Buddhism

Meditation study links history to science: Light experiences during meditation similar to visualizations caused by sensory deprivation

By 

Staff Writer Brown Daily Herald

Practitioners of Buddhist meditation have reported seeing globes, jewels and little stars during meditation-induced light experiences. The neurobiological explanation for these visions was the subject of a recent study led by Willoughby Britton, assistant professor of psychiatry and human behavior, and Jared Lindahl, professor of religious studies at Warren Wilson College in North Carolina.

The study, published in the journal Frontiers in Psychology Jan. 3, connects first-hand accounts of these light experiences and reports of them from Buddhist texts to scientific literature on similar light visions that occur during sensory deprivation, perceptual isolation and visual impairment.

Sensory deprivation, or the lack of input to one’s senses, and perceptual isolation, a monotonous form of input, bear similarities to certain meditation practices and can therefore be used to investigate the biology behind these light experiences, Britton said.

Buddhist meditation, said Noah Elbot ’14, a leader of the Brown Meditation Community, includes practices such as breath awareness, repetition of a particular phrase, or concentration on an image in order to bring the mind to the present.

Because the blocking of sensory input is seen in both sensory deprivation and Buddhist meditation, the authors hypothesized that the light experiences may be caused by a spontaneous firing of neurons in response to a lack of input, a phenomenon referred to as homeostatic neuroplasticity, Britton said.

“Neurons have a point of activity that they fire at,” Britton said. “If there is no input, the neurons don’t like that, and they start to fire on their own, causing hallucinations.”

These visual hallucinations  induced by meditation practice suggest that meditation may lead to increased neuroplasticity, which has been linked to cognitive improvements in learning, memory and attention, according to the study. If this hypothesis proves true, meditation could have significant cognitive benefits.

This study is one of the first that attempts to connect data from historical texts and first-hand reports from current meditation practitioners with scientific research.

“While science has been studying meditation as a way of better understanding the brain, it often overlooks the rich information that religious texts have,” Lindahl said. If people examine meditation only from a scientific perspective, their understanding will be limited, he added.

“This is a paper that respects what the humanities have to offer to science,” Britton said. While meditation is being used increasingly as a clinical practice, the tremendous amount of knowledge on meditation is not being communicated to the scientists and clinicians using it, she added.

This sort of interdisciplinary research aligns with Brown’s values, Britton said. “Really bridging humanities (and) science is necessary in order for rich new dialogues to happen.”

Original post: http://www.browndailyherald.com/2014/02/03/meditation-study-links-history-science/

Modern meditation: Why incense and crossed legs are strictly optional

Modern meditation: Why incense and crossed legs are strictly optional

Former Buddhist monk and founder of online meditation course Headspace Andy Puddicome on why modern life doesn’t mean you can’t get some headspace

By  | Yahoo Lifestyle – Mon, Oct 7, 2013 17:29 BST

Meditation has had a makeover. No longer must you sit uncomfortably in a room, stifled by the scent of sandalwood, a green tea before you and the sound of Gregorian chants preparing you for the serious business of mindfulness.

No.

Today it’s not just a feel-good fix for those on the hippy fringe; mindfulness has shed its alternative image and gone mainstream, thanks, in no small part, to wellbeing website and app Headspace, created by former Buddhist monk Andy Puddicombe.Headspace animations explain and encourage users to give their mind a workout [Headspace]

“There has been a massive change over the past five years in the way in which we perceive meditation,” says Andy, who describes the guided meditation on the site as ‘a gym membership for the mind’.

“Our aim is to demystify meditation,” he explains. “Mountaintops, granola, yogis in loin cloths sitting cross-legged – you don’t need any of that stuff to achieve a healthier, happier state of mind.”

Andy and co-founder Richard Pierson launched Headspace in 2010 promising mindfulness for modern living. The programme aims to equip the uninitiated with the techniques required to cultivate a daily lifelong practice in 10, 15, and 20 minute guided segments over 365 days.

The site now attracts more than 750,000 users worldwide and ranks number one on iTunes’ Health and Fitness chart, while Andy’s ‘10 mindful minutes’ has received over a million views on TED Talks.

The Headspace team works with a broad demographic, from the corporate world to the unemployed, and ages four right up to 91. Famous fans include Gwyneth Paltrow, Emma Watson and Davina McCall.
Why should we give meditation a go?

