Advertisement

Mindfulness Matters

Mindfulness Matters

Wisdom Wednesday :: The Mindfulness Revolution in Your Brain

BS07002.jpgThe New York Times and the Boston Globe have recently written about a forthcoming study on the brain changes associated with mindfulness meditation. This is great news and is not really new. Researches such as Britta Holzl, Sarah Lazar, and others have been conducting and publishing studies for years documenting the brain-changing effects of meditation.

To their credit, neuroscientists have been cautionary about their findings; after all the brain is the most complex thing in the known universe (just consider 100 billion neurons making up to 100,000 connections each, and each of these connections can be in any one of ten electrical states). 
But consider this. The brain is plastic; its constantly changing. Every time you learn something new your brain changes in some way to represent this new knowledge (that is, one of those trillions upon trillions of connections). So it makes sense that meditation would change the brain. And we’ve known that it does for a long time, every since the brain could be measured through EEG. Go into meditation and your brain waves change.
However, what is surprising and important about the research coming out of the labs studying meditation is that these changes are not just state changes — they are enduring changes and can be seen in the very structure of the brain. The brain gets thicker in places, meaning neural connections are piling up. And these changes are showing up in some very interesting places. For example, the parts of the brain that deal with regulating our emotions, including knowing when to quiet fear. 
Studies such as these are at the forefront of the mindfulness revolution. It’s one thing to note subjective changes in well-being, it’s quite another to demonstrate them in objective fashion. We’ve had anecdotes for thousands of years and neuroscientists are beginning to show us the inner workings of wisdom practices.
  • http://www.theemotionmachine.com Steven | TEM

    There is no denying the tremendous effects mindfulness can have on our biology and psychology.

Previous Posts

I Want my WiFi Now!
A recent adventure I had illustrates the limitations of the technology in certain places and how easily our expectations can give rise to a world of frustration. On Thursday March 12, I listened with great interest to Fresh Air that featured writer Fenton Johnson and his article in the April issu

posted 9:10:31am Mar. 24, 2015 | read full post »

The Train's Eye View of the Landscape
I am sitting on a train riding from Essex Junction, Vermont to Hartford Connecticut where I will be teaching my

posted 5:42:18pm Mar. 14, 2015 | read full post »

Mindfulness in Corporate America
Two recent articles in two major publications--The New York Times and The Atlantic--focused on the rising trend of mindfulness in corporate settings and both articles feature the recently published book by David Gelles: Mindful Work: How Meditation is Changing Business from the Inside Out. Mindfu

posted 11:28:56am Mar. 11, 2015 | read full post »

The Other Kind of PDF: Public Displays of Frustration
The world's number one ranked golfer, Rory McIlroy made a spectacle of himself yesterday during the World Golf Championship tournament at Doral. After pulling his long approach shot into the water on hole number 8, he then launched his 3-iron into the lake. It sailed 60 or 70 yards before splashing

posted 1:29:31pm Mar. 07, 2015 | read full post »

Mindful in Relationship: The Biggest Spiritual Challenge We Face
Our closest relationships are often the most challenging places to be mindful. We may be prone to feelings of unworthiness, superiority, and fear as well as a host of other feelings that push us around. When we can bring equanimity to our relationships we are progressing along the path. When we c

posted 7:56:20pm Mar. 02, 2015 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.