Delay or Reverse Aging with Qi Gong, Meditation, Yoga and More

There’s increased evidence showing that practices such as qi gong, meditation and yoga can not only prevent disease, but actually reverse it and delay aging as well. As scientists learn more about such topics as gene expression, what turns a gene on or off, and how to prevent telomeres, (the strands of protein in our cells that control aging) from unraveling, it becomes impossible to ignore just how much our good lifestyle choices can pay off. For instance, researchers at UCSF have shown for the first time that “changes in diet, exercise, stress management and social support may result in longer telomeres, the parts of chromosomes that affect aging.”

In another article on the website www.yang-sheng.com, Dr. Sharon Montes writes of her interest in Dr. Dean Ornish’s work in preventative medicine using diet, exercise and meditation to reverse illness, cancer and aging:

“Building on this work, other researchers have found that meditation and nutrition can actually change the structure of our genes. Dr. Ornish and others have shown that the lifestyle decisions that we make actually turn on or turn off genes. One study “Changes in prostate gene expression in men undergoing an intensive nutrition and lifestyle intervention” of men with low-risk prostate cancer who followed a program of intensive nutrition and lifestyle changes showed changes in genetic activity after only three months on the program. Genes that promote cancer suppression were up-regulated, while genes lead to cancer promotion were down regulated.

If you imagine our genes to be a spiral of proteins that wind and unwind to give form to various chemicals and structures in our body, the telomere is the “cap” at the ends of the spiral that keeps the spiral in order. (One writer compares it to the plastic coating on the end of a shoelace that keeps the threads from unraveling.) With time and successive cell divisions, our telomeres become shortened and our chromosomes become somewhat frayed. It has been shown that healthy diets and stress management/meditation can lengthen our telomeres.”

The Qi Gong Institute also has done research and shown favorable results in the use of Qi Gong to “lengthen telomeres,” in other words, to reverse or delay aging. There are similar studies showing that meditation helps to lengthen telomeres as well, perhaps because it reduces stress in the body.

Click here for our podcast interview with Mingtong Gu

Click here for our review of Wisdom Healing (Zhineng) Qigong: Teachings by Master Mingtong Gu

 


Tell Me A Story: Stirring Up Cellular Memories with Meditation

| by Cheryl Shainmark

I have been meditating for over twenty years now and find it an essential part of my life. Many have written about the substantial physical and emotional benefits, and while I’ve certainly found that to be the case, too, I’ve also noticed that there is a component of releasing “cellular memories” that is rarely addressed. People shy away from phenomena that are not so easily explained, but whether you call it “cellular memories,” “past lives,” or releasing “old patterns,” I have found that there is something extraordinary happening that also brings welcome relief to the body and the spirit.

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Does God Listen to Prayers? by Deepak Chopra

Deepak Chopra writes on his website, www.chopra.com, “Without taking a poll, it’s safe to say that people who believe in God also believe that he answers prayers. If he didn’t, one would be left with an indifferent, distant deity who pays no attention to human affairs. This alternative is hard to reconcile with faith, and so believers are left with a God who seems to answer prayers selectively. It’s as if there’s an invisible telephone line to Heaven, and when you call, sometimes God picks up and sometimes he doesn’t….”

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How Meditation Can Affect Your Heart, Brain, and Creativity

Many people have tried to sell me on the idea of meditating. Sometimes I try it, and have an incredible, refreshing experience. But usually, as I close my eyes and focus on my breathing, while I know that I’m supposed to be letting all thoughts go, more and more fly through my mind. Soon I have a laundry-list of “to-dos” in my head … and then my legs fall asleep. It’s all downhill from there…. www.themindunleashed.org

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Teaching Mindfulness in UK Schools

The UK has for the first time invested public funds to study the benefits of mindfulness in the class room. Hundreds of children in the UK will be taught mindfulness among a range of innovative techniques with the aim of promoting good mental health, through one of the largest studies of its kind in the world (in terms of participant numbers). As reported in The New York Times this February, through this initiative…

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A Talk with William Meyer, Author of Three Breaths and Begin: A Guide to Meditation in the Classroom

William Meyer is the author of Three Breaths and Begin: A Guide to Meditation in the Classroom. He has long taught history, economics, and humanities in urban and suburban high schools, where he has also taught meditation in a variety of forms. He has worked with fellow educators in workshops and professional development courses, is the author of two published middle-reader novels, and is currently working to augment his MA in education from Harvard with a PhD from NYU. More information at BillPMeyer.com.

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Sounds Wonderful by Rick Heller

It’s common to meditate while listening to beautiful music, but I’ve found that meditating to ambient sounds—whatever sounds are present at this very moment—is not only a wonderful meditation, it provides a deep insight into where we can find joy in our lives. I lead weekly meditations at the Humanist Community at Harvard, and one of our mainstays is the ambient sound meditation. I first learned it myself when I attended a workshop by the Buddhist teacher Jack Kornfield. The idea is to pay attention to all the sounds around you with a friendly welcoming spirit. This includes the sounds of trucks and buses going by, sirens, coughing, rustling and other sounds that we typically label as “noise.”

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Keep Making It Simpler by Marc Lesser

The following is an excerpt from Seven Practices of a Mindful Leader: Lessons from Google and a Zen Monastery Kitchen, by Marc Lesser. Whenever I lead trainings or give talks on using these seven mindfulness practices, I can often feel the room’s energy shift as I describe the seventh practice, “Keep making it simpler.” People experience a sense of relief, as though a weight has been lifted. Their shoulders drop and they relax. Though we yearn for and need practices to support our leadership, mindfulness, and growth, we also have a basic and primal yearning to let go, to let it all go — all our concerns and judgments about our health, well-being, improvement, effort, and struggles over everything, including these practices. What a relief to stop struggling!

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Meditation, Spirituality & Brain Changes with Dr. Andrew Newberg

You’ve probably heard of Dr. Andrew Newberg’s work on meditation, even if you didn’t realize it — he’s the scientist who did the ground breaking studies of Tibetan monks meditating that showed how dramatically it changed the brain . He went on to study nuns praying and Sikhs chanting and found similar brain states as those of meditation. His ground breaking work led to the development of a new field of science called “neurotheology,” which studies the relationship between the brain and religious experience.

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Reconnecting to Your Heart: A Guided Meditation from the Angels

| by Deirdre Hade

As a mystic, I have been receiving information and guidance from the angels since I was a very young girl. As I watch the news, what I see is a world of souls searching to make sense of the daily Surprise that is thrown upon us. Recently in my meditation The Archangels (the architects of the Heavenly Realms) came to me with a message for our time. I would like to share this with you.

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