Showing posts with label stress. Show all posts
Showing posts with label stress. Show all posts

What Does Sattva Mean In Yoga?



Table Of Contents
THE KEY TO EXPAND TIME IS SATTVA.
THE HOLISTIC EDGE.
TAMAS IN RAJAS LIFESTYLES.
MAINTAINING A LIFESTYLE OF EQUILIBRIUM.


THE  KEY TO EXPAND TIME IS SATTVA. 




Sattva is one of the three gunas (natural characteristics) in yogic philosophy. 


  • It is the attribute of purity and tranquility
  • The other two gunas are tamas, which represents darkness and lethargy, and rajas, which represents energy and passion, and the aim is to balance these three characteristics as much as possible in your everyday life.


There are many therapy regimens in Ayurveda. Rather of stressing about rajas and tamas, one strategy is to concentrate on increasing sattva. 


  • Another way to deal with the maha gunas is to balance excess tamas with a little amount of rajas, or to decrease excess rajas with a small amount of tamas.
  • You may begin to push prana (life energy) not just throughout your physical body but also into your mental body to produce a heightened level of awareness after you have balanced your outer koshas via diet, lifestyle changes, and a yoga practice.



THE HOLISTIC EDGE.


Unlike Mechanistic healing, the Holistic approach everything is interdependent and interrelated.



The comprehensive system may seem complex, yet the method is quite reasonable. 


  • When we compare the human body to a machine, its processes seem to be extremely basic if we ignore awareness. 
  • Machines are simple to humans since they were created by humans and can be understood by them. 
  • Humans, on the other hand, are much more complex than any machine. 
  • Machines operate on orders and are not aware of their surroundings. 
  • Humans have a sense of judgment or intelligence (buddhi), and as a result, they have the ability to make their own decisions. 
  • In comparison to a computer network, this makes human-to-human contact very difficult. 




It's impossible to utilize holistic medicine without also living a holistic way of life, and it's also impossible to live a holistic life in secret since it affects every area of your life. 


  • You can't disregard your job situation, personal connections, social conduct, or sexuality; if one of these is out of balance, it gradually impacts the others, setting off a chain of bad occurrences. 
  • The holistic approach rejects chance theory and stresses that everything occurs for a purpose. 
  • Chance, according to the mechanistic view of existence, has a significant influence in cosmic events and human life. 




Many individuals who are influenced by this viewpoint have extremely fragmented lives. 


  • They are expected to do their duties in a machine-like manner, because after all, there is a widespread assumption that there is just a material world. 
  • As a result, the existence of the soul as the source of awareness is denied. 
  • This mechanical perspective of existence rejects the idea of a latent spiritual force that exists within all of us, that may be awakened via sattva (see also the previous chapter), and that can be utilized for good. 
  • Many diseases and illnesses are caused by a lack of inner quiet and serenity, as well as other associated sattvic characteristics. 




Our lives are highly unbalanced and dominated by rajas and tamas, with little sattva. 

  • This is due to the imposition of the mechanistic perspective. 
  • We examined the six-dimensional equilibrium that humans should strive towards. 
  • Each of the six dimensions is linked, and an imbalance in one of them leads to an imbalance in the rest of one's life. 



People are always "in a rush." Time is meticulously scheduled, often a year, two years, or even many years ahead of time. 


I met a lady from Switzerland while on vacation on the island of Bali. 

 

She expressed herself by saying,

 

"People in Bali believe that we Europeans are extremely lucky and happy because we are wealthy. They have no idea that we work nonstop and will never be able to enjoy the easy life that they have on this island." 



This is absolutely correct! 

When I go from Bangalore to a Himalayan facility, I get the same feeling. 

The people who dwell in the Himalayan mountains' interior live modest yet peaceful lives. 

When I return to Bangalore, on the other hand, I observe the prevalent craziness caused by people's very "busy" and hectic lifestyles. 




TAMAS IN RAJAS LIFESTYLES


There is a significant degree of tamas in rajas-dominated lifestyles. 



In today's world, there is a lot of competition. When it comes to employment, people aren't always honest. This has an impact on everyone of us. 


