person from France (Alexa)

Meditation, a spiritual experience

Alexa's goosebump moment

Meditation, a spiritual experience – Alexa’s goosebump moment

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“Hello! My name is Alexa, and I am from France. My goosebump moment is meditating. I had this experience meditating a couple weeks ago, it was my birthday. And I just headed out to a spot that was surrounded by nature and just away from everyone and everything. I had my partner with me who’s a great meditator, he meditates daily. I decided why not try it and I closed my eyes. And for about 15 minutes I just felt this immense connection to the universe, to nature and to everyone. I felt this immense sense of gratefulness that went through my whole being. I ended up crying from being overjoyed. And thankful for everything that I have in life, my journey and for all the wonderful people around me. It was a beautiful moment and a spiritual moment for me.”

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The power of meditation

Meditation is a complex concept to define, since there are different types, but it can be understood as an experience of fullness and connection that all people are able to experience.

With meditation we become observers of our own thoughts. This technique allows us to approach our problems from a calmer state of consciousness, which does not mean that we do not experience anxiety, anger, or sadness, but that now, we no longer cling so much to these negative emotions.

The benefits of meditation

Meditation is not “one thing”. It is a concept used to refer to a family of different activities that involve the mind and body. What these activities share is focused concentration. During a meditation practice, we try to achieve a state of awareness of our thoughts and feelings, and a connection with ourselves and our surroundings. Over time, a meditation practice can help you experience peace and greater well-being.

Professional athletes, employees, celebrities, military service members, students and seniors practice meditation. In other words, meditation is not an overly exotic practice; in fact, it is perfect for real life. Anyone who wishes to practice meditation can do so, and it is proven to be beneficial to health and well-being.

Some research indicates that continued meditation practice helps combat stress and its adverse effects. For example, research involving cancer patients yielded data on improvement not only in stress, but also in symptoms of depression, confusion and other scales in both men and women.

It has been proven in multitasking tests and in a study on attentional blinking, which occurs when a stimulus is eclipsed by another that precedes it with little time between them and therefore the individual is only aware of the first one. People who had been meditating showed a reduction in attentional blinking, which means that they learned to better manage the brain resources on which attention depends.

Another probable benefit of meditation is in the relationships with others. A few minutes of meditation have been shown to be effective in predisposing to closer personal contact with strangers.

Myths about meditation

One of the most popular myths is that meditating consists of leaving the mind blank. This belief is inaccurate, as there is always a stream of thought running through us, even if it is minimal. What is meant by this phrase is that, to meditate, you must focus your attention on one focus and concentrate on it as much as possible to avoid distractions.

Another popular belief is that you should sit still for hours. However, this is a false idea that derives from ignorance of the essence of what meditation is because there are ways to meditate even while moving. To meditate, the most important thing is that you can pay full attention to whatever activity you are doing.

It is also said that you should sit in the lotus position while meditating. However, feeling comfortable is fundamental to meditate, as this is how you can achieve deeper experiences. You can meditate with your legs crossed or stretched out, sitting on the floor or in a chair (although it is always good to get used to meditating while keeping your back straight and your shoulders, head and neck relaxed).

Another myth is that to achieve results, you must meditate for many hours. Many people who are attracted to meditation do not start practicing it because they think it will require a lot of time (and we are always short on time). Small practices of five, ten or fifteen minutes a day can be enough for you to experience the well-being and other benefits that come from meditation. More than time, what matters is to be regular and consistent in your practice.

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