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zen-goddess-low-res.jpgWelcome to the Inner Calm Audio Journal

a little blog about the making of our downloadable meditations and music for relaxation & meditation







Can 10 Million People Be Wrong About Meditation?

Guest Article by Ed Mcdonough

More than four years ago Time magazine reported over ten million Americans meditate and since then the number has constantly grown. Once thought of as a ritual performed by men who shaved their heads, wore long robes and lived in a mountain cave, this mind quieting, stress relieving natural self-healing practice is becoming so commonplace that corporations such as Deutsche Bank, Google and Hughes Aircraft recognize the intuitive powers of it and offer meditation classes to their employees.

In addition, the scientific community has stepped up to the plate and is offering factual data to support many of the proclaimed benefits of meditation. Studies on the effects meditation has on the brain and body have been going on for quite some time at institutions such as the Brain Imaging Laboratory at the University of Wisconsin, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Yale and the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind-Body Medicine at Harvard Medical School.

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The Benefits of Meditation: Tips and Techniques

Guest Article by Galina Pembroke

Meditation is healthy, safe and affordable. In fact it’s free. The only expense you’ll have is a meditation mat, which isn’t especially necessary-at least from my experience. Meditation has been around for 5,000 years, and was originally a spiritual component of yoga. Through the years non-yogis adopted it, intuitively sensing and connecting the practice with greater peace of mind. Personally, I can’t say enough good things about meditation. Its use has rewarded me with less worry and much more energy. But I’ve never been one for anecdotal evidence. Let’s get to the science…

Transcendental Meditation

Recently, there’s an incredible amount of science tied into the benefits of meditation. The studies are endless and cover a variety of meditative practices. On Transcendental Meditation alone (mantra repetition) there are over 500 studies. Some are more noteworthy that others. A study in the Japanese Journal of Public Health found that through Transcendental Meditation, industrial workers sleep improved and their smoking decreased. Another study conducted at the MERU Research Institute, in Buckinghamshire, England found that the length of time practicing the Transcendental Meditation and TM-Sidhi program correlated with younger biological age and younger functional age.

Mindfulness Meditation

Mindfulness meditation, which asks us to focus on our breath to facilitate awareness of the present moment, is another widely studied meditation technique. After studying the effects of 8-weeks of mindfulness meditation on participants, a 2003 report in the Journal of Psychosomatic Medicine concluded: “A short program in mindfulness meditation produces demonstrable effects on brain and immune function.” Impressive, but fairly vague. To get a more committed response to the benefits of meditation we have to turn to Taiwan. In 2002 their journal Chang Gung Medicine reported that “training in MM may be a medically superior and cost-effective alternative to pain medication for the control of headaches with no underlying organic causes in highly motivated patients.”

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Meditation - It's Not What You Think!

Guest Article by Steven O'Sullivan

I've been practicing meditation for over 10 years now, the keyword there being practice. I'm certainly no Guru or Buddhist monk that has sat in quite contemplation for those 10 years. I'm just your average guy seeking some spiritual connection.

So, here's the short version of my experience in tapping into the Divine.

The first time I "attempted" to meditate was with a group of my peers and it was a 5 minute quiet meditation. I thought my head was going to catch on fire or maybe even explode! Five minutes might as well have been 5 hours. The "committee" inside my head would not shut up. My brain shouted "You will never be able to meditate!"

Thus began my quest for an easy way to quiet my mind and get into a meditative state.

I ran out and bought several books on meditation and some guided meditation CD's. My first great success was with one of these simple guided meditations. WOW! I actually "left my body" and connected to my higher power, it was so...well, POWERFUL.

I continued to experiment with various forms of meditation and sought out as many teachers as I could find. There were so many I can't cover them all here, but I'll tell you more in future articles. After some years I found several methods that worked well for me. Here are a few of them.

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A free gift: Christmas relaxation mp3


A Christmas Gift from me to you...


