Metta Meditation: 5 Benefits and Tips for Beginners

Metta Meditation – Insight Meditation: Learn How to Meditate for Loving Kindness and Compassion

Metta Meditation: 5 Benefits and Tips for Beginners

Metta meditation is one of the most popular vipassana techniques. This insight meditation is for bringing peace and tranquility into one’s own heart and sending loving kindness, along with compassion to others.

How to Begin a Metta Meditation

While sitting comfortably with a straight posture, begin to take slow, deep breaths while keeping the eyes closed. Once feeling relaxed, focus the mind on feelings about health, well being, and happiness. Take these feelings and turn them into a positive feeling of loving kindness or friendliness. With an open heart, begin thinking kindly of yourself.

Now, in the mind say, “May I be happy,” while envisioning being happy. Remember, in order to truly love others, one must first love themselves. Continue to bask in this positive, loving environment for as long as desired until ready to end the meditation.

Sending Loving Kindness to Others

Once comfortable with sending loving kindness to yourself, it’s time to start sending it out to others. Metta can be sent to friends, teachers, or relatives, along with neutral people and even enemies. When getting ready to send loving kindness, first envision the group of people it’s being sent to in the mind’s eye, then begin to send them metta.

When choosing neutral people, pick a group of people in which no emotions are attached. In order to build skill in sending metta, it’s best not to send to enemies until skilled at sending to familiar people and neutral people. When sending loving kindness, a couple of ideas of what to mentally say are, “May these people be happy,” or “May these people live with peace and joy.”

 

Metta and Universal Connectedness

One might first wonder why should a person should send loving kindness to their enemies. Try to envision everyone being a part of a universal connectedness or a collective unconscious, as Carl Jung referred to it. In other words, in sending kindness to an enemy, it’s also sending kindness to yourself. The more kindness a person feels, the more compassion they can feel towards others.

The vipassana technique known as metta meditation is a form of insight meditation that allows a person to further open their heart to not only accept loving kindness, but, to send it to others as well. When practiced over time, true love and compassion are achieved which projects positive energy to the collective unconscious that is said to be shared by all people.…

DNA Paternity Testing – RFLPs: Restriction Fragment Analysis of a Genome

What Is a Paternity Test?

Before we were able to analyze DNA, blood tests were used to assess paternity. However, blood testing is limited, in that it can only rule out a possible father, not prove paternal identity.

Today, genetic technology is used, and DNA paternity testing makes it possible to, with a very high degree of certainty, determine the identity of a child’s biological father.

The Genetic Code

Everyone, except identical twins, has a unique set of genetic instructions made of DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid). DNA is a nucleic acid made of smaller molecules called nucleotide monomers, and each nucleotide is made of the same general ingredients:

  • a pentose sugar
  • one or more phosphate groups
  • a cyclic nitrogenous base

The specific nitrogenous base is what makes one nucleotide differ from another, and nucleotides of DNA each contain one of four possible nitrogenous bases:

  • Adenine (A)
  • Cytosine (C)
  • Guanine (G)
  • Thymine (T)

These four bases, particularly the combination in which they exist in along the DNA molecule, form the ‘genetic code’.

Restriction Fragment Analysis

Also called DNA fingerprinting, this type of genetic testing compares segments of DNA termed restriction fragment length polymorphisms (RFLPs). By using special restriction enzymes, the DNA molecule is cut at base sequences, also known as recognition sequences or restriction sites.

There are many different kinds of restriction enzymes. Each type will only cut the DNA when it encounters a specific combination of bases; A, G, T, and C. Different restriction enzymes cut DNA at different places—each has a unique sequence it recognizes. For example, the restriction enzyme named EcoRI cuts DNA when it encounters the sequence GAATTC and will cut only at that sequence, no other.

Gel Electrophoresis

After being cut up, the restriction fragments of each genome (mother, father and baby’s) are separated, according to length, using a technique called gel electrophoresis. Since people who are closely related have similar DNA, the DNA of more closely related individuals will show more similar length fragments of DNA.

Gel electrophoresis enables the lab technician to see which DNA fragments of the mother are shared by the child and, more importantly, if some of the child’s DNA fragments are the same size as fragments found in the supposed father’s DNA sample.…

How to sleep properly?

How to sleep properly?

Stop running around, give some time to your health too! You have every right to give some space to yourself and your mind. Well, if you don’t look after your health, then who will look after your loved ones? To enjoy your holidays with all energy and enthusiasm, you must sleep well and take good rest. Give yourself the gift of sleep!

