Meditation Mastery Secrets
W hat had been a religious obsession about moral corruption in Martin Luther's sixteenth-century understanding of obesity and the body came in the Enlightenment to be the stuff of the science of dietetics dealing with illness. The meaning of the fat body came to be the focus of science with all of the moral quality ascribed to secular questions of health and illness, rather than to the moral readings of gluttony and obesity. By the Enlightenment, Christoph Wilhelm Hufeland (1762-1836) had captured in his extraordinarily popular The Art of Prolonging Life (in two volumes, 1796-7) the good and moral aspects of the physical nature of man (Hufeland 1797 I, 169). Fat is simply bad for Hufeland and the Enlightenment philosophers because most people eat much more than they need. Immoderation is one of the prime causes of early death (Hufeland 1797 II, 43 ). Invoking the golden mean, eating too much and
This type of meditation is advocated by Jon Kabat-Zinn, who describes it in this way Mindfulness is an ancient Buddhist practice which has profound relevance for our present-day lives. This relevance has nothing to do with Buddhism per se or with becoming a Buddhist, but it has everything to do with waking up and living in harmony with oneself and with the world. It has to do with examining who we are, with questioning our view of the world and our place in it, and with cultivating some appreciation for the fullness of each moment we are alive. Most of all, it has to do with being in touch. In his book Wherever You Go There You Are, Kabat-Zinn helps readers get started with this advice Breath-Focused Meditation Close your eyes and begin deep breathing through your nose, focusing on your breath as it travels in and out of your body. If it helps you maintain your focus, count to 3 as you inhale and then count to 4 as you exhale. At first, you may find yourself easily distracted by...
Meditation is a state of relaxed yet alert awareness in which control of the autonomic nervous system that regulates involuntary actions such as heartbeat, secretion, and peristalsis, can be turned over to its parasympathetic system which induces secretion, increases muscle tone and slows heart rate as opposed to its sympathetic system, which depresses endocrine secretions, decreases tone, and increases heart rate. Meditation can lower heart and respiration rates, reduce plasma cortisol which is a stress hormone, slow the pulse rate, and promote the relaxed brain wave state of alpha. Meditation techniques have been used in clinical setting to enhance the immune system, reduce stress, manage pain, lower blood pressure, reduce anxiety and depression, and improve blood circulation. Those adept at yoga have learned to control the digestive, respiratory, and circulatory systems.
Right into place all at once and you'll experience a sort of nutritional enlightenment. But you can't reach this enlightened final state of knowledge and understanding without first passing through all the necessary initial stages and learning the fundamentals from the ground up. It's especially important that you begin with chapter one on goal setting and complete all the goal setting exercises before going on to the rest of the book. Once you've read through the entire manual once, then put together your personal plan using what you've learned, and start immediately The secret to finishing anything is starting it.
Difficulty letting go of special topics or activities Interference with other activities (for example, delays eating or toileting due to focus on activity) Interest in topics that are unusual for age (sprinkler systems, movie ratings, astrophysics, radio station call letters)
Lack of sleep slows sharpness in decisions. Exercise, by far, is the one activity that will do a lot for increasing your energy and thinking capabilities. Start some form of regular exercise. Find a specific area in God's Word on which you can meditate to increase God's Kingdom. Seek the Lord for your purpose and turn up your passion a notch.
In addition to these, similar experiences have been described as a result of shamanic (Eliade 1964 Harner 1980) or meditative practices (see, for instance, Becker 1993), where these experiences do not seem to be as unusual as they are in our Western countries. Charles Tart tells us the story of a student excitedly rushing to his roshi (master) to describe a vision of gods bowing down to him and the feelings of ecstasy that occurred during his meditation. The roshi asks him if he remembered to keep his attention fixed on the rise and fall of his belly in breathing during the vision, as per the meditation instructions, and when the student says no (who would care about the rise and fall of the belly during such a vision ), the roshi reprimands the student for allowing himself to be distracted (Tart 1975 83).
As has been reported in previous studies (Hata, in Hadfield 1991 Tachibana 1994), this kind of vision of a beautiful place seems to be a recurrent feature in Japanese NDEs. One reason could be that nature is strongly connected with spirituality in Japan. For instance, the representations of beautiful and idealistic landscapes are often painted on silk or parchment scrolls, which are commonly used in Japanese houses as an aid to meditation. The Japanese tendency to have near-death visions related to the natural environment could be related to their intimate relationship with nature. This phenomenon has been called 'biophilia' (Wilson 1984). However, there are some exceptions. For instance, Mr. C. did not notice any garden, park or similar, but found himself in a strange place where he had never been before. He said
What can help A white-noise generator that makes a kind of sshhhh sound can help you tune out that noisy world and fall deeply asleep. Soft music on the radio may help lull you to sleep. Some people can benefit from deep-breathing exercises, meditation, or relaxation therapy. (Read Chapter 13 for more information on these techniques.)
What did Jesus eat in Egypt The chosen people had specific written guidelines for every aspect of their lives. God was protecting them from the environment at the time, including personal hygiene, toxic food choices, and daily life interactions. When Joseph, Mary, and Jesus were in Egypt, they adapted to a different culture. How do you think they were treated The Egyptians knew they were once slaves. Meditate on that.
The ancient Hindus imbibed a sacred drink called soma, and Marijuana was used in practices of meditation. For the Arabs, Hashish (a form of marijuana) was the substance of choice, while the Incas chewed the leaves of the Coca plant (from which Cocaine may be made). The Opium poppy was used in Asia, and the ancient Mexicans used a variety of powerful Psychoactive substances, including Peyote, sacred mushrooms, and seeds from the Mexican Morning Glory plant, to enter the realm of dreams. The Australian aboriginals used the pituri, a psychoactive substance, to take them into dream time,'' as they referred to it.
American Lama Surya Das writes, When we are recovering from loss of any kind, we need to find ways to reconnect with our basic sanity and essential, authentic selves we need to find kind ways to heal and put ourselves back together again. . . . Chanting, mantras, prayers, and meditation practice can be very healing and nurturing. Yoga and spiritual exercise, like physical exercise, is a beautiful way of being good to yourself. L. S. Das, Letting Go of the Person You Used to Be (New York Broadway Books, 2003), p. 18.
