So you want to know exactly what is Transcendental Meditation?
Many people who are interested in meditation have heard of transcendental meditation or TM but are not sure what it is...
TM is a type of mediation that is not really DIY - you need a teacher or guru to guide you through the practice. But read on and see if the idea of TM appeals to you...
The benefits are many! And stress relief is one of them...
What Exactly is TM?
Transcendental Meditation is a very simple, natural, effortless technique, practised for 15 - 20 minutes twice a day. You sit comfortably with your eyes closed and the idea is that during the practice, your mind settles down and experiences finer levels of thought, until it transcends the finest level of thought and experiences the source of thought...
The source of unlimited creativity and intelligence of both humans and nature!
The TM meditation technique does not involve concentration or control of the mind and is not a religion, philosophy or change of lifestyle.
Basically, during the meditation session, your body enters a deep and peaceful state of relaxation, while maintaining alertness and clarity. First, the person chooses a word or image to focus on, perhaps a religious or cultural symbol that has a special meaning to them. As the person replays this word or image over and over they enter a state of deep relaxation.
What Does Transcendental Meditation Do?
We know that the mind profoundly influences the body and vice versa. Well, as the mind settles down during TM, the body naturally reaches a unique and very profound state of relaxation which is far greater than just the normal resting state.
In fact, no other meditation technique has been so extensively studied and researched, and it has been found that during transcendental meditation, the brain falls into a theta brain wave pattern (akin to sleep and deep relaxation) which then carries over to the state of wakefulness.
Physical benefits include
Another interesting benefit is the actual reversal of the aging process...
In a study conducted by the International Journal of Neuroscience, the biological age of practitioners of transcendental meditation was, on average, twelve years younger than their chronological age.
Sounds like a really good deal, doesn't it?
How Do You Learn Transcendental Meditation?
Learning to meditate in this way has always involved a qualified teacher and those who are interested in learning TM should have access to a complete follow-up programme that provides proper guidance.
We have included these links for your information...
The Transcendental Meditation programme is taught through a seven-step course of instruction offered through hundreds of Maharishi Vedic Universities and Schools throughout the world.
It is interesting to note that adherents from all religions choose to learn transcendental meditation. Although it has roots in Hinduism, the transcendental meditation technique can be applied to any cultural context. In fact, those who learn transcendental meditation are encouraged to adapt symbols that have meaning and depth for the individual. For example, a rabbi may choose to focus on a symbol or image rooted in Judaism to enhance the effectiveness of the session. In contrast, an agnostic may choose an image from nature such as a beautiful meadow or sunset to achieve relaxation. The beauty of transcendental meditation is its flexibility.
Are The Meditation Techniques Different?
Meditation techniques usually fall into two groups: those involving concentration and those involving contemplation...
Transcendental Meditation involves neither contemplation nor concentration. Rather, it is an effortless procedure that makes use of the natural tendency of the mind to move towards happiness or bliss.
The object of the practice of TM is to systematically lead the mind to deeper, quieter and more blissful levels of thought until the finest level of thought is transcended and the source of thought, pure bliss consciousness, the Self, is experienced directly.
But you don't have to wait until you find a teacher or guru to experience the stress relieving benefits of meditation...
There are a number of ways to meditate...
You need to find which way suits YOU... You can read more about the types of meditation here.
I love meditating!! It works!! It relieves stress!!
And there are a number of ways that you can start this practice as part of your every-day stress relief programme. Start with a simple meditation exercise ...
And be sure to get the hang of the breathing techniques so that you can experience the full benefit of any meditation that you do.
Get your kids involved with meditating!
Give them the benefit of learning how to be calm, focused and in control.
A simple 2 minute visualization can be fun for them to start with.
Have a look at my passive visualization exercise for an idea. Adapt the idea to suit the age and attention span of your children.