Cut crease eyeshadow tutorial!

Cut Crease Eyeshadow Tutorial

Let our professional makeup artist Ocean Thakur show us how easy it is to so a Cut Crease Eyeshadow Makeup with glitter and also how you can easily remove the makeup using just Jojoba oil.

Makeup Products Used For This Tutorial

– Mac Studio Fix Concealer in Shade NC20
– Inglot Gel Liner in No.77
– Touch inSOL Shimmer Stick in Gold
– Brown Pencil Liner
– Morphe Jaclyn Hill Palette

Lip Colour – Bumble by Colourpop

Watch the video tutorial below. Please do subscribe to our youtube channel as we keep uploading awesome videos!

Mother Nature wants you to be beautiful; Argan oil is the astonishing proof

Making Argan Oil

Most of the beauty products we come across in daily life are the outcomes of rigorous process governed and evolved through modern techniques involving a mixture of various ingredients. Sometimes, the range of products which has arisen due to acute competition among manufacturers lowers our faith on the manmade cosmetics. Oftentimes, many of us have also stumbled upon a thought of going against the nature by using beauty products to improve upon our natural looks.

But what if I say to you that Mother Nature herself wants you to look beautiful and has produced phenomenal natural products which works directly on improving your overall beauty and charisma. One such proof is the existence of Argan Oil, which has been in usage in Morocco from the past three thousand years. If you are a beauty enthusiast, then you might have heard of it. But if you haven’t, then it’s time to come out of your closet and give it a try.

There is no nonsense in the prevalent aphorism in the Moroccan community that it is called liquid gold, some kind of beauty elixir. The fact that it is used as a pure product enhances our trust that nature is no gamer when our health is concerned and has been hiding herbs in plain sight from millennia, it is only that we have lost much of ancient rich knowledge concerning medicinal herbs. Although, In the absence of much historical knowledge I appreciate the usage of manmade cosmetics which has come into being after a thorough research and working proof and I too use many such products.

But if you come upon a natural gift having trusted upon by people from millennia, then you should not ignore its potential if you are concerned being about your beauty and wellbeing. Having lots of therapeutic and skin quality enhancing properties in a single herb, it is rightful to say that this oil is one of the treasure Mother Nature made for us. In order to avoid any risk of taking it as exaggeration, Here is all you need to know about the magical beautifying properties of Moroccan Argan Oil.

Origin and Early Acclamation

The Argan tree has been believed to have originated in a village called Argana, which lies in the north east of the Moroccan city of Agadir. The Argan tree grows in abundance in the south-western region of Morocco, where these trees laden with fleshy fruits are the favourite target of native goats. The goats eat the fruit, leaving behind a hard nut from which kernels are extracted which are the source of the beauty serum Argan Oil.

Moroccan people have been using Argan oil as a skin moisturizer and hair conditioner since ancient times. Phoenicians in as early as 1550 B.C. have recorded the use of Argan Oil by locals for healing and beautifying their bodies. In 1510 AD, African explorer named Leo Africanus came across Argan Oil while traveling across Morocco. From there, the oil entered Europe where only the rich and privileged class had access to the rare, expensive and exotic oil.

Today, even after 3,500 years, Berber women of Southern Morocco are glorious for their exotic beauty. And their secret is applying this precious golden hued oil regularly to their faces, hair, nails and body.

Manufacturing Process

The nutcrackers: From olden times, Berber community’s women have been pelting stones together to crack the Argan nut’s outer shell which is considered to be 16 times harder than a hazelnut.

The process begins by extracting Argan nut from Argan tree and mostly it is done by a traditional method with the help of goats. Goats are let free to climb over the tree on which goats would scamper up branches to eat the Argan fruit and expelling the nuts. After the nuts are retrieved, shell-cracking began with a technique which is mastered over time and passed down to subsequent generations. In order to produce oil, laborious process of grinding and pressing the nuts is required. 1 liter of oil is extracted from only 4 kilograms of the kernel which is found in approximately 120 kilograms of fruit.

As argan oil got famous internationally, methods of production has changed. Big manufacturers are preferring to directly pick the fruit from the tree and subsequent process of grinding and pressing is done through the machines.

Argan oil is one of the rarest and expensive oils in the world. The price is high because of difficult and time consuming manufacturing process. In the market, Argan Oil is prone to be faked real and dilution which is sold at a cheaper rate to lure consumers. So, one should take caution and check its authenticity before purchasing.

Benefits of Argan Oil to give you all the reasons to use it

Argan oil is very rich with lots of vitamin A, vitamin E, antioxidants, omega-6 fatty acids and linoleic acid which gives it natural therapeutic properties. It is no less than a panacea for hair and skin.

1) Nurture’s Good Skin: It is a great moisturiser for skin. It helps to keep the oil production in check by balancing your sebum levels. It can hydrate even the driest of skins and has skin softening properties.

It’s also suitable on people with sensitive skin conditions like psoriasis, eczema and rosacea.
The presence of trocopherol contained in vitamin E boosts cell production inducing healthy skin and hair. This oil is a much sought natural cure for various skin disorders, such as chicken pox and eczema.

2) Benefits Of Argan Moroccan Oil For Hair:

No more split ends: Split ends are an annoyance for people with long hair. Applying argan oil regularly on your hair cuts down the occurrences of split ends to a great extent. It penetrates into each shaft of hair, strengthening it from within. It ensures that the hair strands is healthier and grows longer and thicker. You can use it as hair massage. If you want greater benefits, then you can use shampoo and conditioner having argan oil as additive.