“The benefits of meditation are defined by the user,” Andy explains. “For some, this might mean feeling less stressed or anxious, or sleeping better.

“For others it might be physiological – lower blood pressure, for example, or for athletes, a better performance on the track.

“Then there are those who practise meditation for altruistic reasons – they want to experience a greater empathy with others. You define meditation by how you choose to use it.” 

An early devotee of the practice, Andy started attending mindfulness classes with his mother aged 10.

He decided to pursue it further while studying at university and relocated to a Buddhist monastery in Tibet, where he spent the next 10 years honing his skills before returning to the UK to share his experiences.

“I started practising meditation because I wanted a calmer, quieter mind and not to feel so overwhelmed by my emotions,” he tells us.

“Whenever I would come back to England to visit, I’d meet up with friends in the local pub in my Buddhist robes and would hear the same story over and over again – ‘I feel stressed all the time. It’s fine for you, you live in the mountains, it’s so quiet and peaceful there….’ but essentially, meditation is a technique that can be applied to anyone, anywhere.”  Andy Puddicomb takes users through a daily guided meditation [Headspace]

Mediation – a mind workout that really works

Still doubtful? Just look at the science. Numerous studies have shown that regular meditation can decrease stress and anxiety levels, boost the immune system, relieve pain, enhance cognitive functions and improve interpersonal relationships, to name but a few of the benefits, while Headspace is about to launch the largest meditation research study ever conducted, in partnership Yale University.

 “What’s driving the mainstream population is the science,” agrees Andy. “When I was growing up in the seventies, my mum used to jog through the village where we lived. People would stare at her like she was crazy because, of course, no one knew the benefits then.

“Over the years, science proved how good physical exercise is for you, and people became more aware of the need to take personal responsibility for their own health and wellbeing. The same is true for meditation. There are now so many scientific papers coming out on its advantages that it’s hard to ignore.”

Headspace users know only too well how restorative regular practise can be.

“People tell me on a daily basis how it’s changing their lives. Kids write in to say thanks for making their parents less angry, people who haven’t slept properly in 10-15 years are now getting a good night’s rest – I never tire of hearing things like this. It’s hard to imagine working on a nicer project.”

Find out more or sign up for your first course of 10 days for free at Headspace. Get some.

What Mindfulness Isn’t … And What It Is – Wildmind

What Mindfulness Isn’t … And What It Is

woman_eating_thoughtfullyMindfulness is all the rage, but there are many misconceptions. It isn’t a form of relaxation, a technique, or even a meditation practice. It isn’t about doing things slowly or emptying your mind; it isn’t Buddhist, and it isn’t scientific. It isn’t easy … but, then again, it isn’t difficult. And it isn’t a fad. So what is it?

1.     It’s not about relaxing
A Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction course is about reducing stress, and that means trying to relax, right? Well, not exactly. Mindfulness just means noticing what’s happening, including the things we find difficult. It doesn’t involve listening to panpipes to escape your worries.

2.     It isn’t a meditation practice
On a mindfulness course you’ll learn meditation, but mindfulness is a practice for the whole of life. It means finding a different way to respond to experience throughout the day.

 3.     It isn’t a technique
Mindfulness isn’t something you do. It’s a way of being. You could say it’s a faculty, or a quality of mind that we all have to some extent and can develop further through practice.

4.     It isn’t a way to fix your problems
Mindfulness can help you address stress, anxiety, depression or chronic pain, but not by fixing them. Mindfulness really means living with appreciation and curiousity. Then we can relate in a new way to the things that trouble us, rather than trying to make them go away.

 5.     It isn’t about doing things slowly
Mindfulness courses include things like eating a raisin very slowly. That helps you notice details that you otherwise miss, and shows up our tendency to rush or do one thing while thinking about something else. But that doesn’t mean that you should do everything slowly. Sometimes slower is worse – like when you’re driving. And some people, who have to do things really fast, like racing drivers and tennis players, are exceptionally mindful. With mindfulness, things can feel slower, even when you’re moving quickly.

6.     It isn’t about emptying your mind
Meditation doesn’t mean emptying your mind of thoughts, like a bucket. Minds produce thoughts – it’s what they’re built for – and keep producing them even when you’re meditating. But you can still become calm and settled by learning to let thoughts go. And exploring your thoughts lets you see what’s bugging you, and even how your mind really works.

