Medication or Meditation?

Those two words look so similar, but they are totally two different approaches regard our health. No doubt medication is the dominant practice to “fix” our body problems nowadays, in the meantime meditation has become more popular- A 2007 study by the U.S. government found that nearly 9.4% of U.S. adults (over 20 million) had practiced meditation within the past 12 months, up from 7.6% (more than 15 million people) in 2002  Meditation practiced for many reasons, such as to increase calmness and physical relaxation, to improve psychological balance, to cope with illness, or to enhance overall health and well-being.

If we say medication is outward oriented because we seek help from those pharmaceutical, then Meditation is generally an inwardly oriented, personal practice, which individuals do by themselves. Definition for meditation from Wikipedia is that any form of a family of practices in which practitioners train their minds or self-induce a mode of consciousness to realize some benefit.  A review of scientific studies identified relaxation, concentration, an altered state of awareness, a suspension of logical thought and the maintenance of a self-observing attitude as the behavioral components of meditation, it is accompanied by a host of biochemical and physical changes in the body that alter metabolism, heart rate, respiration, blood pressure and brain activation. Meditation has been used in clinical settings as a method of stress and pain reduction. Meditation has also been studied specifically for its effects on stress.

In Chinese medicine we greatly emphasize the status of our heart and mind. In the book <黄帝内经> which is an ancient Chinese medical text that has been treated as the fundamental doctrinal source for Chinese medicine for more than two millennia, it pointed out that “恬淡虚无,真气从之,精神内守,病安从来?” means if you have a peaceful calm mind, your Qi follows and energy kept inside well, you won’t catch illness. In contrary, people who worry, tension, stress, panic, anger, unhappy will have all kinds of health issues. Meditation is a very good practice to achieve inner peaceful. I recommend everyone should have at lease 10 minutes meditation a day to gain benefit from it. Let me give you an example, when you use your computer, you open this window, open that application, and open another one, all at a sudden, you computer freeze, what do you do to fix the problem? Simple, re-start your PC! Our mind is like a running rabbit, you are keep thinking so many different issues like computer running so many different applications, one day when you feel something wrong with your body, it’s not hardware problems which equivalent to your physical body. It’s the software problem which is your mind. To restart to have a clear mindset, you can achieve that by Meditation, vacation, Chinese Qigong, Tai ji, golfing, Yoga, pray and much more.

As a Acupuncturist, I know so well that human’s mind play a big role in our health, and it is the source cause for many of our illness. So please well maintain our mentality, be happy!


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