Friday, December 5, 2008

Body Gratitude Meditation

Most of us take our bodies for granted. During the holiday season this is even more true as we have less time for exercise, more activities that add stress, and a banquet of poor eating choices available at every turn. The following meditation will give your body the recognition it deserves and create a sense of calm and empowerment.

Turn your attention inward and breathe.

§ Notice your breath. Your lungs take in oxygen and release carbon dioxide over 15,000 times every day. Thank-you, lungs.

§ Your heart beats about 100,000 times every day of your life. Thank-you, heart for keeping me alive.

§ Life-giving oxygen is carried from the lungs and heart through hundreds of miles of blood vessels to nourish every cell. All without conscious thought. Thank-you.

§ Your bones not only give you structure, but the marrow inside makes all your blood cells. Talk about a multi-tasker. Thank-you, bones.

§ The ligaments, muscles, and connective tissue create your shape and make it possible for you to move. Each part conforms to how you use it. I’m glad for my movement.

§ The skin is the largest organ of the body, about 20 square feet, and is the first line of defense in protecting us from the outside world. Thank-you, skin.

§ The immune cells further this protection and fight disease and cancer on a daily basis. The colds we get are few compared to the number that have been detected and eliminated already. I appreciate my immune system.

§ Lymph is the highway for the immune system. This silent transportation network reduces inflammation and keeps us healthy. I am grateful.

§ Seven glands secrete the hormones that create a finely tuned symphony of chemical messages and function. You are beyond my comprehension, but I appreciate you nonetheless, endocrine system.

§ The organs (in addition to the skin): liver, stomach, intestines, pancreas, kidneys, bladder and more work in ways I can’t fathom, but also can’t live without.

§ The brain and billion nerves in the body tie function together with a network that coordinates the other systems.

Express gratitude for each part. Every second of every day, they work in concert with precision and artistry while we’re busy navigating traffic, surfing the internet, chomping down fast food, or daydreaming. For a few minutes I will recognize the miracles needed to keep me alive.

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