About this course
This is the online companion material for the Meditation For Beginners Course at the Frederick Meditation Center.
There are so many reasons people seek out meditation classes: to reduce anxiety, improve health and wellness, find emotional balance, manage work stress, and cope with life’s changes -- just to name a few. The research has shown time and time again that meditation can indeed improve our quality of life.
You do not need to have a calm mind, or know a single thing about meditation to join this course. How To Meditate For Beginners is taught in plain English, and designed to appeal to anyone regardless of spiritual beliefs.
After all, mindfulness is a lifestyle, not a religion. It can be applied to any activity -- no matter how sacred or profane. From doing the dishes to communicating mindfully with a loved one, the practice of meditation can fortify you with resilience no matter your life circumstances.
To get the most out of this course, try to meditate three to four times each week, even if just for a few minutes. The modules below contain guided meditations that you can practice at home, and download to keep. You will have access to this course for years to come, so don't worry about losing this information!
I want you to get as much as possible out of this class, and welcome your questions before, during, and after the program. Do not hesitate to come to myself or your class teacher with any requests or concerns.
Focusing your attention on just one thing at a time helps stop your mind from time traveling into the past or future. This can have a huge impact on your ability to relax and be more resilient in the face of stress.
Yes, even you can learn to relax! Like any skill it takes a desire to master it plus a little bit of your time to practice, practice, practice. The physical and mental health benefits are worth the investment of time, and you will feel great, too!
Learn how to make each moment a little more special.
A video with Dr. Benson at the Harvard Bookstore about the Relaxation Revolution and how meditation can change your genetic predisposition to stress-related illness.
Video survey of definitions and an overview of the concept of mindfulness.
Begin to harness the power of mindfulness by getting to know your own mind on a more intimate level. Consider the possibility of experiencing stimuli as it arises, without reacting, clinging, or pushing away your experience.
Taking even a mindful breath or two during your day can help you feel more calm and peace, even during the hectic work day.
Eating a meal is the perfect time to practice mindfulness, as all of your senses are easily accessible. This week try to eat at least one meal mindfully.
TED: Matt Killingsworth: Want to be happier? Stay in the moment. An enlightening video based on research.
The desire for others to be free from suffering - and for ourselves to be free from suffering - is the real reason we practice meditation.
Compassion is not just for meditation - you can send well wishes anytime during your day.
We can not always change the circumstance. But we can choose to meet our tender heart with compassion.
One way to boost resilience is to spend time cultivating affection and care for yourself. This primes your nervous system to be more able to weather life's storms.
Recognize. Allow. Investigate. Nurture.
Your meditation practice has just begun!
Books, apps and other suggested materials from the course!