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Melatonin Sleep: Sweet dreams are made of these…

Posted Apr 01 2010 5:57am


Introduction

So, we're living in a time called the 'Age of Aquarius', and yours truly is proud to be an Aquarian. Superstition, you say? I agree, it does carry you into the clouds sporadically, but since I'm obsessed with the 'abstract' and all things related to intelligence, the 'occult' (as it is known in Western Civilization) has gradually changed the way I see things, ever since that fateful day in September 2007.

Somehow, a large part of these two years involved dabbling with the occult (which is an integral part of Hinduism, I might add) in the form of Vedic, Chinese and Western astrology, Tarot Reading and Numerology.

Some Christians called me insane and unholy, some others felt 'blessed' that I did bring good tidings of joy, love and hope… and most of all, some folks who did take a chance in listening to the few things that I had to offer, began to take a path similar to mine, in an effort to find the truth, albeit an offbeat and not necessarily popular one, which we Aquarians are known for!

Not only have I become more accepting and peaceful regardless of external situations on the inside but I have begun to live with a greater appreciation for the culture (through the teachings of the Vedas and Vedic astrology) and its spirituality that I have grown up in but haven't necessarily paid attention to until now. And perhaps it is the desire to see the Khecarī Mudrā in action…

The 'Mystery' Gland

Known as the 'seat of the soul' from times when medicine was not yet considered an exact science, not much was known about the pineal gland until its discovery in the vertebrate brain.

Now, your body has its own internal clock which controls the wake/sleep patterns, and the amount of melatonin that is produced depends on this internal clock as well.

Melatonin

Called the 'hormone of darkness', the amount of melatonin released increased from mid to late evening and remain at their highest levels at night, until the time you open your eyes in the morning to the presence of light, which acts as a signal for the production of melatonin to stop. It has been documented that low-melatonin levels are the cause of insomnia, and hence conversely has been recognized as the body's natural sleeping pill.

So it is safe to conclude that the production of melatonin is regulated by the absence or presence of light, and this can impact sleep to the point where it becomes a sleeping disorder like 'insomnia'.

Now, during the winter when the days are shorter, melatonin is produced is either produced earlier or later in the days, and this can lead to seasonal affective disorder or winter depression due to the change in pattern.

In order to counter these effects, dietary supplements of melatonin have been used to treat patients with sleep disorders, jet lag by resetting their clocks, seasonal affective disorder, irregular sleep patterns due to working at night, issues with sleep after surgery and so on and so forth.

In Closing

In Hindu Philosophy, the pineal gland is also referred to as the 'third eye' and with its other functions pertaining to the occult and dreams as well which can be scoffed at by modern scientists as well, but one thing is for sure – we'll never know until we truly understand the depth of metaphysics and for the most of us, it will truly remain a mystery that will take a lifetime to solve.

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