How Can Meditation Help – An Introduction to Meditation
The benefits of meditation are a big subject, so in this article I’ll give you just a brief introduction. The question in this article is a question very relevant to the global aim of Saving the Earth.
How Does Meditation Benefit Us?
So, how does meditation benefit us? When I was asked to write an article about meditation for Save the Earth, the first question I asked myself was ‘what message about meditation do I really want to get across to the Save the Earth members?’
The answer came instantly. I want to help people learn how to regulate their own thoughts and feelings so they are free from unwanted ones. Also, I want to show you it is possible to learn how to think creatively and get excited about being alive today. And finally, I want to give you the intricate details of how to experience a more emotionally fulfilling life.
By meditating, self-hypnosis and exploring many different altered states of trance, I have learned that between full waking consciousness and deep unconscious sleep there are infinite layers of subtle awareness to explore. Allegedly, there are huge health benefits to entering into some of these subtle states of awareness. Not only this, but they may also hold the key to unlocking the mystery of changing human behaviour at a deep and profound level.
Science and Research into Meditation
In 1992 the Dalai Lama asked neuroscientist Richard Davidson to study the brains of monks. They practice loving kindness meditations for cultivating a sense of deep compassion within every day. The results of these studies indicated that meditations of this kind literally alter the neural networks of the brain. In 2008, the researcher Zoran Josipovic, a professor at New York University, started tracking the neural networks in brains of meditating monks in a MRI machine. He wanted to learn how their brains changed (shifts between modes of attention) during their practice. This led to some exciting findings.
Meditation Can Remove Fear and Help us Navigate Chaos
It turns out from the research that meditating, mindfulness and other positive altered states do reshape the physical brain. Some of the results show that the grey matter in the amygdala reduces in density. The amygdala is the fear response area of our brain integral for emotional behaviour and motivation. Reducing the amygdala’s grey matter is highly beneficial in our modern world where we receive a constant barrage of fear inducing news. If we are ever going to change anything, we are going to need to be able to calm ourselves. Then we can gain the sharp focus necessary to navigate through the chaos of it all.
Learning Benefits to Meditation
Another huge reward for learning to meditate is the area of the brain responsible for learning and generating new memory (hippocampus) increases in grey-matter density. In fact, a poorly functioning hippocampus means you would be stuck in the past obsessed with old memory and unable to create new memory or think in the present. This hinders the ability to be compassionate because people like this are not able to relate to what is actually going on in the present because they are too busy running old patterns of thinking.
Meditating helps us develop healthy brains. A healthy brain means a healthy mind. A healthy mind means our physiology, our emotional and feeling senses and our mental faculties cooperate well together. When they do we quite simply function better. Now, if everybody on the planet knew the truth of this that really would change the paradigm. I will explain more on this subject and give you an experiential demonstration of what I am talking about in future articles.
To be continued….