Meditation

Meditation is the mental exercise that we all can do to create ease in our minds, and happiness in our hearts. Just like lifting weights will make our muscles stronger, practicing meditation will make our capacity to focus stronger. With improved focus, our body and mind calms significantly, and we are increasingly able to recognize when our mind is drifting into the enervating place of worry and self-pity, and then redirect it to the present moment, like a captain navigating a stormy sea. Much of what we spend our day doing – surfing the web, checking social media, swallowing reams of news, engaging in our busy and stressful world, has the effect of stirring up more worry and planning energy in our minds, which can increase our level of distractedness and weaken our strength of mind. The result can range from a low-grade sense of unease to full blown panic and depression. This is why I find it so important to remind my patients about the value of practicing meditation. I have yet to find a prescription as effective as daily meditation practice in the treatment of mental illness and physical malaise. While many of our modern medicines can temporarily diminish or suppress symptoms, they are rarely able to elicit the profound healing of the underlying suffering, whereas I have repeatedly observed patients being able to resolve the very source of their distress via mindfulness meditation.