  • To persuade someone to purchase a thing, a salesman, for example, must use misleading reasoning. 
  • To promote its anti-health, anti-environment goods, big business tells a lot of falsehoods. 
  • A farmer pollutes the environment with pesticides, while industrial pollutants contaminate our drinking water. 



There are many rajas and tamas in life. There isn't enough sattva. 


In the true sense, there is no quiet or serenity. People are too busy, even during their vacations, which are once again controlled by the rajas. 

  • Rajas spend the most of their free time on a daily basis. 
  • In general, watching television is rajas and tamas, and if done for an extended period of time, it may disrupt vata and kapha. 



People continue to follow a daily pattern dominated by rajas and tamas, with rajas-dominated leisure time. 


  • Rajas rule throughout the day while tamas rule at night. 
  • They enter a tamas state of mind throughout the night since sleep is tamas.
  • Their sleep, however, is mixed with rajas owing to the frenetic activities of the day. 
  • The following day starts, and they are once again in a condition of rajas and tamas. 
  • Life continues in this manner until some of them are unable to bear it any longer. 
  • Some people slip into a predominating tamas condition after a lengthy time of hyperrajas. 
  • As a result, people get sad or succumb to another severe illness. 



MAINTAINING A LIFESTYLE OF EQUILIBRIUM.


It is critical that we better arrange our lives and intermix our activities during the day and sleep at night with sattva in order to achieve equilibrium. 




We will be able to work with a peaceful mind, feel relaxed, and be able to endure pressure at work if we can bring a balance with sattva in the rajas and tamas elements of our life. 


  • Stress or strain produced at work will not damage our health if we are able to take energy from the infinite source (the soul) via sattvic techniques. 
  • Similarly, if we can obtain sattvic sleep with our efforts, we would be revitalized, waking up invigorated after a good night's sleep. 
  • Sattva is beneficial for lifespan, health, and increased productivity. 



You can do more in less time if you train your mind to achieve inner calm. 


  • In addition, sattva is necessary for maintaining balance in the three mental processes, since without it, we eventually develop a humor imbalance. 
  • Let's wait and see what occurs. Excessive rajas leads to vata imbalance over time. 
  • It also causes sleep disruptions, which is a vata-related activity. 




Excessive rajas, or too much activity during the day, should be balanced by serenity and tranquility at the mental level; if this is not done, unrest will be carried to sleep time. 


  • This implies that the day's disruptions, stress, and confusion must be brought to a halt with deliberate effort. 
  • Otherwise, you fall asleep because your body is weary, but your mind is not at ease. 
  • You may also be unable to sleep if the nature of your job does not physically exhaust you. 
  • If you have a vata constitution, not getting enough sleep may lead to constipation the following day. 
  • Constipation can deplete vata even more, and you may feel weary and stiff the next day when you wake up. 
  • You may also have a dry throat and be restless at night. 



As a result, an imbalance in one of the six main components responsible for body/mind activity and mental characteristics sets in motion a chain of events. 


  • Vata is the most readily decreased humor of our day, owing to the preponderance of rajas in our contemporary manner of life. 
  • We live in a vata society, as I frequently remark. 
  • We may keep our humor from being vitiated and avoid health issues by incorporating sattva into our everyday life. 

Thus, we must strive to better incorporate the sattvic style of life.




You may also want to read more about Ayurveda here.


You may also want to read more about Kundalini Yoga here.

You may also want to read more about Yoga here.


You may also want to read more about Yoga Asanas and Exercises here.


You may also want to read more about Hinduism here.

Be sure to check out my writings on religion here.






Does Mindfulness Really Work? A Scientific Enquiry.

 


The process of paying nonjudgmental attention to the current moment has been termed as mindfulness.

The awareness of breathing is commonly employed as an attentional anchor to manage ruminative thought in the early stages of mindfulness training; however mindfulness involves much more than just noticing the breath.


It is based on Buddhist practice and has been the subject of empirical research, with over scientific publications on mindfulness released in the last decade. The evidence for its use in the treatment of depression and anxiety is the strongest.

The impact sizes of mindfulness in these two illnesses have often been reported in the moderate-strong to strong range in meta-analyses. However, because some of the studies included in these meta-analyses failed to account for the placebo effect, it's not unexpected that meta-analyses with stricter inclusion criteria yield lower results.

