CAMPUS LIFE EDITOR
Feeling overwhelmed about finals week? A perfect way to unwind or bring energy back into the day is by meditating. Last Friday, The Metaphonian Society held a meditation session with Venerable Youheng, who came to visit from the Hsi Lai Temple.
“[We wanted to] provide an alternative weekend event for students other than usingalcohol and partying,” said senior chair Jaimie Sandlin. “I came up with having a meditation event because it would also teach students how to cope with stress.”
“Sometimes, people turn to alcohol to cope during stressful times, but this is obviously not healthy,” said Sandlin. “So, meditation can be used instead. I spoke with Professor Kjellberg about how to coordinate the event and he directed me to Venerable Youheng, the Buddhist nun that guided us through the experience.”
Youheng came to campus for free; however, the Dean of Students Office sent a donation to the temple. Youheng taught the group several methods and ways to meditate. There are many sitting positions, such as the “full lotus” stance, in which the meditator sits with both legs on top of each other. This is an advanced move, but one can meditate sitting at their desk, even if it’s only for ten minutes. The first meditation Youheng demonstrated consisted of counting every breath. You can repeat this mediation process by counting to 10, and once you reach 10, start back again at 1 and continue this for 15 minutes.
“It was nice to have a moment to destress before finals,” said senior Metaphonian Samantha Cruz. “[The Venerable] was super sweet. She was very good at giving a thorough explanation of the steps to meditation. She was very calming and didn’t make anyone feel uncomfortable or awkward about the process, at least, in my opinion. I think I would use the methods she described again because I found it to be helpful.”
In case you missed the event, there are many online resources or podcasts dedicated to teaching beginner’s meditation or even showcasing advanced moves and posture positions. Calm.com offers programs that not only teach how to meditate but demonstrate the correct breathing techniques while playing soothing sounds. Meditationoasis.com also features audio and visual tutorials, but there are countless resources available online.
“I just kept thinking, this is exactly what I need,” said sophomore Chloe Esparza. “Although I didn’t get to stay for the whole program, while I was there, I was completely relaxed. It made me realize I should make more time for myself.”
The end of finals week is rapidly approaching Good Luck and don’t forget to breathe Poets!