14 Ways My Self-Transformation Happened Through Meditation

Since I started meditating on daily basis, I have had a profound and positive personal transformation. Here is what I learned since I started to meditate:

1) I understand that everything I do has an effect or consequence in the outside. If I think, speak and behave with positivity and optimism, the universe will answer me back with positivity.

2) I understand that I am constantly creating my own reality. I am a protagonist of my world. I have the power to change what I do not like, and no matter how tiny or little an action is, it is always having a positive effect.

3) I understand that there are things in life that only need to be accepted and there is no way in wasting energy and effort in trying to change the unchangeable. On the contrary, by accepting something I am liberating myself. Accepting brings freedom. It gives me a new perspective and new opportunities.

4) I know that everything I think, and every idea I create in my mind is possible of becoming real. There is a very short cut between ideas and facts. If I think about it, I am creating it to a certain extent. So be careful with your ideas!

5) What I call my Box of Negativity fades away! That cumulus of past negative experiences, telling me about catastrophic events or drama situations, and that sometimes determine the way I see reality was cleaned up. So whenever I face a new obstacle, no matter how difficult it is, it will not get stuck to the old negativities. On the contrary, I am able to see it as a new challenge, trying to solve it and then let it go.

6) I am much more able to let go situations, relationships or behaviours that do not nourish me. I do not get stuck so easily to difficulties but on the contrary, I am able to let it go and move on.

7) My creativity expanded as it never did before! I find solutions much easier because my imagination and innovation strategies just flow. Whenever I think about a problem to solve, I immediately figure out the solution. So, my mind is more problem solving or solution-oriented instead of problem creating! It is a switch that changes!

8) I am more confident and I trust myself. I doubt much less. I know what I have to do deeply inside myself.

9) I understand my life and processes in a much more holistic approach. Like looking at the labyrinth from the upside instead of being trapped inside of it. I see things and situations in a clear perspective. There is a break from confusion, a management of ego and a control of emotional dramas.

10) I used to be a person that took a lot of things for granted in life. But now, I have realized I have so much to be grateful for. So I am always being conscious about thanking for everything that is given to me.

11) I am having a more sustainable feeling of joy, pure and simple. My good mood is prevalent over my bad mood.

12) I feel much more connected to the present. I am able to enjoy things as they are at the moment they are taking place, without worrying myself because it won´t be forever but on the contrary, by appreciating them at their right moment and time.

13) I smile much more. And we know that people who smile more are much more beautiful!

14) I understand that even when I think I am controlling everything, there will always be something disruptive, a difficulty or something that bothers me because actually, nothing is perfect. So it is about the attitude I take to address those negative things that really matter in life.

I strongly believe that all this positive transformation has helped me to be a happier person. And the important thing to learn is that there is no way to happiness because happiness is the way. Imagine we all meditate and go under this kind of structural transformation! Isn´t meditation a powerful tool for a positive transformation worldwide?

How can meditation benefit your 5 senses?

The 5 senses rule our lives, but we fail to understand that

When was the last time you enjoyed a meal alone without an electrical gadget by your side? When was the last time you went to sleep without your cellphone? When was the last time you listened to your 5 senses?

For me personally, it’s been a long while now. I can’t nearly imagine eating or sleeping without scrolling through my social media or watching Netflix. It’s something about us Millennials, we are very distracted. Our journey to inner peace has lost its way in the conundrum of a fast life. Millennials are most certainly very productive but have somehow lost the ability to be stable. We can’t be blamed entirely for being addicted to technology either, the competition is tough today. It has become more important than ever to be updated about what’s happening around us, to be able to plan our next smart move.

Meditation can be a savior

A simple example would be, working late at work when your eyes are starting to hurt. It is important for you to understand why your sight is falling back at a time. Chances are, things go wayward if you ignore its warning repeatedly.

However, what we fail to understand is, we are creating bigger problems for ourselves by limiting our senses. Not being able to connect with yourself is a real problem. Meditation is known to help soothe your senses. This gives you the scope to calm yourself and allows you the time to connect with the true self. This is when your body comes in alignment with your mind or senses. This might seem taxing initially but shows greatly on your productivity later. Being mindful should be a lifestyle habit and not something limited to meditations and yoga sessions. It necessarily means being aware of your body in the present. Meditation helps in arousing all our senses and keeping us alert at all times.

We all know our 5 senses that run our lives. But how often do we pay attention to what these senses are trying to communicate? Be that frequent pimple on your face or the itch you get at the end of the day. We all let them shy away with the modern distractions of the day, to take care of themselves. By paying attention to the senses during meditation, we are allowing the body to reconnect well with the mind.

