Meditate

Where To Meditate: 11 Surprising Places To Find Some Zen

Where To Meditate: 11 Surprising Places To Find Some Zen

In search of simple, quick and cheap stress relief? Meditation is what you’re after.

Often associated with Eastern-world practices, meditation has been making headlines and infiltrating the West. It’s no mystery as to why: Just 20 minutes has been shown to decrease stress, help with depression and even lower blood pressure.

Best of all, there’s no catch: Meditation is free, and you can take it anywhere (all you need is your head). We were curious where you take your meditation; while we might typically think it’s a practice for stillness and silence, it turns out there’s no place too loud or exclusive to find peace of mind.

We asked on Facebook the strangest place you’ve found yourself practicing, and from your answers it’s clear: Meditation can happen in motion, and is often helpful in times we anticipate feeling tense. Check out some creative and brilliant places to meditate below, then tell us in the comments where else you like to clear your head.
“In a tree.” — Marty Daymunde
118632982

“In the middle of a rock concert.” — Jane Sayre
129152718

“On the NYC subway!” — Lauren Loma Calixte
on subway

“On a plane.” — Sandrine Laurent
200506275

“In the car.” — Heather Hunter
171586360

“Public restroom!” — Jane Sayre
bathroom stall

“While running on a treadmill.” — Travis H Heinrich
171580814

“While in an MRI. It helped keep me calm in the tube.” — Katherine Nobles
171159778

“In the middle of the airport.” — Sky Can Horn
dv1139030

“In the dentist’s chair.” — Sean Mac An Ultaigh
170619118

“In a bar.” — Denise Helberg Snider
148931910

For more on meditation, click here.

Where To Meditate: 11 Surprising Places To Find Some Zen.

Robert Piper: Meditation: America’s New Pushup

The pushup has been a standard part of being American. If you grow up in America and go to school, one of the first things you’re taught in gym class is how to do a pushup. Millions of Americans do pushups before work, during their lunch break, and at the gym. Because of pushups, we’ve mastered getting ripped pectorals, deltoids, and triceps.

However, we’ve done horrible at managing stress.

Stress costs American businesses around $300 billion a year. Stress is one of the most common long-term absences in the workplace. NBC’s chief medical editor, Dr. Nancy Snyderman, recently said: “Stress is a huge factor when we look at medical problems such as obesity, hypertension, diabetes, cardiac disease.”

Millions of people in America are paying for an overstressed lifestyle: More than 25 million American suffer from diabetes, and some 74 million have high blood pressure. Stress shrinks our brains, may cause depression, and people who are stressed have higher risk for a stroke.

Several of my friends are driven business-savvy men and women with Type A personalities; they like to tease me about how I do meditation. Until one day, on a Friday night one of them pulled me aside and said, “Hey, I have really bad stress problems. Can you tell me about meditation?” He wasn’t the first of my friends to do this; I’ve heard the same line from a few of them. I stopped over at one of my friend’s house, who lives in an expensive high rise in Chicago and works 100 hours week. When he opened the door, he was grinding his teeth, and looked like he hadn’t slept in a week. My first words were, “Stressed out?” He responded, “Yeah, terribly stressed.”

This seems to be the culture of America; everything is go, go, go! No wonder the majority of heart attacks in America is on Monday morning. Another guy I know had band aids on his thumbs, from typing so many emails on his BlackBerry keyboard. He types more than 100 emails a day on the thing — the skin on his thumbs were actually peeling off. He was so stressed; it was difficult just to have a conversation with him.

It seems like this fable of The Lion and Gazelle is installed into the psyche of American culture, “Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up, it knows it must outrun the fastest lion or it will be killed. Every morning in Africa, a lion wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the slowest gazelle, or it will starve. It doesn’t matter whether you’re the lion or a gazelle — when the sun comes up, you’d better be running.”

We don’t have to live like this; we can still be successful and relaxed at the same time if we incorporate meditation into our culture. There’s nothing wrong with a culture full of ambitious men and women; I just want to see more people relax.

I teach meditation to a lot of very wealthy Type A personalities, and one of the things I see with Type As is a lot of them have forgotten how to breathe. The first thing I teach them is to breathe naturally.