7.     It Isn’t Buddhist
The mindfulness practices used in MBSR and MBCT are drawn from Buddhism, but no one owns mindfulness: it’s simply a capacity of the mind. That’s why mindfulness is being re-expressed in secular forms. However, Buddhism embeds mindfulness within its own, distinctive set of values and a wider path to liberation and if that’s what you’re looking for it’s worth finding out more.

8.     It isn’t scientific
Research into the effects of mindfulness and its impact on the brain is impressive. It’s a big part of what’s bringing mindfulness into the mainstream. But although you can measure what mindfulness does, you can’t measure what it is. That’s requires feeling, intuition and sensitivity. Measuring mindfulness is a science; practising it is an art.

9.     It isn’t difficult … or easy
Mindfulness is simple, but life is often complicated. So how does it work? The mindful approach is that you don’t have to work out everything all at once. You just have to be aware and manage what’s happening in this moment. So it isn’t difficult … but it also isn’t easy. What’s happening in this moment might be scary, so mindfulness requires patience and resolve as well as openness and gentleness.

10.  And it isn’t a fad
Mindfulness is certainly popular, but isn’t a fad? Mindfulness is a quality of the mind that has always been there and we’re now learning to harness. And mindfulness is more and more relevant because it counters the speed, distraction, superficiality and general mindlessness of so much modern culture and is causing an epidemic of mental strain and illness. Mindfulness is here to stay.

For many, meditation is key for fighting stress, finding peace Video

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For many, meditation is key for fighting stress, finding peace

Meditation is a mind-body practice that’s existed for thousands of years, yet it still attracts people looking for solace, healing and spiritual enlightenment today.

Verna Sausman of Louisville was among those who gathered at a recent meditation session at Wellness 360 studio in St. Matthews. She sat in a chair with her eyes closed and her legs crossed beneath her as Dr. Peter Buecker guided a small group through a meditation session.

“This is my healing; it works for me,” said Sausman, who was using the 45-minute session to cope with the loss of a loved one.

Though some people think they can’t quiet their mind enough to meditate, “anyone can learn to meditate,” said Buecker, the studio’s owner. “… The quiet or calm mind is the product of meditation, not the prerequisite for it.”

There are many different kinds of meditation, but most have some common threads, according to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, part of the National Institutes of Health. People usually meditate in a quiet place in a specific posture, such as lying or sitting down, with an open attitude and a focused mind, the center says.

The Rev. Joe Mitchell, a priest and meditation teacher who is executive director of the Passionist Earth & Spirit Center on Newburg Road, explains meditation this way:

“Meditation is cultivating a steady and focused awareness by letting go of thoughts and desires to abide in a place of stillness and silence.”

Mitchell, who teaches mindfulness meditation from the Christian and Buddhist perspectives, said, “It’s about turning down the volume of the inner chatter in the mind.”

Buecker, an orthopedic surgeon, opened Wellness 360 in January to offer meditation and a variety of other mind-body services, after realizing that “a pill, or an injection, or a procedure isn’t always the answer” for patients going through personal crises, such as parenting, spousal and care-giving issues.

Many times, people are caught in a vicious cycle of stress that leads to tension and pain, then to the need for “more and more medicines at higher and higher doses,” Buecker said, but meditation helps give them basic skills to get their life back into control.

College Prep: Meditation 30-Day Challenge

This first time meditation experience is common to many who try meditation without finding the right technique for them. After teaching meditation to college students the last 5 years, I have found that all techniques work equally well, so long as you find the one that is easiest to fit into your life.  See my comments at the bottom.

-Karah Pino

Meditation 30-Day Challenge

So my office is really obsessed with 30 and 100 day challenges. The 100 day challenges are definitely more on a more personal level, but we tend to group up for 30 day challenges.

The curl challenge was super fun and definitely an eye-opener. It also felt good to actually stick with it. I didn’t even use our one “It’s Okay to Straighten for New Year’s Eve” cheat day.

I was really looking forward to our latest 30 day challenge. Maxie and I planned to meditate every day for 30 days. We were inspired when a career coach gave us a quick and easy 10-minute guided meditation. I’ve done mediations from time to time in the past, especially during extreme periods of stress.

I thought that committing to spending a month getting in the habit of meditating that I would be much happier, more relaxed, and generally feel better.

via

We both failed.

I tried to carve out the ten minutes every day to meditate, but it ultimately started to feel like a chore. And I simply began dreading it. It was a chore and I was absolutely horrible at it. I would sit down in a comfortable position, close my eyes, and follow the meditation guide.

Then the thoughts would start…. and they were loud, clear, and oh-so-annoying. I would ask myself how long had I been meditating. When was the ten minutes up? What should I wear in the morning. The tape tells you that it’s okay to have wandering thoughts, but to try to pull them back in to be centered. And instead, I would start thinking how dumb I felt sitting in my room with my eyes closed.

Meditation certainly works for some people. I’m not going to write it off completely, but this 30 day challenge definitely didn’t work for me. Three weeks in, I sent a text message to Maxie asking when this whole ordeal would be over… even admitting that I’d skipped a few days. I felt so guilty to let her down, but it turns out that she was similarly struggling as well.

What I did learn though was that it’s important to figure out the best way to sit down and think or let go or be present.

For me, I find that true-zen-tuned-into-myself mode when I’m showering and when I’m working out. (SoulCycle was the best meditation I did this month, but even just walking through the park alone is wonderful.)

Have you ever meditated? What’s your method or trick? Do you have any great apps or podcasts to recommend?

xoxo

via College Prep: Meditation 30-Day Challenge.

Here’s My comment:

karahapinohoponoJuly 8, 2013 at 3:27 AM

I took my first meditation class in college for headaches. It worked so I kept at it until I forgot, then the headaches would return. Years later, I studied meditation as part of my masters degree in acupuncture. We learned four branches of meditation: Moving meditation (i.e.yoga/QiGong/dance), Visualization techniques (i.e.color/guided imagery/progressive relaxation), Sound techniques (i.e.chanting/clapping/singing) and Mindfulness (i.e.Zen/Dogchen/Vipassana) After teaching meditation to college students the last 5 years, I have found that all techniques work equally well, so long as you find the one that is easiest to fit into your life. For instance, I love Vipassana mindfulness technique when I have time to sit, but after having a baby, I needed something I could do quickly with child in arms, such as breathing techniques or chanting.

Vocabulary refresher course in the language of mindfulness meditation – latimes.com

The vocabulary of meditation can be a barrier for people who feel that they’re entering a strange world, experts say. Here are some common words.

Buddha: meaning one who is awake, in Sanskrit. The Buddha was a person, not a god, who lived more than 2,000 years ago; from a privileged family, he became a seeker of truth and eventually became enlightened.

Dharma: often used to mean the teachings of Buddhism and meditation.

Mantra: a word — “om” being perhaps the most famous — repeated as a way to keep the mind focused on one spot during meditation.

Metta: loving kindness. In metta meditation, a person seeks to evoke such feelings for oneself or others independent of self-interest. Phrases such as, “May I be safe, may I be peaceful and happy,” can be repeated in the meditation.

Mindfulness: “a receptive attention to present-moment experience or attention to present-moment experience with a stance of open curiosity” (from Diana Winston of UCLA).

Transcendental meditation: a form of meditation using a mantra, introduced by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and popularized these days by such people as filmmaker David Lynch.

Vipassana: another name for insight meditation to cultivate mindfulness.

Zafu: a round cushion used for sitting during meditation.

— Mary MacVean

via Vocabulary refresher course in the language of mindfulness meditation – latimes.com.

 

Meditation as Performance Art: Calling all Meditators!

Looking for Meditators of all traditions!

From Vipassana, QiGong Practitioners, Yogis and Yoginis to Kirtan Performers and other Meditation Practitioners to share your sacred practice in a sacred space for the benefit of people curious about meditation and interested in learning more about meditation. 

Please read the complete Artist Statement for more information.  You are encouraged to bring brochures or other informational materials to leave behind throughout the month long exhibition.

Performances are scheduled June 13th, during West Seattle Art Walk from 6p-9p and closing June 28th 7p-10p.  Other performances can be scheduled throughout the month at Mind Unwind Gallery in West Seattle.

Please fill out the form below to share your Sacred Self!

Blessings, Metta and Namaste,

Karah Pino – Artist and Meditator

Take the 100 day kindness challenge and contribute to a better world

Just ten minutes of meditation a day can contribute something powerfully positive to the world.