This is how meditation can help your 5 senses:

The sense of Taste

We have such diverse cuisines available so easily today, we take this sense for granted the most frequently. This habit not only makes us unhealthy but also leads to weight gain or weight loss. The right nutrients hit our blood vessels only when we are mindful of what we are feeding them with. Otherwise, our bodies don’t realize if we have already supplied them with the amount or not.

Meditating will indirectly result in being mindful of that. You will have a better control of what and how much you are feeding your body. At times, our body signals at being hungry when it is just in need of water. Misreading your body in times like these will lead to indigestion and obesity.

Having a cup of Jasmine/Green/Pepper Mint tea before meditating can calm your senses and leave a good aftertaste.

The sense of Touch

We are usually always touching something or the else without realizing much of it. We become aware of it mostly when it hurts or feels good in sensation. Meditation can help you be aware of every small thing that you are touching regularly. It could be the warm sensation of an early morning sun or the feeling of rainwater on our bodies. Being aware of such small things or sensations in our daily lives doesn’t just make our lives more alert but also more satisfying.

Meditating doesn’t come naturally to everyone. You can start with being at a comfortable location and relaxing. Make use of soft drapes, cushions, and rugs where you can be comfortable and cozy.

The sense of Hearing

The major motive of meditating is being mindful of your being and surrounding. A great way, to begin with, would be to meditate to a particular sound, be it a chanting of Om or to the sound of raindrops. This will alert your sense of hearing or sound and let all the other senses relax for a while. Let that particular sound absorb you.

The sense of Sight

This is something that has personally helped me a lot in improving my eyesight. Focusing on the flame of a candlelight in a dark room is a great way of enhancing your sense of sight. You can take a note of all the tiny flickers or changes in colors while focusing on not blinking or distracting yourself from it. Your eyes might hurt after a while, then close your eyes and imagine the flame flickering in your mind. You can open your eyes again when the image fades from your mind without distracting yourself.

The sense of Smell

While meditating you sit with your eyes closed, so as not to be distracted. Focus your sense of smell to the aroma of a flower or an incense stick. Anything that has a mild and soothing aroma to it can be of help. But make sure it is not too loud or too over-powering. Fragrances like that of jasmine and sandalwood are known to work as antidepressants and mood stimulants.

Meditating can help you arouse your sense of smell and help you capture the tiniest of smells around you. The smell of soil when the first raindrops hit them, the smell of freshly baked cookies, the aroma of freshness from freshly squeezed citrus, to name a few. Being able to relish these natural and free joys around you will uplift your senses for a long time.

While meditating try and focus at smelling the aromas in the room. This will allow you to absorb your surrounding smells while all your other senses relax for a while.

Being mindful isn’t just a crucial part to survive in today’s world, but also an art of being healthy in the long run. Relaxing or letting go of your crucial senses alternatively, gives them the chance to relax.

Picking up yoga, meditation or some form of workout with a loved one gives us the necessary break from the monotony. Meditation is how you relax your senses and rejuvenate them for a better performance. Allowing your body to fully live all the  5  senses is the only way to connect to your inner self.

Photo credits: Pixabay

Can Trees and Animals Show Empathy and Altruism?

Empathy is a genuine part of our own nature. Moreover, we can improve this quality by training our brain through the practice of focused meditation, mindfulness and loving kindness. But, are humans the only beings capable of showing these positive traits of kindness, compassion and empathy towards our fellows? What about other living beings, like animals and trees? Which lessons can we learn by observing the natural world around us?

Empathy and altruism in non-human animals

Photo credits: Zanna Clay

The answer is, we are not unique in this, and by observing the natural world we can find many examples. In the book The Age of Empathy, biologist Frans De Waal shows innumerable evidences of altruistic and empathetic behaviours in various species of animals, mostly based on his own scientific studies of great primates, such as chimpanzees, bonobos and capuchins. These studies show how they have a true capacity for fairness, and reciprocity; they care about their peers and are willing to help each other, in some cases even risking their own lives to do so. 

In the case of chimpanzees, for example, these traits of empathy and compassion have a determining role in maintaining the cohesion and social harmony of the group. Thus, males or females occupying the highest hierarchical positions can have the key roles in resolving conflicts, often intervening when disputes between the members of their group become more aggressive and helping to mediate reconciliation. As a consequence, these individuals on top of the chimpanzee social hierarchy, are extremely important in sustaining the peace and survival of the members of their groups.

