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Inner truth: Meditation Unplugged

Inner truth: Meditation Unplugged

Thursday, Oct 10, 2013, 8:21 IST | Agency: DNA

Meditation is largely prevalent nowadays because it is seen as an antidote to stress. However it is much more than just that.  Meditation is a way of life. It is to be lived. We have a vast reservoir of energy in us, lying unused, untapped. Once we get in touch with this energy, our life changes from just being an ordinary to a Divine one. Meditation is being in tune with our inner energy source.
It is about moving into the inner zones of emptiness, where stress can never touch you. It is to explore the inner space where you remain absolutely untouched from the ill-effects of the mind. All that is needed is the right method to move into that space. Being there is like being in an ocean of joy. Releasing ourselves from the clutches of our mind is called meditation.

Interestingly, meditation is not about doing something, but rather it is about doing nothing. The life of today’s man or woman is so hectic and fast paced that there is no time when one does absolutely nothing at all. To begin with, find a comfortable and quiet place to sit for 10-15 minutes every day. Stop all movements of body and mind to simply be by yourself, be still. The transformation that comes from the regular practice of meditation is gradual but certain to happen.

The author is a guru, mystic, contemporary spiritual master. For details, visit http://www.gurumaa.com

Meditation: “It’s Not New Age nonsense” | 360 Degrees of Mindful Living

Meditation: “It’s Not New Age nonsense”

By Pavel G. Somov, Ph.D.

In meditation research the news keeps getting better and better:

“Previous studies have reported changes to the brain while people practise [meditation, yoga and prayer] activities, but a new study shows for the first time that gene activity changes too. […] “It’s not New Age nonsense,” says Herbert Benson of the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. He and his colleagues analysed the gene profiles of 26 volunteers – none of whom regularly meditate – before teaching them a relaxation routine lasting 10 to 20 minutes. It included reciting words, breathing exercises and attempts to exclude everyday thought.”

An 8-week course of meditation of this kind resulted in a change of gene profile:

“The boosted genes had three main beneficial effects: improving the efficiency of mitochondria, the powerhouse of cells; boosting insulin production, which improves control of blood sugar; and preventing the depletion of telomeres, caps on chromosomes that help to keep DNA stable and so prevent cells wearing out and ageing.”

Plus there was a decrease in the activity of “a master gene called NF-kappaB, which triggers chronic inflammation leading to diseases including high blood pressure, heart disease, inflammatory bowel disease and some cancers.”

Furthermore: “by taking blood immediately after before and after performing the technique on a single day, researchers also showed that the gene changes happened within minutes.”

So, I ask you, why not sit down for a few minutes to settle down your mind? The news doesn’t get any better than this! With news like this, this whole business of meditation is now really a matter of mental hygiene. Indeed, what if we – as a culture, as a civilization, – framed the matter of meditation as a matter of hygiene? Chances are you brush your teeth every day. Why not scrub your mind of “everyday thoughts” every day too?!

Ref: Meditation Boosts Genes That Promote Good Health, Andy Coghlan, New Scientist, May 2, 2013

via Meditation: “It’s Not New Age nonsense” | 360 Degrees of Mindful Living.

 

Protein origami | Nature Chemical Biology | Nature Publishing Group

April 29, 2013

Nature Chemical Biology

DNA origami, make room: proteins can be bioengineered to fold up into three-dimensional architectures from one continuous strand, reports work published online this week in Nature Chemical Biology.

DNA origami, in which specific base pairing has been used to design a large variety of structures such as smiley faces, university logos, and boxes, has provided inspiration for scientists hoping to create ‘smart’ materials or simply explore our understanding of the forces that control molecular interactions. Protein assembly has also been studied, but these experiments have only utilized multiple short sequences interacting together to form larger structures.

Roman Jerala and colleagues show that longer protein sequences – in this case, a polypeptide containing 12 helices in a row – can be prompted to fold into designed structures based on specific pairing of the helices. The authors characterize their newly folded tetrahedron with several techniques, including showing that scrambled or shortened sequences no longer form the right shape. As the building blocks that make up proteins are more diverse than those in DNA, this study opens the door for entirely new architectures that may have new functions as well, such as cargo delivery or the creation of artificial catalytic sites.

via Protein origami | Nature Chemical Biology | Nature Publishing Group.