Controls frizzy Hair: This oil provides the perfect solution for untameable frizzy hair. It moisturises frizzy hair in a non-greasy way and smoothers it down. Rub a few drops to your palm and smooth out the frizz.
– Imparts shine to your tresses: Hair subjected to lots of tangles and stretching oftentimes lose its original shine softness. Argan oil helps getting it back. You can do so by doing a weekly treatment for 60 minutes massage and then washing off. You would certainly be impressed.

Hair Damage Repair: If you have been using chemical products on your hair, then it is sure to blow away the hair health depleting its strength. Argan oil can actually help in strengthening the hair back from the follicle till the way to the tip. The damages get repaired, leaving hair strong and hydrated once again, rejuvenating its lost smoothness and elasticity.

Nature’s Anti-Dandruff Remedy: Dandruff can be thwarted off by massaging this oil into scalp which often gets the dandruff because of dryness. Use hot water and towel massage to ensure that the scalp gets hydrated. Repeat multiple times a week for dandruff-free hair.

Natural hair style setter: You should prefer the non-greasy and lightweight Moroccan argan oil in place of chemical styling agents. Applying few drops of argon oil before styling the hair through blow dryer or straightening ensures that hair is safe from the heat damages. It also establishes smooth finishing that lasts longer.

Deep Hair Conditioner: Apply few drops of argan oil and leave it for some period for deep conditioning. You can wash the excess oil with a mild shampoo for soft, radiant tresses.

Overnight hair therapy: Before going to sleep, massage generous amount of argan oil into your hair and scalp. Wrap up your hair and leave it for the night while you sleep. In the morning, wash your hair and you’ll have luminous, soft locks.

3) Prevents Premature Ageing: Due to alarming rise in pollution, sun’s rays cause harsher effect on our skin cells. As a result, the skin is flooded with free radicals. These free radicals degrade the moisture levels, leaving the skin to dry. This may set the stage for premature ageing. Vitamin E present in Moroccan oil diminish free radical damages and the saponins present in it enhance the moisture level, ensuring that the skin doesn’t lose its elasticity, firmness and radiance.

4) Keeps your lips beautiful: Keeping your lips smooth and luscious is now easy. Use a mixture of 3-4 tsps of argan oil with brown sugar and vanilla to exfoliate the dead skin cells off the lips revealing the tempting shine.

5) Protection from Acne: Argan oil is a perfect anti-inflammatory agent because of richness of vitamin E and various anti-oxidants. It effectively cures acne and razor bumps, eventually leaving no scars behind.

6) Scars Healing ability: It has innate scars healing properties. Massaging a little Moroccan oil regularly on the affected areas can bring about a lot of difference. The triterpenoids present in it are known to heal the tissue scars, also protecting the skin from developing infections.

7) Helps Maintaining good Fingernails: Shiny and pinky nails are indicators of good health. Argan oil helps to keep your nails lustrous and radiant. Using just as little as 1 tsp of oil on
nails regularly keeps their health in check. It’s antibacterial and anti-inflammatory qualities also help in fighting off nail and skin infections. Argan oil’s softening properties are ideal for brittle nails and also for cracked, hard skin on feet.

8) Use as shaving Cream: This oil is a natural shaving cream. Just use a few drops of argan oil on skin in order to clean hair smoothly and hassle-free. It can also be used as an aftershave keeping your skin hydrated and soft.

9) Face moisturizer: If you own argan oil, you are recommended to massage a few drops of pure argan oil directly onto your face and neck. This oil is not greasy and is considered dry, thus skin quickly absorbs it giving your face ravishing and freshness. You can also use it as a serum, just apply your night cream after the oil absorbs into the skin.

10) Body and bath oil: You can add some oil to your daily bath for long term benefits and by adding it to body lotion.

11) Environmental Damage Protection: Argan oil is an effective sunscreen lotion as it helps protecting the skin from harmful UV radiations because of high content of anti-oxidants.

12) Pregnancy: Stretch marks, sagging and puckered skin is a notable issue for pregnant women. Rubbing argan oil into breasts, stomach and thighs will reduce the possibility of getting unwanted stretch marks during pregnancy. It works by increasing elasticity of skin because of high content of Vitamin E. It’s safe to use on a baby and to help reduce stretch marks on a pregnant belly too.

13) Health Benefits of edible Moroccan Argan Oil:

Control Cholesterol Level: Argan oil is rich in plant sterols like schottenol and spinasterol, which are non-existent in other vegetable oil. These plant sterols inhibit the absorption of cholesterol by the intestine, thus reducing cholesterol and inflammation. It also enhances the body’s immunity. They also have phytosterols which are unsaturated fatty acids, and helps increase the level of LDL (good cholesterol) in the body.

Healthy Digestion: If you often suffer from indigestion, try using this oil. It promotes the concentration of enzyme pepsin in the gastric juice facilitating healthy digestion. It contains flavonoids, an anti-oxidant which reduces inflammation both internally and externally.

Alas! All This, In One Bottle. Moroccan Argan oil is undoubtedly rich treasure trove of various anti-microbial elements, antioxidants, and powerful nutrients. It is indeed a valuable gift of Mother Nature. Huge benefits obviously imply the reason behind it as one of the most sought after expensive oil because of its rare availability. Make sure you do not waste it if you have one in hand.

