MEDITATION HAS much to offer to many people. At the most basic level, it offers us skills to help us relax. The first immediate effect of practising meditation is often experienced as a release of tension. In tandem with this relaxing effect, meditation gives us a way to regain our centre and calm our mind. It helps us regain our inner peace whenever we realise we’ve lost it – or are just about to lose it!
Meditation can also help us increase our ability to concentrate. All in all, it offers us skills we can use to build strategies for remaining centred in order to maintain a more balanced mental and physical state. But these are only the more practical benefits of integrating meditation in our life. Of course, there is much more to meditation…
Many religions, mystical traditions and spiritual philosophies have had a long history of meditative practices. In the Buddhist tradition, for example, meditation is often called the “royal road to enlightenment” – not a small claim. In more contemporary terms, methods of transpersonal psychology, which include modern dreamwork and meditation, also help to guide us on our own inner path of spiritual exploration and discovery.
A common misunderstanding about meditation is that learning it requires a lot of knowledge. That might be true if someone wanted to practise a specific type of meditation within a complex religious or spiritual framework. But out of any such context, meditative skills in themselves remain simple to learn and easy to practise. Among others, professional athletes and musicians admit to employing various meditative skills before performances. It helps them sharpen their focus and remain concentrated throughout the event or concert.
The initial difficulty is to find a type of meditation that suits us best, among the variety of methods available. And that’s where an introductory course is most helpful. Instead of focussing on one method within one specific context only, which might or might not suit us, an introductory course offers the possibility of sampling a whole variety of methods.
By observing the effects on ourselves of every method we experiment with during the course, we can soon find out which method is best suited to us. This process of exploration guides us in finding the best method for us to integrate in our daily lives.
A meditative practice will empower us with skills that will help us relax, calm our mind, concentrate, focus, keep centred and balanced – quite a treasure chest of benefits for something so simple to integrate in our lives.
• As a contribution to Dr. Kaiser’s ‘Perfect Health and Wellness Programmes’, Eleine will be offering a basic introductory course to various traditions and methods of meditation from the beginning of October. The course will run for six consecutive Friday evenings, from 7pm till 9pm, starting on October 7 and ending on November 11, at a cost of 90 euros. For further information and registration, contact Eleine on 918 569 208, 289 462 947 or email [email protected]