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About Meditation

What is Meditation?

Our world of thought is a barely tangible jumble. Pictures, memories, thoughts, self-made fantasies constantly bring us alternately into the past and the future. Our mind creates stories, often dramas. And obstructive feelings such as frustration and restlessness, doubt and fear or anger and sadness are part of our everyday life. When we are caught up in destructive thoughts and feelings, we lose energy.

This repeats itself in an endless loop: the job, the partner, the children, the argument with the girlfriend/boyfriend, the parents, the health. We analyze, evaluate and judge from automated and conditioned feelings and behaviors about circumstances, situations, and people, as well as about ourselves. The mind is wonderful when we use it as a tool (working mind). But a hindrance if it causes restlessness and stress that harms our body and mind.

Because this "monkey mind" in our head keeps us from really being there. Just to be. In the here and now. Present. Observing. That is meditation.

"When you become aware of the stillness, there is an immediate state of silent alertness. You are present. You have stepped out of collective human conditioning of thousands of years." - Eckhart Tolle

There are several ways to calm our minds and experience real stillness and inner peace. As a result, we can individually recognize and experience on more and more levels who and what we are beyond our body, our feelings, and thoughts. What intelligence, possibilities, and powers are inherent in every person and waiting to be used. To be consciously present in our everyday life and to act heart-centered amid all the stimuli and distractions. One way to get there is through meditation.

What is meditation used for?

Put simply, meditation switches off the fight-or-flight response and stimulates the parasympathetic, the relaxing nervous system of the body. You are no longer in survival mode. And so meditation relieves stress on the simplest level. Cortisol levels drop and IgA levels rise, which is the main defense against bacteria and viruses.

When you meditate, the pituitary gland releases oxytocin and dopamine, as well as serotonin and endorphins. So hormones that make us feel calm, relaxed, and balanced. And that also supports healing processes in the body because they increase the immune response..

Through meditation, we can calm the mind and throw off the excess thoughts. This gives us access to a non-conceptual intelligence that inspires our thoughts and actions and provides solutions for personal challenges.

„Before doing anything important, sit still, calm your senses and thoughts, and meditate deeply. Then the great creative power of spirit will guide you properly.“ Paramahansa Yoganandaji

Then there is something called transcendence. From the Latin trans-cedere, meaning "to cross a boundary". Meditation can open up a heightened ability to perceive, differentiate, and finally a consciousness in which there are no more thoughts, no feelings, and no more identification so that only pure consciousness remains.

When we practice meditation techniques, we gradually come into contact with our core being, our core consciousness, which in spiritual teachings is often referred to as soul and can be experienced as a spark of absolute consciousness (also called being, essence). In Far Eastern traditions, such as the holistic yoga science, meditation in connection with scientific yoga practices is a way of recognizing our oneness with the essence from which everything springs and from which we experience ourselves as separate in worldly life.

Self-realization means the direct, unclouded, and constant experience that nothing exists but the essence of all being. That means the indivisible, absolute consciousness with which everyone and everything is already one. In unmanifested form, it can be experienced as being or awareness and as the manifested form it takes on the shape of the universe. Very few people have reached this state of consciousness known as "enlightenment". However, each person experiences individual facets and nuances of what is called "awakening" to this awareness on different levels. Then it is a matter of differentiating between these various insights into our true nature and the continuous anchoring process that leads us there and one day keeps us permanently knowing as this presence.

Meditation, if practiced regularly and sincerely, can lead to feelings of true joie de vivre, love, inner strength, trust, and connectedness as well as to the harmonization of the body-mind-soul system. However, the inner development is not an end in itself, but ultimately also serves to be able to work powerfully on the outside and to move positive things in the world within an individual framework.

Effects of Meditation

One of my teachers put the effects of meditation in a nutshell:

"The importance of meditation lies in its effect. This effect, or rather these effects, affect all levels of human existence, human being.

Our consciousness extends on four levels: thoughts, feelings, body and being.

