Is the benefit of meditation  real, and more fundamentally, how do we define or discover what is real? The ultimate benefit of meditation is self-realization or Unity consciousness, the deep feeling of peace and the physical benefits that attend this feeling are the ‘side effects’ of a regular meditation practice.
As meditation is finding its way in the West and looking for authentic cultural roots, we are bound to re-enact Siddhartha’s own search, re-discover his own disappointments and illuminations. These are the questions that Siddhartha asked as he continued his spiritual quest, continuing to probe deeper, until he was satisfied that he had gotten to the bottom of his inquiry. To see ‘behind the curtain of illusion,’ we must learn how to be still and examine what is within ourselves, sometimes found in the silence, but always found in awareness.
And if you want the message of meditation to spread, please click the LIKE button below share this article on Facebook. The benefits of Vipassana meditation are that as you practice it you will soon see that your thoughts and feelings are part of you but they are not you. Vipassana is an awareness meditation; it doesn’t involve concentration on the breath, mantras or mandalas and candle flames. No talking, no eye contact with others, no phones, internet, reading or writing: trying to spend all your waking hours during the 10-day course committed to learning Vipassana meditation was difficult enough.
But 10-plus hours spent meditating every day, all the time trying to sit – and remain immobile – in the lotus position, while simultaneously attempting to still the mind, to think of one thing only, and nothing else, was almost torturous. Stilling the mind, trying to clear it of everything other than focusing on breathing, for the first four days, then on the body’s sensations for the next six, proved a Herculean task. Our busy minds run helter-skelter; trying to train the mind to focus on the one task and to have to continually bring it back from its incessant thought wanderings, was a monumental task.
A ringing bell at 4am woke the 51 sleeping, mainly Sri Lankan, participants (there were three female and four male foreigners).
The 6.30am breakfast of tea, white rice, spicy vegetables and a banana was served to the segregated sexes in the dining room.
Meditators could sit against the wall or walk outside for short rest periods if they needed a break during the non-group sessions. It was then time for showers, washing clothes and resting before the bell summoned us to the 1pm meditation.
By neutrally observing the changing nature of body and mind; of observing how the body’s sensations continually change, meditators learn the nature of impermanence, suffering and egolessness.
Eventually, you become more able to note the body’s pleasant and unpleasant sensations (pain or tension from sitting in one position, for example) without craving or aversion – without having to change your position to alleviate the discomfort, realizing that it is temporary and not permanent. Those meditating become more balanced and learn not to react immediately to everyday life’s perceived pleasant and unpleasant events.
I was exhausted after six months of travel in India and felt that doing something completely different would instill a new enthusiasm.
Insight meditation or Vipassana is, it’s said, to be the type of meditation that the Buddha himself taught. I promise you that this meditation benefit is not one that is discussed in average discourse on the benefits of meditation, which is, being able to comfortably be immersed in freezing cold water for an extended period of time.
Regarding the second question, about whether a person can raise their tolerance to cold just by meditating, the quick answer is yes. Meditation as a practice asks paradoxical questions, and here’s one; when is boredom interesting?
For example as Jay points out, boredom is really restlessness; it’s about what’s happening inside you and not what’s going on around you on the outside. Ultimately what make boredom interesting is being present enough to contemplate the ‘gifts’ it offers us.
The questions asked here are, do you need to have quiet place to meditate or if there lots of distractions, does this mean I won’t be able to meditate? The second observation is that there are different approaches to meditating anywhere at any time, mindfulness approach and deep inner awareness or transcendental meditation. Mindfulness is about being fully present without judgment and inner awareness is about transcending, going beyond the challenges.
This article is on the benefits of Buddhist meditation and lovemaking, yes, I said lovemaking. Practitioners of meditative lovemaking report more responsiveness along with an increased intensity and whole body orgasms.
The realization that meditation is not all “sweetness and light” and that it’s part of the awakening process is facing our shadow energy’s. So when would-be practitioners ask about the benefits of meditation, I tend not to give a straight answer. For many people the real meditation benefits occur as the result of an emotional realization; the release of stress and, many times, the relief of physical pain come as the result of a deep seated emotional release. This is meditation’s gift and it’s challenge, to experience the benefits you must be willing to take the responsibility, not the blame, that is the process of self-realization and emotional freedom.
Now here’s a meditation benefit that even I was unaware of, well at least until I read this study, done at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. There was a significant reduction in symptoms in the mindfulness practitioners compared to a control group.