Sleep Facts: It is said that a person should sleep for 9 hours (approximately), as it is optimal. An average adult person sleeps for 8 hours. Lack of sleep increases the risk of mortality. Researchers have suggested that a person should maintain 8-9 hours of sleep. Sufficient sleep increases alertness, solves memory problems, and reduces risks of accidents. It is clear that sufficient sleep is necessary for better health.

Guide to get a comfortable sleep:

People learn things but they fail to apply in their lives. There are some people who follow everything that is beneficial for their health. You must get a good and comfortable sleep in order to maintain your energy levels high, your spirit at peak. Boost your energy levels!

1) Before Sleeping: Going to hit the bed? Well, now follow some things that would help you for sure. Before going to sleep. Wash your face gently. Look in the mirror and smile. Now time to concentrate on your footsteps. Gently, feel the distance between your body and bed. Go to bed, and lie down.

2) Right Posture: Lie straight, remove all thoughts from your mind. How? Well, it is easy. When you close your eyes, you see ‘blackness’ or ‘designs’, right? Focus on them, think nothing. No negative, no positive. Blank! Make your body light-weighted.

3) Breathing: Concentrate on your breathing pattern. Inhale and exhale at least 5 times. When you inhale, think that you are taking every positive energy available in this world, and while exhaling, think that you are throwing every negative energy that ruled you whole day.

4) Flashback: This helps in sharpening your memory. Think every possible thing you can remember for the particular day. Try to think the moment you got up from sleep and what you did whole day till you came sleep. Try to remember all the good things that happened in your day. And, do not forget to SMILE when you get good thoughts!

5) Music: Not sleepy? Turn on the music. Music plays an important role in life. Some therapists use music as a part of their therapy. It is because it calms one’s nerves in many ways. Music helps people maintain their physical, emotional, mental, social, and spiritual levels. It plays a vital role in sleep too. When you turn on the music, make sure of your environment, your bedroom’s setting, etc. Preferably, before sleeping, listen to soft music or gentle trance. You can also go for ‘Country Classics’. However, it depends on your choice.

Lack of sleep may result in severe headache or migraine, and other health problems. So? Avoid all the negativities, don’t think much about tomorrow’s holiday or vacation. Grab a glass of water, drink, and hit the bed. Goodnight and sweet dreams!…

How to Use a Sleeping Pill Properly

Sleeping pills are prescribed commonly these days. Ambien, Lunesta and a variety of other medications are supposed to help us get the sleep we need. Unfortunately, not everyone who needs these medicines takes them. Even worse, perhaps, is that many folks who take these prescribed insomnia remedies, don’t take them correctly. Learn how to here.

Sleeping pills are prescribed commonly these days. Ambien, Lunesta and a variety of other medications are supposed to help us get the sleep we need. Unfortunately, not everyone who needs these medicines takes them. Even worse, perhaps, is that many folks who take these prescribed insomnia remedies, don’t take them correctly. As a result, they’re not getting the help they so desperately need.

The new batch of pills including the aforementioned Ambien and Lunesta as well as Rozerem and Sonata are relatively safe and not addictive, compared to the older meds such as Halcion. These medications are also supposed to help you get and stay asleep while waking refreshed, not groggy.

That’s obviously good news for those who use the medications.

However, what is the best way to take the medication for your optimal benefit? Remember – sleep medications are not meant as a long-term solution. They are meant as a temporary aid to help you improve your sleep and prevent the serious side effects that a lack of sleep can cause.

Some advice to follow includes:

1) The first time you take the medication, make sure that you take a low dose and are at home.

2) Take the medication as prescribed. Too much is not a good thing.

3) Ask your doctor to prescribe the newer medications to avoid addiction issues.

4) Combine the medication with therapy so that you can work through the things that are keeping you from sleeping in the first place.

5) Do not take the medication every night. Twice a week is good; five times a week is the maximum.

6) Swallow the pill as you getting ready to go to sleep, preferably right before you lay down. This will help you get to sleep and stay there.

Sleeping pills can be a wonderful way to help your body rest and repair itself. You don’t want to over-use them or take the wrong ones.…

How To Get A Good Night's Sleep, Naturally

How To Get A Good Night's Sleep, Naturally

High-quality, uninterrupted sleep is an integral factor in how you feel as you go about your day.  Even so, many (if not most) Americans are not getting the rest they need on a nightly basis.  Those who suffer from insufficient or poor-quality sleep frequently find themselves looking to drugstore shelves for a solution.

Stemulite is one of the latest dietary supplements available that can help the body relax and enter a deep state of sleep with ease.  If you’re having trouble hitting the pillow each night, natural dietary supplements such as Stemulite can promote a good night’s rest.