How To Choose The Right Argan Oil?

1) Check for Ingredients: Inclusion of additives could negatively affect Argan oil benefits. So, you must ensure that oil you purchased has zero additives and inclusions, even the preservatives.

2) Packaging: of Oil Bottle: It should be poured in dark glass bottles in its pure form, as exposure to light can hamper its inherent goodness. Also make sure that it should not be packed in plastic as it interacts negatively with plastic. As an added comfort, you can also look for the bottles that come with pipette droppers making it convenient to use.

3) Don’t compromise at The Cost: Manufacturing pure Argan oil is a difficult, labor intensive work, which means it does come at a high price. Beware of the advertisements where this oil is priced at a temptingly lower price. You might become the victim of adulteration and fraudulence.

4) The Aroma: This oil gives away a distinct nutty scent, which vanishes fast while coming into contact with hair or skin. You also need not buy odour-free oil as it may deprive you of various nutrients present. Do not purchase any artificially-fragranced oils.

5) The Texture: Although it is slightly thick but it is non-greasy and smooth. It is light in weight and gets easily absorbed by the skin.

6) Check if Oil is Cold Pressed: Cold pressed Argan oils should be the first preference while making a purchase because its nutritional value gets depleted at high temperatures.

7) Colour: Moroccan oil which is used for cosmetic purposes possesses a pale golden hue, while the one used for culinary purposes is deep golden in colour.

8) The Credentials: Check that the oil has necessary certifications and comes with a 100% pure or preferably ‘Made in Morocco’ tag.

9) Based on your Usage: Argan oil comes in two variants – cosmetic and culinary. The cosmetic one is processed from raw nuts to retain the benefits. While culinary one is made using roasted nuts. Do not interchange the type while buying or using.

How To Store Moroccan Argan Oil?

– To use it for a longer time, proper storage should be carefully done.
– Store in a dark, cool place, completely away from heat and light.
– Use a glass bottle or container for storing the oil as metal or plastic containers have the danger of negatively interact with the oil.

What is Biotin & how it can help?

History of Biotin

Biotin IndiaThe word Biotin is derived from the Greek word “biotos” meaning life or sustenance. This Vitamin is found in egg yolks, liver and yeast, it was only in 1901 it was discovered that yeast requires a special growth factor which was named “Bios”. The discovery of Biotin occurred during an investigation of ‘egg white injury’ , which is a vitamin deficiency disease that is induced by feeding lab test rats an excess of raw egg white. During the tests, the lab test animals developed dermatitis, lost hair and also suffered from skin lesions and they were cured by heat stable factors found in yeast and liver.

In 1924 it was discovered that three factors were essential for the growth of microorganisms, they were BiosII, Vitamin H and Coenzyme R, they were same, a water soluble, sulfur containing vitamin Biotin, which was actually called Protective Factor X, Factor S, Factor W, or Vitamin Bw. Only in 1927 did they realise that mammals require water soluble vitamin Biotin. German scientists in 1931 Paul Gyorgy discovered Biotin in the liver and called it Vitamin H, as H represents the words “Haut und Haar” German words for “Skin and Hair”. 1932 saw the isolation of the vitamin from egg yolk, and in 1936 they christened the isolated substance as Biotin and it was recognized for the first time that egg white injury can be healed with Biotin supplements

The Benefits of Biotin, who needs it and why?

Also, known as Vitamin H, B7 and Biotin it’s one of the B complex vitamins that enables the body to convert food into energy and keeps your, hair, skin, eyes, liver and nervous system healthy while also being an imperative nutrient during pregnancy as it aides in proper embryonic growth as pregnant women are at a higher risk of Biotin deficiency. The deficiency of this vitamins usually occurs from an unbalanced diet where the vitamins in absent. Eating raw egg whites daily can also cause the Biotin deficiency, as explained we need the vitamin in a water-soluble form. The symptoms of lacking this vital vitamin are as listed below.

Deficiency Symptoms

1. Hair Loss (Alopecia)
2. Dermatitis
3. Conjunctivitis (pink eye)
4. Neurological disorders, Depression, lethargy, hallucination, numbness and tingling of the extremities (only in adults)
5. Dry skin
6. Inflammation of the tongue
7. Nausea
8. Vomiting
9. Loss of appetite
10. Lack of voluntary muscle coordination

Being precise with your prescription

Although one can get their daily dose of Biotin from egg yolks, soybeans, whole grains, cauliflower, nuts such as almonds, pecans and walnuts, mushrooms and organ meats such as liver and kidneys, for many to maintain this diet can seem to be rather tricky to follow, especially if you have a busy schedule and don’t have much time to prepare your daily meals. The required dosage a person need is anywhere from 30 to 200 micrograms, so choosing supplement is definitely the way to go, as its practical and one can never forget to leave home without them. So, though you may be aware of different doses that are taken around the world how do you know what is best for you?

The recommended daily dose as per your age

• Birth to 12 months: 7 mcg
• 1 to 3 years: 8 mcg
• 4 to 8 years: 12 mcg
• 9 to 13 years: 20 mcg
• 14 to 18 years: 25 mcg
• Over 18: 30 mcg
• During pregnancy: 30 mcg
• Breastfeeding Women: 35 mcg

An average preparation of Biotin tablets are available from 10mcg (micrograms), 50mcg, 100mcg and 5000mcg. Although if you are above 18 there is not RDA (recommended dietary allowance) for Biotin. 5000mcg, may seem like an extremely high dose, but it would only benefit you tremendously, for as it travels through your bloodstream your body has the ability to eliminate any excess Biotin if there is any, your body never builds up a toxic reserve for this vitamin, which means you can never overdose on Biotin itself.