Even though this was a small sample the researchers involved were “impressed” with the results. So I have a gut feeling that the benefits of mindfulness meditation are a meditation benefit for the whole mind-body. I’m going to step out of the ‘meditation benefits’ mode for a moment and back into history, present and not so long ago.

Wavy Gravy is an iconic figure from latter part of that decade, and the reason I came across this post was his connection to another icon of that decade, Ram Dass.
Ram Dass a teacher, guru to me; his path as always been that of Bhakti (the yoga of love) Yoga, in service to love, through his teacher Maharaj-ji, was in a sense an incarnation of Hanuman, who took an incarnation of a monkey to serve God. My mother-in-law, affectingly known by all the family as GG, is transitioning, here at home, even as I’m writing this. When I read about Wavy Gravy, the Hog farm and his life of service, I’m simultaneously transported into the past and made fully present and for that’s a meditation benefit. Vipassana meditation is one of the meditation techniques taught by the Buddha and means to ‘see with special vision’ or insight meditation. Vipassana retreats are conducted in silence and last anywhere from ten days to three months.
With overwhelming enthusiasm, I spent the last couple of weeks learning vipassana meditation at Dharmashring, Budanilkhantha. The meditation benefit and experience of vipassana is a direct and enlightened insight into the impermanent, unsatisfactory, and selfless nature of ordinary existence. These Buddhism meditation techniques have been adopted all over the world including the west for health and spiritual reasons. Among various Buddhist traditions, Theravada tradition contributes to over ninety methods in developing mindfulness meditation and concentration collectively.
According to the Pali Canon School, Buddhist meditation can be practiced to develop right mindfulness, right concentration, and right view.
Buddha has framed two qualities of the mind, which is attained through meditation, namely serenity and insight. Buddha has preached forty methods of meditation which will develop concentration and consciousness. Buddhist meditation techniques have also incorporated practices from others like Zongmi Typology, which has been utilized by the Chinese and others. To make sense of all this, Buddhist meditation techniques are well suited for anyone interested in advancing their meditation practice. When you think of Buddhist meditation techniques for beginners, you probably think of mind exercises to reach a sense of inner peace.
Meditation centers on awareness – an awareness of our bodies that is accomplished through the mind. Jack Kornfield (born 1945) is a teacher in the vipassana movement of American Theravada Buddhism.He trained as a Buddhist monk in Thailand, Burma and India, including as a student of the Thai monk Ajahn Chah.
That is the real treasure that Buddhism has to offer, and it may take us a long time in the West to bring this treasure to full fruition. If your meditation practice, regardless of the technique, gently awakens you to the different levels of your being, one after another, and you have be authentic with yourself in this process, then you will discover the truth, which is the highest form of reality.
For a novice meditator, like Yvonne Moran, a ten day Vipassana meditation retreat was less like a retreat and a lot more like a marine boot camp, at least in the beginning. The first few days were spent writhing in extreme discomfort and pain as I attempted to sit crossed-legged and erect on the cushioned floor in the same position for what seemed like interminable periods of time. Their metal cups and plates washed, meditators returned to the basic dormitories or two-three bedroom cottages to sleep.
During these four daily periods, participants were asked to try and remain in one position without moving at all. Lunch at 11am usually consisted of rice, perhaps lentils, a good selection of spicy and some boiled vegetables, with something sweet to finish.
Group meditation continued through the early afternoon, followed by more meditation until teatime, – four crackers and a banana were the usual offerings.
A video talk by lay meditator SN Goenka, who brought the technique from Burma to India, and from where it has spread around the world, followed. But slowly I came to realise it would be impossible to learn this form of meditation without undergoing such an intensive course. It enables them to face life with more equilibrium, knowing that nothing is permanent and that everything passes. Meditation was something I’d been interested in learning about, and with time to spare, I thought it would be a good idea to attempt it. When all the different kinds of thoughts, feeling, sensations and images arise, we learn to rest in the stillness, allowing the mind to be as it is, without discrimination or judgment. There are a few insight meditation centers in the US, in California and Massachusetts, that offer intensive short term (ten day) and long term (three month) retreats. The focus of this piece, Wim Hof, “may be able to exercise some influence over other body functions considered involuntary,” according to Professor Peter Pickkers of Nijmegen’s Radboud Medical University. Jay Michaelson addresses this paradox, reframing the way boredom is perceived, finding the gifts that boredom offers us.
