Today is a day which only comes around every 4 years! Today, “Leap Day”, exists to correct the scientific calculations of our current western calendar. But, I'm not writing about the scientific reasons for this day. Instead, I imagine great possibilities that this extra day provides us.
I tend to look at this day as a gift given us to be used wisely. I figure that a day which only comes around every 4 years deserves to be treated in a unique and special way. This day is not like any other day, although I fear most people don't recognize the uniqueness of this day. Why is it that a day which happens only once every 4 years becomes overlooked by most of the population? Personally, I don't have an answer to that question. But the answer is not as important if we now come to the realization that we have been given a unique gift in this day.
So, we need to celebrate this day in a special way! This is extra time given to us in our very busy lives. What shall we do with this gift?
As many of us spend much of our time rushing around, we don't seem to have the time for meditation. I often write and speak about the importance of daily meditation, understanding that there are more of us who want to meditate than actually do meditate. Good intentions; I know, I've been there.
One of the rationales I hear from busy people is "I would take time to meditate if I knew it would help me, but it's just a fad, right?" If your definition of a "fad" allows for the practice of meditation lasting thousands of years, than yeah, it's a fad. I believe that our culture sees meditation as a "fad" because it is "new" to our culture, and the practice of meditating has been relegated to the "new age" genre. As such, some don't feel the desire to try something that will "eventually go out of style".
But what if mindfulness meditation were scientifically, and medically, shown to be healing and transformative? A few months ago I shared with you a study from Harvard which demonstrated that meditation generated new grey matter in the brain. Well, we now have the results of a study done at Carnegie Mellon University which "for the first time shows that, unlike a placebo, it [mindfulness meditation] can change the brains of ordinary people and potentially improve their health." This is what the authors of the study wrote:
Please share with us your thoughts on this topic, and if you practice meditation, do you find positive health results?
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