1000 petals by axinia

the only truth I know is my own experience

Cool breeze proven by science May 26, 2010

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.

 

Meditation: a placebo or a real thing? Interesting scientific results in a 9-year evaluation March 17, 2009

  (image by me)

Scientific studies have consistently found that meditation does not give better results than taking a short nap, listening to pleasant music or thinking pleasant thoughts. However, according to recent research, the application of a new definition of meditation involving “mental silence” appears to have effects substantially greater than this, especially with regard to the impact of stress.
Although more than 3,000 scientific studies exist on meditation within the major scientific databases, only about 4% are reports on randomised controlled trials (RCTs) ¾ the only way to reliably exclude the placebo effect.

Researchers who have systematically evaluated these RCTs consistently find that meditation, as it is practised and defined in western society (eg. relaxation, attention focusing and mindfulness), is little more than a sophisticated way of generating a placebo effect. Descriptions of the meditative experience that originated in ancient India, however, reveal that a key feature of meditation is the experience of mental silence. Western definitions have not emphasised this feature.

Currently, the Royal Hospital for Women’s Meditation Research Program (MRP) is systematically evaluating the mental silence perspective of meditation. Over the past nine years, a multifaceted evaluation program has been conducted to evaluate the effect of mental silence on a variety of health and behavioural factors, especially stress. (more…)

 

 
%d bloggers like this: