Contemplation has always been a part of the Native world view to understand and embrace life’s cycles and balances. This has come in many forms, such as dreams, visions, puberty rites, hunting, planting, decision-making, and prayer. Indeed, contemplation was the foundation to a relationship with all things. Perhaps this is the best way to describe visualization/meditation as it exists today.
When we put this into a physiological aspect, meditation has many effects on the human body. Each system is affected by itself, but also the systems are inter-related and can enhance the entire organization of the body into a heightened awareness. Meditation benefits the systems of the body in specific ways:
- can be sedated or stimulated, depending on the technique used
- promotes balance and calm
- breathing patterns are improved
- relieves asthma and bronchitis (other respiratory conditions)
- supply of Oxygen and nutrients to cells throughout the body is increased
- blood circulation is increased
- strain on the heart is eased through the normal return of blood to this vital organ
- muscle tension is relieved and spasms relaxed
- supply of blood and nutrients to muscles is increased
- waste matter from the muscles is eliminated, preventing fatigue and pain
- correct posture and body balance are maintained
- flow of nutrients to the bones is increased
- maintains regularity and balance in the digestive process
- helps keep skin supple, well-nourished, and radiant
As the body’s systems become balanced, there is relief from mental and emotional tension, allowing relaxation to occur. Mental clarity is increased and relation to one’s self and others becomes more harmonious. A sense of emotional balance is achieved that allows the emotions to be used as a full and productive part of living. Meditation greatly assists in producing a state of wellbeing.
Breathe deep. Relax. Be well.