The Process of Healthy Sleep

Ensuring a good night’s rest is good for both your body and mind; sleep is a restorative process, and helps with muscle and tissue repair overnight.  Stress from the day is eliminated as the body repairs itself and creates healthy cells and muscle fibers to accommodate for any trauma or changes.

Getting quality sleep helps to:

Improve skintone and leave you with a fresh, youthful complexion

Keep you alert and energetic during the day

Boost your metabolism and curb your cravings

Increase the chances of weight loss

Give you the energy and adaptability you need to handle stress

Improve mental and athletic performance

Simply make you feel better

If you are finding yourself unable to achieve the deep, restful sleep you need in order to wake up feeling refreshed, there are several factors that could be causing this, from the firmness of your mattress to what you ate before going to bed.  Sometimes, though, there are no obvious solutions. If you’ve tried everything, it may be time to try an all-natural sleep aid such as Stemulite, which is designed to make deep, rejuvenating sleep easier to achieve.

Helpful Hints for Better Sleep

Studies show that melatonin, a naturally-occurring hormone that helps the body repair itself and encourages REM sleep, can help restore the cells overnight.  If your body is not producing enough melatonin on a regular basis, the result is often poor quality sleep and symptoms of insomnia – lethargy, foggy thinking, chronic fatigue, poor memory and reduced athletic performance.  A few ways to improve the quality of the sleep cycle and increase melatonin production include:

Clearing clutter from your bedroom to encourage relaxation

Sleeping in a quiet room, without too much light

Cutting down on the consumption of caffeine

Using a body pillow to improve your sleep posture

Making sure you are not taking medication that may disrupt sleep

Taking dietary supplements such as Stemulite that increase melatonin production and promote natural relaxation

Though there are many sleeps aids available over-the-counter, it is prudent to be cautious and aware of any side effects that may occur.  One should also avoid becoming dependent on poor-quality supplements, as this can end up negatively affecting sleep.  With that said, though, there is no question that all-natural supplements such as Stemulite can offer invaluable assistance in solving sleep issues, so that you can wake up feeling rested and tackle the day’s activities with renewed energy and vigor.…

Buffalo Mindfulness Community sponsors new group, plans retreat – Buffalo alternative medicine

Buffalo, NY Spiritual Retreat Events | Eventbrite

The Buffalo Mindfulness Community now has a sister group, Buffalo Mindfulness North. The first meeting of the group will take place Thursday, October 28 at Saint Andrew’s Church. St. Andrew’s is located at 3017 Main Street, near Lisbon in University Heights.

The doors will open at 7:00 PM. Meditation will begin at 7:30. Two rounds of sitting and walking meditation will be followed by either an audio Dharma talk or another round of sitting. The group ends at 9:00. Buffalo Mindfulness North replaces the Wednesday evening Daemen College meeting. Daemen will continue to host the Sunday meeting of the Awakening Community at Rosary Hall.

Friday, November 19, will begin a retreat. The Friday evening talk will begin at 7:30 PM, and the Saturday events will begin at 9:30 AM and end at 5:30 PM. The guest is Shinzen, who will speak about “Unity and Diversity within the Buddhist Practice Traditions.”

There is no cost for the program, and a vegetarian lunch will be provided. Donations are welcomed.…

How to Get a Better Night of Sleep

How to Get a Better Night of Sleep

Before I had kids I had some great habits and routines. I ate properly, woke up at 4:30 every morning, exercised hard and often, accomplished so much in my work life that my income soared, and still had plenty of time for fun and relaxation. Somewhere along the road I lost it all.  But I know how to get it back.

The road along which I “lost it” is a little path you might have heard of called PARENTHOOD. All my schedules and routines were immediately crushed by the needs of the little people I adopted who were neither aware of my house rules, nor did they care. I slept, ate, cleaned house, and socialized when they allowed it.  I lost my business. I lost my mind and I gained weight.

It has taken five years to get my children and family healthy, happy, and adjusted. I guess I just expected my healthy habits and fit body to return as well. It didn’t.

Now I knew that what was missing was my good habits, routines and scheduling and I tried to recapture all that but I kept getting sabatoged by exhaustion.  I attributed it to stress, to lack of exercise, to staying up too late, etc. But then I remembered my old sleep strategy!  And my life has changed.

The strategy is based on planning your sleep around your body’s natural sleep cycles. Remember when we learned in school about REM (rapid eye movement) and the different phases of sleep? The body sleeps in 90 minutes cycles which are broken down into different phases. For our purposes here we can explain those cycles into 3 phases as follows.

