There countless stories of people shedding a past life of drug addiction, violence, and despair when they take up meditation as a daily practice. Even atheists are reported to have witnessed miraculous recoveries with a the quite discipline.
Whether alone or in a group meditation is a way of just sitting and being quiet until the "busy" mind calms. The practice can last anywhere from 15 minutes to as much as an hour, depending on your level of expertise. Most secular meditations hang on the premise that we should concentrate on one thing until the mind quiets.
Generally practitioners are taught to focus on the breath, or a mantra. If the mind wanders the student is counseled to simple observe the thought and remain focused. The practice has touted to bring calmness of mind and ultimately healing to millions of people.
Psychologist Dr. Katherine MacLean at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, has a neurological understanding of mindfulness meditation and has stated that, "It's a way to become familiar with your own mind."
Her studies have shown that simply being quiet for a few minutes allows the brain to bring into view a variety of fears, phobias, concerns, and generally and repeating thought pattern to light. This activity enables to person to gain clarity on inhibiting thought patterns. The method of course gives the person a chance of letting go, which is so important to mental health and healing.
In 2011 researchers at Justus Liebig-University in Giessen, Germany and Harvard Medical School compose a report surrounding a meta-analysis of existing research data that explains the various neurological mechanisms and brain processes as mediation works, which continues to to verified.
The publication suggests that simple meditation techniques like mindfulness develops the mind several distinct combinations of mental mechanisms that enhance attention, regulation, awareness, emotions, and a even changes self-perspective from negative to positive. Ultimately the cultivation of mindful time in quietness has assisted in a broader more comprehensive functioning of the brain which culminates in the ability to control one's own thought, emotions, and behavior which ultimately eliminates much pain and suffering.
During a state of meditation, the brain goes through the five major brain waves stages, each corresponds to different mental activity. What meditation is move the bran from very active higher frequencies, like beta, to lower frequency, like theta, which allows different centers of the brain to become active. Of particular importance to scientists are the conscious lower frequencies. This where the magic of balancing the mind to health happens.
5 Brain Waves Categories
1. Gamma Waves: (30 - 100Hz) In this state of mind, the brain displays hyperactive thought patterns. Generally, gamma is observed during active learning like with sports when physically and intellectually everything has to come together. If over stimulated, gamma may lead to anxiety.
2. Beta Waves: (13 - 30Hz) Most people operate in beta during normal waking hours. In this state a person is alert and analytical. They can assess and think from moment to moment.
3. Alpha Waves: (9 - 13Hz) Alpha is a sign that the brain is starting to slow down. Alpha waves are produced just before a person falls asleep. During meditation it is the time just before we "feel" deep meditation.
4. Theta Waves: (4 - 8Hz) Is a calm, peaceful, and lucid state of mind when meditating. Theta waves are also naturally produced when we sleep. The difference between theta waves produced by sleep versus meditation is that theta waves while awake clear the mind of what seems endless thought, produces clarity, while normalizing bodily functions.
5. Delta Waves: (1-3 Hz) These brain waves are produce during the final phase of sleep. As a Christian who focuses on Jesus during meditation delta is produced we begin to experience God according to Psalm 46:10 "Be still and know I am God." Delta produces a sensation of total and complete stillness of mind and body. During this state one can begin to understand aspects beyond the carnal. Delta is the final phase of meditation that helps the brain heal, focus better, become more creative, resolve psychological issues, and become stable. The body also goes through major changes that induce health and healing.
Scientists are still puzzled by the science of meditation. But one is certain God designed a spectacular piece of equipment when He design the human brain. It's complex, powerful, and beautiful.
As Christians all we have to do is follow God's word and become more of Him through meditation and less of ourselves. This is how we know Christ, and it begins with daily devotionals in God's word.
So get started today and see how your world changes. We love you, we're praying for you. See you in the kingdom.