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You are browsing all posts tagged with the topic: mental health

Bodhipaksa

Nov 09, 2011

How to get rid of resentment

Ann Lamott, in her novel Crooked Little Heart, says that holding onto resentment is like eating rat poison and waiting for the rat to die.

Resentment is seductive. We assume on some level that it’s going to help us, but it doesn’t. It just causes us pain.

This is something that just about all of us need help with.

1600 years ago, a compiler and commenter of Buddhist texts called Buddhaghosa put together an extraordinary “tool kit” of ways to deal with resentment. I was recently looking at this guidance, which is part of Buddhaghosa’s encyclopedic work on meditation, The Visuddhi Magga, or Path of Purity, and thought it was so fresh, well …

Bodhipaksa

Sep 12, 2011

“Ten Thousand Joys and Ten Thousand Sorrows”: an interview with Olivia Ames Hoblitzelle

This book is intensely personal. Was it difficult to write?

Yes, at times it was difficult to write, but I felt a great sense of purpose. just before Hob died, I promised him that I would write a book and his voice would be in it. That became like a covenant between us. Also, I felt compelled to write the book. I realized that our background with meditation and the wisdom traditions gave us valuable perspectives which could be helpful to others. I hadn’t seen any books about how spiritual perspectives or practices could help with Alzheimer’s, and that’s what had helped us more than anything. In fact, the book …

Saddhamala

May 08, 2011

How to clear your mind of negative thoughts

The mind is like a wild elephant that needs taming. If you have ever meditated and tried to quiet your mind, you will have experienced your thoughts as continuous and difficult to manage.

We worry, we obsess about the same things over and over again, we are anxious about things that never happen, we want more than we have, or something different from what we have, and we have expectations of ourselves and others that may never be met.

What we think creates the world we live in. When we think negatively about ourselves and others, we do not experience the beauty and joy that can be found within ourselves and others.

One of …

Wildmind Meditation News

Apr 05, 2011

Meditation has the power to make dramatic changes in your physical and psychological health

Many people see meditation as an exotic form of daydreaming, or a quick fix for a stressed-out mind. My advice to them is, try it.

Meditation is difficult, at least to begin with. On my first attempt, instead of concentrating on my breathing and letting go of anything that came to mind, as instructed by my cheery Tibetan teacher, I got distracted by a string of troubled thoughts, then fell asleep. Apparently, this is normal for first-timers. Experienced meditators will assure you that it is worth persisting, however.

“Training allows us to transform the mind, to overcome destructive emotions and to dispel suffering,” says Buddhist monk Matthieu Ricard. “The numerous and profound methods that Buddhism has developed over the centuries can be …

Wildmind Meditation News

Jan 25, 2011

The Guardian newspaper’s guide to meditation

Last weekend the British Guardian newspaper published a guide to meditation. Here are extracts, as well as links to the full articles…
1. How to meditate: An introduction
Rates of depression and anxiety are rising in the modern world. Andrew Oswald, a professor at Warwick University who studies wellbeing, recently told me that mental health indicators nearly always point down. “Things are not going completely well in western society,” he said. Proposed remedies are numerous. And one that is garnering growing attention is meditation, and mindfulness meditation in particular.

The aim is simple: to pay attention – be “mindful”. Typically, a teacher will ask you to sit upright, in an alert position. Then, they will encourage you to focus on something straightforward, like …

Padraig O'Morain

Nov 02, 2010

“Living Well With Pain and Illness,” by Vidyamala Burch

living well with pain and illness“You don’t have to get through until morning. You only have to get through the present moment.”

That thought transformed Vidyamala Burch’s relationship with her pain. A catastrophic car accident had left her with permanent damage and permanent pain – and that was on top of an incident during life-saving practice that had already damaged a vertebra.

Following one procedure she was required to sit upright for twenty four hours. During the ordeal she felt “impaled on the edge of madness.” It was as though she could hear two voices arguing inside her. “I can’t bear this. I’ll go mad. There’s no …

Bodhipaksa

Aug 22, 2010

“When In Doubt, Make Belief,” by Jeff Bell

When In Doubt, Make Belief, by Jeff BellHave you ever driven away from your house and found yourself wondering whether you’d remembered to close the garage door? Probably.

Have you ever gone back, checked to make sure that the door was closed, driven away, and then had to come back yet again to make doubly sure? And then repeated the entire exercise again? Probably not, but if you have, then you may be one of the millions of people who struggle with obsessive compulsive disorder, or OCD.

Jeff Bell is a well-known author, speaker, and radio news anchor. He’s found himself checking the garage …

Wildmind Meditation News

Aug 06, 2010

Losing Focus? Studies Say Meditation May Help

The idea that meditation is good for you is certainly not new, but scientists are still trying to figure out exactly why meditating so reliably improves mental and physical health. One old theory is that meditation is just like exercise: it trains the brain as if gray matter were a bundle of muscles. You work those muscles and they get stronger.

A recent paper in the journal Psychological Science tries to identify brain functions that are actually enhanced by meditating. The study shows that intensive meditation can help people focus their attention and sustain it — even during the most boring of tasks. But while participants who meditated were able to pick up visual cues better than a control group, it …

Wildmind Meditation News

Jun 03, 2010

Meditation may improve drinking and substance abuse behaviors in active military personnel

military meditationMeditation may help improve drinking and substance abuse behaviors in active duty service personnel undergoing treatment in a residential program, according to results from a small study reported at the American Psychiatric Association (APA) 2010 Annual Meeting.

“Using mindfulness-based, breath-centered meditation may be a helpful treatment modality for service members who wish to recover from substance dependence or abuse,” said lead investigator Amy Canuso, DO, from the Department of Psychiatry at the Naval Medical Center in San Diego, California, during her presentation.

“I would tell clinicians that this is an option that should be explored,” Dr. Canuso told Medscape Psychiatry. “I would consider including it in therapeutic programs at facilities and …

Wildmind Meditation News

May 05, 2010

Harvard doc helps judges open minds

Dozens of Bay State judges followed their bliss and abandoned the bench to mellow out with a meditation guru who taught them how to boost their “concentration” in the courtroom.

The six-hour conference – scheduled for a Friday – featured noted Harvard meditation expert Dr. Daniel Brown and attracted 66 of the state’s 80 superior court judges.

It was such a hit other judges are shedding their robes for some deep reflection.

“We focused on identifying the types of stresses that are typical of being a judge,” Brown said. “We talked about ways of enhancing capacities to cope with handling the ongoing stresses of being a judge.”

Brown said it was the second such seminar for superior court judges, who pull down $129,000 a …