Visual Meditation

This Saturday (08 October), I shall be introducing my monthly meditation group to a new meditation practice. A visual one.

 

Some may think that meditation is simply sitting - that's it.

 

Well, in essence it is, but it isn't.

 

I teach Shamatha (Calm Abiding / Shinay (Tib) meditation. Which means 'with support'.

 

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Dates (the fruity kind) & pregnancy

A study published in the Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology found that women who ate dates daily during the final month of pregnancy were less likely to need induction of labour, as opposed to non-date eaters.

 

There's more!

 

When arriving at hospital, these women had also progressed further (were more dilated) and laboured in seven hours or less!

 

Melinda Johnson of Academy of Nutrition & Diatetics says that it would seem dates have a compound that mimics the hormone oxytocin (which causes contractions).

 

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Women's Stories: What our words say about us

Within each woman, there's a story to be told. I was first captured by this after watching the film, 'The Bridges of Madison County' starring Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood. In fact, I've watched it several times and it never loses its appeal.

 

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Yoga & Sleep

I often wish I could attend my own yoga classes. Why? Because my students often report that they sleep so well after attending.

 

Many of us have no trouble sleeping - you know, head hits the pillow and that's it until the alarm goes off the following morning.

 

For a few of us, sleep can become something of a nemesis. We want / need it desperately, but it escapes us like water trickling through our fingertips.

 

There are many reasons for sleep being something of an issue: anxiety, issues at work, new baby, illness, menopause...

 

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Yoga really does work to calm & soothe (fact)

Ask anyone why they practice yoga or why they may be considering starting and you will get an array of responses from - "I was told it was good for me", "keeping my sanity", "staying fit"... the list goes on.

 

One thing that is definite is that the practice of yoga increases brain GABA levels. (GABA = gamma-aminobutyric acid - our calming transmitter).

 

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Self-care: Before & After Birth

Taking time for ourselves is tricky, especially when we find ourselves multi-tasking most of the day. Considering our own needs can become something of a distant memory.

 

Set yourself up for the day with a really nutritious breakfast - it can be made in advance and the good thing is the quantities you make can keep you going for several days.

 

No more grabbing an unexciting piece of toast or a handful of biscuits, this will really boost you on many levels.

 

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Removing Obstacles

In last night’s yoga class, at the start we started with Ganesha mudra – this is offered in order to lift the spirits and to also help you keep going, even when life gets a little challenging around the edges.

(It’s also great for the chest muscles, shoulders and arms too!)

 

See the video below to get an idea…

 

Ganesh Mudra Video

 

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108 Minutes of Meditation

Today, Saturday 02 July, I was joined by a team of very wonderful and generous people in order to sit and meditate for a total of 108 minutes.

 

For anyone who has ever tried meditation, or meditates regularly, you will know that this is no easy feat.

 

Why 108? As our endeavours were undertaken to raise funds for the Tibet Relief Fund, the 108 is significant to the number of beads found on a mala.

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