Ed mentioned his experience with annual week long silent meditation retreats. He said that this video by Kelly McGonigal, a professor at Stanford University, opened his mind to the power and influence meditation has on ones own mind and the ability to overcome all suffering. I felt compelled to watch it. As soon as I did, I saw how there is endless scientific proof that meditation helps to over come not just existential suffering, but physical suffering, in those who adopt a daily mediation practice.
In the last year I have been vigilant for my own regular meditation practice. I meditate for 5 minutes in the morning to start my day (I would aim to do at least 20 mins, but its difficult with a toddler so it varies everyday), and about 20 mins before I go to bed at night. I often use the Calm App (calm.com) to time my meditation. I do not listen to the guided meditations, but only the timed meditations with soft soothing music in the background as well as a chime to mark the end of the session. Its wonderful. The effects its had on the consistency in my mind for peace and the intense focus I have in my work and daily life tasks, is immeasurable. I cannot express how important it is to use meditation to train our minds to not only release ourselves from suffering, but help to release others once we are free. Meditation is a power we have today, now, to use to improve the quality of our lives. This video helps to bring it all into right perspective. Enjoy.