At each of these levels, we can perceive ourselves more or less deeply and comprehensively. This self-perception is the ground from which we perceive the world and others. It determines our thinking, acting, feeling, wanting, and being. So, of course, it makes sense that self-perception is as comprehensive as possible because this is the only way we can determine our own lives and find our paths through life. Through meditation, our perception expands further and deeper on all levels - that is "the miracle of mindfulness", as Thich Nhat Hanh says.

Meditation brings with it an experience of gradual inner liberation from the programming of the ego. [...] It is important to understand that we mean meditation in a broad sense. This is not just about meditation in silence, i.e. the practice of meditation in retreat and solitude. It is just as much about meditation "on the marketplace", that is, in everyday life. Both complement each other and together give what we call meditative awareness. But meditation is not just a practice, it is also a state of consciousness. "(Eckhardt Wunderle, graduate psychologist and meditation teacher)

Meditation is a state of consciousness that can lead to...

  • reduce stress and come into one's own power
  • to quiet the thoughts and the mind
  • to perceive inner silence and peace
  • harmonize and strengthen the body-mind-spirit system
  • to support the path of personal healing
  • to change one's own feelings, thoughts and actions
  • to let go of hindering identifications, imprints and conditionings
  • to receive theme-related impulses
  • to release acute blockages, stressful feelings and negative influences
  • to stimulate and develop your own intuition, creativity and creative power
  • to connect consciously with the inner guidance and to align oneself with it
  • to work devotedly in the world

Meditation methods and techniques

Forms of meditation are:

Dynamic Meditations:

  • Kali Meditation
  • Meditation in movement (i.e. Rhythms, dance, Essential Movements)
  • MBSR: Meditation and Methods from MBSR (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction) Body-Scan, Walking meditation, Yoga exercises, Mindfulness in everyday life
  • Osho Meditations
 

Silent meditations:

  • Vipassana
  • Being-Meditation
  • Meditation and Body Awareness
  • Chakra Meditation
  • Metta Meditation
  • Zen
  • Zazen
  • Forms of heart and forgiveness meditation
  • Meditation and self-inquiry
 

Mindfulness meditation:

  • Connecting with the breath
  • Observing the thoughts
  • Working with body sensations
  • Working with feelings
 

Meditation and social responsibility:

  • Meditation in everyday life - awareness
  • Meditation and communication
  • Meditation and Relationship
  • Meditation and Society

Personal experiences in meditation can be:

  • Processes of cognition, expanded perception
  • Revitalization and strengthening on physical, emotional and mental level
  • Working with inner perceptions (images, feelings, visions)
  • Dealing with feelings
  • Dealing with inner resistances
  • Cleansing of the chakras
  • Activating resources
  • Reintegration of forgotten aspects and fragments of the self
  • Extraction of negative energies
  • Systemic work (inner parts, inner family, social environment, ancestors)
  • Satisfaction and joy, inner peace and bliss, experiences of connectedness and oneness

What Makes Meditation Effective?

Meditation in itself is neither a technique nor a training, it is informal. A state of presence and loving acceptance of what is. In this expanded state of awareness, we have no or very few thoughts. In the same way, different experiences and realizations, insights and revelations, new impulses, and healing are made possible for us. Numerous meditation techniques lead us there step by step. This is always a gift that cannot be brought about with our rational mind or iron will. It just happens.

So it's not something we do ourselves. Rather, it is about letting go as well as letting go of everything that happens while you are practicing. At the same time, we can create the best conditions for effective meditation by practicing with concentration and an attitude of openness, receptivity, and devotion. Then meditation becomes a process in which gradually an ever deeper opening becomes possible. The goal is always the presence of the heart in daily life.

Friendly advice:

Meditation does not replace drug treatments or the advice and treatment of a doctor. No medical or therapeutic diagnoses are made and no healing successes are promised.

Participation in cases of acute mental illness, especially schizophrenia, psychosis, borderline or acute suicidal tendencies is not possible.