daily meditation and yoga practices have been benefiting you, and if so, how.
Meditation can change lives. It changed mine. The benefits of the ancient practice have only fairly recently been validated with technology by science. On a physical level, a person is learning to alter the way their brain functions by changing their thought patterns. Debbie Hampton, creator of the blog and website, The Best Brain Possible, […]