This fall, Yoga Matrika is offering a 12-week Meditation Series facilitated by Bhante Pema. This is a very unique opportunity in Pittsburgh to study and practice meditation. By making a 12-week commitment, you will start to see the benefits of regular practice over the course of three-months.
Dr. Josephine Briggs, the Director of the National Institutes of Health, National Center for Alternative and Complementary Medicine, says that, “It is now well established that the meditative state can be associated with changes in electrical function of the brain, and recent imaging studies suggest that there may actually be neuroanatomic changes as well.” In addition, a new study by the Public Library of Science suggests that regular meditation can have a significant impact on stress related illnesses. “The study found that in comparison to a control group of people who had never meditated, a group of regular meditators actually suppressed twice the number of genes that induce stress responses such as high blood pressure and inflammation in the body.Long term effects of the expression of stress-related genes can have very harmful effects on health, including high blood pressure or chronic pain. Those who meditate regularly are thus at a greatly decreased risk for developing these problems.”
According to NCCAM, over 20 million Americans practice meditation for a variety of health benefits. You can find out more about meditation and the types of research that are being conducted now regarding meditation and impact on specific health problems here.
Our course instructor, Bhante Pema, is a Buddhist monk and is currently the resident teacher and abbot of the Pittsburgh Buddhist Center. He is also working on a Ph.D. in Religious Studies at the University of Pittsburgh. While the instructor is a Buddhist monk, the meditation style and techniques that are taught in this course are secular and this is not a religious group and instruction in Buddhism is not provided. Everyone is welcome to learn these techniques to benefit their health and well being.
Ven. S. Pemaratana was ordained as a Buddhist monk in 1986 and received higher ordination in 1997. His monastic training was under the tutelage of the most Ven. Attangane Sasanaratana Maha Thero at Sripathi Pirivena, Diyakalamulla, Kuliyapitiya, Sri Lanka. He holds a bachelor’s degree with first class honors in Buddhist Studies from the University of Peradeniya and a master’s degree in philosophy from the National University of Singapore.
He has lectured at the University of Peradeniya and the Buddhist and Pali College of Singapore. He conducts regular lectures and workshops in Buddhist teachings and meditation. The Transcultural Society for Clinical Meditation in Japan gave him the 2008 Haruki Award for his research paper on Meditation and Cognitive Behavior Therapy. He is currently the resident teacher and acting abbot of the Pittsburgh Buddhist Center.
Posted by Sharon Fennimore Rudyk, Owner and Director of Programs for Yoga Matrika, an intimate yoga studio located in Squirrel Hill, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Discover more about our unique programs that explore the incredible healing power of yoga, breath and meditation on our website.