*65 minutes of normal, non REM sleep.

*20 minutes of REM sleep, the very deepest sleep, when dreams occur.

*5 more minutes of of non REM sleep.

That 90 minute cycle is followed by a brief period of almost consciousness as your body prepares for the next 90 minute cycle.  You are very easily disturbed at this point and easily awakened. If you plan your wake up call for this moment in your sleep “limbo” you will have the most energetic, refreshing, productive day possible.

It is easy to do.You still want to shoot for 8 hours of sleep.  6 is really the bare minimum and 12 is too much. Keeping those parameters in mind, along with what time you must get up in the morning to be on time at work or school or wherever your day takes you, count backwards in 90 minute increments to find your optimum bed time.

For example. I like to get up at 4:30.  Sounds crazy right?  But it gives me 2 hours to workout, tidy up the house and simply enjoy some quiet before the kids get up for school. So from 4:30 I count backward in 90 minute increments… 4:30 to 3:00, (1.5 hours, definitely not enough sleep) 3:00 to 1:30 (3 hours, no way!) 1:30 to 12:00 (5.5 hours is still not enough), 12 to 10:30 (7 hours is pretty good. I can handle that if it was a late night of homework with the kids or I rented a good movie) 10:30 to 9:00. (8.5 hours of sleep! Perfect!).  So my routine is to be asleep by 9 but I know that if I don’t make it until 10:30 I am in good shape too.  By the same token, if I am out very late and don’t get home until the wee hours I would tweek my wake up time to accomodate that 90 minute cycle even if it means 30 minutes less of sleep. Because I know that extra 30 minutes is not going to be as beneficial to me respecting my body’s natural sleep patterns.

I discovered this 90 minute sleep cycle strategy when I was 24 from an amazing and new age-ish co-worker who went on to enrich my life for years with her unconventional wisdom. I used the strategy until I was 35 and went into new mom “just-trying-to-survive” mode. While using the sleep strategy I never had to use an alarm clock, regardless of what time I went to bed.  After years without using the strategy I didn’t even hear my alarm clock and I woke up sick and groggy every day despite how early I went to bed.

I don’t know what made me remember the strategy, but I am so glad I did.  I suppose it was from finally getting my adopted children settled and coming out of a few years of intensity and challenge. The 90 minute sleep rule changed my life once before and I am enjoying watching it transform my life once again.…

Sleeping and insomnia: how to have a great night sleep

Sleeping and insomnia: how to have a great night sleep

Having a good night sleep is important so that you can wake up fresh the next day and be ready for your day. Trouble sleeping is not a great thing for most of us. You’ll have trouble sleeping if you have a medical condition and pain could be keeping you awake. There

some people that will have trouble sleeping from time to time due their particular body response.

You can do several things to help you out in getting a good night sleep. One of those is to exercise or walk around before you go to bed. It works well. When you’re tired you’re most likely to fall asleep better.

The next thing is to avoid drinking coffee, green tea or any drinks that have caffeine in it because it’ll keep you awake. You will want to drink water around bedtime. Coffee will keep you awake for a long time.

The next thing that you can do is to not eat a lot before going to bed. When you eat a lot you can get tire and agitated and feel bad and you will have trouble falling asleep. You’ll get a headache sometimes too.

Next thing that you can do is to keep your room dark and quiet. Keep all noise down in the house. Play soft jazz music to keep neighbor’s noise level down. If you sleep with someone and their snoring or movement is keeping you awake then you should sleep by yourself.…

Boost Your Focus by Using Mindfulness Exercises

Boost Your Focus by Using Mindfulness Exercises

Unfortunately the Internet, the greatest information tool of our time also creates the biggest distraction possible. However, there is an exercise you are able to practice to increase your concentration and make it razor sharp. If your concentration is horrible consider mindfulness exercises.

Unfortunately the Internet, the greatest information tool of our time also creates the biggest distraction possible. With the number of devices all of us have together with the always on attitude it’s become so difficult to concentrate on anything for more than a few minutes. For anybody wanting to be more productive this is a serious problem.

Focus

To make this situation even more difficult, add in a thing called multi tasking. Multi tasking is yet another buzzword, however a lot of people have seen that starting lots of things at once doesn’t mean completing all of them. Now we have multiple things all wanting our attention at once, now our concentration is really shot..

However, there is an exercise you are able to practice to increase your concentration and make it razor sharp. If your concentration is horrible consider mindfulness exercises.

