Yoga asana was traditionally practiced to enable yogis to sit in meditation for longer periods of time. Yoga asana is a moving meditation which has well documented positive effects on the mind, and seated meditation is a deeper extension of this practice where the whole body and mind can truly rest.
The Buddhist philosophy of meditation is to reduce suffering on all levels of our being: mental, emotional and physical. Meditation helps us to detach from the body to free us from physical, emotional and spiritual pain.
Meditation is widely becoming known as a psychological therapy for conditions such as stress, anxiety and depression. Meditation and its effect on the central nervous system has recently become a focus of collaborative research in neuroscience, psychology and neurobiology. Studies on meditation’s effect on the brain suggest there is a neuroplastic mechanism that changes the brain over time with continued meditation. Brain activity in the amygdala, cingulate, and frontal cortex areas suggest that meditation has an impact on mood and emotion. Several studies have shown significant success in using mindfulness meditation to treat depression and emotional disorders. Meditation is as effective at combating depression as well as preventing it, and reduces depression relapse. Other proven to health benefits of meditation include reduced heart disease and lowered heart rate, improved out comes for terminal illnesses and nervous system disorders, reduced fatigue and chronic pain, allergies and arthritis.
Despite the increased use of mental health medications over the past few decades, there has not been a reduction in reported mental health issues as a result of medication. For this reason, meditation as a therapy must be considered for the benefit of all. The proven ability of mindfulness and power of thought in treating health conditions is essential in today’s society, where stress and anxiety levels are high.
Meditation is an amazing tool that you can truly begin to practice with clients. To truly understand mindfulness, we must know it within ourselves. This course is designed to help you bring mindfulness to life, and then to the community.
Meditation courses in 2015:
- Meditation as Therapy (August/September 2015)
These courses are modules in the graduate certificate in Yoga Therapy. You can find out more about our Yoga Therapy program here