Brain Aid -- Meditation and Yoga
Science has proven that meditating actually restructures your brain and can train it to concentrate, feel greater compassion, cope with stress, and more.Read the latest research and put it into practice.Yoga citta vritti nirodhah. Yoga is the ending of disturbances of the mind. (Yoga Sutra, I.2)
Nothing is quite as satisfying as a yoga practice that’s filled with movement. Whether you prefer an intense and sweaty vinyasa practice, a gentle but deliberate Viniyoga practice, or something in between, all systems of hatha yoga provide a contented afterglow for the same reason: You sync your movement with your breath. When you do, your mind stops its obsessive churning and begins to slow down. Your attention turns from your endless to-do list toward the rhythm of your breath, and you feel more peaceful than you did before you began your practice.
For many of us, accessing that same settled, contented state is more difficult to do in meditation. It’s not easy to watch the mind reveal its worries, its self-criticism, or its old memories. Meditation requires patience and—even more challenging for most Westerners—time. So, why would you put yourself through the struggle?
Quite simply, meditation can profoundly alter your experience of life. Thousands of years ago the sage Patanjali, who compiled the Yoga Sutra, and the Buddha both promised that meditation could eliminate the suffering caused by an untamed mind. They taught their students to cultivate focused attention, compassion, and joy. And they believed that it was possible to change one’s mental powers and emotional patterns by regularly experiencing meditative states. Those are hefty promises.
But these days, you don’t have to take their word for it. Western scien-tists are testing the wisdom of the masters, using new technology that allows researchers to study how meditation in-fluences the brain.
Meditating to the rescue
The current findings are exciting enough to encourage even the most resistant yogis to sit down on the cushion: They suggest that meditation—even in small doses—can profoundly influence your experience of the world by remodeling the physical structure of your brain.
Although meditation can be done in almost any context, practitioners usually employ a quiet, tranquil space, a meditation cushion or bench, and some kind of timing device to time the meditation session. Ideally, the more these accoutrements can be integrated the better. Thus, it is conducive to a satisfying meditation practice to have a timer or clock that is tranquil and beautiful. Using a kitchen timer or beeper watch is less than ideal. And it was with these considerations in mind that we designed our digital Zen Alarm Clock and practice timer. This unique “Zen Clock” features a long-resonating acoustic chime that brings the meditation session to a gradual close, preserving the environment of stillness while also acting as an effective time signal.
Digital Zen Alarm Clock - A Meditation Timer and Alarm Clock
adapted from Yoga Journal, by Kelly McGonigal
Now & Zen’s Meditation Timer Store
1638 Pearl Street
Boulder, CO 80302
Posted in Chime Alarm Clocks, intention, Meditation Timers, Meditation Tools, Well-being, zen, Zen Timers