Meditation is primarily the act of training one's mind, as a means to realize certain merits or as an end-in-itself. It is aimed at raising a certain mode of consciousness within oneself. Different types of meditation include mindfulness and sound-based meditation. While in the earlier times, meditation was the niche of certain set of people, today with ever-growing research on its benefit, meditation has become a practice which any individual can take up and further. One of the main features of meditation is that there is no push on suppressing the wandering of your mind. what is required is that you watch your mind as it wanders and let it gradually relax. In this way, there would be no residual worries at the end of your meditation sessions.
- Sharper memory: One of the most important cognitive capacities we use daily is our memory. With higher amount of stress on your brain and body due to demands at workplace and home, there is high probability of negative effect on your memory. This can be countered by mindfulness meditation where the focus of attention is a particular physical sensation. This lets you quiet your mind and learn to be attentive solely to the matter at hand, thus allowing your brain to be able to remember more sharply and quickly.
- Dealing with stress: Stress is the buzzword for anyone who is leading their life in busy cities. Starting from the hurried walk into the office to the pressure of meeting deadlines and reaching home exhausted only to find oneself engrossed in another set of tedious jobs is the condition of daily life for most people. Meditation will allow you to cope with stress in a stronger way by bringing the energies of your body under your control, thus giving you the power to channelize them effectively.
- Giving up painkillers: Recent medical studies, especially ones conducted in Montreal in 2010, showed how the practice of Zen meditation structures the brain in such a manner that its capacity to sense and deal with pain increases. Primarily practiced by Buddhist monks, Zen is the form of meditation where you focus on your breathing and posture while watching and letting your mind gradually turn quiet. In this way, you can put those pain killers away and increase your innate capacity to deal with pain.
- Happiness quotient: Prefrontal cortex is the part of brain concerned with positive emotions and feelings. Those who meditate have been seen to have greater activity in this area. Major journals and research institutions focusing on depression and role of meditation in reducing it have found that meditation helps the person to feel in control of their life by subtly changing the working of their brains and thus, resulting in greater capacity to cope with depression and negative feelings.
- Good for your heart: Two kinds of meditation which are greatly beneficial for smooth working of your heart are Zen and Transcendental meditation. Transcendental meditation, taking after its name, helps you to transcend your worries through attention on chanting. It has been found that meditating daily helps to reduce the chances of stroke and heart attacks by over 40%.