Harvard neuroscientist: Meditation not only reduces stress, here’s how it changes your brain

wildmind meditation newsBrigid Schulte, The Washington Post: Sara Lazar, a Harvard neuroscientist, was one of the first scientists to take the anecdotal claims about the benefits of meditation and mindfulness and test them in brain scans. What she found surprised her — that meditating can literally change your brain. She explains:

A friend and I were training for the Boston marathon. I had some running injuries, so I saw a physical therapist who told me to stop running and just stretch. So I started practicing yoga as a form of physical therapy. I started realizing that it was very powerful, that it had some real …

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A silent journey to the centre of the self

August 18, 2014

wildmind meditation newsDebra Black, TheStar.com: Reporter Debra Black attends a six-day silent retreat, where she practices yoga and mediation and tries her best to live in the moment.

“When we relax the breath, the mind temporarily becomes relaxed. The breath is free from greed, hatred, delusion and fear. Relaxing the breath, breathe in. Relaxing the breath, breathe out. The joy arises naturally.” Bhante Gunaratana, The Four Foundations of Mindfulness in Plain English.

It is odd to eat in silence. I’ve lined up for today’s lunch — miso mushroom soup; cold vegetarian rolls of rice noodles, cabbage and avocado; and fresh fruit — without uttering a …

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“Sit With Less Pain” by Jean Erlbaum

March 28, 2014

Sit-With-Less-PainJean Erlbaum’s Sit With Less Pain is subtitled “Gentle Yoga for Meditators and Everyone Else.”

As most meditators know, finding a comfortable way to sit in meditation for long periods of time can be challenging. We can end up futzing around with our equipment, trying out different chairs, benches, and cushions, and constantly adjusting the height and tilt of our seat, and still find that we end up with sore shoulders, or a sore neck, or an aching back. Often the problem is that we’re expecting a body that lacks flexibility to be still for long periods.

Sit With Less Pain addresses that problem, offering us exercises to bring more flexibility to the muscles, tendons, … Read more »

Handling blocks to any inner practice—meditation, yoga, gratitude, mindfulness

November 4, 2013

When you try to change your life for better, sometimes you bump into a block, such as distracting thoughts. Blocks are common. They’re not bad or wrong—but they do get in the way. What works is to explore them with self-acceptance, and see what you can learn about yourself. One valuable aspect of taking in the good is that it often reveals other issues, such as an underlying reluctance to let yourself feel good. Then you can address these issues with the suggestions below. With practice and time, blocks usually fade away.

Blocks to Any Inner Practice

• Distractibility—Focus on the stimulating aspects of positive experiences, which will keep your attention engaged with them.

• … Read more »

Research finds yoga, meditation can help women after cancer

October 31, 2013

Heather Yourex, Global Toronto: Susan Ockey has been practicing yoga for nearly 5 years. She started her practice after her cancer treatment finished.

“I just got through everything and then about a year later went, ‘oh my goodness… what happened? I had cancer.”

According to clinical psychological, Dr. Linda Carlson, many cancer survivors experience stress and anxiety long after therapy ends.

“It’s a huge problem for many cancer patients. They’re dealing with uncertainty, fears of recurrence, lingering side effects, pain, swelling in the arm, sleep difficulties… and fatigue is a big problem as well…

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Mindfulness meditation can ease stress

October 8, 2013

Sara Rae Lancaster, Kenosha News: Donna Mosca had practiced yoga for several years and taught it for five. But it wasn’t until she took a mindfulness-based stress reduction course that she realized how much deeper her own yoga practice and teaching could become.

“We’re constantly pulled away by the stuff going on in our lives,” said Mosca, owner and teacher at Peace Tree Yoga in Burlington. “Adding in elements of mindfulness meditation made me look more closely at my choices, from the books I read and movies I watched to the people surrounding me and the foods I ate.”

Like yoga, mindfulness meditation…

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Yoga, meditation being pushed as ways to cut prison violence, boost well-being

September 21, 2013

Douglas Quan, Postmedia News: Even though some politicians have derided prison yoga programs as unnecessary inmate “coddling,” there’s a growing push for their expansion across Canada.

Advocates say yoga and meditation boost inmates’ mental well-being and help to reduce prison violence. They point to the success of programs in the U.S., including one at California’s San Quentin State Prison, notorious for housing some of the most dangerous offenders.

The question – can the downward dog really benefit those doing hard time? – will be the focus of a discussion next month at a conference of the Canadian Criminal Justice Association…

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Physicians to receive 26 continuing medical education credits to study meditation, yoga and breathing as mind/body medicine

September 18, 2013

PRWeb: The American Meditation Institute (AMI) will present the fifth annual continuing medical education (CME) course on meditation, yoga and breathing for physicians and other health care professionals, November 6-10, 2013 at the Cranwell Resort and Spa in Lenox, Massachusetts. Entitled “American Meditation: The Heart and Science of Yoga,” this comprehensive, 26 hour CME training is accredited through the Albany Medical College Office of Continuing Medical Education. As part of AMI’s “Yoga of Medicine” program, this “Heart and Science of Yoga” CME curriculum is dedicated to providing quality, evidence-based education to physicians and other health care providers.

AMI’s in-depth study of the philosophical and scientific nature…

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Yoga and meditation can work spinal wonders

September 17, 2013

The New Indian Express: Hospitals should house yoga and meditation centres as it gives strength to the body and mind, said T N Governor K Rosaiah at the inauguration of the Continuing Medical Education programme on Common Problems of Spine, on Sunday.

The governor further said that many medical problems can cause or contribute to back pain. He added that the causes of back pain were usually physical, and that it was important to know that emotional stress can play a role in how long the pain lasted. “Stress can affect the body in many ways, including causing…

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A call for mindfulness in healthcare

August 6, 2013

Braden Buckel, New University: Medical professionals specializing in alternative medicine presented the benefits of mindfulness-based healthcare and meditation to healthcare professionals and the general public last week.
Doctor Donald Maurer and psychologist Adrienne Beattie gave a lecture on the benefits of ‘Mindfulness’ on Tuesday, July 30 at 6:30 p.m. in the Tamkin Student Lecture Building. The purpose of the lecture was to spread the benefits of mindfulness-based stress reduction and to promote their course, the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Course or MBSR. The course focuses on reducing stress in daily life through acupuncture, yoga, meditation, as well as modern medicine. While not relying exclusively on traditional data…

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