RESCU caught up with Queensland’s Vedic Meditation Teacher Steph Watson to find out what the Vedic meditation technique is, and why a growing number of people are turning to this completely effortless yet profoundly powerful practice, for stress relief, endless health benefits and greater happiness, confidence and creativity.
RESCU: What is Vedic meditation technique and how does it differ from other practices?
Steph: Vedic meditation is a unique and very simple practice. It’s a transcending technique, so you use a personal mantra (sacred sound), to allow the mind to transcend, or ‘go beyond’. In Vedic meditation the mind naturally settles down and moves beyond the layers of thinking into our least excited state. This is Being, basically you without your thoughts, a state of pure awareness. At the same time our body experiences a profound state of rest and shifts out of the fight or flight state while dissolving stress naturally.
Vedic meditation is the easiest technique to experience a deep meditative state in, and the most effective in terms of health benefits. Other styles of meditation often involve concentration, focus or control of the mind. We already do that so much in daily life though, we don’t need to mediate in that way. We need to create more balance. Most of us are experiencing some sort of normalised state of stress, to some degree, most of the time, and we’re not even realising it. This technique is about creating the perfect conditions for the mind to settle, the body to rest and let go of stress and our innate healing capability to come back online. You feel the benefits of this deep rest after your very first session – you don’t have to practise for an hour or two a day, for months on end to start to get results – and the benefits are then accumulative, as you make meditation a daily practice.
Vedic meditation is so successful because people can fit it into their routine no matter where they are in the world, or what they’re doing and experience immediate results. You can practice the technique almost anywhere, anytime, and the benefits are vast.
RESCU: Where does Vedic meditation come from?
Steph: Vedic meditation is said to be the oldest meditation practice on Earth. The technique and its teachings are drawn from the Veda, the 5,000+-year-old body of wisdom that is also the source of yoga and Ayurvedic medicine.
RESCU: Why is Vedic meditation beneficial and important?
Steph: Vedic meditation allows you to cleanse the nervous system in a really gentle and effortless way. We are so pushed emotionally and mentally these days. Our nervous systems are so overwhelmed because the body stores so much information on a cellular level – our past memories, conditioning and old stresses – and there is so much information we’re absorbing each day, and you can’t just hit pause on life! If we don’t take time out to rinse our nervous system, stress builds up in the body and that’s when we start reacting to life in really predictable, redundant and unsustainable ways. It’s like when your phone fills up because you have too many photos, and you have to delete the old files to create more space so it will work properly again. As the nervous system releases stored stresses through this technique it creates more space, allowing you greater access to your pure potential – your innate capabilities that have always been there, it’s the stress in our system that clouds our ability to access it all.
Everyone learns to meditate for different reasons. It might be to gain greater creativity, enliven your mental potential, think more clearly, have more energy, become more relaxed, happier, calm and confident, more productive, less stressed, to eliminate anxiety, find relief from depression, sleep better, become more present, develop spirituality and experience greater connection with others, or to support and improve your overall health and wellbeing. Whatever the reason, people are ready to upgrade their lives when they come into my meditation space, to transition out of simply ‘existing’ and into ‘living’ and really thriving in life. The incredible thing about Vedic meditation is that you can acquire all of the benefits through practicing this technique daily.
RESCU: How do you practice Vedic meditation? Is it easy?
Steph: Vedic meditation is extremely easy, effortless in fact — it’s a very simple and natural form of meditation that absolutely anyone can learn. It has been practiced for 20 minutes morning and evening, sitting comfortably with the eyes closed. And, it’s an internal practice that you can do almost anywhere, anytime. A twice-daily practice will deliver to you an experience of life far beyond what you can imagine, in the best way possible. When you come to learn you’re really gifting yourself a lifelong skill that’s going to shift and enhance every aspect of your life.
RESCU: How do you learn Vedic meditation?
Steph: Vedic meditation is always taught face-to-face by a qualified teacher, over four consecutive 60-90minute sessions, so I personally teach the Vedic meditation course, either in a private or small group setting. During the first session, you’ll receive your own personal mantra and learn how to effortlessly enter the meditative state.
Over the following three sessions we then refine your practice while exploring in-depth knowledge on the mind-body connection, the impact of stress, the mechanics and benefits of the practice and how to; expand your own self-awareness; access greater creativity and intuition, and easily integrate your meditation into daily life. By the completion of the course, you have practical experience combined with a deep theoretical understanding that allows you to practice as a confident, self-sufficient daily meditator. Once you learn this powerful technique you have it for life! You also gain a lifetime membership to the worldwide Vedic meditation community.
Steph’s 5 simple steps for practicing Vedic meditation:
- Sit comfortably, and move if you need to move – we don’t want the body to be a distraction in anyway.
- Gently close down the eyes and introduce your mantra into your awareness – this will be taught to you by a qualified Vedic Meditation Teacher.
- Allow thoughts or outside noises to be there – they are 100% welcome in this practice.
- Effortlessly keep coming back to your mantra, and continue the process for 20 minutes.
- Stay with the eyes closed for a couple of minutes when you’re finished, then open the eyes and enjoy the benefits that flow into your daily life.
Steph Watson runs Vedic meditation courses in south-east Queensland; on the Gold Coast, in Brisbane and on the Sunshine Coast. For more information visit stephwatson.com.au or follow Steph on Instagram
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