FREE GIFT Silent Night Christmas Hypnosis Relaxation MP3

click to download your hypnosis relaxation MP3 here

Thank you for reading Living by Design. Please be sure to keep in touch and subscribe to our newsletter, if you haven't done so already. We have some very exciting self-help audio products lined up for next year, and some new free mp3 relaxation pieces too. So subscribe now so you don't miss out!



With my best wishes to you for a peaceful Christmas and a healthy and happy New Year.



New from Street Science: Meditation Improves Attention

Recent research shows that regular meditation improves awareness and attention. Discover how a group of newbie meditators found their attention had improved in this video from 60 Second Science.

In a test where a series of random letters and numbers were flashed on a screen, most people initially miss the second number, but after learning a breath awareness meditation technique they spotted it just fine. Me? Yep I spotted it too.

Here's the video:



If you feel inclined to hone your focus and attention skills you can download a guided meditation exercises here that will help you...


Beautiful Calm Gets the Thumbs Up

Beautiful_calm_ad_art.jpgAnne Coates, hostess of Parenting without Tears, has written a review of our Beautiful Calm Meditation series and given it a big thumbs up.

Here's what she had to say:

"It’s easy to think we have taken five minutes out to relax when we haven’t really done so. This is where Beautiful Calm triumphs.

I have listened to numerous relaxation tapes/CDs and usually find them irritating! And there's only so much of listening to ocean waves a person can take. With Ananga Sivyer's Beautiful Calm I loved the music and her voice didn't grate on the ear - nor was she patronising.

What I particularly like about Beautiful Calm  is that the cover tells you exactly how long each guided breathing/meditation takes.

So if you only have three minutes to spare try the MIndfulness Meditiation. As long as nine minutes? Then work through the Buddhist Meditation..."

Anne also recommended loading the guided meditations onto an iPod or MP3 player for benefiting from the exercises anywhere, anytime.

Anne has fully grasped the intention behind these meditations, and that is to provide quick, easy and effective access to the benefits of meditation, for anyone no matter how busy they are.

Read the full review here

you can get instant access to the Beautiful Calm Guided Meditation MP3s here



Quietness of the Mind in Guided Meditation for Self Development

Quietness of the mind is at what time you start to guide your mind into relaxation. When you mind begins to relax you start to focus. When you focus, you begin to learn new skills. You see areas in your life that you must adjust to clear a pathway to success.

Quietness of the mind in guided meditation for self-development is accomplished in several ways. You can use yoga practices, candles, music, and feedback alternatives and so on to practice meditation effectively. If you choose music, consider the soft, low sounds. Hyped music often increases your adrenaline. With guided meditation practices, you want the opposite, i.e. quietness of mind and body. Melodies when soothing will relax your body so that you experience peace.

To start find a peaceful location. For instance, go to a secluded location where the breezes stream through your hair. Go to a dark room in your home if you prefer indoor meditation. Shut off the lights and light a few candles.

Recline at your retreat with hands and feet stretched out in a straight line. Let your mind begin to roam. Imagine yourself floating on a cloud watching the blue skies allowing the natural feeling to inspire your mind.

Playing music will allow your mind to drift into a peaceful world inside your mind. Use natural music to guide you into meditation. As you start to contemplate, start to feel the sensations in your body. Begin at the toes and work your way up until your entire body has relaxed. You may start to feel tingling. Let it go.

As your body and mind commences to unwind, your subconscious will begin to express certain feelings, which is your feedback.

Practice quietness of the mind each day if convenient to help you break stress from a difficult day. You will feel better. As you begin to feel better, you will start to make sound decisions, which is part of the developmental phase. Making sound decisions authorizes your mind and body to help you become more successful.

Practice using your imagination when you meditate. Develop images far away seeing you in this moment. You can go anywhere you choose to go. You may experience memories that you had forgotten as you continue to meditate. Let the thoughts go freely so that you can learn from them.