However, as a rule always inform your Doctor before taking and supplements especially if you pregnant, breastfeeding, on Dialysis, taking medication for seizures or if you are on a course on Anti-biotics. Biotin is a safe Vitamin and would almost never cause a side effect directly to you, but it’s is recommended to inform your doctor if you are suffering from serious diseases or undergoing an alternative treatment to avoid any reactions to other medications you might be on. One doesn’t need to ever worry about an over dose of Biotin as it’s proven to be very safe, allergic reactions only is some rare cases may occur.

Biotin, A plethora of healing qualities!

The complete range of Vitamin B is imperative for your body to help convert calories from the micronutrients, carbohydrates, protein and fat into much needed energy your body uses. Biotin plays an important role in the metabolism of carbohydrates, fat and amino acids that are the known as the building blocks of proteins. Which means, they are extremely important for strengthening your hair and nails. According to the University of Maryland, the bacteria in your small intestine can produce a slight amount of Biotin as compared to other researchers that state the body doesn’t produce any. It is still highly recommended that a person eats a healthy balanced diet consisting of Biotin rich foods or supplements to ensure a healthy body, a positive state of mind and beautifully strong hair and nails.

DNA’s new Pal!

The benefits of Biotin are truly spectacular! As it rejuvenates your hair, nails and skin it also assists in one of the most important bodily function, which is to regulate the formation of DNA. As this miraculous Vitamin achieves in ensuring that each genetic cell works properly and is replicated correctly, it is an imperative process for body of a pregnant women, especially for cell development, when their cells are dividing itself during pregnancy.

The Brain Protector!

The complexity of how this Vitamin works is truly amazing, it literally protects your brain! Biotin ensures your nervous system is in top working order as it assists the neurotransmitter activities and helps with nerve signals, by this it helps improve your memory and guards you from cognitive issues and neurodegenerative disorders while also preventing dementia and Alzheimer’s diseases. So, it’s no surprise that Biotin revives you mind giving you a better concertation level, keeps depression and anxiety at bay leaving you with a very positive outlook towards life just when you need that something extra to keep you sharp and alert.

A life saver for Diabetics!

Diabetics can really gain enormously with Biotin as well, as it stabilises blood sugar levels. Studies have proven that people suffering with both Diabetes Type 1 and Type 2 have responded to Biotin very well, as the vitamin has the ability to stimulate the secretion of insulin and help lower the blood glucose levels in them both. While Diabetics also suffer from nerve damage due to enzyme build up and low levels of this vitamin in the body leads to an alarming level of build-up, Biotin supplement encourages enzyme activity to a healthier level which prevents Diabetics from additional nerve damage.

Boosts Thyroid Regulation

Our body relies on key glands to normalize functions to keep us feeling our best, Biotin works wonders in maintaining proper thyroid activity and regulating sleep, hunger, energy. When your body is unable to control these basic functions, you will experience weight gain, insomnia, perpetual fatigue therefore Biotin is imperative in assisting with Thyroid regulation.

A Happy Heart!

High levels of Low-density lipoprotein LDL also know as the bad cholesterol and can lead to a heart disease, if healthy levels of LDL is not maintained one has a very high chance of a stroke or a heart attack. Research proves that Biotin can help lower LDL levels while increasing levels of High-density lipoprotein HDL better known as the good cholesterol. As B complex vitamins help in reducing inflammation and plaque build up in the arteries, Biotin lowers the risk of heart disease, heart attacks and strokes.

Kind on the Curves!

Weight watchers should be especially be happy to know that as Biotin helps in boosting the metabolism is also works brilliantly with ones battle against excess weight , as it increases your metabolism is accelerates weight loss . Remember Biotin is not a diet pill, so while you take your supplements always maintain a healthy diet and follow a good exercise routine and always drink loads and loads of water.

Whenever you decide to take supplements, no matter what they are always keep in mind they are they to give you little nudge in the right direction, when you yourself are not able to take care of yourself. They are there to rejuvenate, revive and heal you. Learning how best to make them work for you is all in finding the right balance in all that you do. Eat healthy, rest well, learn to make time for yourself to unwind and stay away from all that corrupts your body and mind.

A good healthy body is absolutely achievable as so is inner peace that makes it all happen. As the Great Buddha once said “To enjoy good health, to bring true happiness to one’s family, to bring peace to all, one must first discipline and control one’s own mind. If a man can control his mind he can find the way to Enlightenment, and all wisdom and virtue will naturally come to him”

Happy Healing Ya’ll!!!

8 Miraculous superfoods for hair growth

Superfoods for hair growth

We often hear that a balanced diet helps in maintaining a healthy body which replenishes our hair, skin and nails to a much healthier state. But what if you aren’t really aware of the miraculous foods that are out there that work brilliantly for your hair. Here’s to update you with natures natural produce that you might never have known that work like a charm in fortifying your hair.

Listed below are 8 superfoods for hair growth!

