Commercialization of Meditation
A search on the Internet for ‘meditation’ or ‘benefits of meditation’ delivers taglines like ‘Meditation in 5 Minutes + 30,000 Free E Books & Software’, ‘How To Do Meditation – Discover The Secrets Of Meditation – All It Takes Is 15 Minutes A Day!’, or ‘Stress Relief Meditation – 6 Minute Online Guided Meditation – Convenient and Profound – Free Trial’.
The commercialization of meditation requires marketers to establish a connection to clear cut benefits or symptoms like anxiety, stress, sleeplessness and so forth, all within the quick and easy schema favored by a consumerist society.
While there is absolutely nothing wrong with practicing meditation to alleviate stress – meditation certainly provides relaxation and peace of mind, it is just one facet of the multiple effects of meditation.
Meditation is much more
Meditation is ultimately though much more: It is practicing the most fundamental and important skill in life.
The irony is that all people have momentarily experienced this skill: Being in ‘flow’, being fully present in what you are doing. Forgetting clock time and simply and fully being your current activity.
This may happen when we are fully relaxed and mange to let go of all thoughts, like after making love for example or enjoying art and music. Or this can happen on exactly the opposition spectrum of human experience, in highly dangerous or life threatening situations, like when you just do the right thing avoiding a car crash. On both occasions, the experience of that activity would be more fulfilling and more effective than usual.
This capacity of being fully present with what you are doing, being fully concentrated and focused can be trained. That way the overall quality of experience at which one is living can be significantly elevated. This is what all meditation systems aim for, develop focus and presence to enhance experience of life.
Just like training a muscle this does not happen overnight. The most difficult moment thought is to get started and then to never stop again to experience a lasting magnification of life.
So, what are the benefits of meditation?
Since there is no area of human life that is not affected by concentration and focus, meditation enhances whatever you are doing. It affects any aspect of human life may that be interaction with others, understanding yourself better or further your spiritual path.
On a more profound level meditation aims at changing your mind, changing the way you react. The purpose of meditation is not sitting in stillness but living a more conscious life. Ultimately, meditation aims at unconditional happiness.