Stress-Proofing Your Child Mind-Body Exercises to Enhance Your Child's Health. New York Bantam Books, 1996. This book is highly recommended for all parents. It clearly explains easy ways to teach children techniques such as guided imagery, deep breathing, and meditation to decrease stress, increase a child's sense of control, and boost children's confidence. A wonderful, practical book.
Identify a specific condition and attempting to treat the condition with specific medications, rehabilitative therapies, and sometimes surgery. The terms conventional and allopathic are often used when referring to Western-based therapies. A larger variety of terms are used when referring to alternative therapies. These include alternative, Eastern medicine, complementary medicine, CAM, integrative, functional, natural, and holistic medicine. In essence, what all of these terms imply is a form of therapy not considered to be a standard Western medical approach. Hence, the list of alternative therapies is infinite and might include a variety of treatments such as aroma therapy, magnet therapy, chelation, acupuncture, and meditation. Because there is such a vast array of different alternative approaches, it is important to define the specific therapy such as a particular herbal remedy or exercise when discussing and assessing the response to a therapy rather than using the term...
To tackle this, the company tried to find an optimum balance between centralization and decentralization. On the one hand, to compensate for slow response and the increased distance among their operations, the company worked on introducing a more formalized form of working. On the other hand, the company nurtured plans of upgrading its regional hubs and maintaining a high degree of responsiveness. In some instances, they compensated for the lack of direct control over the physical flow of goods by standardization and in some cases by letting go of the responsibility to suppliers. The standardization can also be observed in companies who in spite of their overall preference for direct ownership, still face the increasing distance between their HQ and subsidiaries or try to establish or utilize the economies of scale in their value chains. There is also evidence in the case to support the proposition that standardization increased the company's ability to change faster and maintain...
Among children and adolescents who, like Becky, experience LoC eating, there is increasing recognition that interventions may need to be tailored to address distinct patterns of disinhibited eating that may serve to maintain or enhance LoC eating. Disinhibited eating refers to occasions when youth eat food for reasons not motivated by biological hunger. Such occasions are often marked by feelings of letting go or a lack of restraint (Shomaker et al. 2011). In comparison to LoC eating, eating in the absence of hunger and emotional eating are two somewhat less pathological disinhibited eating behaviors that overlap significantly with LoC in children and adolescents (Shomaker et al. 2011). The emergence of eating in the absence of hunger may predate the onset of LoC eating in children, as this behavior appears to begin in preschool-aged children (Birch et al. 2003). Therefore, targeting these behaviors may serve as beneficial LoC prevention strategies in addition to alleviating...
Urge surfing involves mindful, non-attached observation of urges to binge eat or eat mindlessly. Mindfulness skills teach acceptance of the reality that there are cues in the world that trigger urges to binge eat. Patients are taught how urges and cravings are classically conditioned responses that have been associated with a particular cue. Mindful urge surfing involves awareness without engaging in impulsive mood-dependent behavior and involves letting go or detaching from the object of the urge and riding the wave of the urge. In Denise's case, she was encouraged to practice urge surfing when she was alone after her children and husband went to bed.
Ayurveda is a natural healthcare system that originated in India more than 5000 years ago. Its main objective is to achieve optimal health and well-being through a comprehensive approach that addresses mind, body, behavior, and environment. Ayurveda emphasizes prevention and health promotion, and provides treatment for disease. It considers the development of consciousness to be essential for optimal health, and meditation to be the main technique for achieving this. Treatment of disease is highly individualized, and depends on the psycho-physiological constitution of the patient. There are different dietary and lifestyle recommendations for each season of the year. It may be projected from Ayurveda's comprehensive approach, emphasis on prevention, and ability to manage chronic disorders that its
For millennia, Eastern cultures have tried to experience OBEs as a result of states of deep meditation (Becker 1983). Interested in the phenomenon, in 2004, while I was a member of the 21st century Centre of Excellence on Death and Life Studies at the University of Tokyo, I was invited to a panel discussion with Hiroshi Motoyama, who is well known in Japan as a visionary and healer.161 remember I was amazingly surprised to find out that he regularly practises meditation starting at 3 in the morning until 10 in the morning or noon, or sometimes all day long, without skipping a day. This practice enabled him to learn how 'to exit his body at will'. But this is of course not without an effort. According to him 'Each session of meditation is comparable to a situation where a samurai warrior stakes his life in a sword duel. It is an extremely difficult task to overcome one's self while withstanding the sensation of pain and discomfort.' This state of pain and discomfort may be well related...
Early recognition, diagnosis and treatment begin with improved understanding of the manifestations and prodromal symptoms of bipolar disorder in children and adolescents. Only 20 years ago, psychodynamic theories posited that mood disorders per se could not present in childhood. Much enlightenment has ensued since then, but clinical research in the phenomenology and treatment of bipolar disorder in children and adolescents is still in its infancy. Early intervention initiatives such as those sponsored by the Stanley Foundation should help to identify children at risk and improve preventative strategies 7 .
Mr W., who used ketamine extensively in meditational practices and described himself as someone 'who died various times within the ketamine context', had the following vision about the future of Saddam Hussein during the First Gulf War Some participants claimed that their experiences with ketamine had a significant impact on their interests and activities. Some became more interested in practices such as yoga and meditation. A participant commented 'After my ketamine experiences I became attracted by the idea of karma and reincarnation. I am sure that death doesn't exist, and that the human soul is immortal.'
Of the nine studies, seven used written manuals and two evaluated a videotaped SH program. Among the seven studies using written manuals, six used published SH books. A Guide to Rational Living and A New Guide to Rational Living (Ellis & Harper, 1962, 1975) emphasized cognitive strategies and were examined by two studies (Schelver & Gutsch, 1983 Vestre & Judge, 1989). A Manual for Self-Management of Public Speaking Anxiety (Marshall & Andrew, 1973) described relaxation and desensitization strategies and was tested in two studies (Kirsh & Henry, 1979 Marshall et al., 1976). Dying of Embarrassment (Markway, Carmin, Pollard, & Flynn, 1992) described cognitive-behavioral approaches for social anxiety and, along with a commercially available audiotape, Letting Go of Stress, was used to treat people who received a SoP diagnosis (Walker et al., 2001). Overcoming Shyness and Social Phobia A Step-by-Step Guide (Rapee, 1998) is a cognitive-behavioral SH book that was evaluated in individuals...
The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine divides the various CAM modalities into five categories (1) alternative medical systems, (2) mind-body interventions, (3) biologically-based treatments, (4) manipulative and body-based methods, and (5) energy therapies. These modalities include a wide variety of approaches, from acupuncture to nutrition to meditation to chiropractic. Art therapy, dance therapy, hypnosis, meditation, mental healing, music therapy, prayer Mind-body interventions recognize the connection between the physical body and the spiritual self, and include practices such as meditation, prayer, and music therapy. Biologically-based modalities are primarily nutrition-related and vary from special diets such as the macrobiotic diet to the inclusion of dietary supplements in the diet. Body-based methods involve hands-on manipulation of the body, and include such modalities as massage and chiropractic. The energy therapies are based on the concept that...
Endorphin mechanisms are nonspecific. Electrical acupuncture and needling stimulate the secretion of endorphins however, chiropractic manipulation, massage, physical exercise, meditation, and taking a vacation can also have the same result to some degree. Nevertheless, electrical acupuncture provides special clinical mechanisms that greatly enhance the effects of ISDN. When a needle is inserted into damaged or unhealthy soft tissue, the needling process and the needling-induced lesions activate an anti-inflammatory response, relax the soft tissue contracture, and enable tissue regeneration. During insertion and removal of the needles, the tissue is only slightly stretched. Manipulating the needle can apply more of this tissue-stretching effect.3
First, the body's levels of melatonin can be maximized by reducing exposure to artificial light during the dark hours. Even short periods of light at night can dramatically reduce melatonin production for the remainder of the night.242 Second, at least two studies indicate that meditation practices can increase melatonin concentrations.243,244 In addition to an effect on mela-tonin, meditation may have other beneficial effects, not the least being increased peace of mind. Several preliminary studies have in fact reported that deep meditation may prolong the lives of some cancer patients.245-248
Ectomorphs tend to be high strung, stressed and hyperactive. Stress reduction techniques can help the ectomorph get better results from their nutrition and exercise programs. Taking up meditation can be especially beneficial. An excellent book about meditation from a scientific point of view is The Relaxation Response by Herbert Benson.
As purely a product of bad diet whatever be the quantity that a man eats, it is plain that if he is too fat, he has eaten more that he should have done (Boswell 1980 958). Boswell, however, disagreed with Johnson, stating you will see one man fat who eats moderately, and another lean who eats a great deal (1980 958). This was in response to Johnson who said that he fasted from the Sunday's dinner to the Tuesday's dinner, without any inconvenience (Boswell 1980 958). Boswell noted that this may well have been true, but he also explained that Johnson could practise abstinence, but not temperance (Boswell 1980 1121). Nevertheless, Johnson's recourse to the cure of dieting was a typical approach of the first great age of public dieting, the Enlightenment (Rogers See also Enlightenment Dietetics
Establishing good exercise and dietary habits early in childhood is important to prevent heart disease. Regular activity and proper nutrition decreases reactivity to stress and makes the heart stronger and more efficient. At least thirty minutes of moderate exercise daily is recommended to prevent heart disease. Stress management helps to prevent high blood pressure, which is a major contributor to heart disease. Techniques such as yoga, deep breathing, and meditation may prevent coronary disease by improving resistance to stress. see also Arteriosclerosis Atherosclerosis Cardiovascular Diseases Exercise. meditation stillness of thought, practiced to reduce tension and increase inner peace
In order to investigate the phenomenon of enhanced spirituality and posttrau-matic growth in greater depth, we chose to conduct qualitative interview research with a specific subgroup of our MBSR participants.122 Nine cancer patients who had participated in the 8-week MBSR program, and who continued to attend weekly drop-in MBSR sessions, which consist of meditation and yoga practice, were interviewed for this study. Qualitative research was conducted using a grounded theory model. Participants were between 43 and 77 years in age (average age 60.8 years). Additionally, participants had been active in the drop-in group for between 1 and Within semistructured interviews and a focus group, patients were invited to describe how adding meditation to their lives had affected them. Through analysis of the transcripts, five major themes were identified, labeled as (1) Opening to change 2) Self-control 3) Shared experience 4) Personal growth and 5) Spirituality. This information was used to...
In addition to the components described earlier, this book includes cognitive restructuring, relapse prevention (addressed before and after quitting), information on healthy eating, and stress reduction techniques (e.g., relaxation, exercise, and meditation). Resources, primarily for ALA in each state, are provided as an independent chapter for a quick referral. While the chapter includes addresses and telephone numbers for ALA in each state, Internet site and e-mail addresses are not included (perhaps due to the 1998 publication date of this volume). The manual includes motivational activities throughout and provides space within the text for their completion. It also supplies the smokers with materials to assist them in
Dean Ornish, founder and director of the Preventive Medicine Research Institute, is famous for his 17-year study on reversing heart disease through lifestyle changes alone. One interesting result of the study (which uses a plant-based diet, moderate exercise, and meditation) was that the participants who followed his program also lost an average of 22 pounds in the first year, although the focus of the study was not weight loss. Equally significant, the patients who participated in the program were showing even more improvement after four years.
Another important concept in CAM is vitalism, which refers to the belief that there is a life force that helps to promote health and healing. Associated with this concept is the idea that illness results from imbalance or blockage of an essential flow of energy. Restoring balance is therefore often the goal. Spirituality may be a part of CAM, though many CAM therapies utilize nonreligious forms of spirituality such as meditation and relaxation techniques. Also common to most CAM therapies is the belief that health is not just the absence of illness, but a positive state. Health is a goal to be gained by effort rather than just good luck. In this view, the individual has a responsibility to do the things that achieve balance and promote wellness (for example, meditating or following a specific diet). Conventional medicine is more concerned with the pathology of a particular illness, including its cause and effect. The emphasis is not holistic, since treatments target a particular...
