The Science of Meditation
Published studies have documented the many physical and mental health benefits of meditation, including decreased pain, better immune function, less anxiety and depression, a heightened sense of well-being, and greater happiness and emotional self-control. Google Scholar turns up almost 700,000 research documents on meditation, among them imaging studies that show increased activity in brain regions associated with attention, a higher volume of grey matter, and lessened amygdala response to emotional stimuli. What actually happens in the brain when we meditate? Why is meditation so nourishing to the mind, body and spirit?
Though there’s a lot of junk out there claiming the mantle of meditation, science has pinpointed three methods that show clear therapeutic effects. Each of these has its own effect on a different type of brain waves, and they can be complementary.
Types of Meditation
1. Focused Attention Meditation
2. Open Monitoring Meditation
3. Transcendental Meditation
Big IdeaReducing anxiety, depression, increasing wellbeing, sleep, all of these things that are claimed for meditation… What is the science? How do you know these things are actually happening?Perri Peltz
Big IdeaOne of the first things that happens when they learn TM [Transcendental Meditation] is they start sleeping for the first time because this mediation gives the body a state of rest two to three times deeper than just sitting with your eyes closed and in some regards deeper than sleep. And that alone, it’s an amazing experience for me to teach a veteran who hasn’t literally slept for months and then they learn the mediation and they sleep 18 hours a night for three or four nights in a row.Bob Roth