But, what about plants? – The Wood Wide Web

Wood Wide Web by “Hiking Artist”

It’s been recently discovered that empathy, as an ancestral trait, characterizes not only animals, but also plants. Studies conducted by Suzanne Simard, who has spent more than 30 years studying communication among trees in temperate forests, have shown how trees have an intricate system of communication in the soil through their roots, that extend even for kilometres in the forest, as if it was an immense underground secret “internet”. This system of communication and exchange of information through a network is called Wood Wide Web and consists of mycorrhizas. The word mycorrhiza describes the mutually-beneficial relationships that plants have, in which the fungi colonize the roots of plants. The mycorrhizae connect plants that may be widely separated. This network promotes communication between one tree and another, even allowing them to distinguish between those who are their direct relatives and those who are not.

This communication system is so complete and effective that it considerably helps the survival of the trees, allowing coordinated actions in case of emergencies which lead to a remarkable solidarity between individuals. Thus, this underground network between roots and fungi allow them to transfer nutrients, share information about hazards such as pests, and also allow them to attack invasive plants or predatory animals. When a tree feels threatened by a pest (insect attacks, for example) or by other plants such as weeds, it sends a signal to other trees to produce a protective barrier in the form of volatile substances that modify the production of proteins, giving the leaves an unpleasant taste.

Solidarity in the vegetal kingdom

Photo by Ryan Wan on Unsplash

On the other hand, larger trees (called Hubs or Mother Trees) give part of their nutrients to the smallest, favoring and protecting their growth. But this help does not only happen between relatives of the same species, but also between different species that are interdependent, which would be signs of solidarity in the vegetal kingdom. Regarding this, researcher Suzanne Simard stated: “We all know that we favor our own children, and I wondered if cedar trees could recognise seedlings from its own species. So, we started our experiment by growing mother trees along with “kin” seedlings and “foreign” seedlings. As a result we evidenced that they do recognise their relatives, but not only that: mother trees colonised their “kin” seedlings with larger mycorrhizal networks, sent them more carbon underground, and even reduced the competition of their own roots to give more space to these seedlings to grow. So, mother trees created a frame for their children in order to secure their survival. In other words, we found that trees can really speak.”

Featured image: credits 

 

Developing a Bullet Proof Mind Through Cameroon Crisis

What do you do when your hometown has become a place of constant chaos? Sometimes the first thought is to run away. But running to where? We can’t control everything that happens externally but the one thing we can control is our mind. How we react to situations depends on the quality of our mind.

I come from a place that was once a reference of peace but has become a hub for every day violence. Though the option of running away may sound considerable, there are many questions running through my mind in the growing heat of the Anglophone crisis in Cameroon. What about the stakes you have in the place where you spent your entire life? Where do you start from if you leave? Can you really run away from your mind?

Fear, doubt and panic
This crisis started as a peaceful protest against the government for marginalization (of the English speaking minority as oppose to the affluence of the French speaking majority) and a request to return back to Federalism. As it is with every protest that is not tactically handled, this too aggravated from peaceful to violent and a quest for secession. When this tussle persist, the regular man of which I’m a part of is the one that ends ups confused in the midst of both violent parties.

This state of mind comprised of fear, doubt and panic is that which is shared by many in the community. So, when you look around and realize there is no need to run because the stakes involved and the love for patriotism supersedes any other, the only way out is to find a means to deal with the situation and not run away from it. This conception is what led me through a journey of retrospection where I decided to make use of a skill I once learned in a country far, far away from home.

Visualization and flower garden
Together with a group of peace loving youths, we started the Buea Peace Club which aims at empowering the minds of youths to be calm and resilient towards effect of the sound of frequent gunshots in the neighbourhood. We use the tool of mindfulness meditation which I learned in Thailand to train the mind to disconnect from the negative physical environment and create an imaginary one of everyone’s choice where we visualize, focus and feel the pleasure of being in a positive environment such as a beach, flower garden or anywhere we love to be.

These mental exercises have proven to help the participants of the club deal with the chaotic situation in the community better than before. In one of the sessions, a participant named Joy said: “I felt like I was floating, as light as a balloon during the process. The headache that I came in with has all of a sudden gone away!”. Many others said the process gave them a feeling of freedom and peace instead of the constant fear and negative energy brought by the sound of gunshots.

The chaos has not ended in the region, but we – the members of the club – are not feeling the effect as others may because we know how to control our mind. Hence, meditation has now become the bullet proof of the mind. Hopefully, we can reach out to more people with this approach of peace that is grounded from within.