Stress is a normal part of life, but if you have fibromyalgia on top of the usual daily stresses, or maybe with some extra stress thrown in once in a while, you're in a bad situation. Stress can greatly worsen the chronic pain, fatigue, and other symptoms of the person with fibromyalgia. Be sure to read Chapter 13 for my suggestions on relaxation therapy, hypnosis, meditation, and other methods to destress yourself. They work
As a caregiver you must take care of yourself physically by eating a balanced diet and getting enough sleep and regular exercise. Exercise is a great way to relieve stress while strengthening you for the physical challenges of caregiving. Take care of yourself emotionally by learning to channel your emotions and feelings into constructive outlets. Find a support group for caregivers. Talk about your feelings with friends and family. Learn as much about PD as possible so that the next challenge won't come as such a surprise. Take time to do the things that you enjoy Go for a walk or spend time with nature or meet a friend for lunch. Don't neglect your spiritual side either connect with your higher power and meditate or pray every day. Let your spirituality give you strength.
The next study conducted by our group was a pre-post MBSR intervention with early-stage breast and prostate cancer survivors who were all at least 3 months posttreatment. Outcomes included biological measures of immune, endocrine, and autonomic function in addition to similar psychological variables as previously.104,105 Fifty-nine and 42 patients were assessed pre- and post-intervention, respectively. The 59 patients attended a median of eight of a possible nine sessions over the 8 weeks (range 1-9). They also practiced at home as instructed, reporting an average of 24 minutes day of meditation and 13 minutes day of yoga over the course of the 8 weeks. Significant improvements were seen in overall quality of life, symptoms of stress and sleep quality.
Sociological perspectives on loss have emphasized the social meanings attributed by societies to different types of losses. Based on extensive research in North America, Klass et al.54 have challenged notions that successful resolution of loss involves moving on and letting go which have been fundamental aspects of many loss therapies (e.g., Worden55). It is argued that for many people adapting to loss involved incorporating some aspect of their previous relationship with the deceased person into their current lives but in a way that was tolerable and was not distressing. Tony Walter56 a sociologist working in the UK, developed a similar theory in relation to the loss of a deceased person. He suggested that the creation of a durable biography in the form of a narrative which describes both the person who has died and the part they play in others lives was a functional and therapeutic way to cope with loss. A recent review of research on the continuing versus breaking bonds controversy...
Meditation is the ability to self-regulate your thoughts in order to suspend the normal stream of consciousness. A common goal of meditation, which distinguishes it from relaxation, is to reach a state of thoughtless awareness during which you are passively aware of sensations at the present moment. There are a number of different methods that people use to meditate. The methods that involve the constant repetition of sounds or images without aiming for a state of thoughtless awareness are sometimes called quasi-meditative. Meditation is generally thought to be safe for most people. (Meditation is explored in more detail in Chapter 12.)
A retrospective study of Quebec health insurance enrollees compared a group of transcendental meditation (TM) practitioners with nonmeditating controls (Herron and Hillis, 2000). Earlier research had highlighted positive individual and group health effects of this practice, which derives from India's Vedic tradition. This study aimed to determine whether these health benefits translated into savings to the government in terms of possible reductions in payments to physicians for the meditating group. Researchers found that before starting meditation, the yearly rate of increase in payments between the TM group and the control group was not significant. However, after learning meditation, the TM group's mean payments declined 1-2 each year, while the control group's mean payments increased up to 12 annually over 6 years. Thus, there was a mean annual difference between the two groups of about 13 . The research team estimated that this could translate into savings of as much as 300...
It has been claimed that ketamine experiences tend to be more hellish than 'natural' near-death experience (Moody 1975 Strassman 1997 Fox 2003) and also to feel 'unreal' in comparison (Fenwick 1997). However, it is unlikely that there is a 'natural' NDE as such. As we have seen, most near-death experiences have an obvious trigger circumstance, such as cardiac arrest, sensory deprivation, meditation and even stimulation of certain parts of the brain.
Stop treatment because they'd finally seen some positive signs. However, another two unsuccessful cycles followed, so they decided to see the clinic counsellor. She helped them reach the conclusion that it was time they stopped treatment and got on with the rest of their lives. Looking back, Susan and Andrew know that they made the right decision and are grateful that the counsellor encouraged and supported them through the tough process of letting go.
In other terms, the practice of self-cultivation is designed as a form of personal growth that accompanies the spiritual development, or the enlightenment of the person. Accordingly, everyone can become enlightened when the entire mind-body is completely dissolved to the point that there is no hint of ego-consciousness at work. At this stage, thought and action, when they are engaged, are no longer two distinct, competing factors in the being of a person instead, they reach a level of oneness.
Another approach that has been used to help cancer survivors cope with many of the common posttreatment problems detailed above is MBSR. Mindfulness itself stems from Eastern meditation practices, and has been described as nonelabora-tive, present-centered awareness in which each thought, feeling and or sensation that arises in the attentional field is acknowledged and accepted nonjudgmentally as it is. Recent attempts at definition have resulted in a two-component model of mindfulness.87 The first component involves self-regulation of attention on immediate experience, resulting in recognition of events arising in present moment awareness. The second component represents an orientation of openness and acceptance of moment-to-moment experience. This is similar to another suggested conceptualization of mindfulness as composed of intention, attention, and attitude.88 Intention in this model describes the purposive nature of directing the faculties of attention toward observing...
Training in mindfulness meditation develops the capacity for the intentional self-regulation of attention and applies this capacity toward the cultivation of insight regarding the basic processes through which each of us construe identity and meaning from experience. The skills and understandings thus developed have broad applicability for cancer survivors, which include but are not limited to the goal of stress reduction. A principal aspect of mindfulness meditation that has particular salience for cancer patients is its here and now orientation, that is, the radical insistence on paying attention to present moment experience. Some sources of stress for cancer patients relate to the past. These might include attributions about cancer causation, regrets about past decisions or life priorities, and concerns about the future. Other worries also relate to future expectancies regarding health such as enduring pain or suffering or the loss of life itself. The practice of mindfulness...