1. Strawberries: The anti-oxidant properties found in strawberries help hair regain their lost moisture and protect cell membranes. High in Vitamin C nourishes the hair and helps in getting rid of excess oil build up on the scalp, it also contains magnesium, omega 3 fatty acids and copper that makes it very beneficial for healthy hair. Ellagic acid found in strawberries help tremendously in protecting your hair from delaying androgenetic alopecia (male pattern hair loss and Female pattern hair loss), hair falling. This beautiful berry is high in Vitamin B6 and B6 which works like a miracle to prevent hair loss, the phytochemicals in it works as an anti-fungal treating dandruff.

2. Avocados: Contains high levels of fatty acids that also naturally occur in your skin cells, applying avocado on your hair and scalp stimulates production of elastin (a protein consisting od elastic tissue found in the dermis or the skin) and Collagen (main structural protein found in skin and tissues) which are the two important components imperative for hair growth.

3. Bitter Gourd: A.K.A Karela a fruit, is a high source of iron, magnesium, potassium, Vitamin C and more levels of Calcium and Beta Carotene than most fruits and vegetables. The Anti-oxidants are so powerful that they naturally prevent skin from aging, wrinkles, acne, eczema and psoriasis. Embodied with Vitamins A and C, Biotin and Zinc it ensures a healthy growth for your hair while it combats issues such as rough hair, split ends and dandruff.

4. Sweet Potato: Abundantly blessed with Beta-carotene and micronutrients like, Vitamins B5, B6 and manganese. Beta carotene turns into Vitamin A once in the body and is essential for cell growth, especially your hair, a deficiency of this vitamin does cause dandruff, dry, dull hair and skin. Also, being an antioxidant also laden with Vitamin C, iron and phosphorus sweet potatoes work remarkably in boosting the immune system.

5. Amla: Packed in Vitamins C, Iron and Anti-oxidants, Amla is natures gift to us for hair and had been used for centuries. It not only promotes hair growth, but envelopes the hair with a lustrous black shine, works brilliantly for treating excessive hair loss, greying and thinning.

6. Yellow Bell Pepper: Containing a whopping 341 mg of Vitamin C as compared to other fruits which only have 63mg of Vitamin C, Yellow Bell Peppers have a super positive effect on strengthening your hair shaft and cleaning hair follicles and due to its rich source of Vitamins C it helps preventing hair breakage.

7. Curry leaves: This unassuming leaf is bountifully blessed with Vitamins C, A, B and E. Also having high levels of carbohydrates, fibre, calcium, phosphorus and Iron which makes this humble herb fight infections and invigorates your hair and skins vitality. Known to treat, damaged hair, hair fall, thinning, premature grey, repairs damaged roots, strengthen hair shafts and rejuvenates hair follicles it also has a high source of iron and folic acid which combats anaemia and works wonders for treating acne and even weight loss. This is an excellent antidote for hair loss due to its high levels of keratin which is considered an ideal elixir for hair growth.

8. Flax Seeds: Extremely rich in Omega-3 fatty acids and Vitamin E which are the key ingredient for nourishing the follicles and hair shafts. Using Flax seed gel, oil or even eating raw flax seeds, prevents acute hair loss, scalp eczema and dandruff effectively. Other nuts rich in Omega-3 are walnuts that are also high in Vitamin B and manganese.

The superfoods listed here are effective when used appropriately. For fruits eat them raw and try to find the freshest produce, for vegetables remember never to overcook them as this ensures all the vitamins and minerals remain intact. For seeds and nuts, if suggested to be eaten avoid roasting them, for application to the hair one must never dilute them too much or it would lose its strength.

If you can think of other superfoods for hair growth then do let us know in the comment section below.

Happy Healing Ya’ll!!!

Watch our video in Hindi

Swoon back to Serenity Part Two: How mysticism can save your life!

Meditation for Stress

We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.” Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (French Philosopher)

The art of meditation through mind control

We all have some point heard that the art of meditation does help put one’s mind at ease, but do you really know that with the right form that suits you best, it can energise you, rejuvenate and open your mind to perceive life and reality quite differently than you have been accustomed to.

When I ask an average person, what is meditation? I get the most inconclusive of replies one of the most common one being, “it’s about sitting quietly and focusing on an object or closing your eyes and chanting Om to make you feel relaxed”. However obvious and logically that might sound, let me tell it’s a million light years away from the truth and the power behind meditation., when done correctly while first understanding the real intention behind it, it can change your life forever.s

What is the right way to meditate? With so many forms out there, which one is the right one for me? And finally, what will I achieve through it? These vital and frequently asked questions is what I am about to address and to which for once I hope you all would see and experience the passion and commitment I have for making this daily practice a part of my life. Once you grasp the true essence and significance to why you are doing it, it becomes extremely easy to break free from the cocoon of stress that constantly envelopes you.