حكايتي مع التأمل

بداية قصتي مع التأمل

التأمل كلمة تحمل الكثير من المعاني لأن لكل واحد تجربته. وهذه التجربة تجعله يتبنى تعريفًا معينًا أوأن يخلق تعريفًا جديدًا.تجربتي الأولى مع التأمل كانت في ربيع 2015 عندما كنت في نيبال لدراسة اليوغا. كان المدرب يبتدئ حصص الرياضة بالتأمل. وحينها قمنا بتجربة تقنيات التخيل والابتهال والنيدرا (يوغا النوم) وفحص الجسد. دائمًا ما كان يوصينا بإغلاق أعيننا أو فتحها مع التركيز على نقطةٍ معينة. استمرت محدودية التجربة لعشر دقائق في حصص اليوغا إلى أن  تعرفت بعدها على “مبادرة السلام العالمي”.

قمت بإنشاء حساب على موقعنهضة السلاموبدأت برنامج الـ 42 يوم لتطوير الذات. ابتدأت بعشرة دقائق واستمر وقت التأمل في الازدياد حتى شاركت في زمالة المؤسسة الإقليمية للنساء العربيات ” هي 2″. هناك استمتعت ب أربعة ساعات من التأمل يوميًا مع إمكانية طرح الأسئلة على الراهب باسورا واثنتان من المدربات المحترفات هن نسرين وأسيل. بعد عودتي من الزمالة، قمت بإكمال برنامج الـ 42 يومًا فأنهيته، لتصبح العشرين دقيقة التي كنت أتأملها قبل المشاركة ب هي2 تصل إلى ما يزيد عن الساعة يوميًا.

ماذا تعلمت من برنامج تطوير الذات؟

خلال الـ 42 يومًا، تم شرح وتعليم عدد من التقنيات التأملية مع كيفية الجلوس ، واختيار المكان. تعلمت من خلاله الاستعداد للتأمل واختيار المكان المناسب، وكيفية الجلوس بوضعية مريحة تضمن أطول مدة من التأمل ، وكيفية وضع يد اليمين فوق اليسار لضمان تدوير الأكتاف واستقامة الظهر. في البداية لم يكن الأمر سهلًا ، ولكني لم أتوقف واستمريت بالمحاولة. خلال التدريب، بعض الفيديوهات كانت تعاد لتركيز الفكرة والتمرن عليها أكثر، وقد كان هذا أمرًا مساعدًا.

مراحل التأمل

بعد الاستعداد للتأمل وإغلاق العينين، كان الراهب في الفيديو يختار احدى التقنيات. ففي أول أسبوع، كان الاختيار واقعًا على أسلوب التخيل، حيث يخلق العقل مكانًا هادئًا داخله ليبحر به. كنت أحب تخيل البحر بسبب حبي الكبير له، فكان ذلك يساعدني على الهدوء التام. ثم اعتمد الراهب مبدأ الابتهال في التأمل، حيث يختار المتأمل ابتهال (عبارة أو كلمة) يرتاح لها ويكررها حتى الهدوء. كنت أردد سبحان الله حتى أدخل في حالة التأمل العميق. في بعض الأحيان يشرد العقل فلم أنفعل لذلك،  بل كنت أشاهد بدون أن أحكم على ذلك. كما كنت أعتمد التركيز على التنفس، فقد كان مساعدًا جدًا. كنت أعود إلى ترديد الكلمات بهدوء مرارًا وتكرارًا حتى يصبح التسبيح مناجيًا لعقلي.

كما علّمنا الراهب في الفيديو فحص الجسد ، فكان يركز على إزالة التوتر من كل جزء من أجزاء الجسد بالترتيب. وكنت أقوم بمحاولة إرخاء العينين والفم والأكتاف والحجاب الحاجز واليدين وأصابع القدمين وغيرهم. وبمجرد الانتهاء من إرخاء أجزاء الجسد، ينتقل الراهب إلى تقنية أخرى. التركيز على النفس، والتوحد مع الأفق، وتخيل الشمس هم أيضًا من التقنيات التي تمت تجربتها. فتقنيّة  تخيل الشمس جعلتني أشعر أنّي مركزٌ للطاقة ، وكانت تشحنني بطريقةٍ غريبة. ودائما ما كنت أشعر بوجع في فك الفم السفلي خلال التأمل وأظن أن ذلك شيءٌ جيد.

