Sunday, March 22, 2009

Indian Yoga and Meditation

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This Article is contributed by Sh. M.P. Bhattathiri, Retired Chief Technical Examiner, to The Govt. of Kerala.
In the storm of life we struggle through myriads of stimuli of pressure, stress, and multi-problems that seek for a solution and answer. We are so suppressed by the routine of this every day life style that most of us seem helpless. However, if we look closely to ancient techniques we shall discover the magnificent way to understand and realize the ones around us and mostly ourselves. If only we could stop for a moment and allow this to happen…

Let me bow to Indian Maharishi Patanjali with folded hands who helped in removing the impurities of the mind through his writings on Yoga, impurities of speech through his writings on Grammar, and impurities of body through his writings on Ayurveda.

The American justice Dept. have recently approved the power of Yoga and Meditation vide a recent judgement in the American court. "Man Who Slapped Wife Sentenced to Yoga, It's Anger Management, Says Judge." First there was house arrest. Now there's yoga. A judge ordered a man convicted of slapping his wife to take a yoga class as part of his one-year probation. "It's part of anger management," County Criminal Court at Law Judge Larry Standley said of the ancient Hindu philosophy of exercise and well-being. "For people who are into it, it really calms them down."

Yoga which is one of the greatest Indian contribution to the world has got vast potential in all fields. At Tihar Jail in India, Yoga is experimented among the inmates and found successful. Their criminal mentality is changed. This study aimed at investigating the effect of "Vipassana Meditation" on Quality of Life, Subjective Well-Being, and Criminal Propensity among inmates of Tihar Jail, Delhi. To this effect the following hypotheses were formulated. 1) There will be a significant positive effect of "Vipassana Meditation" on the Quality of Life of inmates of Tihar jail. 2) "Vipassana Meditation" will have a positive and significant effect on Subjective Well-Being of inmates. 3) Criminal propensity of inmates will decrease significantly after attending the "Vipassana Meditation" course. 4) There will be significant difference in Subjective Well-Being and Criminal propensity of experimental (Vipassana) group and control (non-Vipassana) group. 5) Male and female inmates will differ significantly in Subjective Well-Being and Criminal propensity, as a result of "Vipassana Meditation".

In the famous "Time" magazine, the importance of Meditation and Yoga, an ancient Indian system, is highlighted that the ancient Mind- and Spirit-enhancing art is becoming increasingly popular and gaining medical legitimacy. It is a multi billion dollar business in US. In many Universities it is accepted as subject and included in the Syllabus. In the latest famous book "Inspire! What Great Leaders Do" written by Mr. Lance Secretan recently published by John Wiley and sons, the benefit of meditation is elaborately described for good corporate governance. By practicing transcendental meditation, or TM, many people have got relief from back pain, neck pain, depression. The mind calms and quiets. What thoughts you have during meditation become clearer, more focused. Anger, anxiety and worries give way to peace. In the world of exorbitant medical expenses one can definitely make use of meditation. Maharshi Mahesh Yogi and Sri Ravi Sankar are popularizing this.

In Bhagwad-Gita Lord Krishna has inspired Arjuna to rise from his depression by preaching Gita on the battlefield and to rise from the depression to do his duties. In Holy Gita we can see, being hidden by the cosmic overview of any institution beset with myriad of problems, not the least of which is its lack of moral probity, there is a groundswell of educated people seeking answers to deeply personal but universally asked questions. Chief Executives taking lessons from yoga, meditation and learning, how to deal with human resources equations in an enlightened manner. Individuals from every walk of life can get ideas of how to be better human beings, more balanced and less stressed out.

Medical studies continue to show regular meditation working magic in reducing blood pressure and stress-related illnesses, including heart disease. Brain images show that regular meditation helps calm the most active sensory-assaulted parts of the brain. The ancient Hindu sage Patanjali who had mastered the secrets of the human mind has written a book "Yogasutra". In this book we can see how super powers can be achieved by meditation. It has both cosmic relevance and cosmic resonance. In spite of its universal appeal, for most people total control of mind remains an elusive goal and daunting task. From time immemorial, there have been many attempts throughout the world to unlock the mysteries of the mind and to achieve total control over it through a variety of techniques. One of the most powerful of these techniques is meditation. Many spiritual leaders, sages, saints, and holy people such as Sri. Buddha, Sri Ramakrishna, Madam Sarada Devi, and Swami Vivekananda have practiced this. It is said that in the unknown period of Lord Jesus Christ, He too was under meditation.

Ref. Yoga magazines
Newsweek
New York times
Time magazine

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