Perhaps nowadays meditation has no longer been a strange concept to us. We may feel full of stress in our daily business, family problems or even other matters regarding social relations. To be inspired again, a lot of people have chosen meditation as a treatment, and it is really effective.
Yes, it might have huge influence on our life, on the way we do everything. But, do you really understand every single aspect of this practice?
Some people may only assume that meditation means simply sitting down and not thinking of anything else, and then it can help to improve your attention and concentration on a particular thing. That’s true, but not completely enough. There are a lot more than that.
Below is 11 most important things you didn’t know about meditation that can provide some certain useful information about this limb of yoga:
Observing breath is the key to successfully meditate:
You might be curious about how people meditate without being disturbed by loads of events and thoughts existing around them. It seems to be mysterious and hard to catch to those who has never practiced it before.
However, the secret is actually very simple. All you need to do is observing your breath. That means you will sit quietly and watch your own breath every single time when inhaling or exhaling.
This sounds super easy but you will have to put a lot of effort on it. Sometimes, your mind will wander, and you have to redirect it, return your awareness back to breathing. That’s always a challenge to first time practitioners.
Lotus pose is not the only pose applied for meditation:
When we think about meditation, maybe we will automatically imagine someone sitting in the lotus pose, being quiet and closing eyes.
However, the fact is that you can meditate in any position, not necessarily with two legs crossed on the floor.
Meditation can happen even when we are sitting in a chair, when laying down or standing, as long as your body feel comfortable and totally relaxed. Lotus pose is recommended more often simply because it helps to stay focused.
There is no time limitation for meditation:
You might have heard somewhere that we need around 30 minutes to complete a meditation session. In fact, it is true that the more time you spend on meditating, the better effects you will receive.
However, there is no hard rule about that. If you are a busy person and cannot manage to get a certain period of time to practice meditation everyday, you can take advantage of all the spare moments that you have.
You can do it whenever having to stand in line or waiting for a friend. Make it to your daily life habits then it will result in unbelievable benefits.
Meditation is not a process. It is a result:
One of the things you din’t know about meditation is that your mind will become quiet itself. You won’t need to actively try to avoid your thoughts or force yourself not to think about anything. Your mind will naturally be quiet – all on its own.
Remember that meditation is not a process. It is a result, a goal you will reach after having mastered the skill.
You will finally start to just be present, because if you ask your brain not to think about other stuffs, you will just multiply the thoughts in your head.
Instead, if you focus more on present, for example, if you pay attention to the sunset or the stars at night, all other thoughts seem to disappear as you become more present to the moment. That’s the way your mind becomes quiet itself when meditating.
All people can meditate:
It is always assumed that there are some limitations to meditation practitioners in terms of age, gender or religion.
But that’s not true.
There is actually no restriction on it. Whether you are in your 90s or at the age of 5, you can give it a try. Even if you are not a “spiritual” person, you can still meditate solely for your health.
So, don’t let any factor prevent you from practicing meditation.
You can meditate anytime, anywhere, in any status:
While meditation is always highly recommended to be practiced in a quiet space, it is still possible to do it anytime and anywhere.
You can have a walking meditation where you stay mindful of every step as you walk.
Even when you are on the bus or sitting at your working desk, you can be present to what you are hearing and seeing or how you are feeling.
There is no “one right way” to meditate:
Meditation just has one goal, but there are loads of schools and techniques to do it.
According to the Vigyan Bhairav Tantra, an ancient Hindu text, there are 112 different ways to meditate. Some traditions teach you to focus on your own breath, but some will direct you to concentrate on a mantra.
There are various types of meditation: Zen, Transcendental meditation, Vipassana meditation, mantra meditation, etc. You can choose one technique to follow or even create your own style.
Observing the feeling within your body:
Like above mentioned, the key to successful meditation is being present. That means you can concentrate on your breath, or pay attention to the feelings inside your body at the time of meditating.
Maybe at first you would feel nothing special happening inside of you, but then you must learn to notice the aliveness and sensations you feel in your legs, arms, torso, every single part of your body. You will eventually become more present. As a result, your mind will also be quiet itself.
Meditation can improve your memory:
Did you know that besides increasing the ability to concentrate, meditation can also help to improve your memory?
Scientific research has shown that long-term meditation increases gyrification – the process of forming the folds of the cortex. More folds on the cortex would create more space to retain information.
Meditation practitioners are also considered to have the ability to adjust their brain waves better and ignore distractions faster than normal people.
Meditation is an anti-aging therapy:
Are you struggling to find out a miracle to prevent aging process?
If yes, you should try meditating. Some researchers have talked about the effects of meditation to our look, and it was proven that people who meditated on a daily basis for at least 4 years has longer telomeres.
Short telomeres are thought to be signs of accelerated aging. Since meditation helps its practitioners to focus on present, it is no surprise that it has the anti-aging ability.
The benefits of meditation are immediate:
The last fact in list of things you didn’t know about meditation is that its benefits are almost immediate.
Theoretically, when you get some exercises for health benefits, you will need to be patient with it for a certain period of time to see the result. But for meditation, practititioners can see the benefits almost immediately.
The first experience is normally the feeling of peace and calmness in your mind. You will definitely feel the difference right after sitting down quietly and directing your mind to what’s in present.