Why meditate? This ancient superpower will change your life

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By Jim Barr (aka Doc Pow)

My former self, a passionate juggler with constant balls in the air lived a pretty frantic life. But these days, because of meditation, my #Covid19Response has led me into a place of calm and, dare I say, but a grounded perspective. 

This is why I participate in one of the oldest practices on the planet.  Sitting still and letting the time unfold through breath and relaxation. Meditation gives peace of mind as opposed to that once-frantic juggler.

Speaking from 12 years of experience, the art of being seated brings understanding while it fuels curiosity and gratitude. Introduced to me by a gal whose very presence lights up your soul, Edmonton's Sue Agrios - founder of Agrios Mindfitnes who instructs on how to approach life with a glass half full attitude! There's plenty of scientific research touting the benefits of meditation, functional strength and mindfulness, especially in times of high stress.

What can be described as a superpower, meditation is not new, and many in the Western world are waking up to its powers. Yogis and indigenous communities have been practising some form of meditation for many centuries.

ZenSeekers 40-day challenge
Photographer: Rebecca Bollwitt

#IndigenousCoastBC inhabitants have called their home sacred gardens over their entire story and live with an appreciation of the earth that is essential to their life balance. A daily practice that is exclusively for you, can also build a whole new perspective. For example in the case of the Coastal Salish People, meditating during a paddle in the ocean, sitting listening to the forest or basking in a musical glow has led them to natural and sustainable ways since their beginnings.

Drumming can be experienced as an expression of meditation, the foundation of indigenous music. 

“Drumming ... is helping a lot of people during this difficult time. Hearing our songs is bringing people out of their homes and on to the land, where these songs come from. Hearing the songs brings people back to a time in their life when things were good,” says Tla'amin Nation Cultural Director Drew Blaney.

“In historic times, certain songs would come from a form of meditation, but this custom is not openly discussed due to the cultural nature of it, and it is still practiced to this day amongst the Coast Salish people."

ZenSeekers 40-day challenge
Photographer: Chris Istace

For the dark days to see light again, now is your time to rise, receive a new purpose and try something. Find a new sense of calm and enhance your perspective in a time when it's so essential.

“I meditate to find myself. My ego-less self, “ says mindfulness instructor Jane Loney. “I meditate to tap into this moment in time to find limitless space and connection with all sentient beings, the natural world and spirit. I meditate to stay in flow with my life.” 

Are you ready to take the challenge and step into some light?

Two Ideas On Renewing Your Optimism

1) If you are looking for an escape or some solace on demand, this app, from Elizabeth Papadakis, is called Deep Relaxation - Yoga Nidra. It’s really simple, just download, hit play and allow the app to guide you through the practice. You just have to lay down or get in any comfortable position and listen to the commentary. (Top tip: Place the phone near the top of your head, lay on the floor or on your yoga mat or a blanket, but not your bed because you’ll likely fall asleep)

2) Try....something.

Pick up a new hobby, learn a language, just try something new - what about cooking, what about painting? 

Put your brain to use in a new way and watch the world pick up some additional colour.

Tell us what you find using the hashtags #ZenSeekers & #ImOptimistic

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