Douglas LaBier talks about how a strong inner life is the core of psychological health. Here are a few lines that I liked:
Meditation heightens your consciousness and mental control. It also contributes to a stronger immune system and a more robust cardiovascular system. It shifts your perspective towards just observing the ebb and flow of your emotional states with less knee-jerk reactivity to them. It’s like filling an inner reservoir with clarity and mindfulness that you can carry with you in each moment within your outer life.
Research shows that people who practice positive emotions through meditation show heightened brain activity in regions linked with joy and humor; with feelings of compassion towards people who suffer. They also show diminished brain activity in regions associated with negative or destructive emotions like anger, resentment, depression or self-pity. This indicates that you can physically modify your brain through conscious practice. The upshot is that you can actually learn to “grow” compassion, tolerance and cheerfulness. In effect, what you think and feel is what you become.