COULD you be kind for 100 days straight? If everyone spent ten minutes a day quietly focusing on kindness the world would be a much better place to live. That’s according to Wild Mild an online Buddhist group, run from the United States, who’ve kicked off a’ kindness’ challenge for the next 100 days.

That’s right, kindness. For one hundred days. If that sounds like a tall order, then you might also like to know you only have to spend ten minutes a day to join in and make a difference.

Kim Hollow, the president of the Federation of Australian Buddhist Councils told news.com.au you can’t underestimate the power of positive thoughts.

“Meditation is integral to our [Buddhist] philosophy. And when we focus on kindness, we call it ‘metta meditation’. This basically means that kindness becomes the focus of our meditation for that particular day,” he said.

Mr Hollow said the process requires between ten and thirty minutes a day, a quiet space and the ability to switch off all the other thoughts swirling around your head and just focus on kindness.

“This can take practice,” admits Mr Hollows. “But peservere with yourself. Close your eyes and try and switch off for a moment. You can start by thinking of all the things you are grateful for in your life.”

Another way to cultivate this kindness is to run through a list of people in your life and send them a wish for kindness and peace.

“Kindness in modern life really comes down to the way you conduct yourself, not just on a Sunday. Once you start you find it’s actually easier to project kindness than hold resentment and anger. And it has a ripple effect. Your kind thoughts about others set you off on a good and peaceful path for the day,” Mr Hollow said.

Skilled mediators, who can sit for up to an hour at a time, experience a transformation in their perception of the world.

Mr Hollow said when they open their eyes and report that everything just looks better. “Kindness meditation is all about trying to escape the conscious by tapping into the subconscious. It helps you focus on all the positives in life, rather than negative,” he said.

Meditation tips for beginners

1.Sit down in a comfortable position

2.Close your eyes

3.Try and disconnect from everything around you and focus on one thing.

Do you meditate? Would a challenge like this inspire you?

via Take the 100 day kindness challenge and contribute to a better world | News.com.au.

 

Dr. Nalini Chilkov: Depression, Desire, Addiction: Is Meditation the Answer to Changing Your Brain?

Does the discomfort of discontent, longing, envy, jealousy, anger, compulsion, and anxiety contaminate your life, tighten your body and constrict your heart? Feeling out of control, impulsive and addicted is a tyranny, a prison in which there is no real peace or freedom. Is it possible that cultivating awareness and a kind and generous heart through time-tested meditation practices could be the path to freedom from addiction, craving and unhappiness? Might generosity, open heartedness, peace and contentment cultivated through mindful awareness practices replace our angst?

Our modern materialistic, dehumanizing, time- and task-driven life fuels our sense of lack and cravings for such things as shopping, food, work, drugs, alcohol, sex, high-risk sports and even the Internet. Where is real peace to be found? How are we to get off the wheel and come home to our tender-hearted selves?

According to Dr. Stephen C. Hayes, “Mindful awareness facilitates greater awareness of bodily sensations, thoughts, and emotions and leads to greater capacity for self-regulation and self-control.” Advances in brain research tell us that our brains, our emotional habits and responses are all malleable, that we are not stuck with our current self-limiting patterns, but that surprisingly simple techniques can actually change our brain and our lives. We are plastic. Like clay, we can reshape our brain, our thoughts, our emotions.

Neuropsychiatrist Daniel Amen, M.D. states:

You’re not stuck with the brain you’re born with. By changing your brain, you can change your life. With simple breathing and awareness techniques it is possible to quell anxiety and panic, calm inner turmoil and fight depression by learning how to short circuit automatic negative thoughts, conquer impulsiveness, obsessiveness and anger, develop focus and stop obsessive worrying.

Joan Halifax Roshi, Abbot of Upaya Zen Center is part of a group of scientists and Buddhist teachers who have been meeting with His Holiness the Dalai Lama for over 20 years. These meetings, sponsored by the Mind and Life Institute endeavor to bring modern science and traditional Buddhist practices together to explore how meditation transforms our hearts and minds, our brain, our bodies, our behavior and emotions, even our communities and our world.

