Meditation generally involves discounting wandering thoughts and fantasies, and calming and focusing the mind. Meditation does not necessarily require effort and can be experienced as "just happening". Physical postures include sitting cross-legged, standing, lying down, and walking (sometimes along designated floor patterns). Quietness is often desirable, and some people use repetitive activities such as deep breathing, humming or chanting to help induce a meditative state. Meditation can be done with the eyes closed, or with the eyes open: focusing the eyes on a certain point of an object or image, and keeping the eyes constantly looking at that point.
The purposes for which people meditate vary almost as widely as practices. It may serve simply as a means of relaxation from a busy daily routine, or even as a means of gaining insight into the nature of reality or of communing with one's God. Many have found improved concentration, awareness, self-discipline and equanimity through meditation. Generally, there is religious meditation, where one meditates to commune with or on the Divine, and focus meditation, where one meditates to improve health or mental faculties. Very often there is significant overlap between these two positions in many meditative traditions.
Rabbi Jeffrey Roth, M.S. W., M.A. is SRHA's Psycho-Spiritual Therapy practitioner. Jeff helps clients using modalities such as meditation, meditation therapy, psycho-spiritual therapy, 50-50 work and spiritual direction.
Rabbi Joanna Katz is the Acting Jewish Chaplain at Bedford Hills Correctional Facility. She is a meditation teacher and a spiritual helper.
Joanna and Jeff facilitate weekly and monthly Mindfulness Meditation groups at SRHA. The time is spent in sitting and walking meditation practice, teaching, questions and answers and group discussions. Check the calendar for details.
For more information regarding meditation practice, dates, and for first time attendees please call or e-mail either Jeff or Joanna.
Joannakatz@hvc.rr.com Jroth2@hvc.rr.com 845-384-6507