Consciousness
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Consciousness
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Meditate Your Way To A More Creative Mind

Meditate Your Way To A More Creative Mind | Consciousness | Scoop.it

Re: the research of therapist and meditation teacher named Ron Alexander.


"Mindfulness helps you to build what I call 'mind strength,' " Alexander says. "Your awareness and consciousness become really toned. This is an excellent strategy for becoming successful in your profession, as well as the bigger game of transforming yourself and the people who work with and for you."


Alexander's metaphor is grounded in science. In a move partly spurred by recent improvements in the resolution of computer-generated brain images as well as advances in stem-cell research, neuroscientists have been learning that our brains are more malleable than was once presumed. "A decade ago, we thought you got what you were given at birth and that was pretty much it," says Joshua Aronson, a psychologist at New York University who studies intellectual performance. "But now we know the number of brain cells can increase throughout your life through neurogenesis. There's great evidence that shows if you really work on a skill, the part of the brain associated with that skill grows. The mind is like a muscle. If you don't keep exercising it, it will atrophy."


When adults practice juggling, for example, gray-matter volume in motor areas increases after just two weeks. A classic series of experiments showed that London taxi drivers, who go through detailed training to memorize their city's layout, emerge with enlarged hippocampal regions, which are associated with memory.


But can intelligence and creativity really be as "neuroplastic" as memory and motor skills? Intelligence, much less creativity, has not been conclusively linked with any one area in the brain. The closest analogues are the so-called executive functions, brain systems involved in planning, integrating of sensory information, and abstract thinking, that are thought to be concentrated in the prefrontal cortex. There is, says Aronson, a way to improve executive functioning, and it's the very same practice prescribed by Alexander: mindfulness meditation. In fact, Aronson is currently planning a meditation study with undergrads at NYU. "Some studies show that people who do mindfulness meditation gain as much as 10 IQ points," he says. "What that seems to indicate is that it works on the ability to screen out irrelevant information, to clear out the mind of distractions, and to focus intently on relevant stimuli, which frees up resources to solve problems."


Fast Company

Anya Kamenetz

18 May 2011

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Dibyendu De's comment, December 5, 2012 8:09 PM
Thanks for sharing.. Some quantification as justification for obsessively Left Brained ones.
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Meditation fights flu better than pills - Times of India

Meditation fights flu better than pills - Times of India | Consciousness | Scoop.it

Meditation could be very useful at preventing winter ailments than popping vitamins or herbal remedies as "insurance policy" to stave off colds and flu, a new study has revealed.


According to a study from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, adults who meditated or did moderately intense exercise, such as a brisk walk, for eight weeks suffered fewer colds than those who did nothing, the Daily Mail reported.


Previous research has found that mindfulness meditation may improve mood, decrease stress, and boost immune function.

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Spanda!

Spanda! | Consciousness | Scoop.it

Spanda is a Sanskrit term – derived from the root spadi: “to move a little” (kimcit calana) – for the subtle creative pulse of the universe as it manifests into the dynamism of living form. (...)


It might be described as the essence of a wave in the ocean of consciousness. An impulse or desire to create and enjoy, likened to an eternal spring, joyfully overflowing its inner essence into manifestation and inspiration, yet ever full, complete and unchanging. (...)


"Spanda is the pulsation of the ecstasy of the divine consciousness", as Abinahavagupta (975-1025 c.e.) defines it. When we sense this pulsation inside us, we are sensing our own personal spark of that huge, primordial life force. It is the energy behind the breath, the heartbeat, and the movement of our thoughts and feelings. It is also the source of all our inner experiences. When we get deep into ourselves, we realize that this throb, this subtle pulsation, is actually ‘meditating’ us.


http://www.spanda.org/SPANDAJOURNAL_C&D2.0_L.pdf


Image via @SpandaNetwork

HT @cyber_shaman


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danijel drnić's curator insight, March 19, 2013 4:29 PM

..i stvarno je tako.

danijel drnić's comment, March 19, 2013 4:31 PM
..there is circle I like to take for good example..and it goes something like this : TOUGH-WORD-LETTER-DEED. How can't this be real. I love this article. It say the true.
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Talking To Your Mind

Talking To Your Mind | Consciousness | Scoop.it

The thoughts our brain/mind produces include situations we have yet to experience, yet are fearful of, angry or worried about. We’re pretty much creatures of habit, after all, and our habits go back thousands of years. Much of our behavior is reactionary, initiated when we’re faced with situations that cause us to be fearful or angry. Our primitive brains – specifically the amygdala, take us into fight-or-flight mode in order to survive. Within seconds our brains are flooded with chemicals, our heart-rate changes, our blood rushes from our extremities to our body’s core to guard our important organs, and we’re prepared to run or stand our ground and fight the saber-toothed tiger.