Cancer patients most commonly try special dietary regimens, herbs, homeopathy, hypnosis, imagery, meditation, megadoses of vitamins, relaxation, and spiritual healing. Progressive muscle relaxation, imagery, hypnosis, prayer, and meditation are all reasonable to try. They may help reduce stress and pain and have essentially no side effects. Some treatments, such as massage and acupuncture, are usually fine to try, though in rare instances your doctor may not want you to use them. For example, if your immune system has been suppressed by cancer treatment or if you are taking anticoagulants, then both massage and acupuncture may be unwise (not always check with your doctor). If you have extremely brittle bones from osteoporosis, then deep-tissue massage might not be the best treatment for you to try. Some doctors also recommend that you not have massage over an area where you had or have a tumor. Yoga is usually well tolerated unless extreme positions are used. Check with your doctor...
Perhaps the most important aspect regarding the usefulness of EEG and ERP measures in substance abuse research is the issue of specificity. Namely, whether the electrophysiological changes observed are unique to the specific drug or condition tested. Most of the data available to date suggests that EEG and ERP measures have limited diagnostic specificity. For instance, acute administration of either ethanol, cocaine or marihuana all result in significant increases in alpha activity (Lukas et al., 1986, 1990, 1991, 1995), these increases are not only indistinguishable from each other but are also similar to those observed during transcendental meditation (Lindsley, 1952 Brown, 1970 Wallace, 1970). Given the association between alpha activity and pleasurable states, these findings suggest that the drug-induced increases in alpha activity represent a neurophysiologic response associated with reinforcement in general. Even though electrophysiological measures are not always specific...
Anxiety is everywhere All around us And, if you have PD, you may be even more anxious. Anxiety, recognized or unrecognized, is an aggravating factor in many diseases, including PD. It's estimated that 95 million Americans, about one-third of us, are sufficiently anxious to seek help from our anxiety through counseling, meditation, alcohol, tobacco, and prescription drugs such as Ativan, Klonopin, Valium, Xanax, Paxil, and Zoloft. It's further estimated that 35 million people, about one-third of all anxious people, have panic attacks.
DeMaria I had irritable bowel syndrome combined with lower back and shoulder pain. I didn't take much medication for IBS, only a little occasionally for constipation or diarrhea. I didn't know how much IBS had weakened my body until I ended up in the emergency room about three years ago. The parasites in my colon had weakened my body. Dr. Bob recommended Parablast and that brought healing to my colon and the parasites vanished. I have also modified my diet per Dr. Bob's recommendation. I now eat more raw fruits and vegetables along with more fiber. I have also increased my water intake. I now exercise speed walking for one hour approximately 4 to 5 days per week. Self-discipline has been the most difficult, making sure I'm releasing stress daily by getting enough exercise, eating a more balanced diet, and gaining spiritual strength by prayers and meditation. The adjustments have enhanced my health by diminishing colon pain, lower back and shoulder pain.
For several reasons, phenomenology did not become the dominant mainstream approach in Western societies, where the Cartesian legacy is still influential. According to Yasuo Yuasa, this is because (1) phenomenology has limited its investigation to a universal or normal state of consciousness, with no significant attention paid to the study of altered states of consciousness (ASC), such as meditation or mystical states of consciousnesses (2) it did not emphasize a dynamic perspective of consciousness, assuming instead that the connection between body-mind was constant and not developed or cultivated during the life of an individual and (3) finally, it largely stressed a 'temporal' dimension of human existence, rather than a spatial dimension, or an integration between the two (Yuasa 1993).
There is a belief among many experts in fitness and recreation that participating in physical activity is a close second in terms of its importance to eating and breathing. What would your life be like if you weren't able to participate in all sorts of leisure, fitness, and recreational activities In a society filled with many stressful events, the need to release by moving in any way, shape, or form that is comfortable and enjoyable to you is critical for maintaining overall balance in your daily life. For some people, yoga, meditation, and relaxation exercises fit the bill. Others must hop on a stationary bike or go for a jog to feel invigorated. No matter what type of multiple sclerosis (MS) you have or how much you're able to move, exercise, recreation, and physical activity can be adapted to meet your needs. Don't ever underestimate what you're capable of doing. Many experts in engineering, technology, and exercise have found ways to adapt all kinds of physical activity to meet...
Many of the available therapies are geared towards improving general wellbeing and emotional health. Massage therapies, reflexology, yoga, meditation, stress management, relaxation and aromatherapy are all ways to help you handle the stresses of life and many infertile couples find these forms of therapies helpful.
The fine line to be negotiated when selecting CAM therapies is protection for finances when recommended therapies include benign but costly ineffective or untested treatments. Alternately, persons who have tried CAM therapies with no relief may feel guilty for not improving. A stellar CAM provider, like a stellar allopathic (standard Western medicine) provider, will reassure patients that if therapies are not effective it is not the patient's fault. Continuing to use and promote an unproven therapy that shows no ongoing health advantage to the patient is always unacceptable in any practice of medicine. Well-tested CAM therapies for FM include acupuncture, chiropractic, electrical therapies, and various vitamins, herbs, and nutraceuticals. Although their mechanisms of action have yet to be fully elucidated, they may be due in some part to stress reduction and their ability to elicit the relaxation response. Patients also might learn to elicit the relaxation response without...
You can make some nonmedical lifestyle changes to ease your pain. In Chapters 13 and 14, I tell you how you can control stress using relaxation therapy, hypnotherapy, meditation, and yoga, and provide details on how to get a good night's sleep. In Chapter 15, I include important information on exercising, losing weight, and making key dietary changes that may help considerably. In Chapter 16, I cover dealing with the emotional fallout of FMS, and, if you need a therapist, I offer advice on finding a good one.
Although some psychiatrists continue to counsel patients, the current trend in medicine is for them to focus on starting and adjusting medications that treat symptoms of anxiety and depression. Psychologists and clinical social workers, who are not licensed to prescribe medications, perform counseling. These professionals can also be extremely skilled at teaching patients cognitive strategies to help with relaxation and stress reduction, such as meditation, biofeedback, and imagery. Some counselors, especially those who work closely with oncologists, can also provide information about a particular medical condition in order to help put things in perspective.
