Slowing down.

Of space and meditation.

In yesterday’s post, I wrote about using a biofeedback device promising to explain more today.

Also yesterday, I touched on the benefits of meditation and how the video from quantum physicist John Hagelin PhD seemed so interesting.

So let’s start with that sixteen-minute talk from John Hagelin.

In this intro video, quantum physicist and certified TM teacher John Hagelin, PhD explains the Transcendental Meditation technique and its benefits from a scientific perspective.

Now while I had been aware of transcendental meditation, seemingly for years, I had never really taken steps properly to understand exactly what it is all about. Clearly, John Hagelin does an excellent job in that video in giving one a good basic understanding of TM.

However, a quick trip across to the TM Organisation’s website soon fixed that. There’s a great amount of information. Including sections such as: Stress Relief & Stress Management.

OK, moving on to the biofeedback unit.

Ultra_Side_transp2-700x500

The picture is taken from the company’s website where, as one might expect, there are many glowing reports about its effectiveness. But the key benefit to my mind is that it is a, “FDA-cleared, non-drug, non-invasive hypertension treatment device”.

I purchased it, for $99 plus S&H, because I was aware of having an elevated blood pressure and it came recommended by long-term friend, Dan Gomez. I have been using it now for about 8 weeks.

Essentially, one clips an elasticated strap incorporating a strain gauge around one’s midriff, inserts the ear-pieces into the ears and settles back somewhere comfortable in a quiet room.

While my blood pressure is still too high, the unit most definitely has an incredible calming effect and in approximately twenty minutes my breathing rate drops from about ten breaths per minute (BPM) to five or even just below five BPM. The calming effect stays around for quite some time afterwards.

That why the item about deep breathing from Val Boyco referred to yesterday seemed so apt. No less apt that the comment left by blogger Raj.

Deep breathing exercise also insists on holding the deeply inhaled breath, and releasing it in gradual phases, with a pause between each release, till entire air is exhaled; followed by three to four cycles of same process… One of the purposes of this structured format is to keep the mind in the now and thereby relax the practitioner… Best wishes… Raj.

Not sure what else to add other than be very happy to answer any questions – assuming I know the answer!

In these modern times, when we are bombarded by so much from so many directions, the benefits of deep meditation, of slowing down so naturally, as our dogs demonstrate every single day, could be of tremendous value.

Just watch this short video of the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, speaking at Lake Louise, Canada in 1968.

Uploaded on Apr 3, 2009

The Transcendental Meditation technique uses the natural tendency of the mind to go toward greater happiness, so the mind effortlessly transcends to its most silent state.

8 thoughts on “Slowing down.

  1. Thanks for expanding on this Paul! Mindfulness Meditation is getting a lot of press and research funds these days following the success of Jon Kabat Zinn’s Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction program. It is based on the Buddhist tradition of bringing mindful awareness to whatever is happening in the moment and using the breath as a focus.
    TM hasn’t been as popular here in the US since the 70’s and is one of the foundational meditation practices in yoga using mantra to focus the mind.
    There is no doubt that meditation – in whatever form it takes – is beneficial for our overall health, wellbeing, and focus as it brings about stable tranquility in the mind and body. Over time it takes us deeper into our own layers of being and connects us to our spiritual essence.

    1. Val, I am minded to do more research and see if we have an appropriate teacher near us. Any recommendations in terms of finding the right person?

      Thanks for your helpful reply.

      1. TM people tend to feel that their meditation is the “best” …. I would explore different types of meditation and keep an open mind.
        I, of course am a believer in yoga with pranayama and meditation. Moving and breathing prepares the body for sitting in meditation. That is my practice 🙂

  2. p.s. There are several breathing practices in Yoga. ( Called pranayama) Many are advanced and need supervision. The traditional holding that Raj refers to is likely to be based on a ratio of
    1 – inhale
    4 – hold
    2 – exhale.
    an other practice is:
    count of 4 on inhale
    4 for holding
    then 8 on exhale. (Long exhales calm the system)
    I was taught that holding on the inhale may build blood pressure unless it is practiced with a sense of ease. For you, I’d recommend practicing the long exhale rather than the long internal hold.
    🙂

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