Tag Archives: Meditation

The Five States of Mind Related to Meditation

Meditation pic

Image: yogajournal.com

A established entrepreneur, Benjamin Shoval is the proprietor of Shoval & Co. Currently based in Seattle, Ben Shoval enjoys yoga and meditation.

In his commentary on the Yoga Sutra of Patanjali, sage Vyasa identified five states of mind that form the concentration process. Each state of mind reveals something about distractions and how they hinder meditation.

These states of mind are:

1) Ksipta
In this lowest state, the mind is distracted and constantly disturbed. It cannot shake away the distractions that are haunting it. In this state, a person is agitated. He is unable to think, keep quiet, or listen attentively.

2) Mudha
In this state, the mind is stupefied. It makes things such as addictions and obsessions rewarding, and consequently debilitating. Those struggling to overcome this state can find peace through relaxed breathing, systemic relaxations, and yoga postures.

3) Viksipta
Here, the mind is distracted. It oscillates between calmness and restlessness. Though able to meditate, the mind cannot do it for long. It oscillates in confusion.

4) Ekagra
In Ekagra, the mind is very relaxed. It becomes one-pointed and is able to concentrate on a single thing. Attention is relaxed and the person is ready to meditate.

5) Nirodha
Here, the mind is absorbed completely in the object of focus. The mind experiences absolute stillness, shutting down all thoughts. It is the absolute condition of mind.


Meditation Shown to Improve Mental Pathways

Meditation pic

Image: zazenlife.com

Seattle’s Benjamin “Ben” Shoval, a successful entrepreneur with a range of experience in technology, housing, and financing and president of Shoval & Co., also enjoys meditation. Recent research shows that meditation is ideal for busy entrepreneurs such as Ben Shoval, as it offers reprieve from hectic lifestyles.

Recent research shows that just 11 hours of meditation training can help to rewire your brain to better balance behaviors and emotions. Study participants practiced meditation for 11 hours, and scientists studied their gray and white matter. Gray matter holds neurons that communicate throughout the brain; white matter connects the gray regions to allow certain areas to communicate more quickly.

The results indicated that the participants had improved white matter tracts joining their anterior cingulate cortices (ACCs), which balance thoughts, emotions, and behaviors, to the brain’s other structures. This means that meditation improves the efficiency and integrity of the brain’s connections and our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. Meditation also helps the brain stay healthy as it ages, reduces wandering thoughts to improve focus, and decreases anxiety and depression.

Health Benefits of Meditation

Meditation pic

Image: zazenlife.com

A technology entrepreneur based in Seattle, Washington, Benjamin “Ben” Shoval is the founder and president of Shoval & Co., a Washington-based investment firm. In his free time, Ben Shoval enjoys practicing meditation.

Although meditation is historically for spiritual and mystical purposes, modern health professionals tout its ability to reduce stress and improve overall mood. In terms of emotional well-being, meditation helps practitioners transform their perspectives on stressful situations and develop stress management skills. Meditation also reduces the intensity of negative emotions, making it an ideal supplemental treatment for individuals with depression and anxiety.

Although the emotional and mental benefits of meditation are relatively well studied, meditation also has significant effects on physical health. Studies have shown it improves medical conditions aggravated by stress, including asthma, heart disease, high blood pressure, and chronic pain. However, meditation is not a replacement for traditional medical treatment, and individuals should talk to healthcare providers before making any drastic changes to their medical treatment plans.