تأمل المشي

من طرق التأمل التي تركت في نفسي أثرًا وجعلتني أركّز أكثر في تنقلاتي اليومية هي المشي التأملي والذي قمت بتجربته للمرة الأولى في برنامج هي 2. وقتها، قمت بالمشي في الطبيعة وتعلمت تأمل الشجر وما يحيطني.أصبحت الآن أنظر للتفاصيل حولي خلال المشي أو السواقة.

تأثير التامل على حياتي 

ساعدني التأمل على التركيز أكثر والتخفيف من انفعالاتي،  كما أنه ساعدني على اتّباع نمط حياة صحي. احرص/ي على التأمل في نفس الميعاد يوميًا لتتمكن من اكتساب هذه العادة الحسنة. ولنشر هذه الثقافة قمت مع صديقتي رشا رستم،  التي تعرفت عليها ببرنامج هي 2 بإنشاء “نادي السلام” وهو نادٍ نقوم فيه بجلسات تأملية في بيروت وطرابلس.

انتهى برنامج ال 42 يوم وأنا أشعر بأني أفتقد شيئًا. لا أريد أن أصف حالتي بالإدمان، ولكن فوائد التأمل وسهولة طريقة الراهب في الفيديوهات جعلته محببًا ومريحًا. والآن أتطلع شوقًا للمرحلة الثانية.

Life-changing Scholarship Opportunities in Thailand

Life Changing Scholarship Opportunities Thailand Meditation

Just like those unexpected and wonderful things that happen in life, my cousin suggested me I take a look at an article. It was entitled “The Most exotic Scholarships of the World.” She emphasized that I was probably the only person she knew who would be interested in those kind of weird things. By weird, she meant what I actually referred to as a surprising scenario: a life-changing scholarship opportunity offered by World Peace Initiative Foundation to participate in a Meditation Retreat in Thailand! I could not believe how amazing and simultaneously exotic it sounded!

The Scholarship Opportunity, Thailand Meditation

This “casual and azarous” fact led me to a life-changing experience several months later, in January 2016. After I started the online Self-Development Program, I experienced an astonishing personal transformation. Although I had always been interested in exploring and developing tools for personal growth, meditation came to me as a very practical way to dive into my depth and redefine the way I want to be in the world.

I still remember how happy and smiling I was when I got the news that I had been selected to participate in it. My family could not believe it at all. “Are you really going to Thailand? That far? For a Meditation Retreat?!”

This training-retreat allowed me to awaken and develop many aspects of myself that had always been there. I had the precious opportunity to dive into myself, my emotions, and my essence. To enjoy some silence enabling me to listen to whatever my body, my mind and my soul were trying to tell me.

Good News: Another Scholarship opportunity in Thailand!

The application call for the new edition of this training is now open until August 15th. Further,  it will take place in December 2018 in Thailand! This is the only international youth training of its kind as it offers group dynamics for networking as well as time for personal well-being and calmness. A good combination of meditation, mindfulness & self-development which will lead to professional success in any career path by challenging yourself to be a better version of what you are looking for.

Read more of the whole process of my personal transformation during and after attending the Thailand training in my article “14 ways my self-transformation happened through meditation”.

Here are the 4 Ds why the Thailand Meditation Fellowship is a life-changing opportunity:

Discover you true self

How much of our own selves still remain unknown for ourselves? How much hidden potential do we have? What about embracing our weaknesses and transforming them into virtues?

Personally, since I started meditating, I feel much more confident and I trust myself better. I doubt much less because I know what I have to do, deeply inside myself.

Detox and empower your mind

We all know how important is to keep our physical body clean. But have you ever wondered how important it is to purify our mind as well? The same way we clean up our body, our mind needs to detox. What causes a clouded mind? Our daily agitated routine, stressful situations, negative sensations, recurrent thoughts, concerns with no solution. If we would just take some time for ourselves. Did you know that when we meditate, we recharge the mind and body so that we have more energy to do good things for ourselves and for others?

On a personal level, that cumulative of past negative experiences. Stories of catastrophic events or drama situations, and that sometime determine the way I see reality, was cleaned up. So whenever I face a new obstacle, no matter how difficult it is, it will not get stuck to the old negativity. On the contrary, I am able to see it as a new challenge, to try to solve it and then let it go.

Develop mindfulness lifestyle

How do we cultivate healthy habits? What is a good habit? Further, how do we change those habits that we think do not lead us to reach our goals in life? First, we need to be aware of them recognizing our actions and its consequences in our daily life. Does it sound easy?

Personally, I am now much more able to let go situations, relationships or behaviours that do not nourish me. I do not get stuck so easily to difficult moments, on the contrary, I let it go. So it is about the new positive attitude I take to address those negative things what really matters in life.

Design a peaceful environment

It is easier to be at peace when on vacations in a beautiful beach or in the exotic mountains with good food and friends, right? But how to bring this feelings back home? We should learn how to create a peaceful environment that allows us to be at peace as well.

Personally, I now understand that I am constantly creating my own reality. I am a protagonist of my world. I have the power to change what I do not like. Though some actions seem tiny they always have a positive effect.

In the end, it all comes to the same reflection: “As within so without”. Nothing in our external reality can change without first making changes on the inside. And this is the secret ingredient of this program: Peace In, Peace Out. Peace starts from within. If I am not at peace, how can I spread peace out? By changing the quality of your thoughts, you change the quality of your whole life and of those around you. This change includes your family, community and the entire world!

Prepared for this life-changing opportunity?

Apply here  Now!

How To Sit During Meditation?

meditation posture

Meditation posture is very important; it is the first thing that I teach when explaining meditation to the people in my workshops. What is the right way to sit when you meditate and is there a right way? Below are some tips on your posture that will make meditation pleasant and lasting.

Back straight

Many people ask me if they can lie down during meditation. Technically you can, but 1) there is a high chance that you will fall asleep, 2) most meditation schools suggest that sitting upright is necessary to keep your spine straight. One of the explanations is that along your spine is the energy channel which connects you between the earth and the sky, and sitting upright keeps this channel open. Physiologically, the explanation is simple – when a person is sitting with the back straight, there is enough space in the chest and stomach to breathe fully, the inner organs are not contracted and have enough space in the stomach.

Legs crossed

When you meditate for a long time, crossing your legs into a half lotus position will keep your posture stable. Your two knees and the buttocks form a triangle which stabilises the posture and allows the meditator to sit without movement for hours.

Cushion

It is a good idea to sit on a cushion to support your back. If your buttocks are higher than your knees, there will be no pressure on the knees and it will be easy to maintain the posture for a long time.

It is ok to sit on a chair

Meditation is a practice for the mind. If you meditate less than an hour, it is totally fine to sit on the chair. Remember that keeping yourself comfortable will help you forget about the body and concentrate on the mind. When you sit on the chair, try not to lean on the backrest, and keep your feet flat on the floor, your hands on the knees or right hand on the left hand.

Eyes relaxed

We often keep the most tension in our eyes and shoulders. Relaxing your eyes will help you relax the full body. Try to open the space between your eyelashes a bit, so the light comes in, but you do not see anything. Do not look towards your stomach if you visualize something there; your eyes are to be relaxed at all times. When visualizing, feel the object inside your center, and keep your eyes relaxed.

Adjust your posture

If you feel too much pain or discomfort, feel free to move and adjust your position. Making your meditation experience pleasant will assure you to come back to it. Our body remembers all the unpleasant activities and forms resistance towards them. Do not torture yourself, if your legs are numb or in pain, simply change your position. If your back is in too much pain, allow yourself to lean on the backrest/wall for a while, and then come back to sitting upright. May your posture depict your self love.

If you have any special condition, remember to consult with your physician about the meditation posture you will stay in for a long time.

Thank you for reading, if you are ready to meditate, join our free 42 days online self development program. Today is the best day to start changing your life for better. Learn about 4 ways traveling makes you grow, and combine traveling with your meditation practice.

I am happy to hear from you! Share your tips about meditation posture in the comments below.

meditation posture

How Meditation Helped Thai Boys Survive in the Cave

How could meditation help when you are trapped in a cave and may think you are about to die? We’ve heard the story of 12 Thai boys and their football coach who were rescued from a flooded cave in Northern Thailand after spending there almost 10 days. In order to survive, they were guided into meditation by their coach, who had once been a Monk, and miraculously – it helped them attract the rescue team and survive. Peace Revolution Teaching Monk John Paramai explains how it was possible.

1) Meditation reduces the need for food

When we meditate, we reduce the need to use energy. When the body is still, the amount of energy that the body needs decreases. Then, as we observe our breath during meditation, we make our breathing softer, smoother and longer. This is how the body naturally needs less energy resulting in less metabolism and lower oxygen consumption. Therefore, meditators can stay alive many days with less food or in some case with no food at all.

2) Meditation reduces fear

If we got trapped in a room with no light for days without knowing when we would be freed, would we be able to let go of worry from the mind? When the amount of worry is more than the amount of hope, we  – humans – develop fear in the mind. Meditation reduces the number of thoughts. Moreover, meditators can choose positive thoughts over negative ones. Those who meditate regularly will fear nothing regardless of the situation they are in.

