What is Spiritual Meditation?
In the context of alcohol or substance use addiction recovery, meditation usually refers to mindfulness meditation, a method of clearing the mind in order to experience less stress and think more clearly, an essential step in alcohol or substance use addiction recovery. Spiritual meditation refers to any variation of mindfulness meditation that incorporates religious or spiritual thinking.
Generally, beginners to mindfulness meditation are encouraged to sit still in an upright position with their eyes closed, paying attention to their breathing. In this quiet state, one is more easily able to bring awareness back to one’s breathing when the mind begins to wander.
Some people practice spiritual meditation, incorporating it into the framework of their religion. Some people approach meditation in a more secular way. There is no correct way to practice meditation, however, and you may find that a different method feels more helpful to you.
The Proven Benefits of Meditation
Experts agree that sitting in meditation for 15-30 minutes a day can dramatically shift the way an individual sees the world and experiences stress, improving one’s odds at success in addiction recovery. Those who meditate regularly report feeling less stress and thinking more clearly. If you are in recovery from drug, alcohol or substance use, you can expect to find opportunities to practice meditation with your fellows in recovery.
Mindfulness is such a powerful tool that it can affect the way others, including complete strangers, perceive you. A recent 2019 study found that, when shown photographs of long-term meditators and non-meditators, people consistently judge the photos of meditators as appearing less neurotic, more conscientious, and more mindful than the photos of the non-meditators.
What are the Benefits of Spiritual Meditation?
Researchers have known for a long time that people who have active religious and/or spiritual lives tend to be healthier and more capable of serenity than their peers. This is true regardless of the religion or spiritual practice. Studies show that people with a spiritual practice tend to be more capable of managing pain and maintaining a good mood than those without one.
Studies have also found that incorporating some sort of spiritual practice or thinking into your meditation routine may have greater benefits for relieving pain and stress than secular meditation. Scientists have evidence that spiritual meditation can particularly help manage the kinds of stresses that decrease wellness and increase anxiety. Managing stress and improving overall mood and wellness can be critical to achieving and maintaining lasting sobriety from drug and alcohol use.
Can Spiritual Meditation Help me Stay Sober?
Yes. Meditation improves your serenity and self-awareness and decreases your stress and anxiety, skills that can be indispensable to a program of recovery from alcohol or substance use addiction. Mindfulness mediation is often encouraged in 12-step groups and other recovery programs, and it can be an important tool to help you achieve sobriety and prevent relapse.
If you are engaged in drug or alcohol use and are interested in learning tools for managing stress and cravings, please contact us. We are happy to hear from you.