Meditation (Restful alertness)
Meditation is the 6th limb of Ashtanga Yoga. It is an important element in the overall practice of yoga. It is a way to relax the mind and get-rid of day to day stresses. In meditation we connect with ourselves and surroundings. We are simply being in the present living in the moment, accepting the present as it is.
Meditation cannot be described in words. It has to be experienced. Meditation is not about concentrating on something. It is in fact de-concentration. To concentrate effort is required and meditation is effortless. When we attempt to force the mind to concentrate, the mind rebels and this forceful attempt causes headaches and discomforts.
The essence of meditation is stillness. From movement we move to stillness, from sound to silence, from a scattered mind to mindfulness. One could start practicing meditation by simply sitting quietly for few minute’s everyday by observing breath and thoughts without any judgments and by being a witness to what is happening in the present moment.
Meditation is about being quiet and heightening the awareness of what is going on inside the body and mind. At the same time being aware about what is happening around us. It is a state of restful alertness. In today's competitive world, it is important for people to resort to this timeless technique so as to face the challenges of life with a smile. Meditations can help to overcome painful memories/ impressions, allowing one to view reality as it really is.
It is only when one is free of limitations that one is able to understand a simple fact: The body and mind are not really one's own; the body is the result of all the things one has eaten and the mind is the result of all the information/impressions that one has gathered. Today when we are experiencing high levels of stress, meditation will serve as healthy tool for combating the same.