A recent meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials of mindfulness-based stress reduction, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, and other mindfulness-based interventions—each with an active control—found small to moderate effect sizes in the treatment of depression or anxiety after eight weeks of mindfulness training, with a reduction in effect size after three to six months.


Although the findings are less impressive, they are equivalent to those that would be expected from antidepressant therapy in a primary care population without the side effects.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence and the American Psychiatric Association both recommend mindfulness-based cognitive treatment for individuals with recurrent depression, based on these findings.

Other psychiatric diseases, such as schizophrenia spectrum disorders, eating disorders, chemical and non-chemical addiction disorders, and sleep disorders, may benefit from mindfulness-based therapies, according to some data.

Despite the fact that mindfulness has recently been added to the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists' practice guidelines as a non-first-line treatment for adults with binge eating disorder, there is arguably insufficient evidence from well-designed randomized trials to support its use for conditions other than depression and anxiety.


Mindfulness may potentially have a role in the treatment of somatic illnesses such as psoriasis, cancer, HIV infection, irritable bowel syndrome, heart disease, hypertension, lung disease, diabetes mellitus, and chronic pain, according to growing evidence.

Randomized trials show that mindfulness-based therapies, such as mindfulness-based stress reduction and cognitive therapy, are minimally to moderately effective in the treatment of chronic pain, with potential applications in the treatment of pain-related diseases like fibromyalgia.

However, it's unclear if mindfulness improves patients' capacity to manage with pain or lessens the frequency and severity of pain.

There is inadequate high-quality data to support mindfulness for treating somatic diseases, except for chronic pain and particular pain syndromes.



Questions that remain unanswered


As previously stated, different methodological issues restrict the overall quality of the data on mindfulness's efficacy.

A type of "popularity impact" may impact results in particular. Because mindfulness is becoming more popular, participants' perceptions of getting a "fashionable" or "proven" psychotherapy practice may affect outcomes.

Because it's very hard to blind patients from the knowledge that they're employing mindfulness techniques, this is a challenging confounding variable to control for.

We also need more clarity on whether positive outcomes last for years rather than months, whether mindfulness interventions have any negative side effects, and the validity of the traditional view among contemplative traditions that long-term improvements in health and wellbeing require daily mindfulness practice over many years, rather than just attending a retreat.


In addition, data is needed to identify whether mindfulness in general or specific interventional procedures are more useful for a particular condition.

Numerous interventions have been developed, with significant variation in factors such as total participant-facilitator contact hours, including whether one-on-one contact is provided, quantity and duration of guided mindfulness exercises, use of non-mindfulness psychotherapeutic techniques such as psychoeducation or group discussion, inclusion of a full day silent retreat, and emphasis on self-practitioner interaction.

Mindfulness is defined and operationalized differently in different interventions. Recent research, for example, has concentrated on second-generation mindfulness therapies like the eight-week Meditation Awareness Training, which are founded on the notion that mindfulness is a psycho-spiritual rather than just psychological skill.

It's challenging to extrapolate findings across the whole spectrum of treatments due to significant differences in design and pedagogic approach.


Mindfulness appears to be beneficial in improving perceptual distance from stressful psychological and physical stimuli and in causing functional neuro-plastic changes in the brain, according to emerging evidence.

However, mindfulness's "fashionable" reputation among the public and the scientific community may have obscured the need to investigate crucial methodological and practical difficulties related to its efficacy.


You may also want to read more about Mindfulness Meditation and Healing here.



Truth about Meditation as a Therapy

Listening to the breath, chanting a mantra, or detaching from the thinking process are all tools used in meditation to center the mind and bring about a state of self-awareness and inner peace. There are cultic and non-cultic varieties, the latter of which was produced for medicinal or scientific purposes. Meditation's calming and tension relief are believed to have prophylactic and preventive health effects, as a slew of scientific articles claim to demonstrate.

However, these studies have methodological flaws, that are discussed here, along with a brief review of the best evidence for meditation's medicinal efficacy in clinical populations. Meditation does not have a Cochrane review. Demonstrating that such physiological symptoms like a slower heart rate or a specific electroencephalographic pattern exist during meditation and characterize a "relaxed state" can provide insight into how meditation functions, but it does not prove its therapeutic value. Most studies looking at the long-term effects of meditation have had poor architecture.