Simple mindful breaks throughout the day will do wonders to the culture as a whole. If we all looked at our breathing and checked in with ourselves throughout the day, we would feel a lot better.

Here’s a simple meditation that anyone can do.

1. Find a comfortable place to sit in a chair, close your eyes, bring your awareness to your breathing.

2. Take a deep inhale.

3. Exhale out.

4. Again inhale, bring your attention to all the feelings in your body in a non-judgmental way.

5. Exhale out, focusing on all the feelings in your body in a non-judgmental way.

6. Repeat those steps above. As you progress, work on bringing your breathing to its natural state.

7. Then, open your eyes and carry that feeling with you for the rest of your day.

America is a culture that loves to win. If Americans want to continue to win, they better figure out a way to incorporate meditation into their schedule. Because as the statistics show, stress is cleaning house. To continue winning we have to incorporate meditation into our culture. Meditation is the new pushup.

For more by Robert Piper, click here.

For more on meditation, click here.

via Robert Piper: Meditation: America’s New Pushup.

Sadhguru: Meditation: The End of Suffering from Huff Post

Meditation is not something that you do; meditation is something that you become. Meditation is not an act; it is a certain quality that you grow into. Why is there a need to become meditative, first of all?

When you were born, you were so small. And now, you have grown your body. Obviously, the body is something that you gathered; it is an accumulation. Similarly, the mind is also an accumulation. The body is an accumulation of food; the mind is an accumulation of impressions. Whatever you accumulate can be yours, but it can never be you, because the very fact that you accumulate means you gather something from somewhere else. Let us say you gathered a 150-pound body; if you are determined, in a few days, you could make it 140 pounds. Where did these 10 pounds of body go? You would not go looking for them, because they are an accumulation.

Once you get identified with things that you have gathered from the outside, your perception has completely gone haywire; you cannot perceive life the way it is. The moment you experience the body as “myself,” and the moment you experience the impressions that you have in your mind as “myself,” you cannot perceive life the way it is. You can only perceive life the way it is necessary for your survival. For a human being, survival is very important, but it is not enough. For any other creature on this planet, when the stomach is full, life is settled. But for a human being, life does not end with the survival process. Actually, for a human being, life begins only after survival is fulfilled.

Meditation means giving you an experience, an inner state, where what is you and what is yours is separate. It brings an absolute clarity of perception; you see life just the way it is. Right now, your ability to go through this world is only to the extent that you clearly see it. For example, for thousands of years, people went on arguing about whether the planet is round or flat. Leave all the textbooks that you have read aside, take a walk and see — in your experience, is this planet round or flat? In your experience, it is still flat. This argument could have continued forever, but man started flying. We went up and looked down and it was very clear that the planet was round. We even went to the moon and looked down, and it was 100 percent clear. Only when we removed ourselves from this earth and looked down was there no more argument about it. Otherwise, we would still be arguing.

The same is true for your own body and mind; unless there is a little distance, you don’t see it the way it is, because you are in it. Meditation is a simple process that gives you a little distance from your own mind and your own body. You have probably heard of the word “Buddha.” Bu means “buddhi,” or the intellect. Dha means “dada,” or one who is above. One who is above his intellect is a Buddha. A Buddha has clear perception of the nature of his mind. One who is in the intellect is a nonstop suffering human being.

Look at this sincerely. Whatever you experience as moments of happiness and peacefulness are just those moments where you are able to leave anxiety, tension and stress behind. But if you turn back, they will be sitting right there, because once you are in your intellect, stress, anxiety and tension are very normal. But if you are above the intellect, it is the end of suffering. Being a Buddha means there is no question of suffering, because suffering has either come through your body or through your mind. Do you know any other kind of suffering other than physical and mental suffering? Once there is a distance from your physical body and your mental structure, that is the end of suffering.

Meditation is the first and the last freedom, because it gives you a gallery view of your own body and your own mind. There can be no suffering once this distance is established.

Article from Huffington Post: Sadhguru: Meditation: The End of Suffering.

Sadhguru will teach programs in London Feb. 9-10, 2013 and Atlanta April 19-21, 2013.

For more articles by Sadhguru, click here.