Mindfulness & Meditation for Politicians

Something interesting has been going on in the British Parliament – and no, it’s not Brexit. More and more members are meditating before they meet! As reported in The Guardian, since 2013 more than 145 members have taken an eight week course in mindfulness and meditation (video). Last year government ministers from 15 countries gathered at the House of Commons in the British Parliament to explore whether mindfulness can help reset the conduct of national and international politics. The event was organized by senior Conservative and Labour MPs, who said they would discuss the potential of meditation “to help political leaders stay resilient, clear-minded and creative in the face of constant change.”

This last October a panel of expert speakers from the UK and USA gave talks on the latest research and implementation of workplace mindfulness training programs in the context of high-stress or trauma-prevalent public service. According to The Mindfulness Initiative,the benefits are real:  “From schoolchildren, to NHS staff, policemen, and members of parliament, mindfulness courses have offered significantly improved well being by reducing stress, fostering compassionate care and providing greater clarity in prioritizing the demands of life.”

Lord Andrew Stone

More than 95 MPs and parliament staff meet regularly for mindfulness meditation courses taught within parliament, and from the sound of it, the effect these courses have been having are pretty substantial. Lord Andrew Stone, who was assigned to meet with Egypt’s military leadership earlier this year, told the audience that mindfulness meditation helped him be compassionate towards all sides of the country’s deeply troubled political factions. “I didn’t know how to cope,” he explained, “but these practices made a massive difference.”

Tracy Crouch MP also talked about the extraordinary benefits mindfulness meditation has created in her life. In her speech, she spoke openly about her personal struggle with mental illness. And since she started meditating, she’s seen benefits in unexpected places, too. “I have given much better speeches in the house since I started mindfulness,” she said.

It seems to me that as more people gather together to bring peace and balance into the world through meditation, we stand a chance to make a real difference and to manifest the future we would like to pass on to our children!


The Science Is In: Meditation Affects Aging and Telomere Length

Science is all about precision, controlled studies, and measurable, repeatable results. So for years researchers resisted working on alternative practices such as meditation, dismissing the few studies done as “fuzzy science,” “subjective,” or “impossible to duplicate.” But as research methods have advanced, so has the accuracy of the latest research. There is ample evidence now that stress leads to increased risk of health problems and that meditation reduces stress. What’s new are the studies showing how stress is related to aging and telomere length.

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Up the Hill – Down the Hill by Stephen Thomson

| by Stephen Thomson

When I was in my thirties I began to meditate. Most of my friends were doing it, so I thought I would try. I became addicted to my practice and progressed to a point that I was meditating daily for periods as long as three hours during one sitting. I was also becoming pretty full of myself and had a kind of spiritual arrogance at the same time. Now as I look back, I think I approached meditation in the same way I did any competitive sport. My efforts were about being the best I could be, the one with the most endurance and greatest success.

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A Few Thoughts About Thinking

| by Cheryl Shainmark

I recently finished reading “Anathem” by Neal Stephenson, for the second time, (not something I usually do) and I was struck by an offhand observation that the young main character makes about another man who may be hundreds of years old. At one point, the old man is chanting and holds the same note for hours, (clearly some kind of re-breathing technique), and the young man ponders what it’s like to have such a different notion of time that you would want to chant the same note for hours. Then he has the insight that a mind that has done that probably has very different thoughts from a mind that hasn’t.

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Meditation: What IS the Real You? by Dada Jyotirupananda

| by Dada Jyotirupananda

Dada Jyotirupananda (video) writes, “The book, “Meditation: Searching for the Real You” came out of my experience as a meditation teacher. Why do I meditate? I first heard about meditation in my university days and gradually understood that it could help me in various ways…

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Stalking the Wild Pendulum, by Itzhak Bentov

Bentov says: “I am attempting in this book to build a model of the universe that will satisfy the need for a comprehensive picture of ‘what our existence is all about.’….Referring to psychic phenomena, he says that he will try to explain the underlying mechanisms and explain how they may work.

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The Power of Meditation by Tim Walter

The power of meditation can no longer be in any doubt by even the most sceptical of sceptics. Details of a scientific experiment conducted at the Max Plank Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig Germany were published recently…. The experiment looked at how three meditation techniques affected the brains and bodies of more than 300 volunteers over nine months.

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Mindfulness For Children On the Rise

Mindfulness Matters! For celebrities, for kids, and for you! In a recent article for AARP, Goldie Hawn discussed how mindfulness and meditation, (something she’s been practicing since the 70’s), have impacted her life. She writes: “In 2003, I established the Hawn Foundation to help children create greater brain health through mindfulness practices… . Through our MindUP program in schools, we’ve demonstrated that if students take two minutes for a brain break three times a day, optimism in the classroom goes up almost 80 percent. On the playground, aggression goes down about 30 percent.”

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Merlian News Podcasts with Teresa Hale on Meditation

| by Merlian News

Teresa Hale began teaching Meditation and Yoga over 30 years ago. Her exploration in this field led to the creation of The Hale Clinic – the world’s leading complementary health center, where she continued to deepen her understanding and practice of Meditation and Yoga. Teresa has had direct experience of how Meditation can be applied to a whole range of situations including Health, Creativity, Mental Ability, Reduction of Stress, the Workplace and Scientific Research. She also has a deep interest in the Philosophical and Spiritual aspects of Meditation.

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Yoga Science Teaches Us How to Transform Energy by Leonard Perlmutter

You learned in grade school science class that energy can appear in either the potential or kinetic form. The electricity in the wiring of your home is available for any use you choose. When you turn a light switch to the “on” position, energy appears in the form of light. This is the kinetic state because the energy is being used or expended. However, when you turn the light switch to the “off” position, the energy remains in the potential state–ready to be used at the flick of a switch.

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