As a lifelong dancer and dance teacher as well as a Thai Massage healer, I found through my experience that Meditation is a powerful tool not only for dancing or working as a therapist but generally as a human being. The benefits I had from Meditation practice are countless but just to name a few:
* Keeps my mind fresh and alert and most important stress free!
* Increases my attention spam
* Increases my immunity and helps me fighting illnesses when they appear
* Improves my night sleep and helps me relax before bed time
* Improves functioning of my brain as it works like a reset
* Brings me into "Here and Now" therefore feels like adds more hours in my day
witch also makes me appreciate life more and helps me feel more connected
* Overall makes me happier therefore others around me happier too! So, Meditation is good for you! Scientists say so, psychologists and doctors say so and even media agrees. Very well, but why is meditation good for you? How does it help? First of all, there are many kinds of meditation and they may potentially have different benefits. Many people focus on the physical benefits, like improved sleep patterns, a better immune system, more ability to focus, less stress, higher pain tolerance etc. Or you may be more interested in psychological benefits, such as increased empathy, patience, focus, and so on. Another benefit that inspires people to meditate can be spiritual: the space to go deeper into their faith, a greater sense of connection and an opportunity to explore the non-material spectrum. The reason why you should meditate is very much connected to what you’re interested in developing. Once you’ve established a regular meditation practice, you may discover that meditation is benefiting you in ways that you hadn’t even imagined.
However, to me, Meditation is a spontaneous, intuitive practice that, although has countless benefits, doesn't happen for "a reason". It just comes to me as "a need", like when one is hungry and needs food, or thirsty and needs to drink. When there is a need to concentrate, learn a new choreography, or create one, or working on healing someone, meditation is always there to my aid! I was meditating long before I even discover the word "Meditation"; as a child I remember my self lying on my bed and just focusing on a spot on the ceiling for hours, or other times while in Nature, enjoying observing the clouds passing by, the birds chirping, the sea waves splashing on the shore. All those times, without knowing, I was meditating, I was just observing Life around me and the feelings inside me without judgment, likes or dislikes, just observing "What Is"! This practice was always leaving me with a feeling of satisfaction, integration, lightness and surely happiness!!
I was meditating even while I was learning Dance! The strong and vigorous physical practice was helping the mind to "switch off", allowing only the practice to happen, without judgment, without "ego"! This was helping me to learn long choreographies and difficult combinations without much struggle and remember them for very very long time too! Body Memory was generated by meditation and my body still remembers some of those difficult and complicated choreographies, after all those years! Impressive, right? Many years after, when I started travelling to India and Southeast Asia, I've learned about Meditation, many different styles of it, and how to "sit" in silence to search for the "silence within"! I've tried many different ways of meditating: Mindfulness Meditation, Transcendental Meditation, Guided Meditation, Vipassana Meditation, Loving Kindness Meditation, Chakra Meditation, Yoga Meditation, Breathing Awareness Meditation. But they all have showing me one thing! That I can hear sound because there is Silence within, I can feel my Body because there is Emptiness within, I can see objects because there is Vastness within! And that all there is to Know is that ALL abilities and potentialities are Within!! So, what else there is but Meditate! Just sit comfortably, take few deep breaths, relax and observe, observe, observe! Observe outer sounds; just all sounds that are reaching your eardrum, in the order they come, without judgment if you like this sound and dislike an other.
Observe outer sensations; just what you feel on your skin, the air touching your hair, the little tickle on your skin, your breath coming fresh and cool in from your nostrils and how warm it is when breathing out, where your body touches the floor or the chair when sitting, who heavy or light it is.
Observe the thoughts passing through your mind, like clouds in the sky. Without attachment, or judgement.
Observe what feelings arising together with some thoughts; observe those feelings again without attachment or judgement, there are no good and bad feelings in this state, just clouds passing by in the sky of your mind.
Observe how all these are happening without You doing something! Just arising and passing through.
Observe the Inner Quiet Vast Space that all those feelings and thoughts and sounds and sensations are flowing from.
And Just Stay Within this Quietness, your very own Inner Peace, The Oneness where all spring from! Isn't it wonderful? With Love Elina