The Mandala: The Sacred Geometry of Meditation

The Mandala: The Sacred Geometry of Meditation

26th August 2016

By Ethan Indigo Smith

Contributing writer for Wake Up World

A mandala is a visual symbol often utilized in meditation practices and teachings. The mandala symbol itself is a geometric construction of geometric points, lines, planes and solids which symbolizes our universe. These geometric symbols can be used as a visual meditation tool, called a yantra. Other designs can similarly be used as meditation tools, but may not be mandalas by definition.

Mandalas and all other yantras work as visual meditation points of concentration. Pictured (top) is the sri yantra: sri meaning ‘king’ or ‘most important’. Ancient yogis of India and Tibet considered it to be the most powerful of all geometric symbols, representing the geometric structure of the sound of creation — the Om.

Conversely, a mantra is the audio version of the mandala; an aural meditation tool. Whether the sound of the mantra is a single syllable tone, such as the Om, or a series of metaphysical musings, such as the ancient Gayatri Mantra, mantras are wavy linear expressions of universal connection, voiced as concentrated sound vibrations.

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Riding the Waves of Change – How Altering Your Brainwaves Can Change Your Life

Riding the Waves of Change – How Altering Your Brainwaves Can Change Your Life

12th August 2016

By Gilbert Ross

Guest writer for Wake Up World

The scientific idea of brainwaves has made its way into popular media as can be witnessed in art, movies and science fiction. The image of a person with electrodes on his scalp while his brainwaves are being recorded is almost as iconic as the symbol of the atom or the depictions showing the ascent of man according to evolution. Yet very few people are aware of the fact that our brainwaves can be altered and, more importantly, by shifting into different states of brainwave activity, we can swiftly change our state of consciousness — say from one of anxiety to one of deep calm and openness — and by doing so, we also shift our emotional and physical state as it corresponds to that brainwave level. This is an idea which deeply fascinates me and intrigues me.

Short Waves and Long Waves

The brain produces electric impulses. These impulses can be recorded by devices such as EEGs, fMRIs and others and are shown as waves of varying speeds or frequencies. The speed of the brainwaves are measured in Hertz (cycles per second). There are four general categories of brainwave levels: The Beta, Alpha, Theta and Delta.

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How Meditating with My Younger Self Changed Me

How Meditating with My Younger Self Changed Me

8th August 2016

By Danielle Benvenuto

Guest writer for Wake Up World

A couple of years ago I began to dive head first into meditation. I found myself exploring a whole new world of possibilities, brought on by books I was reading and my own intuitive experience.

Of course, there are many ways to meditate and what works for one person will not work always for another. The process of learning how to meditate takes time, and that different experiences we go through will call for different techniques. It’s a game of trial and error. We find our way when we are open to what resonates best for our own unique personality and life experience.

That being said, I want to share with you a meditation technique that had a profound effect on my life: meditating with my younger self.

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More Effective Than Anxiety Meds: How Mindfulness Changes Your Brain

More Effective Than Anxiety Meds: How Mindfulness Changes Your Brain

7th August 2016

By Michael Forrester

Mindfulness-based teachings have shown benefits in everything from inflammatory disorders to central nervous system dysfunction and even cancer. Now, researchers are studying how cognitive therapy utilizing mindfulness techniques can serve as a natural alternative to pharmaceuticals for people with anxiety disorders.

Mindfulness is “the intentional, accepting and non-judgemental focus of one’s attention on the emotions, thoughts and sensations occurring in the present moment”, which can be trained by a large extent in meditational practices.

Anxiety disorders are among the most common psychiatric conditions affecting children and adolescents. While antidepressants are frequently used to treat youth with anxiety disorders, they may be poorly tolerated in children who are at high risk of developing bipolar disorder. Moreover, many antidepressants cannot be metabolized by segments of the population due to deficiencies in metabolic pathways such as Cytochrome 450. Historically, non-metabolizers are given more and more psych drugs as they become more and more psychotic until finally they hang themselves, kill someone else or become disabled in a mental institution. [For an in-depth look at this cycle, please see the article: Licensed to Kill: Psychiatry, Big Pharma and the State-Sanctioned Drug Cartel ~ Editor.]

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Do We Really Practice Yoga In The West?

Do We Really Practice Yoga In The West?

29th July 2016

By Dr. Itai Ivtzan

Guest Writer for Wake Up World

Yoga is one of the most prominent well-being practices today. Even if you are not currently practicing, or have not practiced in the past, you have probably thought about joining a Yoga class. In the US alone, it is a market that is worth $9 billion a year, with over 20 million regular Yoga practitioners; and 45% of the population show interest in trying it out. As incredibly popular as it is, we need to better understand the Yoga that is being practiced in the West.

In what way does it relate to the Yoga that originated in India, thousands of years ago? 

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Grounding: The Gift of Being in Your Body

Grounding: The Gift of Being in Your Body

21st July 2016

By Susan Hassen

Guest writer for Wake Up World

“Be here now.” We see this phrase everywhere, but are we actually embodying it? Are we consciously present and in our experience here on Earth? Often, the most simple of phrases hold the biggest treasures. Now more than ever, we need to be here now. We are in the midst of a global ascension and are experiencing a multitude of energetic shifts both off and on our planet. Being anchored into the Earth allows you to go with the flow of these new planetary changes while remaining safe and secure in your body.

