Meditation involves deep breathing and silence, using either a mantra, or a guided process into mindfulness or deep prayer, or both. Many academics have found that their concentration levels can increase with meditation, whilst their stress levels can decrease. Research gives credence to greater concentration, focus and memory – with some studies showing that meditation can change brain physiology, slow aging, as well as improve cardiovascular and immune health, decrease episodes of depression, and lower blood pressure.
All the major faith traditions have as part of their history, meditation as well as prayer, and it is something that anyone can do, regardless of their belief system. Having a mantra is optional. You might imagine a word that works for you, like ‘peace’.
For a good summary of the benefits of meditation, take a look at this information sheet on mindfulness.
For those interested in further reading: the works of 19th century writer, philosopher, and psychologist William James also provide an interesting background to this area of research.
UTS Multi-Faith Chaplaincy offers several meditation sessions on campus for staff and students:
Mondays 11.40-12. 07.06.009B
Tuesdays: 11-11.30; 1-130pm. 03.05.17
Friday 11-11.30. 03.05.17.
contact Joanna.Thyer@uts.edu.au or email@example.com for more info.
Feature image credit: Dingzeyu Li.