Meditation reshapes the brain

by admin Dec 1, 2005 Add comment

Filed under: Meditation

An article on Indystar.com talks about the results of a study which shows how certain areas of the brain show increased thickness in people who meditate regularly.

Even though the study showed only certain areas of the brain to be affected, like the ones that deal with thought and emotion, it kind of got me wondering if there is more to this. If the brain is a muscle and meditation is the weights to strengthen and build that muscle, then can one through meditation strengthen all parts of grey matter? Kind of like building your body using weights, if you only do dumbbell curls, then you will probably see your biceps build, not your hamstrings.

Another thought that occurred was can that strength gained through meditation pass on to your children, ala evolution? If ones ancestors had a tradition of memorizing and reciting the thousands of verses in the Vedas, could that equate to one being born with a stronger memory? An example that comes to mind is from the movie March of the Penguins, how an emperor penguin remembers where to go, and what to do, it’s a memory that they are born with, because it affects their very survival. It raises an interesting question, can a practice of meditation over generations, trigger some innate rule in us, that decides the strengths gained from this practice now qualifies as a necessity for the survival of the species, and hence will be remembered and passed on from generation to generation?

Finally, isn’t is strange that the exercise of meditation works by doing nothing, or are we doing a lot? By reaching a state of no thought, are we actually working the brain to it’s limits? If a thoughtless mind only affects a certain area of the brain, what would it take to do a full brain workout?!

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