The History of Meditation

In 1500 BCE, Vedantism which is the sixth orthodox school of Hindu philosophy meaning end of Vedas, reflect ideas from speculations and philosophies contained in the Upanishads (ancient Sanskrit texts that contain philosophical concepts and ideas of Hinduism that are also found in Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism). Meditative practices date back to the Vedas of ancient India and from 6th to 5th BCE newer forms of meditation developed in Taoist China and Buddhist India. The earliest records of meditation in Buddhism in India dates back to the sutra of Pali Canon (a collection of scriptures in the Theravadan Buddhist tradition) in 1st century BCE. Vimalakirti Sutra (the Mahayana sutra) dating back to 100CE mentions forms on Zen in many passages on meditation and enlightened Wisdom. Zen emphasises rigorous self-control, meditation practice and insight into Buddha Nature (meaning the luminous mind of the Buddhas are naturally present in every sentient being)

The practice of meditation reached out the far west, in 20 BCE by Jewish philosopher Philo of Alexandria in Egypt he wrote forms of “Spiritual Exercise that involved concentration. Plotinus, famous Greek philosopher in 3rd century had developed meditative techniques which didn’t attract a positive response among Christian meditators. Saint Augustine a north African Christian theologian and philosopher experimented with Plotinus’s techniques and was unsuccessful in achieving inner peace or ecstasy.

When Buddhism entered Han China via the silk road between 1st and 2nd century CE, it was known as the Silk Road Transmission of Buddhism, wherein meditation was introduced to prominent oriental countries. During the 5th or 6th century Buddhist Monk Bodhidharma, was considered as the first transmitter of the concept of Zen to China. According to a Chinese legend it is believes that he also began the physical training of monks of the Shaolin Monastery that led to the Birth of Shaolin Kung-fu.

Not being only apparent in Buddhist and Hindu traditions, evidence reveals that meditation practices were also adapted in Judaism from prior traditional view. The Torah the book of the Jewish faith, the patriarch Issac is mentions attention “lasuach” term used to describe a meditative practice. The Hebrew Bible Tanakh clearly indicated that Judaism always professed about a meditative tradition within their faith and practices.
Meditation since time itself has proved as being a very powerful and significant form of spiritual practice in many faiths and beliefs.

The 19th century brought rise to this practice and it spread from Asia towards westerns world, where more and more are embracing this routine into their daily lives. The benefits of Meditation are endless, one acquires a sense of self awareness that enables them to become more mindful about their thoughts and actions. It relieves stress, calms the nerves, allows you to detach from illusionary uncertain worries, increases happiness, makes you think clearer de-cluttering your mind from all negativity, slows ageing, and is recommended for a healthy cardiovascular and immune health.

Perplexity of Meditation forms, Finding your comfort zone

One could easily get confused as to which form of meditation would suit them best. Just knowing the basics about them doesn’t necessarily help nor do recommendations based on everyone’s own personal experience. Meditation is not just about relaxing your mind for a few minutes to gain a sense of calmness, it’s much more than that, so it’s imperative that you need to find a technique that suits you best and master it.

We are living in a world with two realities, one conventional, what we see, feel and experience in this physical dimension that we call life. The second is the Ultimate reality, where we break through the illusions of what the world perceives as, happiness, love and success and start sensing life through our souls. The world we seek to find within our minds always existed for we are one with the universe, we are interconnected through a spiritual bond of energies that transcends to a higher consciousness. We have gotten used to switching off from it all, as our current dimensions reality vacuums us away from reaching out to the positive light that’s omnipresent, call it God or by any name that you relate to as a divine entity, but we do turn to the light when things go haywire in our life, we do something quite similar to meditation, we pray. We acknowledge a higher power, a strong positive energy force that is guiding us, strengthening us and showing us the path that leads us out of our troubles.

For me, meditation is a way of finding that positive light that’s within us, that is powerful enough to keep us focused, happy, stress free and at peace. So how did I decide which form of meditation suited me, when everyone claimed that their way was the best? I never for once let myself blindly follow something, I questioned every method, I tried and tested each of them and the meditation form that truly brought my soul to ease is that one I chose to follow.

I am going to break it down into simple layman’s terms sans the gimmicks and the branding they all come with, to make you understand one very important aspect. Meditation is a natural phenomenon that the mind, body and soul needs to stay balanced and though they might be many versions to it from many religious beliefs, it doesn’t have to be a complicated task to research and follow the doctrines of whoever is teaching their version to it. Finding peace and reaching to a state of Zen (vigilance and self-discovery) is absolutely possible when you reflect on your inner self and see the strength from within, the power of focus comes naturally without any guide whatsoever.

We all know that to properly meditate, one follows simple steps, sit in a proper upright position, and do what helps us to focus, some say focusing on an object makes us more alert and dedicated towards meditating, others say listening to music or chanting enables us to detach from our surrounding in our aim to achieve mental clarity and emotional calmness. These are the first baby steps I would ask you all to follow, initially we would need a gentle nudge to allow our mind to detach from our environment, but always remember one thing, you are not supposed to get it right the first time, the more you routinely take your time to practice, the deeper and stronger your mind adjusts and adapts to detaching itself from the illusions it’s imprisoned by.

Effectual and Positive Meditative practices and Techniques

Zen or Zazen

Practiced in monasteries and Zen temples, primarily relies on the sharpening the mind through a deep meditative form of focus. The purpose of Zen meditation is achieving vigilance and self-discovery, it is a form of spiritual awakening and when practiced dedicatedly it becomes the source of calmness in all actions of daily life such as sleeping, eating, walking working, talking and thinking becomes more beneficial as your mind is in a state of awareness in dealing with all actions mindfully. It is through the practice of Zazen is when Gautama Buddha achieved Enlightenment.

