Meditation is an age old practice. It is associated with spirituality but also over all health. While originally spiritual in essence, in recent years it has become an alternative health practice in the West.
Meditation is not just a fad but is an excellent tool for better health, stress reduction, and a better mental outlook. For those who are spiritual, it is also an immensely useful tool in becoming closer with God. Eastern as well as Western religions utilize it. In this blog, we will look at the most prominent types of meditation, their uses and the health benefits associated. We will also review AIHCP’s Meditation Instructor Certification.
Meditation as a spiritual tool is its oldest use. Meditation in the far East was used to become closer to God. Hinduism looks for reunification. The soul tries to reunify with Brahman. Through meditation, this reunification can occur sooner in life or lives. With this in mind, many of the techniques used for relaxation are focused on helping the mind escape the body.
In Christianity, meditation has a different use. Reunification with divinity is not the purpose but becoming closer to God. While it may appear the same there are fundamental differences in this. In the East, there is total union. There is no longer separation between beings but everything itself becomes being. In the West, the difference between Creator and creation is maintained. So union is quite different in these traditions.
Whichever religion one may be, spiritual meditation is a critical part of any faith. As a deeper form of prayer, it allows one to deeply communicate with the divine and become spiritually closer. This is essential in any religious and spiritual relationship. Individuals look to not only become better persons but also become closer with their God.
Since meditation has come to the West, many of the Eastern techniques have been utilized in secular settings. Christian Meditation has not become as secular, but only Eastern meditation. It is important to note this for individuals who wish to use Eastern meditation as a health option but also avoid any spiritual aspects that may contradict their faith. Caution is needed for these Christian Westerners who wish to meditation for health purposes.
Those not seeking any type of spiritual connection look for the mind and body benefits of meditation solely. Mindfulness Meditation is an Eastern use. It is very popular for executives and stressed individuals. This type of meditation looks to focus on all thoughts and words. This type of meditation has no judgement upon what thoughts enter. Another type of meditation is Transcendental Meditation. This meditation is more structured and scientifically studied. As the most popular form of meditation, it is used by those who are more serious about meditating. The structure is far more deep than mindfulness meditation. (1)
Other forms of meditation include mantra meditation where words are recited. Also focused meditation utilizes all five senses. Another type of meditation involves movement, such as yoga. Ultimately, all types of meditation were originally intended for spiritual ends but their health benefits can also be utilized.
Obviously the health benefits of meditation beyond the spiritual are multiple. Stress reduction is the biggest reason anyone utilizes meditation. From stressed parents to high end executives, individuals look to meditation to find relaxation and less stress. The results are more calm and less hormones from stress, such as cortisol, that can cause higher blood pressure and issues with the heart. In addition to this benefit, meditation also helps the immune system, reduces muscle aches, can ease inflammation, and help relax muscles for better movement. (2)
In addition to this, mentally meditation can help the mind with anxiety, depression, as well as other mental stresses. A calmer, clearer mind is beneficial for all health systems within the body. When meditation is combined with other alternative health practices, such as hypnotherapy or EFT, one can even see better results against other mental issues.
With so many benefits, many individuals are looking to learn how to meditate. They are individually practicing, or looking for groups to join. Meditation books, videos, and meditation classes are in larger demand. Individuals, as well as corporations are looking to train in meditation for the multitude of benefits. This is also true in the work place, where employers are even utilizing meditation instructors to train employees in mindfulness.
Certified Meditation Instructors are excellent candidates to help meet these needs. Meditation Instructors can offer classes, advice and training to firms, corporations, as well as individuals. They can offer small classes or large classes. Individuals with an interest in meditation and various backgrounds in healthcare, or education in healthcare and meditation are great candidates to become certified meditation instructors. Life coaches, trainers, nurses, massage therapists, spiritual gurus or those with education in the subject can all take advantage of the interest in meditation. They can then utilize their skills helping the general public benefit from the mental and physical aspects of meditation. Again, the biggest movement towards meditation is the secular crowd looking for mental and physical health benefits.
The American Institute of Health Care Professionals offers a certification for Meditation Instructors. The Meditation Instructor Certification is an online, self paced program designed for working professionals. The program entails online courses that educate the individual in the basics of meditation. After completing the required meditation courses, the individual can then apply for a four year certification. The certification can be renewed every four years. During the four year spans, the meditation instructor must display five hundred hours of work within the field of meditation, as well as fifty hours of continuing education.
The courses again are online and self paced. After the completion of each course, one receives a certificate of completion. The American Institute of Health Care Professional has offered this certification for over Fifteen years and has successfully certified individuals throughout the country in many different career settings. If you are interested or would like to become a certified Meditation Instructor, then please review the Meditation Program and see if it meets your professional and academic goals.
In the meantime, meditation continues to become a growing field. Individuals from every aspect of private and professional life are utilizing its benefits. With such a growing marker, qualified professionals can offer their services and benefit in this business field.