Cannabis sativa is among the earliest plants thought to be cultivated by humans. Archeological findings indicate that it has been cultivated for fibers (strings, textiles, ropes, and paper) in China since 4000 BC (Li & Lin, 1974), and in India about 3000 years ago, where it was used as an analgesic, anticonvulsant, anti-inflammatory, antibiotic, antispasmodic, appetite stimulant, digestive, diuretic, and aphrodisiac, among other uses (Aldrich, 1997). Cannabis was considered sacred in Tibet, where it was used to facilitate meditation (Touwn, 1981). Assyrians also used it as incense, and the Persians were aware of many of the plant's effects (Touwn, 1981).
Frequently available to people undergoing cancer treatment. Be aware that neither of these treatments should cause pain. If they do, either the person performing the treatment is not skilled enough, or the person receiving the treatment is hypersensitive and this form of therapy is not a good option for him or her. Mind-body therapies (for example meditation and hypnosis) are also often available in cancer centers. If you are considering taking dietary supplements or botanicals for any reason, including pain relief, talk to your doctor about possible side effects and drug interactions.
They can resort to some strategies that may reduce stress, such as meditation, relaxation, and physical exercises. Other aspects of self-management during smoking cessation include setting realistic goals and some sensible rewards for behavior that leads to reducing tobacco use. Some days a realistic goal is a short-term one and involves just getting through each urge to smoke without succumbing. The smoker who is quitting can use any of the already mentioned substitution or distraction strategies while remembering that urges to smoke are likely to continue to come and go for some time. Rewarding oneself for meeting even the short-term goals is important. Rewards for not using tobacco can include new clothes, a new book, time to develop a new hobby, or anything else the former smoker might enjoy. Many rewards can be paid for from money saved by not buying tobacco.
A lternative and complementary medicine (CAM) are two different but interrelated approaches to health. Alternative medicine refers to those therapeutic practices, systems, and products that are employed instead of conventional or allopathic medical means, while complementary medicine refers to those practices used in conjunction with allopathic ( medical ) treatment. Conventional or allopathic medicine is practiced by MDs (doctors of medicine) or DOs (doctors of osteopathy) and their allied health professionals. Ayurveda, acupuncture, and homeopathy fall into the category of alternative medicine, as they are based on systems of medicine radically different to the allopathic approach. Yoga and meditation, for example, would be characterized as complementary therapies in that many hospitals and medical centers incorporate them into their treatment programs.
Human beings have long turned to the written word for solace in the face of psychological adversity. Ballou (1995) notes that an inscription over the door of a library in ancient Thebes identified it as a Healing Place of the Soul. Starker (1989) suggests the quest for enlightenment is synonymous with human existence and that, throughout time, individuals have looked to soothsayers, prophets, and gurus in search of advice. In contemporary times, these sources have been supplanted by a new oracle, the self-help book. The search for the Holy Grail, for spiritual renewal and hope, no longer requires a heroic trip into the distant corners of the kingdom the object of the quest may be found conveniently in paperback, at the grocery, to the left of the chocolate milk (p. 1).
Thomas Aquinas (1225-74) who must rethink these limitations in Pauline terms when he preaches that meditating upon all these things, let us not give our minds to delights, but to what is the end of delights. Here on earth it is excrement and obesity, hereafter it is fire and the worm (Toal 1957 III, 315). If for Paul all humans are damned by their flesh, Aquinas needs to stress this once again, by seeing us trapped in our fallen bodies by our natural functions eating and excreting. And yet it is St. Teresa who says, that the soul finds everything cooked and eaten for it it has only to enjoy its
There was nothing to see because there was no light there was nothing to feel because there was no substance. Although I no longer considered that I had a physical body, nevertheless I felt as if I were floating in a vast empty space, very relaxed and waiting. Then I experienced the review of my life, which extended from my early childhood and included many occurrences that I had completely forgotten. My life passed before me in a momentary flash but it was entire, even my thoughts were included. Some of the contents caused me to be ashamed but there were one or two I had forgotten about of which I felt quite pleased. All in all, I knew that I could have lived a much better life but it could have been a lot worse. Be that as it may, I knew that it was all over now and there was no going back. There was one most peculiar feature of this life review and it is very difficult to describe, let alone explain. Although it took but a moment to complete,...
Gill meditated every day, twice if she could manage it, early in the morning and early in the evening. She always sat in the same place on a cushion in a cross-legged position. Her back was upright, her eyes closed and her hands loosely folded in her lap. Typically, her thoughts while meditating would be something like this 'Now, I'll start by taking three deep breaths and centre myself in my body. Oh, I hope that I have a good meditation this morning. Now, my breaths. Concentrate on my breaths. Perhaps I'll begin by counting.' Then she would concentrate on her breathing for some minutes with no thoughts intruding. Then, 'I wonder what I should wear today what did I wear yesterday What's the weather going to be like No, my breathing' . . . 'What have I got to do today Think about breathing back to counting' . . . 'Is it better to concentrate on my diaphragm or the breath as it enters my nose Different people say different things. No, breathing' . . . (On this occasion, some minutes...
Some people with FMS report that praying helps them feel much better. Prayer may act much in the same way as meditation and yoga do, instilling calmness and an acceptance that you're really not in control, that you can't be expected to be accountable for everything, and that you don't need to frantically rush about trying to solve difficult problems right away. Instead, you give yourself a break and at least temporarily leave the resolutions of your pain and your problems to the cosmos.
The value of a healthy womb is priceless. Jesus spent nine months in Mary's womb prior to entering the world. Multiple children were born to Mary after Him and they were blessed just because they spent nine months growing where Jesus developed. Wow, that is something to meditate on.
Positive thoughts and even prayer may help you deal with your frustration because they help you focus on your inability to magically resolve your loved one's problem and allow you to give up the illusion of control. The positive energy that's conveyed through prayer (or meditation) may also be helpful as well. If you're a religious person, you'll be comforted that your request to God will be heard the problem will pass from you to God.
T he history of fasting extends far into the past and is powerfully connected to religious ideas about contamination and rituals of devotion and purification (Douglas 2002). Many groups of people today still fast for religious reasons, but fasting is now also used by people to lose weight. There is, even today, a large body of religious literature on the evils of overeating, which suggests that fasting and weight loss will bring an overweight person back into God's graces. However, secular materials on fasting and diet also express many of the same ideas about contamination, cleansing, and salvation (or at least health). Ritual fasting remains a feature of Judaism (on Yom Kippur and other fast days), Christianity (during Lent), and Islam (during the days of Ramadan). The Enlightenment transformed fasting into dieting as a means of affecting the material body rather than providing some metaphysical relationship between the godhead and human beings. Fasting itself comes to be seen as a...