Technique

The best way to prepare yourself for Zen Meditation if you’re at home and not accessible to a Zen temple or a Monasteries that have a meditation schedule, is to find a place at home or at your work place where they are the least of distractions. Best practiced while sitting on a zafu cushion (round cushion or any comfortable cushion you can find) in lotus, back upright and head and shoulder relaxed. You can place your hands on your thighs on fold them placing the right palms over the left palm making a lotus gesture. If you have trouble sitting cross-legged, this can also be practiced while sitting on a chair, ensure your legs are slightly apart and your hands are placed on the thighs or in the lotus posture.

One can keep your eyes closed or keep them open and focus on a spot of space two of three feet front of you. The sense of nothingness should gently come into play. You begin with first focusing on your breath and your entire attention should be on the movement of your breath. Inhale slowly counting one till ten then slowly exhale counting backwards. Don’t worry if your mind gets distracted with sounds of your environment or thoughts that might arise during this. It is absolutely normal to have thoughts arise, detach from the distractive elements and focus back on your breathing, with practice you will learn to get the hang of it. The alternative way to perform Zen meditation is Shikantaza (just sitting) where you sit and observe your mind and the thoughts that arise, you will notice them pass you by and fade away. Be at the present moment in full awareness not allowing any of these thoughts and worries be of any significance. Detaching from the illusions of this dimension, letting go of ego and allowing your subconscious mind to merge with the universe is what you must achieve, this is Zen.

Practising this enables you to control every negative emotional feeling or problems that cloud our lives. Observing them from a higher more controlled consciousness allows you to deal with them more practically and logically without any stress that has been previously been bearing you down. The primary reason this is practiced is to experience complete detachment from illusionary emotions and fears of this world. Connecting with energies of the universe brings tremendous peace and raises your consciousness to an extent, where at one point in your life stress would actually be very relative and completely loses its intensity around you. That’s the true state of Zen.

Metta or Loving Kindness

This meditation practice is one my favourites, as it embraces Buddhas teaching of Unconditional Love. Buddha’s analogy for Metta is evoked by an image of a mother’s love for her new born baby. The love remains truly unconditional, regardless of the baby’s mood, the mother’s care and concern for her child would be as bountiful from the first moment of birth. Metta or Unconditional love seeks no acceptance, expectations or rewards, one loves because they have the ability to love not for emotional or spiritual gain. It will and must remain unconditional.

Technique

The sole purpose of Metta meditation is directing love towards people known and unknown to you and especially to those who have a harsh and negative impact on your life. The only way to find balance within extremely negative people is to fight it back with pure positivity. Darkness weakens through light, and unconditional love that has no ulterior motive but to impart goodness and pure positive thoughts works remarkably well against negative emotions and creates balance.

You begin with, finding a meditative posture that suits you best, deep breaths for two to three minutes. Eyes must remain closed, and then in your mind’s eye imagine energies of healing, love, forgiveness and kindness emitting from your heart chakra towards first yourself, do this for a few minutes then move on to the next most important person in your life like your mother, father, sibling, partner or a best friend. Send out these energies to them one at time imagining the waves of positive white, pink or purple light leave your heart chakra and enter into their heart chakra. Gradually move towards a neutral person, who could be your landlord, employer, neighbour or a colleague. Your main focus should remain while sending out energies that you seek no change or rewards out of this practice, you are strong emotionally and have the power to send it to those who need it the most. Then slowly move towards a difficult person in your life that causes you much distress, feel compassion, forgiveness and kindness for them and finally practice Global Metta, where you send out energies to your entire neighbourhood, city, country, the entire world and the Universe.

The results of this meditation are instantaneous and very exhilarating, it makes you feel released, relaxed as you have emotionally spiritually detoxed yourself from all negative emotions that you might have been harbouring for a while. Making this practice a routine in your daily will make you be more emotionally stronger, happier and gives you a strong sense on inner peace.

Mindfulness Meditation

Anapanasati is a Buddhist term meaning Mindfulness of breathing, said to be adapted from traditional Buddhist practice of Vipassana meaning insight into the true reality referring to the existence of impermanence, suffering and realisation of the non-self. Vipassana is a combination with Samatha, a meditation which is the practice of calming the mind done by a single pointed meditation through mindfulness of breathing. Similar in ways to Zazen meditation, Mindfulness meditation works on the principals on staying focused on the present moment, accepting and just observing to the sensations, thoughts, sounds and emotions that arise and distract. When practiced properly, one can stay in a state of mindfulness for longer periods of time during performing any daily tasks. It increases productivity, keeps your mind more alert and less distracted with irrelevant issues that normally tend to perturb our concentration and create a sense of calmness which is constant within us and no matter how long and hard our schedule might be, we won’t feel our energy drain out at the end of the day, leaving you refreshed, content and at peaceful.

Technique

This can be practiced while sitting on a cushion or on a chair, but ensure your back is upright and unsupported, hands in lotus or on your lap and don’t not tilt the head downwards. Eyes closed and pay close attention to your breath. When you inhale and exhale be aware of your every breath. When thoughts arise, sounds that would distract and bodily sensations such as itching or a mild irritation occurs, be alert and focus back onto your breathing, break through these minor distractions and soon enough after five minutes or so you would be calmer and in your comfort zone. Strengthening your mind over the external distraction gives focus to the self. You are aware of your surroundings and are in control of them as well. The present moment is the importance of this meditation, it sharpens your senses, strengthens your patience levels and controls stress. Practising this often makes your body and mind feel very differently to your environment that once seemed chaotic and complexed. You soon naturally become mindful in your daily life and any task you are out to perform, you are more attentive, perceptive, sensitive and assertive to it all, allowing you to always stay on guard and controlled through any situation that may arise, resulting is a much happier and peaceful you.