He suggest that the next time you feel bored, take a moment to see how you feel, are you feeling energetic or relaxed?
Do you need to have a quiet place free from all distractions and noises or can you actually meditate anywhere, anytime, any place? It’s taking a bit of literary license in comparing meditation to Viagra; one helps alleviate the symptoms of a medical condition, which was the intent when of Viagra when first came on the market, the other, has traditionally been, to enhance the experience. Mindfulness is a way of melding more love into your love making, and frankly I would call that a heck of a nice meditation benefit.
And all the tears, the “powerful surges” of emotion, seemed, to be foreign to what he understood meditation to be.
Enlightenment is the process out ‘lightening up or letting go and that includes all our repressed emotions.

This study found that mindfulness meditation helped improve the quality of life and the mental distress that accompanies irritable bowel syndrome. Because mindfulness meditation teaches the practitioner how to focus their attention and relax, it “empowers” the sufferer to deal with a difficult to treat illness. One of the ways that Ram Dass has promoted loving service is in supporting conscious care for the dying, something that has been pretty close to home for me lately. The conscious, loving care of our hospice practitioners was the result of the Buddhist tradition inspired, Metta Institute, founded by Frank Ostaseski. You can find out more information about Ram Dass and his compassionate community at
Training in vipassana begins by focusing and calming the mind, which is accomplished by placing the attention on the breath, following its natural movements. Many of the centers, including the Insight Meditation Society offer instruction in other Buddhist practices like, loving kindness or Metta meditation. One reason for such a wide acceptance is these techniques do not have any authoritative doctrines. Likely, the Tibetan tradition also has abundant meditation techniques which have elements of visionary qualities.
Among them in the Sattipathana sutta, Buddha has framed four ways of attaining mindfulness. Moreover, he has advised to choose the most suitable path among the forty methods, which align with ones mental makeup. You may practice them for a number of reasons, such as general well-being and spiritual advancement. What most people don’t realize is that in fact Buddhist meditation is really a combination of mind and body. When you sit in a relaxed, attentive, aware way, you create a new person within yourself – a person filled with confidence and strength.
Most postures are on the floor but if that’s not comfortable for you – it doesn’t make a lot of sense to do it! Many find this difficult and it is common to sit with your knees bent and your feet facing straight behind you. Notice each body part as you work your way up from your toes, up to your head, and back down again – picture a massage chair rolling up and down slowly stopping at each body part. And that is what we’re aiming to achieve – an absolute awareness of ourselves – inside and out. He went on to explain that most religion, including Buddhism, offers an escape from reality, rather than a transforming insight about it. In fact, without some calmness in meditation it is impossible to see anything clearly or distinguish what is real from what is illusion. Puff talks about his personal experiences and how he was able to practice his meditation even in noisy situations. This ability evolves as your practice evolves and it’s not a recommended practice beginning meditators; for most beginners, distractions lead to frustration. I would add, because it is a practice, go ahead and do just that, practice, remembering to be gentle with yourself and letting go of any frustration if it arises. In this article, what the author’s experience of his first few days of Vipassana, while they are unique to the individual, they are not unique to the process. Sometimes other forms instructions are offered at these centers; include teaching as diverse as Tibetan Lamas, Christian priests or Native American shamans. Non-Buddhists pursue these techniques for purely mental and physical well-being and non-religious spiritual aims.
We also send regular updates, inspiring quotes, and new guided meditations to you regularly.
People in every generation have the same opportunity as the Buddha had to see behind the curtain of illusion to the reality beneath. It was, apparently, a way of gaining strength from everyone undergoing the same process simultaneously. Also there is belief among some that the exposure to the cold may benefit the circulatory system, and lead to a quicker recovery for athletes after training, though these benefits remain controversial. The number one benefit of meditation is stress reduction, so don’t stress if the distractions are too much, relax and wait until you feel you are in a comfortable place, then meditate. Even medical science has adopted Buddhist meditation techniques to deal with the various aberrations of human mind.
They have five categories of meditative techniques: ordinary, outside way, small vehicle, great vehicle and supreme vehicle. The sixth ancestor of Zen, Hui Neng, specifically taught that to empty the mind of all thoughts during meditation is not a Buddhist practice.
These techniques helps to develop some great virtues of the human mind, namely mindfulness, concentration, tranquility and insight. Where do these thoughts and feelings that rise and fall originate, and where do they go when they subside?

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