In one of the most thoroughly designed studies of meditation ever published, full-time workers who used Sahaja Yoga meditation became much less stressed compared with more conventional approaches to relaxation or placebo, according to a paper published in the online journal, Evidence Based Complementary Medicine, a leading publication in its field.
A team of researchers at Sydney University’s Meditation Research Programme monitored stress levels of full-time Australian workers in Sydney’s Central Business District to determine the effectiveness of meditation in combating this widespread and expensive problem.
The 8-week clinical trial provides strong evidence that there are measurable, practical and clinically relevant effects that appear to be specific to Sahaja Yoga meditation.
The study divided volunteers into three groups. Those who used Sahaja Yoga meditation showed significant reduction in their stress levels compared with those who used other methods of meditation that didn’t involve thoughtless awareness.
This is one of only a few meditation studies in the world that clearly demonstrate an effect that is much greater than just placebo. Hence, it has broad and important implications for all levels of society.
Work stress is described by many experts as a modern epidemic. It costs the Australian economy $15 billion per year and the US economy more than $300 billion. It is a leading cause of work absenteeism, causing both mental health problems such as anxiety and physical problems such as heart disease. Sahaja Yoga is a simple, low-cost intervention that can help prevent these problems.
The strategies currently available to tackle work stress often have limited effectiveness. This is where this study is remarkably relevant. It shows that a simple, mental silence orientated meditation skill reduces stress significantly more than other, often more expensive, approaches to stress management.
Stress is not just limited to the workplace. In western countries, studies estimate that more than 70% of medical consultations feature stress as a major issue.
Read the original research publication here: