by Parmjit Singh, PhD
For centuries, meditation has been used in the East to induce special states of consciousness. Not only does regular practice of meditation foster better emotional and psychological well-being, it is equally potent in inducing ‘healing physiology’—a state of hypometabloic alertful state which helps to regain healthy equilibrium in body. Among other benefits, meditation, if practiced regularly, is known to control high blood pressure. A recent study published in American Journal of Hypertension is adding to this claim by reporting that Transcendental Meditation (TM) may be a helpful adjunct to the treatment of hypertension in African Americans.
» For more information, read:
A randomized controlled trial of stress reduction in African Americans treated for hypertension over one year.
By, Schneider, R. H. et al (2005). American Journal of Hypertension (AJH), 18, 88-98.
Tips for Practicing TM:
• Find a quiet and calm place to practice. If possible, a spot near water or natural setting can be a good start. Otherwise, choose a quite corner in your home.
• Adopt a passive attitude—just sit and focus and do not expect anything from it and do not struggle with your mind.
• Pick up a special word or mantra for use during practice. Any word, religious symbol/name would do.
• Sit in a comfortable position—you do not have to sit in a Lotus Posture to enjoy meditation. Just keep your spine comfortably straight.
Once you have taken care of the above requirement, bring your attention to your breath and relax it. Let it be deep and smooth. Consider one inhalation and exhalation as one breath unit. On next exhalation, intone that word/religious name you picked up in the background of your mind. At each exhalation, intone that word. Whenever your mind wanders, gently bring it back to breath. Be gentle with it. Practice this for about 20 minutes each day.