What is Meditation as Medicine?
What we do in the morning sets the tone for the entire day. It’s also when the mind tends to be at its quietest. What we do in the evening sets the tone for a good night’s sleep which is essential to our immunity and emotional well-being (and non-reactivity). And our day can suck us in, or we can take pause at some point during our day to ‘press the reset button.’
Controlled breathing and meditation invite the body to stop being busy, the breath to slow down, and the mind to begin settling, especially if it feels frayed, overwhelmed, restless, distracted, or dull. Moving from within this stillness, breathing practices serve to awaken, move, and deepen awareness within our body-mind systems and guide us to deeper levels of consciousness (mindfulness). We tap into our Rest & Relaxation Response (the parasympathetic nervous system) which has positive implications for managing social anxiety, depression, insomnia, persistent (chronic) pain, addictive tendencies (and more).
Meditation is not something we do, but rather a practice. It extends from the breath and evolves from showing up again and again for oneself and for others as collective prayer, and cultivates space and stillness from within to help us heal and enhance our sense of well-being. Meditation extends our mindfulness off the cushion into how we proceed through our day, how we inter-act with our families and community, and how we choose to manifest in the World.
Yoga Mandala is a sangha (community) of practitioners of mindfulness. Community offers solidarity and support, especially when life gets difficult, or practicing alone or staying on the cushion is a challenge. If you are new to the practice, try our SLOW FLOW with YIN on Sunday evenings, or BASIC YOGA with MEDITATION on Thursday evenings, or MINDFUL SLOW FLOW on Sundays at 8am–these classes prepare the body for sitting with short periods of practice in breathing, meditation and guided relaxation.
And please join us in Collective Meditation and Prayer on the last Sunday of every month to help raise the vibration for healing, health and wholeness in the World, with particular attention to the plight of Syrians and Syrian refugees ($10 donation).