I believe one of the main benefits of meditation, even if only a few minutes a day, is to allow us to create a pause between a stimulus and our response. More often than not, if we hear someone say something we don’t like, we may immediately react. Meditation allows us to easily step back and pause to provide us time to think about an appropriate response. A few seconds can mean the difference between a harmful reaction or a benevolent action.
When I went to France last Summer in August, one of the items on our itinerary was hiking in the St. Maximim forest which is near the Sainte-Baume mountains (a basilica dedicated to Mary Magdalene is there). Our task was to commune with nature on our own and share our experience with the group afterwards.