Take away don’t add

When you concentrate on one task at a time you can do a higher quality job and actually complete that task. The important thing here is concentration. Being able to concentrate on a single thing at a time is a skill, that takes practice. Concentrating on one thing at a time is one of key principals of meditation, additionally it is something you can practice with mindfulness exercises.

If you fight to sit still for 2 minutes, you need to develop you concentration. To accomplish this you need to practice some mindfulness exercises.

Be in the moment

The very nature of mindfulness is to entirely focus on one thing at a time, or to be totally “in the moment”. You may have discovered this once or twice when listening to a song, or doing something where you’ve lost track of time. Focusing on one thing may seem simple however it’s far from it.

Try this experiment

Next time you’re at the office, try to work on a document solidly for 10 minutes. Try to focus only on the document and don’t do any of the following things:

  • Answer the phone
  • Check Facebook
  • Send an SMS
  • Reply to the outlook pop up
  • Send or receive any messages from any type of system
  • Respond to a walk up or talk to a colleague

This will be impossibly hard. Why? Simply because there will literally be many distractions. It will take a lot of practice to master this. The power of learning this is incredibly useful in a work environment. If you’re able to focus on one thing at a time you will find your level of productivity explode.At home it’s understandable there will be an enormous amount of distraction. If however you can find only a couple of minutes every day to practice concentrating on one thing you’ll easily recognise the benefits.

Using mindfulness exercises to get the job done

With more experience you’ll find you’ll be able to concentrate on things longer and sharpen your focus into a precision laser able to cut through tasks with ease. This is simply an example of mindfulness exercises. Why not learn more about mindfulness exercises and how they could help you!…

X-Inactivation in Chromosomes: Mosaicism in Females Lessens Instance of X-Linked Diseases

X-Inactivation in Chromosomes: Mosaicism in Females Lessens Instance of X-Linked Diseases

Chromosomes encapsulate DNA and are responsible for every physical aspect and a host of personality traits of every human body. Humans have 23 pairs of chromosomes. Men and women have all the same types of chromosomes, except one vital pair. In women the last pair will be XX. In men the last pair will be XY. Whether or not the last chromosome pair is XX or XY is determined by the male sperm.

Human Genome Project

The quest for the map of human chromosomes was started in 1990. Surprisingly, the project was fully completed in May 2006. The results have already poured mounds of new information about genetics into the biology world.

For instance, one thing determined was that the X chromosome has many more genes than the Y chromosome. Due to less genetic material from their fathers, males are 6% more genetically similar to their mothers. Male twins are also slightly more identical than female twins due to less genetic information, according to Natalie Angiers, in her book Woman: An Intimate Geography.

X and Y Chromosomes

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, it was determined that the Y chromosome contains about 70+ genes. The X chromosome carries about 2,500 genes, and is responsible for about 300 specific diseases, including colorblindness, prostate cancer, hemophilia, baldness, Duchenne muscular dystrophy and many mental retardations, as reported by Jai Dennison at Daily News Central, in his article, “X-Chromosome Studies Unlock Deep Mysteries About Gender Differences.” Women are less likely to suffer from these X-linked genetic diseases due to what is called X-inactivation.

X-inactivation and Mosaicism

When two X chromosomes come together to create a female embryo, X inactivation occurs. During X-inactivation, cells randomly chooses to “shut down” sections of its extra X chromosome to form a “mosaic” of genes.

Consequently, X-linked diseases are more common in men than women, since women have both Mom’s and Dad’s X genes to pull from. Scientists are still discerning just how “random” the X-inactivation process is. Philip Avner and Edith Heard’s article “X-Chromosome Inactivation: Counting, Choice and Initiation” discusses interesting research in this area. Similar to the reason that tortoise-shell cats can only be female, X-inactivation creates a mosaic of X-linked traits in women but not in men, who are subject their single X’s full expression.

Inheritance and the X Chromosome

Because men only have one X chromosome, men may inherit their mother’s genetic diseases related to the X chromosome but will never inherit their father’s X-linked genetic diseases, since men only receive their father’s Y chromosome. While men escape any X-linked diseases from their father, they are vulnerable to and likely to fully develop any of the X-linked diseases given to them on their mother’s X chromosome.

In contrast, women’s double X requires that both parents have a gene an X-linked disease and even then severity of inherited disease will likely vary due to the fact that during female development random sections of the X-chromosome are inactivated. A woman is less likely to develop X-linked diseases, and more likely to develop a light instance if a disease should develop.

In conclusion, nature appears to have a “back up plan” for women through X-inactivation, while unlucky men must suffer the full severity of X-linked diseases.…