Meditation is an incredible tool for strengthening the mind and body. Last week Lindsay Gonzalez lead a Meditation Workshop put on by BeWell and Student Activities. The workshop had a great turn out, almost 35 people, the positive and happy energy could be felt throughout the room.
Meditation is considered a type of mind-body complementary medicine. Meditation produces a deep state of relaxation and a tranquil mind according to the Mayo Clinic. The goal is to focus one’s thoughts and clear the constant stream of anxiety and stressful thinking that runs through everyone’s mind, as Lindsay called it “the monkey brain.” Meditation has been practiced for thousands of years, originally it was meant to help deepen the understanding of the sacred and mystical forces of life. Anyone can do it in any way, during a walk, final shavasana or even when they are doing the dishes. It is all about finding what best works for each individual. Not only does meditation help with managing stress and anxiety, living in the present moment and improving self awareness, there have also been studies that show meditating can help with allergies, depression, heart disease and cancer (Mayo Clinic).
The only thing needed for the workshop was a blanket, pillow, journal and open mind. It began with a couple of “ohms,” the entire group sat, eyes closed on their pillows or folded blankets and joined together in three powerful ohms. The vibration of everyone’s voice felt so interesting and purifying. After this Lindsay showed the group how to make their own meditation shrine. A meditation shrine is a wonderful tool for improving your meditation practice, it can include anything from a plant, picture of your family, and any other little things that bring the shrine owner happiness and peace. Following this the group began their meditation, getting in touch with ones breath and clearing the mind. Lindsay guided the meditation with questions, such as “what do you love to do,” and “if you didn’t have to worry about money, what would you do.” After each question the group would write a short response in their journals. Deeply thinking about these questions can make some Mines students very uncomfortable and leave them feeling disheartened, since they meditated before and after the question, the mind was able to stay calm and uplifted.
The entire workshop was centered around the idea of “when I let go of mental and emotional doubt, I become physically stronger,” and how the best tool to “let go” is meditation. This event was such a success there is a very good chance it will be held again next semester, and, if not, then definitely next spring. The hope is through workshops and reading this article more meditation practices will begin, creating healthier and more mindful people. Namaste.