Meditation Facts
Meditation Facts

43 Peaceful Facts about Meditation

By Karin Lehnardt, Senior Writer
Published May 3, 2018
  • The word "meditation" is from the Proto-Indo European root "*med-," meaning "take appropriate measures."[12]
  • Wall art in the Indus Valley dating from 3,500 BC depicts one of the earliest records of meditation. The images show figures sitting in classic yoga poses, with crossed legs, hands resting on knees, and slightly closed eyes.[18]
  • Children with ADHD who practice meditation have better concentration at school.[25]
  • Meditation inspires social connections, improves empathy and kindness, increases helpfulness, and increases resilience and mental endurance, even in children.[25]
  • Meditation boosts memory and improves attention.[25]
  • Orgasmic Meditation Fact
    Necessary supplies include lube and a towel. Gloves are optional.
  • "Orgasmic" meditation, or OM, is a type of mediation in which one person strokes another person's clitoris for 15 minutes with no other goal but to feel sensation. Currently, there is no OM for pensises.[23]
  • Meditation can help relieve lower back pain more effectively than other standard treatments, such as over-the-counter or prescription medications, hot and cold compresses, and, in some cases, surgery.[10]
  • Just 10 minutes of mindfulness meditation daily can help reduce distracting thoughts for people with anxiety.[14]
  • While meditation benefits both genders, women show greater decreases in negative thinking (guilt and irritability) and greater increases in self-compassion and mindfulness.[6]
  • Because meditation stimulates the neocortex and reduces stress, it can profoundly enhance creativity and innovation.[21]
  • Meditation is painful in the beginning but it bestows immortal Bliss and supreme joy in the end.

    - Swami Sivananda

  • Meditation increases cortical thickness, particularly in areas related to attention and introspection.[25]
  • Meditation reduces activity in the default mode network (DMN), which is the brain network responsible for mind-wandering and "me" thinking.[24]
  • In one study, just a few weeks of meditation increased students' scores on the verbal reasoning section of the GRE.[24]
  • Mindful-based meditation (in contrast to focusing on breathing only) changes areas in the brain that help relieve social anxiety.[24]
  • Compared to the American Lung Association's Freedom From Smoking® program, mindful meditation helped people quit smoking permanently at a much higher rate.[24]
  • In 1968, the Beatles wrote most of the White Album while studying meditation with the controversial guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in India.[3]
  • Dating from about 1500 BC, the teachings of the Vedas show the earliest written records of meditation[15]
  • Meditation fights aging in all regions of the brain.[24]
  • Meditation Benefits
    The brains of longtime meditators are less affected by aging than the brains of those who do not meditate

