We have all experienced the benefits of peaceful and meditative moments at some point in our lives, whether we were aware of them at the time or not. Perhaps when walking along the beach, completely absorbed in the moment. No thoughts of the past, no plans for the future. Making no distinctions, judgments, or comparisons in the mind, just feeling at one with our surroundings. At one with the sand, the waves, the sea breeze, the universe. Completely at peace, totally absorbed and focused in the moment. Allowing ourselves just to be.While this may be a fleeting and random occurrence, it need not be if we choose to make meditation a part of our daily lives. The practice of meditation has been utilized for thousands of years, and it is neither complex nor associated with any particular religion or doctrine. It is available to people whatever their background or belief structure, and requires no conversion or abandonment of a present spiritual orientation.Meditation goes by many different names, including the relaxation response, centering, transcendental meditation (TM), and the calm technique, to name a few.Meditation can enable you to experience the deep reservoir of peace within you, no matter where you are, whether at the beach or in your home. Once you become familiar with it, you can gain the benefits wherever you happen to be.The practice of meditation is the culmination of a process which involves two preliminary steps:1 Withdrawing awareness from the sense stimuli of sound, taste, touch, sight, and smell.2 Concentrating the mind by using a technique to gradually focus the mental energies, allowing the mind to become one-pointed and focused beyond distraction.Once the mind is completely still and focused, the meditation process is fully engaged and its benefits are forthcoming. The mind is no longer responding to external stimuli, and has gone beyond its erratic state of skipping from one image, thought, or idea to another. The mind becomes completely focused on the object of concentration.Go to http://www.virtualhealthresort.com for effective meditation tools that you can listen to online or download and a host of health enhancement techniques and resources.This discussion on the practices for cultivating a peaceful mind through meditation is part of the Health Enhancement Lifestyle Program (HELP) in the book HELP Yourself To Health. Developed by international speaker, consultant, and author Neal Hoptman.The major influences in developing this talk have been the teachings of Integral Yoga from Swami Sivananda and Swami Satchidananda complemented by wisdom passed on from Shunryu Suzuki, Swami Satyananda, Thich Nhat Hanh, Swami Rama,The research and work of such pioneers as Dr. Candace Pert, Dr. Herbert Benson, Dr. Dean Ornish, Ann Wigmore, Dr. Joan Borysenko, Dr. Bruce Lipton, Dr. Jon Kabat Zinn, Dr George Solomon, Dr. David Spiegel, Dr. John Sarno, Joseph Campbell, Robert Jervis, Dr. Patch Adams, Rob Brezsny, Ram Dass, Dr. Deepak Chopra, Norman Cousins, Dr, Larry Dossey,Bill Mollison, Hans Selye, Victor Frankl, A. Doak Barnett, Dr. Bernie Siegel and Daniel Goleman among others has been very significant as well.Sincere thanks and appreciation to Martin Amada of www.sitca.com who produced and edited this podcast. which was shot at Kamalaya Wellness Sanctuary and Holistic Spa (www.kamalaya.com) on Samui Island in the Gulf of Thailand.