3) Meditation reduces conflicts

Getting trapped in a place with so many people, how did the boys stay so calm? It looks as if they didn’t have any conflict with each other at all. When we meditate, we develop empathy, and that’s how we can see and understand from other people’s perspective. Those who meditate regularly will not only think about themselves, but will develop compassion towards others. That might be the secret of how all the boys survived and no one was left behind before the rescue team arrived.

4) Meditation increases patience

Waiting requires patience, which is always hard to find and easy to lose. People get tired of waiting, especially when you have to wait indefinitely. The mind that can let go, helps us wait longer. Additionally, the amount of expectation that keeps growing every minute we wait, is gong to blow our patience away. When we meditate, we learn to let go, lower our expectations and stay with the present. And that’s how patience is developed.

5) Meditation increases positive energy

Buddha taught us that the mind is everything: what you think, you become. When we meditate, our mind cultivates positive energy which by the law of attraction, will attract positive things to your life. When all boys meditated together, the amount of their combined positive energy could potentially attract the rescue team that finally discovered them. And this is the secret power of the mind.

If you wonder where to start exploring the power of your mind, you may consider applying for the upcoming Peace Revolution Fellowship in Thailand.

La magie de l’expérience de la méditation

La première fois que je l’ai réellement expérimenté, c’était avec l’un des Peace Architect du World Peace Initiative. A l’époque, il m’avait conviée à l’une de ses séances en groupe qui devait se tenir à Porto-Novo. J’ai essayé, j’ai découvert la méditation, une vraie magie. Je vous épargne les détails. J’en suis tombée amoureuse: pas a priori de la pratique, mais de l’effet qu’elle fait. Découvrez dans cet article la magie de la méditation.

Le début de la magie

J’ai continué à apprendre et à me familiariser avec la méditation grâce à un programme de développement personnel en ligne sur le site internet de PEACE REVOLUTION. C’est 42 jours de pur délice, où tout un cocktail de cours est gratuitement disponible pour apprendre à prendre conscience de certains faits de votre quotidien, jusque-là banalisés. A la fin de ce programme, vous êtes transformé positivement: vous respirez et répandez naturellement la paix. Mais avant même la fin, vous remarquez l’impact positif des leçons sur vos relations avec les autres, sur votre manière de voir les choses; vous êtes désormais plus enclin à la tolérance, à laisser passer certains choses jadis insupportables.

Des opportunités pour améliorer sa pratique

Après les 42 jours de cours en ligne, vous avez également la possibilité de saisir des opportunités pour approfondir et développer votre pratique de la paix intérieure. J’ai donc été à la première édition de la Formation ALAFIA pour l’Afrique francophone du 10 au 12 octobre 2017. C’était une occasion inédite que j’ai partagé avec 21 autres jeunes de l’Afrique francophone. C’était une expérience inoubliable de paix profonde.

De même, des milliers d’autres opportunités existent comme par exemple le Global Peace on the Move (GPM) qui est à sa 21e édition cette année, et actuellement en cours. Vous avez donc la possibilité d’y postuler jusqu’au 15 août, délai butoire. C’est une rencontre des jeunes de tous les pays du monde entier en Thaîlande durant 2 semaines. Plus de détails à travers le lien suivant.

Faire l’expérience

Maintenant que vous avez découvert les B-A BA, je vous invite à lire mon prochain article pour découvrir des thématiques concrètes pouvant vous aider à cultiver la paix, tant en vous et avec vous, qu’en dehors de vous et envers les autres.

Seven Steps For A Yogi Path

There’s a lot of confusion about yoga these days. For many, it’s just a brand to market their products, or a tool used in social media as a way to get thousands of likes and followers. However, yoga is not only about a perfect headstand pose, or holding your leg behind your neck. The asana (poses) practice is a very important part of this whole technology; it helps you be in a good physical condition, prevents you from loosing the right function of your body, helps you detox and restore your system from all the negative impact of the environment but is not definitely the only aspect of it.

When I became interested in yoga, I had no idea what I was doing, in fact, I had many misconceptions about it, like yoga is for women, yoga is for flexible people, yoga is religion and so on. Anyways I went for classes every week until I fell in love with it. Fortunately, thanks to this first approach to yoga and meditation, in a few months my life changed completely in the four areas: personal, social, professional, mental. I could witness my body and mind changing, while my heart started to open little by little allowing me to connect with my intuition, self-love, and compassion.