  • Deepak Chopra, MD, set the world record for the largest online meditation in history. According to the Guiness team, 33,061people (both physically present and via live-stream) meditated together for 30 minutes.[5]
  • While noting that meditation does not take the place of standard medicine, physicians have observed that meditation helps prevent heart disease and heart attack. It can also help keep blood pressure low.[16]
  • The Walt Disney Company was one of the first companies to incorporate meditation into its workplace. The company noticed a dramatic increase in creativity after employees mediated on certain projects and ideas.[17]
  • Google offers over a dozen meditation courses for its employees to help teach emotional intelligence, improve mental focus, and sharpen listening skills. They have also built a labyrinth for mindful walking meditations.[22]
  • General Mills offers weekly meditation and yoga classes to its employees. It also has a dedicated meditation room in every building on its campus.[22]
  • A Buddhist meditation technique known as loving kindness meditation (LKM) directed toward another race reduces racial bias.[1]
  • Meditation has religious ties in Egypt and China. It also plays a role in Judaism, Hinduism, Jainism, Sikhism, and Buddhism.[20]
  • The Silk Road is primarily responsible for the early spread of meditation, in about the fifth or sixth century BC. As the practice of meditation arrived in a new region, it would transform to fit the particular culture.[20]
  • Meditation Trivia
    Meditation can curb impulse shopping
  • In addition to improving mental health, meditating can also help reduce money-related stress and decrease the urge to impulse shop.[9]
  • While meditation and Buddhism are almost synonymous in the West, the majority of Buddhists, past and present, haven't regularly performed meditation practices. Traditionally, only ordained Buddhist nuns and monks practiced meditation.[26]
  • Meditation can have dangerous psychological and physical effects. Some practitioners have experienced hallucinations, psychotic episodes, depression, and other mental and physical impacts, especially if the practitioner has a pre-existing mental or physical condition.[26]
  • While many religions practice meditation, its possible to meditate no matter what your religious affiliation is and without violating any religious principles that you may hold.[11]
  • Unlike simply sitting on your couch or lying in your bed, meditation produces specific chemical changes in the brain. Transcendental meditation, for example, releases a soothing hormone known as prolactin.[15]
  • Of the several types of meditation, the most popular type in the West is mindful meditation. Originating with Buddhist teachings, this type of meditation combines awareness with concentration and can easily be practiced alone.[2]
  • Of the various types of meditation, the following six are the most popular: mindfulness, spiritual, focused, movement, mantra, and transcendental.[2]
  • One of the most common and sacred symbols in the meditation tradition is the Om or Aum. Om represents the consciousness of the universe condensed into sound.[19]
  • Aum Facts
    The sound of OM encompasses all words, all sounds in human language

  • Practitioners of yoga and meditation show improved mitochondrial energy production, consumption, and resilience, which helps improve the immune system.[13]
  • Zen monks who practiced long-term meditation showed an improved sense of touch.[13]
  • A common meditation symbol is the mandala, which is a geometric construction of points, lines, and shapes that symbolize the universe. It acts as a visual point of concentration and symbolizes the sound of creation, the Om.[19]
  • The lotus flower is a an important symbol in the meditation tradition and represents the ability to rise above difficulty and to bloom in enlightenment. Practitioners often imagine their heart as the flower, unfolding in the center of their chest.[19]
  • Caring for your garden can be a great form of mindfulness meditation. By connecting with the earth, you can cultivate a healthy mind and feel calm and connected.[8]
  • Walking Meditation Fact
    For some people, walking meditation is easier than sitting meditation
  • Meditation can be practiced in four positions: sitting, lying down, standing, or walking. Sitting still is not a prerequisite for meditation.[4]
  • Practitioners of meditation use a mantra (a word or phrase) to help focus their thoughts. One common mantra is the word hamsa, which means "I am the pure, unchanging, godly subject."[19]
  • Chakra meditation focuses on placing the seven chakras of the body in harmony. The word "chakra" is Sanskrit for "wheel," which symbolizes smooth movement, power, and harmony.[19]
  • A Georgia elementary school has banned the word “Namaste” from its school after parents complained such words encourage non-Christian beliefs.[7]
  • History of Meditation
    DateEvent
    5,000-3,500 B.C. The origins of meditation are unclear, but most historians belive it has been around for about 5,000 years
    1,500 B.C.The Vedas in ancient India hold the oldest written record of medition 
    600-500 B.C. Meditation develops in Taoist China and Buddhist India
    400-100 B.C.The Yoga Sutras of Patanji outline the eight limbs of yoga
    400 B.C.-200 A.D.The Bhagavad Gita outlines the philosophy of yoga, meditation, and how to live a spritual life
    653 The first meditation hall opens in Japan. Japanese Buddhism begins to evolve.
    1700sTranslations of meditation text begin to travel to the West
    1922Herman Hesse publishes Siddharta, the story of Buddha's spiritual journey
    1927The Tibetian Book of the Dead is published, attracting more Westerners to Tibetian Buddhism
    1950sThe Vipassana movement begins in Burma 
    2014 The largest meditation group on record occurs, with over 100,000 people meditating at once
    Surprising Meditation Facts INFOGRAPHIC
    Meditation Infographic
References

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