At long last scientific verification of “cool breeze” has been published in a scientific journal!
Although studies on cool breeze have already been done in India by Prof UC Rai, they were not published in journals accessible to Western scientists.
The small study demonstrates a skin temperature reduction on the palms of the hands during the experience of mental silence, arising as a result of a single 10 minute session of Sahaja yoga meditation. However when people (non-meditators) were asked to do a simple relaxation exercise, under the same conditions, their skin temperature increased which is the opposite of what occurred for those using the mental silence approach to meditation.
The outcomes of this study therefore suggest that “thoughtless awareness” is both experientially and physiologically different to simple relaxation.
Interestingly, all other studies of (non-Sahaja Yoga) meditation that have studied skin temperature show that skin temperature either increases (i.e. the hand get warmer) or does not change during the meditation session, leading scientists to assume that meditation is the same as relaxation, which also provokes skin temperature increases.
So this study not only shows how Sahaja Yoga is different from other forms of meditation but also supports the idea that meditation is more correctly defined by the experience of mental silence rather than relaxation. This definition of meditation may well be the best way to differentiate meditation from relaxation, hypnosis, sleep, reiki, chi-gong, TM and other practices.
Manocha R, Black D, Ryan J, Stough C, Spiro D, Changing Definitions of Meditation: Physiological Corollorary, Journal of the International Society of Life Sciences, Vol 28 (1), Mar 2010
Read the whole article here.