Yoga comes from the Sanskrit root YUJ, which means “to unite”. And the ultimate goal of it is liberation, also known as Samadhi, through the union of the individual self with the universal soul. According to the old scriptures, yoga began with the universal sound OM, the powerful cosmic vibration that lies in the bottom of all atomic energies, the word of creation.

For me, one of the most important aspects of engaging into a yoga lifestyle is to have the right reasons; you need to be one hundred percent committed to your daily practice Sadhana if you are to have success in maintaining it. Your “why” should be more important to you than the reasons and excuses for not doing it. So, before you start any yoga practice, you want to create a Sankalpa or a personal intention, formed by the heart and the mind, which serves as your personal resolution.

If you are wondering where to start, here are simple steps for a yogi path:

1) Moral discipline

As human beings, we have the ability to choose between the right and wrong. This can be considered as a very important practice for training our thoughts, speech, and actions in relation to the external world. Remember, we are not alone, we depend on others not only to survive but to build pure and lasting relationships, either you practice yoga or not.

2) Positive duties

This is a practice for healthy living concerned with ourselves and bringing an impact to the outside world as well. Some of these duties include purifying our body and mind, cultivating an attitude of contentment, self-discipline, self-study or inner exploration, and if you are deep into spirituality, you may consider surrendering to your spiritual source.

3) Posture

According to Patanjali, the physical aspect of yoga is the third step on the path of freedom. Asana means “seat” (for the practice of meditation), the posture should be steady and comfortable. Instead of focusing on only one posture that we can hold comfortable and motionlessness, we should be able to attain many poses really comfortable and steady.

In this article, I am taking the risk of stepping out of the Indian tradition and honoring the Tibetan Lamas with these Five Rites to activate and stimulate the seven main Chakras (wheels of spinning energy). According to Peter Kelder “performing the Five Rites stimulates the circulation of essential life energy throughout the body”.

4) Breathing techniques

In sánskrit it is called Pranayama, the yogic practice of regulating and channelling one’s breath. Another path translates it as “freedom of breath”. The goal is to change our state of being so that we become more focused on what is to be the focus especially to meditate without distractions. My two favorite practices are:

Chandra Bhedana: our left nostril is energetically associated with the moon, our body’s cooling energy.

Surya Bedhana: our right nostril represented by the sun, carries our body’s healing energy.

5) Meditation

So far we reviewed the moral aspect of the being, the physical body and the breath as a source of balancing the energies. Now I am reaching one of my favorite aspects of yoga which is understanding the nature of the mind. We have two parts: the body and the mind, like the hardware and the software. The software controls the hardware, so the software needs to be optimized and clean in order for the hardware to work properly. The same way we need to keep the mind clean and optimized; keep it positive all the time, rest and let go of everything that no longer serves us. Meditation is a very effective tool to control the mind, desires, thoughts, speech and finally our actions. Research shows that regular meditation helps improve concentration skills, clarity, and emotional positivity.

I recommend you to start with a guided meditation.

6) Yogi eating

The type of food we eat plays an important role in our lifestyle, the energy levels and the deepening of the meditation and asana practice. It is our responsibility to fulfil all the requirements for the body, be aware of the quality of the food, and make it simple.

Avoid intoxicants like alcohol, drugs, smoking. This keeps you stimulated, and your ability to perceive and feel changes. The level of clarity gets limited, and you may make wrong decisions. Another advice is to make 40% of your diet plant-based, with fruits and veggies. Animals carry memory and information that your body absorbs and make it part of itself. As evolving beings, we no longer need to eat large quantities of meat. And, of course, if you are willing to spread love and kindness to all beings, think about all the sacrificed animals that die in order to satisfy your old habits and cravings.

7) Heal yourself

Emotionally, psychologically, physically and spiritually, we all have something to heal, in fact, I truly believe that the only reason we are born is to know who we really are. We carry deep fears, self-judgments, imposed beliefs, that are hard to face and can only be eradicated with the willpower and courage to recognize when something is wrong. Since my first contact with yoga, I notice a change in my consciousness and a deep desire to develop my life, cultivate my inner desires and dreams only by listening to the heart and getting away from all the possible distractions of the matrix.

As the Dalai Lama says: “Be free to experience on your own what works for you or not.”

These paragraphs that I’m sharing with you are not the ultimate truth but all of the tips mentioned have been used for thousands of years in many traditions and cultures. Too often, I keep repeating to myself that everything happens for a reason, and thanks to yoga I can understand myself better and spread the words of well-being around me. I believe in changes, and one by one we can all change the situations, mindset, and misperceptions that keep us away from being happy and at peace.

LOVE YOURSELF.