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Wildmind Meditation News

Jan 04, 2011

Stars’ meditation technique gains mental health experts’ approval

National Health Service departments are now offering the Buddhism-inspired method of ‘mindfulness meditation’ which is favoured by celebrities such as Goldie Hawn.

A form of meditation practised by some of Hollywood’s biggest stars is becoming a major growth area within British psychology, as evidence grows of its effectiveness in dealing with anxiety and depression.

“Mindfulness meditation” was pioneered in the United States during the 1970s as a tool for alleviating stress and is practised, among others, by Meg Ryan and Goldie Hawn, who acts as an advocate for the technique. Drawing on ancient Buddhist principles to combat mental suffering, the technique encourages practitioners to slow down, “inhabit the moment” and become more accepting of their feelings. According to Ryan, “by simply refocusing …

Wildmind Meditation News

Dec 30, 2010

Mindfulness therapy no help in fibromyalgia trial

A program aimed at easing stress with meditation and yoga may not be much help for people with the chronic-pain condition fibromyalgia, a recent study suggests.

The study, published in the journal Pain, looked at the effects of so-called mindfulness-based stress reduction — a technique developed by researchers at the University of Massachusetts in 1979 that combines mindfulness meditation and gentle yoga postures.

The technique is now available throughout the world — in the form of an eight-week program of classes — to help people manage general stress or health problems, including chronic pain.

For the new study, researchers led by Dr. Stefan Schmidt, of the University Medical Center in Freiburg, Germany, tested the program’s effects among 177 women with fibromyalgia.

Read the

Bodhipaksa

Dec 23, 2010

Being mindful of pain, and the paradox of mindfulness

pain and meditationMeditation offers us a powerful paradox: that becoming more mindful of our pain reduces the amount of pain we experience.

The use of meditation techniques to treat chronic pain is becoming increasingly common, largely as a result of the pioneering work in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction started by Jon Kabat-Zinn in 1979 at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. Dr. Kabat-Zinn’s scientifically validated work has touched the lives of tens of thousands of people and helped to establish meditation as a highly respected tool in the treatment of chronic pain, stress, and depression.

Some people initially find the idea of using meditation to deal with pain incongruous. After all, isn’t meditation …

Wildmind Meditation News

Nov 18, 2010

Can mindfulness help manage pain and mental illness?

In the German night sky, there were hundreds of parachutes falling in a routine army training exercise.

It was this jump that would cause former United States Army Ranger Monty Reed more than two decades of pain. Reed fell from about 100 feet after another parachute interfered with his descent. He broke his ankle and back and to this day has trouble walking and feels discomfort when he breathes.

“I felt like the physical pain that I deal with every day was an enemy I had to fight,” says Reed, 45, of Seattle, Washington.
But eventually, says Reed, a therapy technique that incorporates mindfulness helped him deal with this pain and the flashbacks he got from various army training situations. Mindfulness as a …

Bodhipaksa

Nov 02, 2010

“Life Happens,” by Cheryl Rezek

life happensLife Happens is the work of Cheryl Rezek, a UK-based clinical psychologist who teaches mindfulness as a way of helping her clients deal with often difficult life situations. It combines pithy insights in written form with excellent audio instructions that guide the listener through a variety of meditative exercises and even physical stretches. It’s aimed in particular at those who have problems with mental distress or physical pain, such as stress, depression, chronic pain, cancer, and addiction.

The recordings most clearly show Rezek’s strengths as a teacher. Her voice is very pleasant to listen to, and conveyed to me a sense of warmth and gentleness, combined …

Wildmind Meditation News

Jul 01, 2010

Mindfulness meditation: a new way to help diabetics?

Research is showing a certain type of meditation may help people suffering from diabetes. This stress reduction works in many different ways and provides calming strategies as well as ways to discipline the mind.

“There is little research on this process when it comes to this treatment of diabetes,” Joseph B. Nelson, MA, LP, CST, told Ivanhoe. He defines mindfulness as “intentional awareness of each moment; non judgmental; internal and external awareness.” Nelson stresses mindfulness is not about relaxing; rather, it is about becoming fully awake and aware. In addition, Nelson said, “Mindfulness is not meditation; it’s a way to live.”

Nelson believes through mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), people with diabetes will be able to relieve stress and anxiety. At the …

Wildmind Meditation News

Jun 02, 2010

Meditation reduces the emotional impact of pain, making it easier to bear

People who meditate regularly find it easier to cope with pain because their brains anticipate it less, a study has found.

The findings could help develop new treatments from those who suffer from conditions that cause chronic pain.

Scientists from Manchester University compared non-meditators with a group who had meditated. Although they had varying levels of experience they had all tried mindfulness meditation, which seeks to anchor the person in the present.

Brain scans revealed that the most advanced meditators were the least likely to anticipate pain induced by a laser device, which made the experience more bearable.

Lead researcher Dr Christopher Brown, said: ‘Meditation is becoming increasingly popular as a way to treat …

Vidyamala

Jun 01, 2010

“Mindfulness for Pain Relief: Guided Practices for Reclaiming Your Body and Your Life,” by Jon Kabat-Zinn

Mindfulness for Pain Relief: Guided Practices for Reclaiming Your Body and Your LifeVidyamala, a long-term pain sufferer, rejoices in a new offering from Jon Kabat-Zinn, but experiences regret it wasn’t available years ago.

I was delighted to to be asked to review this new offering from the founder of mindfulness in healthcare: Dr Jon Kabat-Zinn. It is a two-CD audio book combining extensive background information with guided meditations.

Disc One (session one)

The first CD (or session as the CD is labeled) is entirely taken up with short lectures on various aspects of applying mindfulness to chronic pain of any sort. I listened avidly and welcomed everything he had to say and feel. Jon comes across with …

Wildmind Meditation News

May 03, 2010

Can training soldiers to meditate combat PTSD?

A University of Pennsylvania-led study in which training was provided to a high-stress U.S. military group preparing for deployment to Iraq has demonstrated a positive link between mindfulness training, or MT, and improvements in mood and working memory. Mindfulness is the ability to be aware and attentive of the present moment without emotional reactivity or volatility.

The study found that the more time participants spent engaging in daily mindfulness exercises the better their mood and working memory, the cognitive term for complex thought, problem solving and cognitive control of emotions. The study also suggests that sufficient MT practice may protect against functional impairments associated with high-stress challenges that require a tremendous amount of cognitive control, self-awareness, situational awareness and emotional …

Wildmind Meditation News

Apr 28, 2010

Fit to be tried: Mindfulness

WHAT’S a good way to ease tension, seek a sliver of serenity, and calm that troublesome mental chatter? Try taking a course in mindfulness.

But first the title: why learn a technique that sounds like “mind fullness” when most of us would be keen to avoid some of the estimated 70,000 thoughts we have a day?

“When we take the time to notice what’s going on inside ourselves, we discover our mind is a very busy place,” says Mary O’Callaghan, a psychotherapist and mindfulness trainer, and director of Dublin’s Oscailt Integrative Health Centre.

Mindfulness meditation aims to bring a more conscious awareness to our daily lives.

“We spend of a lot of our time thinking about the past or planning for the future, and …