At Upaya Zen Center, she and Dr. Al Kaszniak, a research psychologist and Zen teacher who has studied consciousness both on and off the cushion, host a program called Zen Brain, Zen Mind. The next in a series of Zen Brain, Zen Mind retreats, Greed and Generosity, The Neuroscience and Path of Transforming Addiction, focuses upon the challenge of addiction, greed and desire and the possibility that Buddhist Meditation Practices and Buddhist Perspective and Philosophy combined with modern brain science offer a compassionate, effective and skillfull means to addressing these problems at the level of the individual, the family and the community, and most importantly the heart and mind.

Amidst the beautiful arroyos and mountains of Santa Fe, New Mexico, one can experience firsthand how simple meditation and awareness practices combined with modern knowledge of brain science can heal and transform. Here, you can engage in reflection and discussion, turn inward and explore the path to freedom from greed, compulsion and desire. Whether you struggle with addiction and desire, counsel, teach or study, sit down, rest on the breath, come home to your own tender heart. Perhaps this is where you will find the end of addiction and the seeds of enduring inner peace and an open generosity with which to meet your life.

Need help with substance abuse or mental health issues? In the U.S., call 800-662-HELP (4357) for the SAMHSA National Helpline.

References

via Dr. Nalini Chilkov: Depression, Desire, Addiction: Is Meditation the Answer to Changing Your Brain?.

A Meditation For Promoting Peace Within Ourselves

Being at peace with ourselves in our life begins within. I teach my clients to become the expert of themselves and that everything they experience in the external world is a reflection of their internal world.

One of the techniques clients learn is to use mindfulness meditation to improve their relationship with their body and I have adapted a meditation that is simple to use and helpful in this process.

The adaption comes from the Buddhist mediation Metta Bhavana Meditation, which means “Loving Kindness Cultivation.”

The aim is to feel more appreciative of ourselves and helps the individual to feel more integrated and less prone to internal conflict. The basic psychological principle recognises that if we can’t feel good about ourselves, then we are less likely to be able to feel good about other people.

So a metta bhavana meditation session leads from concern with oneself, to a concern for others.

You begin with self reflection and the project this to others. It’s a process of using your imagination in a powerful and positive way that feels really good. It’s simple and can be done anywhere. I recently was visiting NYC for some book promotion work and did this on the trains to-and-from the city.

With a comfortable but dignified posture connect with your breath by noticing the inhale and exhale. Notice your thoughts coming and going. If your mind wanders, bring it back to the breath. The breath is an anchor for the present moment.

Reflect: What is it that other people like about you? What do you think you are good at? What achievements are you particularly pleased with? Hold these good qualities in your mind for a little while, and feel good about yourself. Every now and again repeat to yourself “may I be well, may I be happy, may I be free from suffering.”

Project: Imagine a friend. What is it that you like about your friend? What do you think they are good at in particular? What do you think they should be most pleased with? Hold these good qualities in your mind for a little while, and feel good about your friend. Every now and again in your mind’s eye say to them “may you be well, may you be happy, may you be free from suffering.”

Reflect: Repeat to yourself “may I be well, may I be happy, may I be free from suffering.”

The cycle is to reflect onto oneself and then project onto others and repeat. Continue this pattern opening up to imagining an acquaintance or neutral person, then you can move to a stranger, then move to someone who would be difficult for you to feel or wish goodness towards.

Let it be OK that it may be difficult at first to wish well to someone you dislike! With practice you develop compassion for all while developing your self-compassion.

In my own practice, I have simplified the practice and I encourage my clients to adapt a practice that feels right to them. I like to imagine a beam of green light coming out of my chest which is the heart center chakra and this light extends out of me in every direction; first I start with it beaming out ahead of me as far as I can imagine into the horizon.

I use the shortened version of the mantra beginning with me, focusing on my breathing, being in my own space I repeat “may I be well, may I be happy” then with the light extending out to others, “may you be well, may you be happy” – repeating and extending in every direction – ahead, behind, side to side, above, below and all around.

It’s very relaxing and by the time I arrived from a hectic morning commute I was Zen.

Taking a few minutes out of your day to reflect and project loving kindness will cultivate a peacefulness within that can open you to experiencing more love in your life.

A good time to pave out a loving kindness for your day is first thing in the morning, while you are awakening in bed or in the shower. Be sure to include your immediate family in it as well. Notice how your interactions with others are improved.

via A Meditation For Promoting Peace Within Ourselves | Weightless.