When transcendental meditation, a common type of mantra meditation, trials was conducted, they often compared self-selected meditators with non-meditators or experienced meditators with novices. These studies did not account for methodological variations in individuals who want to learn the procedure and those who do not, as well as those who stick with it versus those who stop. In randomized trials, positively predisposed participants are often selected, resulting in assumptions of gain that vary from those of control subjects. The favorable outcome of transcendental meditation trials for cognitive benefits was limited to participants who were given passive controls such as eyes closed rest.

Trials of naïve participants and plausible controls such as pseudo meditation were found to be inconclusive. A previous meta-analysis of cognitive behavioral therapies including meditation for hypertension found a related connection.  Many co-interventions, heavy mortality, and insufficient mathematical interpretation are among the other flaws. Recent clinical trials have been somewhat more robust, but the number of participants has been reduced. Co-interventions such as cognitive rehabilitation have been used in all controlled studies of mindfulness meditation or disconnected perception of experience, but successful controls have not been used, since outcomes cannot be removed or differentiated from non-specific effects.

Few results in patients with poorly managed asthma were changed by sahaja meditation or passive witnessing of thoughts, but the differences did not last two months. People with epilepsy who practiced sahaja meditation saw a substantial decrease in quantitative stress tests and seizure frequency, but sufficient intergroup comparisons were lacking, and anxiety levels and seizure frequency were significantly different between groups at baseline.

Benson relaxation response, a non-cultic type of transcendental meditation, had no significant effect on blood lipids, weight, or blood pressure when added to a risk reduction program for elderly men with hypercholesteraemia, and while patients with irritable bowel syndrome reported a reduction in symptoms after six weeks of practicing Benson relaxation response, the only significant difference was between the two groups.

Transcendental meditation has been widely researched, but most of the research is still being done by scholars who are affiliated with the organization that offers transcendental meditation and are eager to show its special importance. The 35 trials of transcendental meditation were consistent with slightly greater effect sizes than other approaches, according to a meta-analysis of trials of calming and meditation for trait anxiety. However, it involved unregulated experiments, and there is little evidence that the result was unaffected by test design, type of supervision, or other confounders.

The significance of healthcare populations remains questionable since it omitted trials of people with mental disorders. As a result, a revised and independent meta-analysis of anxiety-related mediation research is desperately needed. The impact sizes of cognitive behavioral strategies for hypertension is particularly sensitive to the methods used for baseline measurements, according to a meta-analysis of studies.

Since then, a study using appropriate baseline tests has shown that three months of transcendental meditation activity lowered clinic-measured diastolic and systolic blood pressure compared to a group of people who were granted schooling. The impact size of progressive muscle relaxation was in the center. In the transcendental meditation community, the mean modified increases in systolic and diastolic blood pressure were 10.7 mm Hg and 6.4 mm Hg, respectively.

This study, along with many others by scholars affiliated with the transcendental meditation association, suggest that meditation has a beneficial impact on blood pressure, a claim that should be objectively verified. 

A study that found beneficial effects of transcendental meditation on exercise tolerance in men with coronary artery disease was not randomized and had significant baseline differences in exercise tolerance between groups that surpassed the effect sizes recorded.

Co-intervention with food, exercise, herbal supplements, and inadequate data collection due to attrition and lack of funds confound the observed beneficial impact of transcendental meditation on the thickness of the intima media of the carotid artery, an indicator of atherosclerosis.

A small study that found some benefit from transcendental therapy for asthma had significant issues with procedure adherence. The evidence for transcendental meditation's therapeutic efficacy in other conditions is either equally flawed or limited to small-scale studies. 

Overall, the evidence for any form of meditation's therapeutic efficacy is poor, and evidence for any impact beyond that of reliable control measures is still weaker. The only protection concern seems to be in severely depressed patients, who may have psychotic episodes because of meditation. The limited research that does exist is in areas where stress reduction can have a significant positive impact, and potential studies with better design can have more definitive positive effects in this field.