The Many Benefits of Meditation
Through the study of books one seeks God: by meditation one finds him. Padre Pio
Meditation, which began as a sacred practice thousands of years ago, has become mainstream because of its many benefits. I Googled “meditation benefits” and the first reference to meditation that arose was from the Mayo Clinic. They suggest meditation as a body-mind medicine and cite the following benefits:
- Gaining a new perspective in stressful situations
- Building skills to manage your stress
- Increasing self awareness
- Focusing on the present
- Reducing negative emotions
I recall Goldie Hawn speaking about the benefit of two minutes of silent breathing meditation on The Oprah Show. Interested in accessing her research, I discovered a curriculum program she created with neuroscientists and positive psychologists for children utilizing mindful meditation. She calls it MindUp™ and is based upon the practice of mindful meditation. The benefits for this practice include: improved focus and concentration; increased academic performance; developed empathy; and increased optimism.
Food Matters, an e-magazine, recapped the benefits of meditation based upon a research study conducted by Harvard scientists. They used a control group and a practicing group. They identified the following seven benefits of meditation:
- Increased immunity
- Balanced emotional states
- Increased fertility
- Relieves irritable bowel syndrome
- Lowers blood pressure
- Serves as an anti-inflammatory
- Increases calmness
All of this is to say that meditation has benefits for your body, your mind, and your spirit.
I entered into meditation practice to know The God Within. The Eastern spiritual teachers refer to God as Self with a capital S. To me this means the Presence of God as an Inner Eternal Singular Presence that is sourced by an individual through attention.
My meditation practice is based upon focus. I focus upon breath, a question, a candle, or movement. It is through the single focus that I enter into a more vast Portal of God.