Meditation, thought by some to be a uniquely Buddhist practice, comes in many guises. Buddhists do use meditation to transform themselves. It helps them move beyond the world's many distractions to find the true nature of things. Since it dates back thousands of years, and we continue to embrace it in different ways, it must work, right?
Today the benefits of mediation are being quoted more and more often. During a recent Wall Street Journal event, in a counter-point to reporting about sales, profits and growing the fourth largest tech company in the world, Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff talked about the importance of gratefulness, clearing your mind and attention to breathing. Laurel Holland, author of Courageous Woman: Live Your Inner Strength, recently appeared on television talk show Virginia Today, and said that if you could do just one thing to change your life, it should be meditation. Today on WBUR-FM in Boston, Jon Kabat-Zinn (one of my all-time favorite authors and speakers) told program hosts on Here and Now that meditation has come a long way since he developed the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program for patients at the University of Massachusetts hospital in the 1980s.
According to Kabat-Zinn, "There are very interesting things that happen when people shift from doing to being, in that you can see major changes in brain structure within eight weeks. The reason we’re into this is because of the results. The real reason that mindfulness is valuable is that it’s intrinsically valuable for its own sake – your life improves.”
Rarely a day goes by that I don't read or hear something about the benefits of meditation. My mom always told me, "If it sounds too good to be true, it is too good to be true." She has been right in every instance until now. The results of regular meditation do sound too good to be true, but study after study and anecdote after anecdote confirm the life-affirming, health-enhancing results from making meditation a part of our lives.
How do you get started?
It's easy. Sit. Breathe. Really. See why it's so hard to believe? Of course there are many different ways to meditate. However, the studies keep confirming that it is simply the quiet, mind-clearing breathing that leads the way to more clarity, new levels of intuition, better sleep, lower blood pressure, less stress and increased health.
For some, it is helpful to focus on a physical item or to have a meditation ritual. That's why we have created The Infinity Angel meditation beads. You can choose from The Infinity Angel Wellness Beads or The Infinity Angel Chakra Beads. Both types of meditation beads include the story of how The Infinity Angel came about and are packaged in a gossamer bag with a sample meditation.
I have been so gratified to receive such wonderful comments from those who have given our meditation beads to loved ones. A dear friend in Massachusetts buys a dozen Infinity Angel Wellness Beads at a time so that she can have them on hand to give to loved ones dealing with illness or other life challenges. On one occasion, we sent several strings to a lovely woman in Ireland, who shared them with the women she loved. One recipient did The Infinity Angel Wellness Meditation walking the beach in Ireland every morning. Another woman asked for her Infinity Angel Wellness Beads on her deathbed, asking her sister to recite the entire meditation to her.
These stories, and others like them, have really impacted me. It's wonderful when something you create can bring such comfort to others. I am grateful every day for this opportunity and for that morning when I "discovered" The Infinity Angel on the beach here in Ogunquit, Maine.
If you or a loved one needs a little help in starting a life-changing meditation practice, we welcome you to explore our website. Sometimes it just takes a little something to hold in your hand, or something inspiring to read, in order to feel the confidence and inspiration to trust yourself to just sit and breathe.
It really is that easy. Believe. Do it over and over again and before you know it, your life really can change in subtle, and then dramatic, ways.