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5 essentials of Meditation
It's ok to have thoughts
○Be kind to yourself
○Let go of expectations
○Don't try too hard
○Stick with it
What to do with thoughts when they arise:
Allow thoughts to be present but keep your awareness on your focus
○Don't try to stop thinking or change your thoughts in meditation. Accept what comes
○Watch thoughts as though watching a movie. Let them come/go without getting involved with them
The breath is used as an anchor in meditation because
○It is easily felt
○It is always in the present moment
○It is constant
What is Conscious Awareness
Conscious awareness is a degree of awareness in which thoughts, sounds, and sensations of the body no longer influence your experience
What is mindfulness
Mindfulness is an informal practice, meditation is formal
○Mindfulness is the practice of being aware of what is taking place in the present moment without judgement
○Meditation and mindfulness bring about a greater degree of peace and contentment
Formal meditation requires three parts
■Your willingness to do the practice for a determined length of time
■Your gentle, non-judgemental awareness
■A Focus on which your awareness can res
There are 4 areas of the brain that are heavily influenced by meditation. These include:
■Amygdala: Area of the brain over the fight/flight response
■Hippocampus: Area of the brain responsible for memory.
■Prefrontal cortex: This area of the brain is responsible for balancing life goalswith thoughts and actions.
■Anterior Cingulate Cortex: This area of the brain is responsible primarily for social awareness, intuition, empathy, decision-making, and emotional regulation
What is stress
○Stress is created from any change to your regular schedule. Negative and positive changes result in stress
○Stress response is attributed to the amygdala which activates the sympathetic nervous system.
○Stress over a long period of time can lead to several medical conditions including: heart disease, chronic fatigue, diabetes, obesity, poor sleep habits, and even premature death
What are Mindful moments:
Paying attention to the little things in life; how your body moves when walking, feeling soap suds when washing, etc.
Recognize, Accept, investigate, non-identification
Stop, Take a breath, Observe your feelings, Proceed
5 hindrances of meditation
○Desire/greed: Wanting or expecting a specific result due to your practice○Aversion: A type of desire in which we want our experience to be something other than what it is.
○Sloth/torpor: physical/mental fatigue or brain fog/low energy.
○Restlessness: difficulty sitting still, anxiety, fear, worry. This can be physical or mental.
○Doubt: not trusting yourself, the process, the instructor, or any number of things
Difference between sloth and torpor
■Sloth: due to low physical energy
■Torpor: Due to low mental energy
What is a Beginner's mind:
A mind that sees each moment with freshness or newness
What is Interbeing:
Everything that is, is influenced by everything else. There is no separateness.
What is Self-love:
An all-embracing acceptance of ourselves
What is Self-esteem
The evaluation we ascribe to the image we hold of ourselves
4 aspects of true love:
■Maitri: Loving-kindness, the willingness and ability to offer happiness
■Mudita: sympathetic Joy,
■Karuna: compassion, the willingness/ability to remove the suffering from another.
■Upeksha: equanimity/unconditional love, the willingness/ability to accept everything as it is without discrimination
Pebble meditation: Gatha Pairs
○Breathing in I see myself as a flower; breathing out, I feel fresh.
○Breathing in, I see myself as a mountain; breathing out I feel solid.
○Breathing in, I see myself as clear, calm water: breathing out, I reflect things as they really are
○Breathing in, I see myself as space; Breathing out, I feel free
What is Pranayama:
Techniques to quiet the mind through breath control.
Long slow deep breathing: calms the nervous system, oxygenates the body/mind
What are mantras
A word or sound that helps guide the mind into stillness
What is Vipassana (insight meditation)
open awareness to everything that comes.
What is Metta (Loving-kindness):
May I be happy, May I be well...
What is Self-inquiry:
Who am I? What is my heart's desire?
What is Silent Mantra:
What is Noble Silence
a dedicated, predetermined period of time to be in deep meditative silence
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