Flower_reflection

The Benefits of Meditation

There is a lot to be said in the phrase that, “Praying and meditation are one part of a two-sided coin.” I used to think that meditating was a more pure and direct path to “god” (the universe, the “god” of the universe, pick a “___” and go with it) as both increase your GABA production and both are proven to create channels in the cognitive regions of the brain that assist in the release of endorphins and serotonin as well as lower blood pressure and many more amazing, positive effects. However many of the studies and scholarly articles that I have read produced by fairly prestigious researchers suggest that meditation could help to fortify many other functions of the brain, more so than with the use of prayer alone.

I took this as meditation was “better” than prayer because it is not confined by any parameter or structure that is not based on anything other than what you and your connection with the singularity could produce; which in turn is primarily based on your own level of awareness and consciousness, as well as practice. My assumption, at this point, was that prayer was always going to be inferior to meditation because in prayer you are almost always following someone else’s written words and directives for communication and worship; or even in contemplating what can be said, should be asked, and what will or can be produced from such a ritual. To a degree, I still feel that there are more limitations to a theology based form of meditation-like prayer over meditation itself; yet now I have expanded upon this notion by finding a way to bridge the gap between the two.

15 - 1

The folly in thinking that one way is particularly better than the other (in my case that prayer is inferior to meditation) is that in prayer there is typically an association with the Source (a direct intention towards communication) that is not as commonly ambiguous as when a person chooses to meditate (which is typically directed at the “All” or everything within Creation). The major difference between this intentional ambiguity and directly addressing the Source with a name or prayer, is that most often than not there is gratitude built directly into prayer; this is because in most religions (usually to a detriment) you are asked to be humble and respect that you are not at the same “level” as the Source.Yet often times (and I have fallen prey to these same actions) when one starts to push one’s self away from theology for whatever reason (typically due to self-discovery while undergoing research in the realm ancient world history and of course comparative theology), one begins to get upset with the many rewrites and plagiarizations, and in how the many versions of the “word of god” each claim to be the “true path.”  Many may even turn to atheism out of anger and frustration; but the danger in this path is often found later in moments of regret for these reactions as some realized they are only hurting myself by leaving behind “spirituality” and focusing solely on what is empirically available in the physical realm (typically the attainment of physical goods and property or in mental studies for cognitive development).3045996598_434293e02b

My point is this, you don’t have to pray to get results that appear to be miracles, nor do you have to meditate; there is no one fixed path for any of us (sometimes this even bears repeating). Having one way or path was never meant to be the point, there has really never has been “the way” to do something; but always “a way“.Maybe we could make better use and obtain more of our so-called, “miracles” (or better explained as the positive “incomes” of our karmic energy “output”), by adapting the principles of gratitude as seen from the humble eyes of a religious person while praying and combining this with the open mind and heart of a meditating “spiritualist” (a person of a non-theology based belief structure).I have begun to try this in my daily thoughts and meditation/prayers so as to reintegrate my love and gratitude for the universe; something I feel I have begun to sway from in recent days.. and the results? My own karmic “miracles” are much more direct, much more powerful, and with a near instant reaction or positive outcome than I have ever seen before.

ennn


CONCLUSION

Be mindful of your reactions to others when discussing this topic and remember that none of us are truly on “the one right path” and so there is no need to push your feelings or beliefs onto others, nor is there need to get upset with others for being different or having a different belief system.

I feel that there is unfortunately a trend that has developed over time in this “conscious-based subculture” to be a little pretentious at times towards others that do not feel or think the same as “we” do. Ironically, this developed as a reaction to the religious crowd doing the same to non-affiliated spiritualists. Many of us may have felt the consequences for thinking differently than others and should remember that during key moments of learning it is essential for us to be in a comfortable environment in order to allow the Self to observe itself (which is the only way any of us truly become self-aware, and thus begin the journey of self-discovery and change). This cannot happen when the environment for the questioning mind is hostile, or even at times simply uncomfortable and Fearful (a natural reaction of the protective force of the Ego).