Heartburn is a common form of indigestion consisting of a burning pain in the stomach or the esophagus and the chest. It tends to worsen with age, and may be associated with a hiatus hernia (protrusion of the stomach through the opening in the diaphragm into the esophagus). It is exacerbated by stress, and by eating certain foods (see Indigestion, above). Eating too quickly or eating too much, and swallowing air also aggravate the condition. Heartburn is very common during pregnancy, when digestive efficiency is impaired. SELF-HELP Try relaxation or meditation before you eat. Eat calmly, and relax for 30 minutes afterward. Avoid eating late, and do not eat foods that you know upset you. If you smoke, stop. Raise the head of your bed slightly.
Anxiety, or worry, consists of both an emotional and a physical imbalance, and tends to be provoked by overwork, stress, fear, or insecurity. It may be accompanied by an increased pulse rate, clammy skin, irregular sleep patterns, and appetite disturbance. SELF-HELP Avoid stressful situations and caffeine. Practice relaxation techniques or meditation (see page 217). CAUTION If you are feeling very anxious, with no obvious cause, see a doctor. If anxiety is accompanied by serious chest pains, call 911.
The modern interest in unity of science stems largely from the work in the 1930s and 1940s of logical positivists of the Vienna Circle, especially the logician-philosopher Rudolf Carnap and the sociologist Otto Neurath. (Today the logical positivists have acquired the image of conservatives, but politically they were liberals and social democrats, and scientifically they advocated a pluralist and Enlightenment conception of science.) one of the driving concerns of Carnap and Neurath was epistemic. The nineteenth century witnessed the birth of many new scientific disciplines, especially in the life sciences and social sciences cytology, physiological chemistry, psychology, anthropology, and so forth. These various disciplines employed different vocabularies and different methods of investigation, raising the question of whether they were generating real knowledge. One way Carnap and Neurath proposed to evaluate the epistemic status of those inquiries was in terms of their unity with...
An example of how ki-energy is used in meditation to achieve a kundalini experience is given in the following account by Motoyama. After practising meditation for six months, sometimes all day long, he observed When I was gathering my consciousness into the lower abdomen in order to balance ki-energy in my body, so that the energy of the upper part of my body would become evenly distributed, while the lower part would be packed with the energy, I suddenly experienced, after engaging in this practice for less than twenty minutes, a pillar of hot and voluminous fire shooting up from the base of my spine through the central tube of my spinal cord. My entire body was scorching hot, and no sooner had I realized it than my body swiftly became afloat twenty to thirty centimetres in mid-air, even though I was still assuming a meditation posture. Although my body was terribly hot and my consciousness was almost hazy, I could clearly grasp the event that was taking place. After ten to twenty...
Drugs are fascinating because they can change our awareness. The basic reason people take drugs is to vary their conscious experience. Of course there are many other ways to alter consciousness, such as listening to music, making music, dancing, fasting, chanting, exercising, surfing, meditating, falling in love, hiking in the wilderness (if you live in a city), visiting a city (if you live in the wilderness), having sex, daydreaming, watching fireworks, going to a movie or play, jumping into cold water after taking a hot sauna, participating in religious rituals. The list is probably endless, and includes nearly all the activities that people put most of their time, energy, and hard-earned money into. This suggests that changing consciousness is something people like to do. uralness of taking drugs It is possible that endorphins and other endogenous agents are the basis of all the highs people experience, whether obtained with drugs or without. People who get high by meditating or...
In his book Democracy in America (1835-1840), Alexis De Tocqueville wrote Satan, the enemy of the human race, finds his most powerful weapons in the ignorance of men, and it is important that the enlightenment brought here by our forefathers not remain buried in their graves.In America, it was religion that showed the way to enlightenment it was respect for divine law that showed the way to freedom. Liberty looks upon religion as its comrade in battle and victory, as the cradle of its infancy and divine source of its rights. It regards religion as the safeguard of mores, and mores as the guarantee of law and surety for its own duration. Historically, coupling religious convictions to politics has resulted in disastrous consequences, including pogroms, terrorism and war. Christianity was the dominant political and social force in Europe and other parts of the world for much of the last 2,000 years, with particularly tragic consequences for Jews. In the eighteenth century, the...
Would doubt such a claim, I proffer the following points. First, in many jurisdictions, the absence of brain activity constitutes a legal definition of death. Second, it is clear, especially from electroencephalograph (EEG) studies, the bioelectromagnetic field generated by human brains clearly indicates subjectively experienced transitions between sleep and wakefulness. Third, EEG reveals profound alterations in brain behavior during seizures. Fourth, studies using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to alter brain behavior consistently and repeatedly alter mental experience. Fifth, lesion studies can dramatically illustrate effects thereof on mental functioning. Sixth, studies in brain plasticity indicate that living brains continually undergo massive changes in neural connectivity from moment to moment. Seventh, substances having noticeable effects on brain chemistry typically have noticeable effects on mental experience. Eighth, the burgeoning field of cognitive neuroscience,...
Shawn is a year off treatment and I find myself letting go of the bad memories more and more. They are just fading away. What I am left with is awe, admiration, and amazement that my son handled all of the hardships of treatment and survived. He's very determined and strong-willed, and I'm so proud of him. When people say to me, Oh, you were so strong to make it through that, I respond, All I did was drive him to the appointments he did the rest.
After you've started that letting go, come back and look at your autistic child again, and say to yourself 'This is not my child that I expected and planned for. This is an alien child who landed in my life by accident. I don't know who this child is or what it will become. But I know it's a child, stranded in an alien world, without parents of its own kind to care for it. It needs someone to care for it, to teach it, to interpret and to advocate for it. And because this alien child happened to drop into my life, that job is mine if I want it.'
Some may wonder why you mourn for a child you've never known. But in many ways you may have already bonded with the baby growing inside of you. You and your partner may have shared many moments imagining the days when you would hold your baby in your arms. The missed opportunity of watching your child grow and develop may be especially poignant. Even if no embryo was ever present, you will still grieve when your dreams and expectations were to have a baby. Grieving is the process of letting go of the emotional attachment you've developed.