As an energy practitioner, I’ve observed that the one thing every client of mine has in common is that they are not grounded into the Earth and fully occupying their bodies.

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Modern Science Confirms Yoga’s Many Health Benefits

Modern Science Confirms Yoga’s Many Health Benefits

23rd June 2016

By Sayer Ji

Contributing writer for Wake Up World

Modern science now confirms why humans have been practicing yoga since the beginning of recorded history: it is good both for the body and mind.

There is evidence in the archeological record that yoga has been practiced by humans for at least 5,000 years. Whereas this would constitute sufficient evidence for most folks to consider it a practice with real health benefits, as its millions of practitioners widely claim, skeptics say otherwise. They require any activity deemed to be of therapeutic value run the gauntlet of randomized, controlled clinical trials before it is fully accepted within the conventional medical system.

This tendency towards scientism in medicine, or what some call medical monotheism, runs diametrically opposed to the standards of lived-experience – so called “subjectivity” – or anecdotal experience (learning from the experience of others) which is what the majority of the world uses to determine if something has value, or is worth doing or not.

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The Art of Dream Meditation

The Art of Dream Meditation

13th June 2016

By Steafan Fox

Guest writer for Wake Up World

I use Meditation like an exercise routine where the muscle I am trying to develop is my focus. I sit down cross legged and hold my focus onto one thing, repeatedly lifting it back to my goal every time I slip into distraction. I am like a bodybuilder doing biceps curls.

I practice this way because it’s said that a powerful focus is the only thing you need to evolve the mind. I am fascinated by this idea, and I am not the first. Many people throughout history have searched for ways to evolve the mind. The practitioners of activities like education, drug taking, yoga, puzzles, and philosophy all hope on some level that these activities will work.

In this article we are going to look at a meditation technique called Active Imagination that uses dreams and focused meditation to evolve the mind, and we are going to look at the psychologist who pioneered it — Carl Jung.

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The Value of Breathing Consciously

The Value of Breathing Consciously

10th June 2016

By Fiona Reilly

Guest Writer for Wake Up World

Every minute of every day we breathe, what a joy to feel our breath, to feel our aliveness and vitality. It is the manna or life source that enables us to exist and is essential for our survival.

Conscious breathing is said to be one of the best antidotes to stress, anxiety and depression. For many years I have given much consideration to the food and drink that I consume, yet paid little attention to my breath. We can survive for days without food and even water, though only minutes without oxygen. Our breath is vital to our physical existence, the oxygen we inhale helps to build our very cells. It is a process that continually happens often without our conscious awareness.

Healing Benefits of Conscious Breathing

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You Know the Benefits of Meditation – But What Are the Pitfalls?

You Know the Benefits of Meditation – But What Are the Pitfalls?

By Dr. Itai Ivtzan

Guest Writer for Wake Up World

A few years ago, after I discussed the great benefits of meditation in one of my workshops, a student said to me: “Well, what you’re actually saying here is that meditation is great, and does not have any dangers or side effects.”

That comment made me realise how easy it is to highlight the bright side of meditation while disregarding its potential dark side. Psychological research, as well as our personal experience, has shown how valuable meditation is: it reduces our stress, deepens our meaning in life, eases our pain, and makes it easier for us to sleep. Continue Reading – You Know the Benefits of Meditation – But What Are the Pitfalls?

Healing With Color: Enhance Your Well-Being With Color Therapy

Healing With Color: Enhance Your Well-Being With Color Therapy

By Paul Lenda

Guest Writer for Wake Up World

Colors… an integral aspect of reality as air and water. A colorless existence is a seemingly-incomprehensible one, minus perhaps what has been described as ‘the Void’ by sages and mystics.

Thanks to the ability for humans to see the visible light spectrum, reality itself seems surreal at times. Even though we see only a narrow band of the full color spectrum, the vast array of colors that exist within the domain of human experience gives life it’s wonderment.

It’s incredible to think not every living thing sees reality in the same way. There are species that only see ultraviolet light whereas others such as snakes and scorpions see infrared light. The ultra-exotic mantis shrimp has 16 color-receptive cones compared with the 4 that humans have, giving way to a much more dramatic and surreal experience of the world.

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Shifting the Brainwave State: 6 Powerful Practices to Expand Your Consciousness and Harmonize Your Brain

Shifting the Brainwave State: 6 Powerful Practices to Expand Your Consciousness and Harmonize Your Brain

By Justin Faerman

Guest Writer for Wake Up World

The brain and consciousness are inextricably linked, meaning that shifts in one of these aspects of the self produce corresponding shifts in the other. This is in large part because consciousness is not restricted to existing only in physical form and is in fact a non-local field of energy [1,2,3,4,5]. This means that the brain is simply an organ which interfaces the mind with the physical reality.

To draw an analogy, it is a translator of physical sensation and other experiential phenomenon from the body to the mind and from mind to the body. The brain allows the mind to control and move through the body, but the mind exists as an energetic field independently of the brain, which is why scientists have never been able to pinpoint consciousness to any specific part of the brain or to the brain itself — because it does not arise from the brain. Metaphorically speaking, the brain is simply a tool that the non-local mind uses to interface with and experience physical reality.

Continue Reading – Shifting the Brainwave State: 6 Powerful Practices to Expand Your Consciousness and Harmonize Your Brain