Meditation: Relaxing The Body And The Mind
Meditation is a state of being focused on a certain thought and involves the “quieting of the mind” as you concentrate inwardly, resulting to a more relaxed and calm feeling. This relaxation technique can help a person develop his personality through mental discipline as well as encourage his spiritual well-being by communing with God.
Usually associated with some ancient eastern religions dating back several centuries, meditation has been assimilited in western culture via spiritual practices and medical therapies which focus on different kinds of healing with the help of the mind and inner energy.
According to Dr. Borysenko, author of ‘Minding the Body, Mending the Mind’, “…through meditation, we learn to access the relaxation response (the physiological response elicited by meditation) and we become more aware of the mind and the way our attitude produces stress.” He believes that through meditation, one can also get in touch with the “inner physician” and allow the body’s own inner wisdom to be heard.
In Taoism, the mind of emotions is controlled by the “Fire” energy of the heart. Unrestrained, this Fire energy flares upward and wastefully burns up the energy and smothers the mind. On the other hand, the mind of intent, or will power, is governed by the Water energy of the kidneys. Without direction, the “Water” energy is flushed down the sexual organs which drains its essence and spirit. However, when you are meditating, these flows of Water and Fire energies are reversed. The Water energy is drawn up to the head through the Central and Governing channels, while the Fire energy from the heart is drawn down into the Lower Elixir Field in the abdomen, where the energy is refined and transformed. This process allows the mind of intent, which is Water, to provide a soothing and relaxing effect over the mind of emotion, which is Fire. Hence, meditation relaxation occurs.
In today’s world, where there is so much chaos and negativism brought about by man’s pursuit of wealth and power, many have fallen victim to stress and anxiety, not to mention a variety of medical conditions such as cardiovascular and respiratory diseases.
Meditation relaxation involves the body and mind. It is beneficial in providing relief to those suffering with anxiety disorders as it allows the person to experience relaxation and release negative energies stored in the body, allowing it to acquire a different form of healing that is not afforded by medications. But this method is a skill which needs to be learned properly. Training in the art of meditation relaxation is necessary to avoid getting distractions.
In Yoga Meditation, the key principles in this process are attention and breathing. These two work together naturally in allowing the relaxation of the physical body, as well as the mind.
There are times when the mind is restless that it could not keep itself from getting distracted and have the tendency to open the eyes or make unnecessary movements during the process. What some practitioners do is to make use of external device or stimulus like music or visual support to get to that state of relaxation. However, to train the mind means not relying on this external technique but directly working in the mind itself.
In order to train the restless mind, one must first acknowledge it as restless and that it will not easily come through. Give the mind something to do, something internal and real, not external or a fantasy. Focus on what is within the body and do not create something that isn’t there. That’s the beauty of Yoga meditation. So, whether the goal is to combat stress, cure illness or to gain higher spiritual experience, Yoga meditation as well as other relaxation therapies can help you find healing by training your mind to reach into your inner being.