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Guided meditations for when you need a quiet moment of clarity


Ever since the pandemic, the world has been in a state of frenzy. From the scary reality of COVID-19 to powerful Black Lives Matter movement and Asian-hate crimes, fear and anxiety have become the ‘new normal’.

Life certainly took an unexpected turn when the lockdown began and we were required to stay indoors, not travel or meet friends and family, and learn to adjust to a ‘new normal’. Things came to a standstill and isolation became a reality which, for many, took a mental and emotional toll.

Of course, this year, the vaccination drives around the world have given us hope for better things to come, but it will still take time for things to get back to the older ways. So, as we wait for the pandemic to be over, it’s important to take care of your physical and mental health. One of the best ways to keep yourself calm is meditation, and when done right, can have a positive effect on the mind, body and soul.

Here are some guided lessons by experienced teachers who will take you through the process and stages of meditation, along with the right posture, timed breathing and controlled thoughts.

Isha Kriya

Sadhguru
Sadhguru, spiritual teacher.

A 12-minute guided meditation by Indian spiritual teacher Jaggi Vasudev, popularly known as Sadhguru, on his official YouTube channel shows us how to use our breath, thought and awareness in the right combination to enhance the ability of the mind and body. This exercise aims at bringing mental stability and clarity besides cultivating a general feeling of peace.

This guided meditation has three stages. The first one focusses on breathing, the second involves chanting “Aaa” methodically and the last is assuming a correct seating posture. The video is available on YouTube for free.

On this channel, you can find numerous other videos on subjects such as diet, Yogic superfoods, spirituality, and yoga philosophy.

Headspace

Andy Puddicombe
Andy Puddicombe, founder of Headspace.

The YouTube channel of the eponymous wellness company is a great place to learn meditation if you are new to it. Its co-founder, Andy Puddicombe (pictured), is a former Buddhist monk who guides the viewers through every step to a more awakened mind.

There are quick tips on things like what to wear while meditating or how to sit when doing so. There are short videos highlighting issues such as fear, loneliness and technology addiction, and how to cope with them. Other than effective meditation techniques, the channel also has short videos on mindfulness and calming music for a peaceful sleep.

On its official website, you will find self-help articles on a variety of topics including anxiety, stress and sleep. Practitioners can also learn the art of deep breathing with Puddicombe’s guidance. While all the content on the YouTube channel is free, membership for the Headspace app is paid.

Tara Brach

Tara Brach
Tara Brach, Insight Meditation Community of Washington.

Tara Brach is a PhD in Clinical Psychology and is known for her therapeutic approach towards wellness. After years of practising meditation and yoga, she founded the Insight Meditation Community of Washington, DC (IMCW) — one of the largest non-residential meditation centres in the US — in 1998.

On her official site, you can choose from four meditation categories: Basic, Heart, Open Awareness, and Special Meditations/Reflections. All meditations are free. Ranging from 10 to 40 minutes, some have guidance features. And of four online courses, two — mindfulness daily and becoming a mindfulness meditation teacher — are also available for free.

If you are interested in learning more about wellness, head to Brach’s YouTube channel. There are videos of her talks on topics and issues of mental health and self-development such as depression, happiness, gratitude and spirituality. Do…



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