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My neuroscientist Dalai Lama: How Meditation Conquered Scientists

Медитация покорила ученых

Meditation (from the Latin. Meditatio - meditation) - a type of mental exercises used in the composition of spiritual-religious or recreational practice, or a special mental state arising from these exercises (or for other reasons).

There are many meditation techniques. During meditation, the practitioner usually needs to take a certain posture. The object of concentration is usually the sensations inside the body, internal images, less often emotions. Sometimes the object of concentration may be an external physical object. Meditation can be combined with breathing exercises.

Biologist Yoha Koludar acquits meditation. This practice, like all esoteric, was considered the antithesis of science, which means it was perceived by sober-minded people as a divorce for suckers who can give the last money for a magnetic bracelet and weed that “heals cancer”. But in recent years, scientists have begun to see clearly.

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A skinhead man in an orange dress sits cross-legged and eyes closed. Minutes, hours pass, and he still sits, breathing measuredly and deeply. “Why does he need it? Is there nothing for him to do? Besides, he is probably asleep ” - we think with you. Too much of the esoteric, of the spiritual, is even connected with the concept of meditation, so that we can not think about it without being twisted. Too many people talking about Spirit and Enlightenment are addicted to meditation so that a modern rational person can sit next to a skin-headed man, cross his legs and take a nap.

HAPPINESS FOR US, SCIENCE IS IMPRESSIVE. EARLY OR LATER IT IS DROWNED BEFORE THE VENUE, EVEN IF ITS HER ADEPTES - THE SCIENTISTS - ACTIVELY RESISTANCE IT.

It does not help that meditation has always been a religious practice. Since its inception (approximately in the 5-6 century BC), Buddhist monks, Hindu yogis, then Christian monks, Muslim Sufis, and even Kabbalists actively used it. It is not surprising that many of us treat meditation with the same degree of respect as shaman’s dances or voodoo dolls. And very vain.

For a very long time, the intellectual establishment looked at the practices of “spiritual growth” with contempt, and only in the early 2000s decided to check how it really is. And suddenly the wisdom of the ancient yogis was revealed to us. Now, after fifteen years of scientific study of meditation, we know that people practicing it significantly increase their chances for a healthy and long life. Among other things, practicing meditation slows down cellular aging (increasing the activity of telomerase), improves heart function and reduces the activity of genes responsible for inflammation - the cause of many chronic pains. And we did not even begin to talk about the beneficial effects of meditation on our main organ, the brain.

What is meditation and what is it eaten with?

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Before discussing the effect of meditation on the brain, it is necessary to figure out what meditation is all about. In its most averaged form, it is the practice of calm, inactive contemplation of something. What for? To calm and clear the mind, to achieve emotional harmony, awareness, cultivate the love and compassion. Felt the smell of cheap Indian incense? If yes, then Hare Hare.

ANY SKILL WHICH WE OWNED OURSELVED TO US AS A RESULT OF TRAINING. BRAIN TRAINING. MUSCLE - ALL ONLY WORK-PERFORMERS.

It doesn't matter whether you jump with a pole or scribble a report on a computer - the ease of action is achieved by training certain neurons in the brain. The ability to think clearly, keep calm, love your neighbors and feel the world as it is - the same skills as everyone else. Without proper training, they will forever be undeveloped. Meditation is the only way we can practice these skills.

Since people have been meditating at least since the days of the Buddha, there are many different practices and approaches to this practice. At one time in India there even existed universities of meditations, like Nalanda - until the Muslims defeated them in the 12th century. Do not worry, it is not necessary to scour in search of lost knowledge or shovel thousands of existing practices, it is enough to know only three. Focused attention meditation, open contemplation meditation and meditation of compassion and love-filled kindness (again, hare hare).

Focused attention - from procrastination

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Focused attention is the type of meditation with which training usually begins. The meditator (there is such a word) concentrates his attention on breathing, allowing it to flow measuredly and freely. Sooner or later, the mind begins to soar in the clouds - this happens even in the Dalai Lama, so the task of the meditator is to quietly switch attention back to inhale and exhale.

DO YOU HAVE MOMENTS WHEN YOU ARE WORKING ANYTHING IMPORTANT AND MUCHLY UNDERSTAND THAT THERE HAVE BEEN THINKING ABOUT ANYTHING ANYTHING, LIKE KOTKI, HOUSEHOLD CARE, OR SHOGAN,

You are trying to get back to work, but after a couple of minutes you find yourself completely in nonsense. If yes and if you would like to change the situation, the practice of focused attention is for you.

It was she who initiated the scientific study of meditation. Buddhist monks who have spent more than 10 thousand hours in their condition in this state were asked to meditate in the MRI cell. And not just to meditate, but also to press a button every time their attention loses focus. Or rather, when they understand it.

With the help of MRI, scientists saw very well when a stream of random thoughts started in the monk's brain — the relevant parts of the brain were activated. The less the subject was tempted to meditate, the longer he spent in that state. Then the brain activity shifted, the monk realized that he was wandering in the clouds, pressed the button and focused again on breathing.

And gradually, the brain as if calmed down - except for a single portion of the prefrontal cortex associated with concentration. None of the control group recruited from non-practicing meditation, and close came to such a silence of the brain. Time after time, scientists have seen people losing their concentration and not even realizing it.

Open contemplation - from depression

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The second type of meditation, open contemplation, is a kind of complication of the practice of focused attention. Instead of paying attention to one object of the world - specifically the breath - attention is paid to everything at once. Every visual stimulus, sound, inner feeling and even dialogue with oneself, which we, modern people, conduct without stopping.