If you find yourself in either position remember those that feel the need to push their objections and opinions onto others are truly more of a sophomore of their own studies of the self. I use the term sophomore in the context of knowledge because when one first attains knowledge of the spiritual or metaphysical Universe, they were and in some circles are still known as a sophomore  [ (sophos), “wise” + μωρός (moros)] which literally translates from greek to, “foolish or dull,” meaning a person has a basic starting ground of some spiritual knowledge and/or wisdom and yet still requires more experience to become further actualized from their newly acquired potential.

be like water

The truth is much more simple and less confrontational than we give ourselves credit for, each of us are like lotus blossoms floating on the same river of life; sometimes we move faster with the current, sometimes we bump into the lotus pads of others, sometimes we get stuck in the mud that made us, and sometimes still we hit the wall and spin backwards, but we are all still on the same river in the end.

Photo on 2012-08-15 at 20.16 #4


Much love.

Eric Anthony Crew

नमस्ते


Waking Meditation: Channeling the Elements

This is a short documentary film about the morning rituals of a martial arts/Eastern philosophy student.

In this film I reveal a brief moment of my daily ritual in which I meditate first thing in the morning on all of the things I need to do in order to get out of the house for the day. If my mind wanders, I allow this and then focus on bringing myself back into center before moving forward.

As the film progresses and my mind wanders again I find myself visualizing practicing my martial arts katas while in various locations focusing on channeling each of the elements through each of the four very different styles of martial arts form training or “katas”.

During the final element, the audience will get to see one of the “avatars” I channel; visualizing myself as the embodiment of the consciousness and energy of this element while focusing on keeping my energy contained, for specific reasons.

It was a blast to make and even more fun to watch after so… Enjoy!

Fun Filming Facts:

– All of the segments were filmed out of order!
– I wrote this and storyboarded this all at once after watching fast moving cut scenes.
– Multiple scenes were blended together during the “breakfast” scene to appear as it only took one take.
– Most of the scenes showing the bedroom and me in the living room were filmed during twilight to maintain a morning light consistency.
– The coffee cup was empty in the beginning as it was filmed before making coffee.
– The Water Kata scene was filmed in Pacific Beach, California.
– The Air Kata scene was filmed in the Hillcrest area of San Diego, CA.
– The Earth Kata scene was filmed in the mountains of San Jose, CA.
– The Fire Kata scene was filmed in my backyard using two candlesticks and two sage sticks along with two simultaneously running cameras from two very different angles which were overlaid and then mirrored to create the desired affect.
– The higher tone that runs through the background is the 528 Hz Earth Solfeggio frequency.
– The lower tone that runs through the background is 128 Hz & other Solfeggio Frequencies meant to stimulate the chakras.***

– My voice went out after filming and the voice overs actually took longer than the filming itself.

*Alternate opening and blooper reel now available!

**SDO satellite images and video curtesy of SDO and NASA, music obtained from live performances of Japanese Solo & War Drums as well as Solfeggio Ascension Frequencies 528 Hz & 128 Hz.

*** Solfeggio frequencies the origin of the ancient Solfeggio scale can be traced back to a Medieval hymn to John the Baptist. The hymn has this peculiarity that the first six lines of the music commenced respectively on the first six successive notes of the scale, and thus the first syllable of each line was sung to a note one degree higher that the first syllable of the line that preceded it. Because the music held mathematic resonance, the original frequencies were capable of spiritually inspiring mankind to be more “god-kind”.


Vipassana Meditation and Body Sensation: Eilona Ariel at TEDx

Eilona Ariel is a documentary filmmaker whose work was deeply inspired by her life in Asia and her practice of the ancient meditation technique called Vipassana.


Science of Meditation Part 1 of 3

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=socAQcKhxVI

There is a way, which can be learned and practiced by which the consciousness can be focused, aligned and turned towards the first source of spiritual inspiration, the soul.


Meditation: Change Your Mind, Change Your Life: Bodhin Kjolhede at TEDx

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ixu4Kd5R1DI

Bodhin weaves metaphor and allegory together to explain the importance of meditation. He will deliver several tangible benefits of meditation that would go unrealized without personal experience.


Meditation 101: A Beginner’s Guide


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-kMJBWk9E0

Are you new to meditation, and interested in finding out how to start a practice? We’ll walk you through the basics!


 

Harvard Yoga Scientists Find Proof of Meditation Benefit

Scientists are getting close to proving what yogis have held to be true for centuries — yoga and meditation can ward off stress and disease.

John Denninger, a psychiatrist at Harvard Medical School, is leading a five-year studyon how the ancient practices affect genes and brain activity in the chronically stressed. His latest work follows a study he and others published earlier this year showing how so-called mind-body techniques can switch on and off some genes linked to stress and immune function.

While hundreds of studies have been conducted on the mental health benefits of yoga and meditation, they have tended to rely on blunt tools like participant questionnaires, as well as heart rate and blood pressure monitoring. Only recently have neuro-imaging and genomics technology used in Denninger’s latest studies allowed scientists to measure physiological changes in greater detail.

“There is a true biological effect,” said Denninger, director of research at the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, one of Harvard Medical School’s teaching hospitals. “The kinds of things that happen when you meditate do have effects throughout the body, not just in the brain.”

‘Immortality Enzyme’

Unlike earlier studies, this one is the first to focus on participants with high levels of stress. The study published in May in the medical journal PloS One showed that one session of relaxation-response practice was enough to enhance the expression of genes involved in energy metabolism and insulin secretion and reduce expression of genes linked to inflammatory response and stress. There was an effect even among novices who had never practiced before.

Harvard isn’t the only place where scientists have started examining the biology behind yoga.

In a study published last year, scientists at the University of California at Los Angeles and Nobel Prize winner Elizabeth Blackburn found that 12 minutes of daily yoga meditation for eight weeks increased telomerase activity by 43 percent, suggesting an improvement in stress-induced aging. Blackburn of the University of California, San Francisco, shared the Nobel medicine prize in 2009 with Carol Greider and Jack Szostak for research on the telomerase “immortality enzyme,” which slows the cellular aging process.


How Meditation Can Reshape Our Brains: Sara Lazar at TEDx

Neuroscientist Sara Lazar’s amazing brain scans show meditation can actually change the size of key regions of our brain, improving our memory and making us more empathetic, compassionate, and resilient under stress.



30760_495420963802715_765819385_n

Will your results be the same? Only one way to find out for sure… Please feel free to post about this in the AP User Forum Page


Andy Puddicombe: All it takes is 10 mindful minutes

When is the last time you did absolutely nothing for 10 whole minutes? Not texting, talking or even thinking? Mindfulness expert Andy Puddicombe describes the transformative power of doing just that: Refreshing your mind for 10 minutes a day, simply by being mindful and experiencing the present moment. (No need for incense or sitting in uncomfortable positions.)

https://www.ted.com/talks/andy_puddicombe_all_it_takes_is_10_mindful_minutes?language=en

The benefits of meditation

 

MIT and Harvard neuroscientists explain why the practice helps tune out distractions and relieve pain.
http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2011/meditation-0505.html

Effects of mindfulness meditation training on anticipatory alpha modulation in primary somatosensory cortex

Definition of Meditation Countless different meditative techniques Meditation involves a specific technique that is both clearly defined and taught to the practitioner involves, at some stage, progressive muscle relaxation involves, at some stage, a reduction in logical processing is self-induced involves a skill, referred to as an anchor, that allows the practitioner to effectively focus their attention

Types of Meditation Can be passive and active Passive meditation empties mind of thought and is attentive on entire experience, usually by using an anchor, such as the breath involves a widening of attention and includes techniques such as mindfulness Active meditation focuses attention on a specific mantra or image involves a narrowing of attention and includes techniques such as TM and Zen meditation

http://www.slideserve.com/deanna/the-blissful-brain-neuroscience-and-proof-of-the-power-of-meditation-dr-shanida-nataraja

Waking Meditation – Channeling the Four Elements

Advertisements