On Children and Death. New York Macmillan, 1983. In this comforting book, Dr. Kubler-Ross offers practical help for living through the terminal period of a child's life with love and understanding. Discusses children's knowledge about death, visualization, letting go, funerals, help from friends, and spirituality.
Prayer is generally thought of in a religious context, but it can be a nonreligious endeavor and associated with the nonreligious aspects of spirituality. In her book How to Pray without Being Religious, psychologist Janell Moon writes, Webster's New World Dictionary defines prayer as 'the act or practice of praying, to beg, to implore or beseech, implore, to ask earnestly make supplication as to a deity to God, a god, as by reciting certain set formulas.' I propose that we expand the definition of prayer to include praying to our spirit as a source of life energy. So, for the purposes of this discussion, prayer, which can include meditation and other nonreligious entities, is the method that one uses to connect to one's energy source. (Although some scholars make a clear delineation between prayer and meditation, for this chapter, I'll include them in one general category.) Formal religion may or may not be a part of an individual's spiritual life. Moreover, these definitions are...
A break is not necessarily a nap. I only recommend napping if you are sleeping well at night and still exhausted during the day. If you are not sleeping well at night and you nap during the day, a vicious cycle of poor sleep can result. Most people don't need to nap during the day and would do better with an earlier bedtime or a later wake-up time, or both. But planning breaks during the day will give your body and your mind a needed rest. You should find time to sit down in a comfortable chair and read, listen to music, meditate, or whatever you find relaxing (for more suggestions, see Table 4.2). Depending on your energy level, stage of recovery, current treatment regimen, and work and family commitments, you may have to be
Dencies, strengths, weaknesses, and susceptibilities to ill health. Once a diagnosis of the illness has been made, the methods of treatment may include cleansing the body of toxins, whether of an environmental, bacterial or viral nature, appropriate changes in diet, herbal and mineral preparations to rebuild and rejuvenate body tissues, and stress management through activities such as meditation, deep breathing, and sound therapy. The purpose is to balance the doshas within the individual.
Several other techniques for tobacco cessation have failed to show results superior to a non-treatment control group, but may still be useful in treatment programs that employ multiple behavioral techniques. Relaxation or breathing techniques involve deep breathing or meditation in anticipation or response to urges to use tobacco. Programs designed to specifically counter negative affect seek to help the tobacco user to identify negative feelings, assess and appraise the situations that lead to the negative affect, and respond to them realistically and productively. Programs designed to counter increased weight on cessation (on average about seven pounds), have not improved quit rates, and can actually reduce the chances of successfully quitting. Two commercial treatments, hypnosis and acupuncture continue to be popular, but their lack of efficacy and unclear bases for action do not support their use.
Evidence that treatment of hyperlipidemia influences CHD is substantial. The methods of treating hyperlipidemia have varied from diet to drugs, surgery, meditation, and multiple risk factor reduction. The conclusion is that treatment of hyperlipidemia improves CHD morbidity and mortality. The Lipid Research Clinics Coronary Primary Prevention Trial, started in the 1970s, examined 4000 men without evidence of CHD but with hypercholester-olemia, randomized to receive cholestyramine or placebo. After 7 years, despite a relatively minor difference in cholesterol levels, there was a 20 decrease in CHD in the drug-treated group.
These emotions are often a response to events that are perceived to be physically or psychologically threatening. They can be brought on by overindulgence, overwork, or exhaustion, or they may be associated with digestive ailments and, in men, premature ejaculation or impotence. Such feelings may lead to depression. Physical manifestations include an increased pulse rate, fluttering feelings in the stomach, and tense muscles. SELF-HELP Get more exercise and practice relaxation techniques, meditation, or movement therapy such as tai chi (see page 217). Assertiveness training may help to overcome feelings of insecurity.
The palmar grasp-reflex is one of the primitive reflexes observed in neonates. It emerges at around 11 weeks in utero and is inhibited or suppressed at about 2-4 months after birth. The palmar grasp-reflex is due to an inborn coordination of movements, which were described as an instinctive motion allowing a baby to practice grasping and letting go of objects (Lorenz, 1937, 1943). Stirnimann (1941) has argued that the palmar grasp-reflex might be a first expression of a social instinctive behaviour. This reflex is a cutaneo-muscular, polysynaptic reflex, which is elicited by touching the ulnar part of the palm. Characteristically, the thumb comes over and locks the object, then the baby's other fingers lock the object very tightly. One can, in fact, easily visualize the importance of this reflex for grasping mother's hands, arms, and, of course, nipples for nutrition. The palmar grasp-reflex also shares one of the most important functions of the polysynaptic reflexes, i.e., protective...
Tai chi chuan (literally, 'supreme ultimate fist') is an ancient Chinese 'soft' martial art. It is now practised worldwide, in various styles. The main practice of tai chi is to learn a series of forms or postures which emphasize a straight spine, controlled abdominal breathing, and a natural, fluid range of motion (136). The focusing of the practitioner on the movement and form is thought of as a 'moving meditation' that will bring about a state of mental calm. Practising the forms involves balance, alignment, fine-scale motor control, rhythm of movement, and the genesis of movement from the body's vital centre.
SELF-HELP Practice some form of relaxation or meditation before you eat. Do not rush your food, and relax for at least 30 minutes after eating. Avoid coffee, tea, alcohol, carbonated drinks, smoking, and eating late at night. Avoid foods that may cause problems, such as citrus fruits, tomatoes, onions, beans, nuts, spices, bread, pork, and rich, fatty foods. Cut down on unrefined carbohydrates. CAUTION If you experience serious pain radiating toward the back, with or without vomiting, see a doctor within two hours. If you vomit blood, consult a doctor immediately.
I n the West, we have long been concerned with how as individuals we can properly manage our lives and bodies. This concern, some argue, has developed since the Enlightenment into a makeover culture, that is, a culture obsessed with transforming the self through managing the body. The makeover culture, like much in the modern world, emphasizes the importance of aesthetics and promises people with eating and weight problems that they can become more successful and happy if they just have the right tools and the right attitudes.
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Empty Mind Meditation
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