Meditation has been a subject of many research and investigations.
There are many articles about meditation and its benefits. Still, there are also many things to say more about how people could consider meditation in their everyday life. This article provides a simple way to understand what meditation is and gives some of its benefits.
A misunderstanding to sweep out of our mind
In Africa, meditation is somehow a new concept and many people tend to misunderstand what meditation is and what it is not. My aim is to share my point of view about meditation and to show that meditation has nothing to do with religions and any other mystic perception. Meditation is a tool to calm and clear our mind from bad thoughts and have a more useful life. In the first part of this article, I will discuss “meditation from my Peace Agent point of view” and in the second part, I will show how we can easily use meditation when we discover its benefits both for our mind and body.
Open your mind and be the change
First of all, let’s be sure about the fact that meditation has nothing to do with religious. Next, let’s become more open minded in order to understand the following. There is nothing about religious here and our aim is not to convert anybody to any kind of religion. If we agree with the above conditions, we can then continue reading the rest of the paragraphs.
What is meditation?
Meditation = Concentration + Inner Peace. Many people wrongly believe that “Peace” is the absence of “War”. Unfortunately, this world, we are in a perpetual conflict with life. Everyday, we struggle to satisfy our basic needs. We only think about what we could eat, wear, drink and save. But few of us succeed in cleaning their mind. We fail to build our Inner Peace by cultivating positive thoughts. Everything in this life is determined by our Inner Peace, the outstanding quietness and peacefulness that we always forget to train and feed with good emotions. We always run after life and wealth. But we fail to take a look to our inside universe.
An illustration from a Monk in Dhammakaya Temple in Thailand
I have been given a very good lesson by a Monk in Dhammakaya Temple. I asked him the question to tell me one thing to encourage me in my everyday meditation; so that even when I will be tired because of work, I find out a reason to meditate. He gave me a very interesting example. He said: “supposed you don’t take a bath for three days. How would you feel”? He continued and said: “I am sure that you will feel uncomfortable”. “It is the same for the mind”. Human beings are made of body and mind. So you, as an example are: your body + your mind. When you are clean, you feel good in your body and when you are not, you feel uncomfortable. We always produce thoughts. And they are of two natures. We have positive and negative thoughts. Human-kind, most of the time produces many negative thoughts. It is the reason why many people are unhappy with their life in the world. Our thoughts corrupt our realities. It is said that: “we eat our words and thoughts”. It simply means that what we say and what we think about always becomes our reality in life. How could we then control our thoughts?
The only way to control of thoughts and to have a good quality of thoughts is to meditate
There is no need to be a member of a group or a religion. We need just to sit down, close our eyes and look inside our body or feel our breathing, feel our heart beating. Let’s be calm for 10 to 15 minutes and we easily notice the goodness of the inner-world. Each time we repeat that exercise, we help our mind to be more and more focus and peaceful. It is as if we took a bath and clean our mind so that we start producing more positive thoughts. When we continue, after a month, we could confess that meditation is a wonderful tool to be happy and to have pure thoughts. When we succeed in cleaning our mind regularly and then pay attention to our words, our whole life change after a very short period and everything becomes clear and bright around us.
A scientific evidence to this:
Scientifically, it has been proven that meditation helps us to have:
1. A Tider life,
2. Good and positive thinking,
3. More empathy and understanding,
4. The ability to think before speak,
5. More energy, 6. Better eating habit,
7. Self Improvement and self-discovery.
Those are some of the first benefits of meditation. When combines with Cleanliness and Tidiness, meditation:
1. Develops focus,
2. Helps us to take better decision,
3. Enables multitasking,
4. Reduces stress,
5. Provides relaxation, prioritization, letting go, time management and better memory,
6. Boosts creativity,
7. Improves social life,
8. Reduces conflicts,
9. Develops compassion.
Moreover, meditation has proved to be the best way to know ourselves and to improve our living and working conditions. True facts in the history of America, meditation had helped people to solve some problems at a given point of time. For instance, in 1993, TM Study stated that “18% of violent crime was reduced in the USA, when 4.000 people meditate in DC”. We could then understand that meditation is a very nice weapon to build our Inner Peace and share it with our surroundings. We can never stop our mind because naturally it is made to think and wonder every time. The only thing that is possible for us to do is to train our mind. We can train our mind in order to control our thoughts and try to clean out negative thoughts. We are living in a world of struggles. Many things happen and most of them are beyond our human capacity.
Let’s change our mind to change the world. It is one of the secrets of happiness.
Peace in … Peace Out!
M. Armand KODJO
Peace Agent at World Peace Initiative Foundation,
Benin, West Africa