When I first started meditation 4 years ago I was so stressed out at my work and went to emergency room for gall bladder stone attack that I told my boss that I couldn't come to work early at 4am for the releases. I thought my career was coming to an end after 16 years and it's about time for me to stay at home and spend more time with my two kids.
I actually didn't know anything about meditation at that time. I ran into it accidentally because of my mom's Parkinson's disease. She'd had Parkinson's for 10 years by then and no doctors could help her much since Parkinson's is a degenerative disease, only getting worse as time goes. Western medicine, tradition Chinese medicine, I tried everything I could but still see her condition getting worse day by day. I was so desperate and willing to try anything. A friend told me about a meditation class for health and fitness and suggested that it might help my mom.
We went to try it out and both experienced great improvement in our health conditions. I had an unusual experience of spontaneous fasting for two weeks only eating an apple a day. By the end of the two week I felt so refreshed and rejuvenated that I realized what a great detoxication process it has been. While my digestive internal organs finally got a break after working non stop for over 40 years, the toxins build up in my body all these years were flushed out. I was so motivated that I started the 2 hour daily practice since then. For my mom, meditation didn't cure Parkinson's completely, but it definitely improved her condition.
I also gained enormous benefits from meditation myself:
No more gall bladder stone attack! All the gall bladder stones disappeared when I did a CT last year, may also have to do with me becoming a vegetarian. No need to do a surgery to remove my gall bladder as doctors highly suggested.
I had gestational diabetics and my blood sugar level dropped 5% after the first year of meditation
Energetic, rejuvenated, recover from chronic fatigue (after I had two kids I always felt tired no matter how many hours I slept)
Better quality of sleep, reduced number of hours of sleep needed from 9 hour to 7-8 hours a day
Lost 10 pounds and back to the weight I had when I was in high school, this may also have to do with becoming a vegetarian
Sharper mind and faster thinking, like back when I was in my 20s. My brain was becoming slower and slower over the last 20 years, due to lack of good sleep and aging.
Much calmer and more in control under stress. I can handle much more stress than before and feel I can do more!
Better insight and decision making, gaining wisdom through meditation, advancing my career much faster than I could have otherwise achieved.
Better relationship with family & friends, co-workers and everyone, less judgmental, more tolerating and compassionate.
Happier, stronger, more insightful and meaningful life! I wish I started meditating much earlier, at 22 instead of 42!
The meditation I started with had more emphasis on physical health although it did open a door to an unknown world which science can not explain much, like the 2 week fasting. With a science and engineering background I used to have a very narrow mind set, regard anything which science can not explain as nonsense. These experiences completed changed my view of the world and I wanted to explore more and advance my practices to beyond just physical health, but that center couldn't give me answers and guidance I needed.
I started visiting all the meditation centers I could found in the south bay, English and Chinese, with any religion or no religion, but still couldn't find one which satisfied my need. I wanted to know what's the highest possible state one can achieve through meditation practices, where I am now, and how I can get to that peak, step by step. I wanted a systematic way of learning, like the school systems we have.
I did lots of research online and kept searching for the right guidance for me, until I finally found Khenpo Sodargye's 9 year program online. I was so thrilled and enrolled in it immediately. I heard about Khenpo Sodargye before but didn't know he has such programs for people like me since he is a monk in Tibet. I had never been to Tibet in my whole life and couldn't imagine myself going there to learn meditation.
One month after I enrolled in the program, I was doing some research on very advanced level of meditation, I found an article online which I was really impressed, which turned out to be one article from the Wisdom Light series by Khenpo Tsultrim Lodro. I didn't even know who Khenpo Tsultrim Lodro was back then, looked him up and found he was from the same institute as Khenpo Sodargye and was the standing Vice Principle. I loved Khenpo Tsultrim Lodro's books and lectures that I couldn't stop reading/watching. They really illuminated the path of my practice and my entire life completely. I enrolled in the 9 year Wisdom Light Program taught by Khenpo right away and later started the first study group here in Silicon Valley.
My practice has been advancing so much and so fast since I started to learn from the two Khenpos that I am so grateful to my great teachers. All the teachings they give are free, the only pay back they want is for the students to learn, practice and improve, the more the better. Although I regard myself as a beginner and have a long long way to go, my teachers told me it's time for me to share what I have learned with others, while keep learning and practicing myself. And that's how I started all this ...