Flip through the memories of your past and learn to develop your skills by exploring all angles of your mind. If you find it difficult to meditate or relax, search the Internet for helpful tools and use what works for you as your guide.

Online you will find many helpful aids. Look through the products or programs, such as sandbox word association, mind puzzles, brain enhancers, biofeedback, neurofeedback programs, accelerated learning, subliminal learning and such categories that work toward self-development.

When you take time out for you, it becomes relaxing. You will begin to find it easier to meditate and relax. Practice guiding your mind and body in relaxation each day if possible to help you relieve some stress from a long day.

Guided meditation is achievable even if you find it difficult to concentrate. You merely take a few steps, such as finding a quiet area. Get away from any distractions. Recline and allow your body to relax with your mind.

The overall goal of guided meditation for self-development is to guide the body, mind and spiritual being into union so that they work in harmony. Keep practicing and you will achieve your goal.

Guest article by Laurie Raphael

Photo by honey-bee


There are many types of alternative therapy solutions. Visit Laurie's site at: for information on feng shui, natural cures, medicinal herbs, Chinese herbal medicine, yoga and meditation, new age and subliminal messages. For the comprehensive report go to:



Meditation is easy with someone to talk you through the experience and help you keep on track download a guided meditation MP3 now… and start enjoying the benefits of meditation in your life today


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New Release: Tibetan Bowls Music for Relaxation MP3


Tibetan-Bowls-web-ad.jpgTibetan Singing Bowls

Music for Relaxation, Meditation or Healing

When it comes to music for relaxation, there's nothing quite like the gentle tones of Tibetan Singing bowls. With this high quality relaxation download you can enter the peaceful space created by these ancient bowls as they sound together to produce natural rhythms and harmonies.


From deep rich bass to singing high notes, this recording brings you the healing sound of Tibetan Singing Bowls in a harmonic composition that will transport you to a place of peaceful awareness. Due to their metal nature and singing tone, Tibetan Bowls are associated with the the element ether and thus have a directly soothing effect on the mind and spirit.

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Meditation: Alpha Brain & Anger Management

Guest Article by M.P. Bhattathiri, Retired Chief Technical Examiner, to The Govt. of Kerala.

In the storm of life we struggle through myriads of stimuli of pressure, stress, and muti-problems that seek for a solution and answer. We are so suppressed by the routine of this every life style that most of us seem helpless. However, if we look closely to ancient techniques we shall discover the magnificent way to understand and realize the ones around us and mostly ourselves. If only we could stop for a moment and allow this to happen…

Let me bow to Indian Maharishi Patanjali with folded hands who helped in removing the impurities of the mind through his writings on Yoga, impurities of speech through his writings on grammar, and impurities of body through his writings on Ayurveda.

The American justice Dept. have recently approved the power of yoga and meditation vide a recent judgement in the American court. "Man Who Slapped Wife Sentenced to Yoga, It's Anger Management, Says Judge." First there was house arrest. Now there's yoga. A judge ordered a man convicted of slapping his wife to take a yoga class as part of his one-year probation. "It's part of anger management," County Criminal Court at Law Judge Larry Standley said of the ancient Hindu philosophy of exercise and well-being. "For people who are into it, it really calms them down."

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Preview: Body Gratitude Meditation

A preview of the Body Gratitude Meditation from our new Beautiful Calm Meditation for Beginners collection.

The human body is a rare gift. It's the only platform from which you can stretch and reach higher awareness, or better still God consciousness, but when your body is tense and your mind is clouded with stress life becomes distracted and difficult and it's hard enough to get through the day, what to speak of reflecting on your spiritual life.

This meditation offers an 8 minutes guided reflection on the miracle of your body while simultaneously leading you into states of deep relaxation and contemplation. From this place of calm it's easy to take stock of your life and chart your course with clarity and conviction.

Find out how to get the superior quality full version via instant download here...