The entity we call mind
may not be as neuroscience says
just a manifestation of the brain.
According to Ricard (text)
In the Western world, meditation means sitting under a mango tree in a blissed out state. The prevailing idea is that you have to sit down and empty you mind. It’s not that at all. You have to clean up a bit. We have so many wandering and intrusive thoughts. So you have to be in control of your own mind. Inner freedom doesn’t mean following every chain of thought. It’s like a sailor who takes the helm and decides where to sail instead of drifting with the current. If you want to generate particular state of mind, you do what it takes.
“Meditation is not just blissing out under a mango tree but it completely changes your brain.” The French genetic scientist left an intellectual life 40 years ago and moved to India to study Buddhism. His daily routine of meditation made possible amazing brain scans that demonstrate that if he’s meditating on compassion, Ricard’s brain produces a level of gamma waves never before ever reported within neuroscience literature. NOTE: gamma brain wave production is associated with consciousness, attention, learning and memory.
His skull was wired up with 256 sensors at the University of Wisconsin and its all been recorded — he’s got a happy and joyous mind — no doubt. Scans found excess activity in his brain’s left prefrontal cortex compared to its right counterpart, giving Ricard an abnormally large capacity for happiness.
A larger volume of a specific brain structure generally increases the abilities to carry out specific functions associated with that structure. This is widely accepted based on the assumption that greater numbers of neurons will produce larger outputs and therefore may be more influential than smaller numbers of neurons.
Researchers in neuroscience demonstrate that the prefrontal cortex plays a responsible role in forming of expectations based on actions and social control, predicting of outcomes, future consequences of activities, working toward goals, development of abilities to differentiate among conflicting thoughts, abilities to determine same and different and better and best. Abilities to suppress urges that may lead to socially unacceptable outcomes are developed by this area of the brain.
Thanks for reading.
- Is this the world’s happiest man? (dailymail.co.uk)
- Buddhist monk is the world’s happiest man (india.nydailynews.com)
- Scans of Monks’ Brains Show Meditation Alters Structure, Functioning (psyphz.psych.wisc.edu)
- Neuroscience proves meditation really works (timescolonist.com)
- The Compassionate Brain (throughthevortex.org)