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What is meditation?

What is meditation?Meditation derives from the Latin word meditatio and means deep thinking.

It is defined as the techniques and experiences of controlling one's mind that enable one to achieve inner peace, tranquility and different states of consciousness and reach one's self-being. It is not a type of faith or a religious ritual; it is considered a method of healing the body, soul and mind. Meditation has taken place in many different cultures with different beliefs such as taoism, Buddhism, and Islam, and therefore there is no standard technique. Usually in a quiet, calm environment; although it is thought that it is done in a blurred state of consciousness, there are also types of meditation that are performed while moving and consciousness is completely open. The goal of meditation is to feel the presence, focus on the mind and understand the mind, and as a result, achieve inner peace and tranquility.

How to do meditation?
 First of all, there are some points that need to be considered before starting meditation. These are as follows;
 - Creating a peaceful and calm environment: Especially for people who are just starting to meditate, there may be problems with focusing. For this purpose, it should be started by turning off the vibration and sound of devices such as phones and tablets. A music of repetitive calm melodies or the sound of water can help focus. Instead of using earplugs and creating a completely quiet environment, it would be more useful to hear the sounds of the outside world and learn not to disturb the focus of the mind, even if there are disturbing sounds over time.
- Wearing comfortable clothes: By dressing according to the weather, it should be prevented from distracting from being cold or sweating. In addition, itchy, uncomfortable clothes can also distract and make it difficult to focus. In an area where it is not possible to change clothes, one should try to focus only by removing the shoes.
- Determine the duration of meditation: In general, a period of 20 minutes 2 times a day is recommended for meditation, but this may vary depending on the person's wishes and needs. Since it will be challenging for beginners to meditate for 20 minutes, it can be started with 5 minutes and increased over time. A slight audible alarm should be installed, as it will be distracting to constantly check the clock to understand that the time has expired.
- Stretching the body: If meditation is to be done in one position, staying still may be uncomfortable after a while. To prevent this, stretching movements should be performed before meditation. If the sitting position is to be preferred, it is necessary to stretch the inner leg in particular. In addition, the back muscles November need to be flexible and relaxed, as it will be necessary to sit upright.
-Finding a comfortable position: If meditation is to be done passively, it is important to find a position where prolonged stay will not disturb. For this, it will be useful to sit cross-legged on a cushion or without, if you are going to sit on a chair, it will be useful to center the chair and sit slightly tilted forward on the full sitting bones. In addition, it is also very important to keep the spine upright and exert minimal effort while doing so.
- Keeping the eyes closed at the beginning: It will be better to keep them closed at first because having the eyes open will distract attention. Over time, you can start doing it with your eyes open, but the point to be careful is not to dive into a single point with your eyes open, but to consciously see the whole.

After all these conditions are met, the question "How to meditate?" we can move on to the answer to his question.
Emptying the mind: Although experienced people can completely empty their mind, this is unlikely for beginners. At first, one should focus on a single object or mantra, and as one gains experience, one should try to completely empty the mind.
Following the breath: Breathing meditation can be a good start. What needs to be done here is to be aware of what you are breathing in and out of, without trying to manage the breath. To do this, it is necessary to designate a point above the navel and focus on how that point moves when breathing in and out. To make it easier to focus, it can be assumed that there is a button or other object at that point. It is important to use diaphragmatic breathing.
Chanting a mantra: In Sanskrit, a mantra means an instrument of the mind and can be a sound, a word or a phrase. Repeating mantras is a good option to silence the mind and move into a deep phase. The "Om" sound, which is one of the traditional mantras, can be made or words that give peace to the person, such as silence, calmness, tranquility, can be repeated. When a deep stage of consciousness and awareness is passed, there is no need to repeat the mantra.
Focusing on a visual object: If you meditate with your eyes open, focusing on a simple object instead of repeating a mantra can also be a good option to bring consciousness into a deep phase. Attention should be paid here to be able to see the object without head and neck contraction. For this, the object must stand at eye level. The flame of a candle or simple figures can be used as visual objects.
Animating in the mind: Another way to move to the stage of deep awareness is the method of animating in the mind. In this method, the goal is to create a space that feels completely peaceful and calm in the mind and to explore this space until it passes into a deep stage. For this, a windy but warm beach, a forest house with rustling leaves and birdsong or a garden full of flowers can be revived. It is important to use all the senses while exploring the animated space; to see, smell, feel the environment and objects. The point to note here is that the animated space is not a completely real place. One has to use one's own imagination.
Scanning the body: Scanning the body is also a good way to move into the deep stage. The aim here is to explore all the points of the body and relax, and as a result of the relaxation of the body, the mind also enters the relaxation phase. For November, it is necessary to feel each muscle of the body one by one, starting from the toes and going November to the bottom of the hair, and relax all the muscles.
In addition to the passive types of meditation such as the above, there are also active meditations such as tantra, kinhin, yoga and taijiquan.

The Benefits of Meditation
It has been proven through neurological imaging methods that regular meditation affects a person's brain waves. Studies meditation regulates high blood pressure, heart rate lowering, and cardiovascular diseases as a result of disease progression in the corrective effect of them; and neurological examinations of the brain, cognitive-sensory portion unsuppress; the muscles reduce the level of tension and stress that may be found. Although the result of many years of studies is not considered conclusive evidence, it has been definitively proven in recent years that meditation reduces stress levels and blood pressure.
 The benefits of reducing the stress level are;
- Allows you to make faster and more accurate decisions.
- The level of happiness rises.
- Learning and memory improve.
- Increases the time and quality of focus.
- Problem solving ability develops.
- Brain capacity increases.
- It makes you feel good both psychologically and physically.
- The level of creativity increases.
- Stress-related aging is reduced.
- Overcoming anxiety becomes easier.
- It makes it easier to adapt to changes.
- It allows the development of self-control.
- It allows a person to focus on himself and discover himself.
- Self-awareness increases.
- It makes social relationships stronger.
- Ensures increased success in work and school life.
In summary, meditation allows a person to find inner peace and awareness, reducing stress levels and living a better quality of life.

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