Self-Healing and Cleansing Meditation

As humans we take on a lot of negative emotions into our hearts and let it gradually disrupt our sanctity. Sometimes we can’t control our emotions by being overly sensitive and perhaps we just absorb unknowing the sadness around us that isn’t at all serving us. This is a basic a beautiful self-healing and cleansing meditation I personally do and recommend all who need a little help from the universe to keep us emotionally stronger. We take on a lot in our daily lives and times when most of us need a hug just to get through it all, is when some of us realise that we are alone. This is a wonderful way to know how strong the loving the power of the Divine light is and how strong the energies of the universe really are. Practising this form of meditation, helps tremendously during times of depression, unforeseen sadness or on days when you just need a little love.

Technique

Find a comfortable and quiet place wherever you are. Find a posture that you are most comfortable with and you can use a back support if you need one.

Close your eyes, slowly inhale counting one to ten then exhale counting backwards. After repeating this 3-4 times, continue with your breathing and in your mind, imagine beautiful white light entering your nostrils when you inhale saying the words “I ask the Divine Light to heal me” and when you slowly exhale imagine black smoke leaving your body and say “I let go of all that no longer serves me”. Repeat this for a few minutes then go back to focus on your breathing. The beautiful art of meditation is that it’s meant specifically for you to deal with your innermost issues that are hard to express sometimes to find help with. You can look to the Divine for whatever help you might seek but always remember, we are in the world to break out of samsara, asking for things of materialistic value is not the purpose or true meaning of peace but asking for balance within the stress of our unsettled lives will lead to a comfortable peaceful life. Always understand the depth of your desires and once you do, true happiness and inner peace is closer than you think.

Protecting yourself from Negative Energies

Always, always protect your Chakras after meditation. Meditation does activate your charkas opening them up which makes you susceptible to negative energies around you and especially from negative people. I would never ever recommend you to go for any kind of meditation for chakra activation this can be quite damaging to the self if the person performing it isn’t to be trusted. I would always suggest the basic Vedic forms of meditation that Buddhist have mastered the technique for, they are easy, powerful and very mentally, emotionally and physically strengthening. Protecting yourself from negative energies should be a routine we all should do, for ourselves, our children and towards our friends and families. It is extremely powerful and imperative especially after meditation, while encountering negative people, while facing negative energies from unknown entities and it also helps with children and yourself if being susceptible to nightmares.

Technique

Sit in any posture comfortably, close your eyes, deep breaths counting one to ten inhaling and exhaling. After a few moments, imagine strong and powerful Divine light, in colours of Blue, Silver or Gold emitting from the top of your head where your crown chakras is, slowly form a blanket over your entire body encapsulating you as if you were inside a golden egg. Inhale and exhale as you form more and more layers to this protective egg you’re inside. Create seven to nine layers for complete protection, using spiritual symbols, such as Om signs, Crucifixes etc, over the layers make a stronger seal. Say to yourself “I am protected with Divine Light no harm can come to me”, then slowly exit while going back into deep breaths, this should only take four to five minutes to perform. While protecting another, just imagine the person in front of you and the shield of light cover them as you would yourself. This is extremely powerful when facing any form of negativity.

Beware of bogus Baba’s!

When I first decided spirituality was my true calling, I first researched on what really spoke to my soul. Being from a Brahmin background, I grew up with Christianity and somehow, I knew for a fact I connected with all, not through my religious views but with the true nature of our significance, our souls. Compassion, kindness and unconditional Love were the qualities that make a Soul pure, true and powerful, for with these qualities one can never go wrong in life. So, with that I researched to all forms of spirituality trying to decipher the truth. Never did I blindly decided on a form of spiritual practice because it seemed to be a popular trend or because friends glorified it so. I questioned everything I came across, tried to find logic and most importantly I listened to that inner voice in me that told me if it was the truth. A very kind Buddhist Monk once told me, “all the answers you need , you will find them from within”, and that’s my advice to you, Whenever you chose to follow your heart and soul on a path of spirituality no matter what guide that you might come across that helps you on your way, always remember, the truth will find you if you stay alert, detached from illusions and gimmicks and believe that there is a greater positive force guiding and protecting us all and it would never let you falter.

The Power of the Universe is within you

They say that the Universe is made of up the same elements that are found in our bodies, we are interconnected and are truly one with it. Nature in its beauty truly remains unconditional with its benevolence no matter how badly we treat it. You cut down hundred trees the next hundred would never stop bearing fruit or give us oxygen, the energies of love are truly quantifiable. We, humans tend to disrupt our own peace without realising the consequences it has on our bodies and mind. We hold onto fears, memories and emotional pain that doesn’t serve us any longer. We don’t realise the power of the universe in within us and it would always bring us balance in our chaotic lives, if only we learn and know how to reach out and connect with it.

Believe in yourself when all feels lost, learn to never bludgeon yourself with the mistakes you make, this is life, this is how we learn. Let go of all that destroys your peace of mind and listen to that inner voice deep in your Soul that tells you it’s ok, everything will work out just fine and always remember darkness can never prevail when you believe in the light!

Happy Healing Ya’ll!!!

Part One: Swoon back to Serenity! Defying the genesis of Stress