There are a lot of benefits from meditation and all of them are backed up by science. Using meditation, you train your mind to focus and redirect your thoughts. As a result, you can reduce stress and anxiety and live a healthier, more intentional life. If you are looking for meaning in your life or seek a spiritual awakening, then meditating will set you on that path, as well. To get the most out of meditating, you should make sure you are using the five elements of nature. Believing in any Eastern religion, or changing your current religious beliefs are not necessary. It’s just the original practitioners of meditation understood that nature can help the process. In this article, I will go over the five elements and how you can use them in your meditation routine.
How Nature Helps You To Focus
The main aspect of how nature helps us to focus and tune out distractions is that it awakens many senses. The sense of smell is working with all the scents of a forest so abundant, for example. There is the musky smell of the damp soil as we walk the paths. The pine needles emit a bright fragrance and there are flowers attracting your attention by their scent as they also try to attract insects. Wind rustling the leaves of the trees, or waves gently lapping at the edge of a lake awakens our sense of hearing as there are not any sounds of machines overwhelming us.
Temperature changes have us feeling our surroundings in a way that doesn’t happen in our temperature controlled home and car. The sun warms us and then the passing cloud cools us down. There are so many senses working at the same time that our mind feels sharper and less constrained by thoughts. The elements that you should use in your meditation are space, water, fire, air and earth. Let’s go over each of these elements one by one.
It is thought that water is something we connect with so readily since we are made of 70% water. It is always flowing and can move around obstacles. There are lessons there that we can learn from water. The sound of the water is highly meditative and allows our mind to recalibrate. Stress is reduced and anxiety pushed aside when we hear the gentle sounds of water. Having this element nearby when meditating enhances the experience. If you don’t have the sea or a brook nearby then add some outdoor water features to your garden and make a meditative space there.
Fire provides light and warmth as well as a relaxing sound when it crackles. If you practice your meditation inside in a room, you should incorporate fire with a candle or by a fireplace. If the room is too dark, your meditation will go from focus and clearing the mind to more of a subconscious state similar to sleeping. That should be avoided. If you practice in your garden, add a fire pit to the area and enjoy the sound of the fire and the warmth.
Through the circulation of our breath and the wind, we rely on air more than just about any other element. Focusing on breath is an essential part of meditation. Breathing exercises are a must. By doing so, we focus on our breath and direct it throughout the body. On a scientific level, it helps increase blood flow and brings nutrients and oxygen to all parts of our body leading to better health.
The Earth is what keeps us grounded and centered. When you meditate, you want to let your body sink into the ground. Feel the heaviness of your body and it will be pulled down, either symbolically or literally, down to the Earth. Explore the feeling of heaviness and being unmovable. To enhance the experience, surround yourself with the heaviness of earth by adding lots of rocks to your meditation area if you are in your garden. Or find a rocky spot to practice.
Lastly, the space element is the most ethereal as it is difficult to feel a connection. Use open space to allow your thoughts room to grow and flitter away. Being in an open field is very helpful to use space in your meditation routine.
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