mrs. neal's not-so-conventional MEDITATION [CLASS] for TEENS...

...the book and the recorded meditation

Meditation is the dissolution of thoughts in eternal awareness
or pure consciousness without objectification,
knowing without thinking, merging finitude in infinity.

– Voltaire, author


Teen Stress...

Teens are one of the two most highly-stressed age groups — the other highly-stressed group is the elderly. As a teen, you are at the awkward age between childhood and adulthood. You don’t want to be treated like a child, but you also are not being treated like the adult you may think you are.

When you consider all the changes that you are going through during your teen years — with physical changes (puberty, hormones), emotional changes, and changes to your brain — it’s no wonder you are stressed.

Reducing your stress is important to your mental health as well as your physical health. Many teens are fighting battles, conquering demons, trying to understand their emotions, and dealing with a multitude of issues on a day-to-day basis.


... And The Teenage Brain

The teenage brain differs from the adult brain. It processes information differently, and functions from a place of emotion rather than logic.

As a teenager, your brain is still under construction; it’s not fully developed, and won’t be until you are in your early- to mid-twenties. There is a lot going on with you physically during your teenage years, including brain development.

The physiological changes begin in the pre-teen years — at about 11 to 12 years of age — and this development continues throughout your teenage years and into your early twenties.

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Changes To The Teen Brain Include These Areas:

  • The Frontal Cortex — the rational part of the brain that recognizes new or foreign concepts, and determines the necessity to act; this process can be slower for teens who tend to just react.
  • The Amygdala — a part of the limbic system, the emotional part of the brain associated with emotional responses; teens use this part more than the “thinking” part of their brain (the Frontal Cortex).
  • The Corpus Callosum (cable of nerves connecting the two hemispheres) and the Cerebellum (the part associated with muscle coordination and movement, and the thinking process) also go through dynamic development during the teenage years.

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Who’s In Charge?

As a teen, the “CEO” of your brain is the limbic system, located beneath the cerebral cortex — an emotional part of the brain, and the seat of instinct.

When stress levels are high, a teen’s concentration and memory can be affected which interferes with cognitive functioning.

This will have a domino effect and cause problems in many areas including school and relationships.

At your age, your responses to your world will tend to be based more on emotion than logic. Whether it is a verbal or a physical response, when something happens that provokes a response, yours will be an emotional one.


Here’s an example:

Think of the last time you and a friend got into an argument. Very few of you would go to your friend and say, “You know, we really need to sit down and discuss this issue. We need to just have a cup of tea, and work out our problem.”

More likely — you just had an emotional exchange, perhaps screaming at each other, calling each other names, smacking one another, shedding a few tears…

As you age into your early to mid-twenties, the frontal lobes kick in and the thinking process becomes more logical. At this stage of development, you actually can sit down and discuss your differences over a cup of tea.

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No Excuses...

While this information is helpful to know as a teenager — you also need to recognize that this is not an excuse for bad behavior, but rather an explanation for your behavior.

You still are responsible for your actions — no matter your age or level of maturity.

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Interesting Stuff You Just Might Like…

  • During meditation, there may be an increase in activity in the front part of the brain, the area that is activated when one focuses their attention, as well as a decrease in activity in the back part of the brain, or parietal lobe, which is the area responsible for orientation, which suggests that meditation may lead to experiencing a loss of the sense of self, space and time.
  • The brain is about 1/50th of the body’s weight, but uses about 1/20th of its blood supply, and needs about 1/5th of the body’s oxygen and calories.
  • According to research by Paul Ekman, University of California San Francisco Medical Center, meditation and mindfulness can calm the amygdala, the area of the brain responsible for fear memory.

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Think about the last time you were upset with a friend,
and how you reacted.





Science is not only compatible with spirituality;
it is a profound source
of spirituality.

– Carl Sagan,
scientist / astronomer