Brainstorm your ideas on modern meditation and mindfulness:
What is modern meditation?
What benefits does it bring in terms of what it increases and decreases?
Can you not think about anything for ten seconds?
For a five minute period, jot down the thoughts you have. Would you describe them as constructive, detrimental, comforting, cynical, pernicious…
Do your thoughts play a minor or major role in your emotional state?
What ways do you know of in order to decrease the amount of thoughts you have in order to mitigate possible emotional negativity?
Now watch to find out the extent to which your ideas match those in the video:
Modern Meditation being rolled out in US schools:
More and more schools in the US are introducing modern meditation classes. Is something similar happening in your country? What support programs are there in addition for students to empower students in overcoming the challenges they face?
One councilor says the aim of such a modern meditation class is not to get rid of the thoughts. On the contrary, it is to foster students’ awareness of their relationship with their thoughts. Are you aware of the relationship with the thoughts?
To what extent can meditation have a bearing on us biologically?
One noticeable feature of the meditation program in public schools is that it seems to black students. Why might this be the case? What are the possible implications of this trend?
Gain a deeper insight:
Meditation in a fortune 500 company:
What’s the connection between meditation, a hike in minimum pay, hippies, and, lastly, a fortune 500 CEO?
First you feel pain, after that you react! How good are you detaching yourself from the pain your body feels?
Do you think implementing yoga lessons in the office would, as a result, lead to a dramatic drop in stress levels, an increase in productivity, a fall in costs and positive testimonials?
Watch Fortune 500 CEO of Aetna at the time, Mark Bertolini, to gain an insight into his thoughts on the matter.
In conclusion, for an article on meditation, mindfulness and how your business can thrive, click here.
Reading article, adapted from: “The Conversation” website.
Should Meditation be taught in schools?
New research in the fields of psychology, education and neuroscience shows teaching meditation in schools is having positive effects on students’ well-being, social skills and academic skills. The research showed meditation is beneficial in most cases and led to three broad outcomes for students: higher well-being, better social skills and greater academic skills.
Students who were taught meditation at school reported higher optimism, more positive emotions, stronger self-identity, greater self-acceptance and took better care of their health as well as experiencing reduced anxiety, stress and depression.
The review also showed that meditation helps the social life of students by leading to increases in pro-social behaviour (like helping others) and decreases in anti-social behaviour (like anger and disobedience).
Finally, meditation was found to improve a host of academic and learning skills in students. These included faster information processing, greater focus, more effective working memory, more creativity and cognitive flexibility.
How meditation is taught
“Mindfulness” meditation is one of the more popular practices being taught at schools. It involves a three-step mental process where students are asked to:
- focus their attention on a particular target (for example their own breathing, a sound, a sensation);
- notice when their attention has wondered away from the target;
- bring their attention back to the target.
What the detractors say about teaching meditation
While meditation is an age-old practice, the scientific journey into the effect of meditation education is only just beginning. Detractors argue that it should not be introduced in schools until the long-term value is better known. Given the newness of the field, it is certainly true that the longitudinal research is yet to come.
Some are concerned with how to fit meditation into an already over-crowded curriculum. However, the positive evidence of meditation has led large numbers of teachers to find time for meditation in school.