But it is necessary to distribute attention in a special way: without focusing on one thing, to divert the focus so as to capture all the sensations that are in your head at the moment. Over time, your awareness of feelings as a whole picture grows, then emotional dependence on any part of the whole (conflict with homework, work, etc.) decreases, and you reach a feeling of peace and tranquility.

PEOPLE WHO LEARNED OPEN PERFORMANCE, CONSIDERABLY BETTER DIFFERENT TO THE INCENTIVES THAT FOLLOWING A FRIEND.

For example, you are looking for errors in the document. The first mistake you find will get your attention so much that you will almost certainly miss the next one if it is not far from the first one, and your view slides along the lines with sufficient speed.

This is due to the fact that the brain throws all the resources on the first error and does not have time to fill them in order to give you a signal about the second. However, the more you try to embrace the whole eye, practicing open contemplation, the better your brain copes with this task .

This applies to any incentive in general: minor stresses, pain , and indeed everything in the world will cause you less negative emotions. In the brain of expert meditators, the departments responsible for anxiety and aggression are significantly reduced. Such people are able to control their bodies much better than us: they can lower the level of stress hormones in themselves by an effort of will. Think about it the next time you have to make a presentation in front of hundreds of more experienced colleagues or talk to annoying relatives about your personal life.

Meditation of compassion and kindness - from burnout

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In the modern world it is considered normal that everyone loves only himself. However, it’s not always possible to fall in love with yourself, as the inconsistency with many standards interferes. If you have a desire to correct it, if you generally want to feel more comfortable, better understand others and stop living in the world of your own illusions, this is a practice for you.

Instead of focusing on the breath or on the world as a whole, the meditator concentrates on the sense of well-being and love of people. Yes - to all people in general. To do this, a person repeats to himself any version of the phrase “May all beings find happiness and free themselves from suffering” (if your cynical brain jars on from the prospect of saying this in Russian, start with a Tibetan or Hindi version). You can imagine yourself in the place of another person whom you know and try to feel how he feels the world. You can just concentrate on wanting to help people.

According to the researchers, this type of meditation is not just an exercise in spiritual growth.

HAS IT HAPPENED TO YOU TO BORN FOR SOMETHING TO SUCH A DEGREE, WHAT DO YOU FEEL FATIGUE? HOW THE BUDTO BURNS INSIDE. SUCH CONDITION IS ESPECIALLY CHARACTERED FOR SOCIAL WORKERS, TEACHERS AND DOCTORS, IT IS A KNOWN AND JOURNALIST.

So, after a proper training meditation of compassion, you can not just better understand the motives of other people and sincerely empathize with them - this process will not take away your strength . People practicing meditation compassion and kindness, increased activity in the areas of the brain responsible for mercy and positive emotions.

The path to a better future

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In 2005, the Dalai Lama was invited to speak at a conference on neuroscience. A couple of hundred scientists insulted it so much that they demanded to cancel the invitation. Religious leader, they say, nothing to say science. As it turned out, they were wrong and, I hope, now regret their trick.

Meditation is not the prerogative of Buddhists or yogis. Both the Templars, the monks of the Trinity Lavra, and the assassins Rashid ad-Din Sinan were meditating. But only Buddhists and yogis have developed a system of practices that everyone can master - there would be desire and patience. Like any skill, meditation cannot be learned in one day. Studies show a significant difference between the possibilities of novices and experienced meditators.

ADVANCED PRACTICES ARE ABLEABLE FOR THINGS BORDERING TO WONDERS. FOR EXAMPLE, BY ONE EFFORTS OF WILL, THEY CAN DOWN THEIR BRAIN IN A CONDITION OF INCREASED PLASTICITY AND TRAINABILITY - RESEARCHERS WITH WORK BELIEVE TO INSTRUMENTS WHEN SEE INSTANT CHANGE IN CHANGES OF CHRONIC CHINA

Медитация покорила ученых

Another example is the self-immolation of the monk Thich Quang Dyk , whom even the devouring body did not force the flame out of meditation. No one calls you to repeat his action, but the calm of this man who died in the lotus position, and his ability to ignore pain, even involuntarily arouse admiration.

However, all this should not surprise us. It is strange to expect less from people who have perfected the art of controlling their minds for centuries. It is strange to assume that such control of a person over his mind will not affect his brain. Science had only to drop its prejudices in order to understand: meditation is practically a panacea for stress, fatigue, emotional exhaustion, a constant chain of bad thoughts, inability to focus and other disasters of our age of information, the processes in which continue to gain speed.

Now it's up to you.

IF YOU HAVE PREDICTIONS, ASSOCIATED WITH MEDITATION, AND YOU CAN'T DISCLOSE THEM - NOTHING TO BE HINDER. YOU JUST NEVER KNOW THAT YOU CAN LIVE BETTER.

If you're ready to try, start small. Every day, try to make time for yourself. Turn off the phone, find a place where no one will disturb you. You can set the timer for ten minutes. Sit somehow comfortable, not lounging, preferably with a straight back - for this, the edge of an ordinary chair is not bad. Breathe exactly. If necessary, close your eyes, but do not fall asleep.

And just watch your breath, feel the air coming in and out of your body. Just this. If any thought starts to lead you away - and she starts - calmly catch yourself on this and return attention to your breath. If you can repeat it every day for a couple of months, then you will notice tangible changes. You will be less wasted on empty quarrels and conflicts, will be able to better focus on work, conversation or book. Life as a whole will bring much more joy. All this - just ten minutes a day. Hare Hare.

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