 

Problem is, we’re not fighting saber-toothed tigers anymore.

 

via Intent Blog

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Jon Kabot-Zinn presents Wherever You Go, There You Are

Jon Kabot-Zinn presents Wherever You Go, There You Are | Consciousness | Scoop.it

Kabat-Zinn - It's brutally simple. Not simple-minded, but brutally simple, but it's also not easy. And I want to emphasize that it's not easy. And it's not for everyone. You've got to be willing to actually be something of an athlete of your own consciousness, so to speak.

 

via Bodhi Tree BOOKSTORE

more highlights : http://diigo.com/0mqc5 

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What is Consciousness?

What is Consciousness? | Consciousness | Scoop.it

Sometimes, in order to critically analyze a mysterious and complex phenomenon, it helps to define its opposite.

 

We might gain traction if we think about what it means to be unconscious or have our conscious minds altered in some way by hypnosis, meditation or drugs.

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Meditation expertise changes experience of pain

Meditation expertise changes experience of pain | Consciousness | Scoop.it

Meditation can change the way a person experiences pain, according to a new study by UW–Madison neuroscientists.


Meditation can change the way a person experiences pain, according to a new study by UW–Madison neuroscientists. The researchers found that during a pain experiment, expert meditators felt the discomfort as intensely as novice meditators, but the experience wasn't as unpleasant for them. Images of brain regions linked to pain and anxiety may explain why.


Compared to novice meditators, experts had less activity in the anxiety regions. Not only did the experts feel less anxiety immediately before pain stimulation, they also became accustomed to the pain more quickly after being exposed repeatedly to it.


The scientists, based at the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds and the Waisman Laboratory for Brain Imaging and Behavior, run a robust program analyzing the effects of meditation. The new study adds to a growing body of knowledge in the young field.


The study involved an advanced form of mindfulness mediation called Open Presence, but other kinds of meditation also may provide benefits, says Antoine Lutz, first author on the paper appearing recently in NeuroImage.


"We predict that mindfulness-based stress reduction and related programs should also lead to a decrease in some of the elaborate brain processes that account for distress as people deal with pain," he says.



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Genpo Roshi Explaining Big Mind

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How to Misuse Your Power of Thought

How to Misuse Your Power of Thought | Consciousness | Scoop.it

“Thinking about sense-objects will attach you to sense-objects; grow attached, and you become addicted; thwart your addiction, it turns to anger; be angry, and you confuse your mind; confuse your mind, you forget the lesson of experience; forget experience, you lose discrimination; lose discrimination, and you miss life’s only purpose.”
–Bhagavad Gita 2:62, 63

 

you may find value in reading Swami Nirmalananda Giri's lesson in its entirety. - @Ddrrnt

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You are not the mind

Concentration, meditation, and learning to direct the mind according to your own will, prove that you are not your mind. Can the mind control itself, or does it need some higher power to control it? This leads you to realize that you are separate from the mind, otherwise how can you master it? It is you, the real you that is directing the mind. The ability to focus the mind or stop its activities in accordance with your willpower awakens the understanding that you are not your mind, and this is a great step toward self-realization.
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Memes, minds and selves: competing for consciousness

Memes, minds and selves: competing for consciousness | Consciousness | Scoop.it

"... the theory is similar to Dennett’s but there are two fundamental differences. First Dennett calls the self a "benign user illusion". I suggest it is far from benign, and is the root source of human suffering and delusion. The creation of a selfplex means we live our lives as a lie; constantly falling into dualism, and prey to all the emotions concerned with protecting our false self from harm or dissolution. Second, for Dennett consciousness "is itself a huge complex of memes", which implies that if all the memes were dropped consciousness would cease. An alternative is that the memes of the selfplex obscure and distort consciousness rather than constituting it."

 

"This is a an empirical question, well suited to first-person research with available methods. Meditation and mindfulness can be seen as techniques for dropping memes (or meme-weeding), their ultimate effect being to dismantle the selfplex. We may ask those who have completed this path what happens. I believe their answer is that dualism falls away but consciousness (though it may be transformed) does not."

 

- Susan Blackmore

 

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