An Awakened Brain: MyOm's Experiment with Brainwaves and Meditation

 

When your mind changes, your brain changes too. A famous psychologist, Donald Hebb has stated that when neurons fire together, they wire together - mental activity actually creates new neural structures (Hebb 1949; LeDoux 2003). This mental activity is captured as brainwaves. 

Neurons in the brain communicate with each other through electrical signals. These electrical signals when categorised into different frequency ranges, give rise to brainwaves. There are majorly five categories of brainwaves - 

Delta Waves (0.5-3 Hz)

These are the slowest of all brainwaves which are mostly dominant during deepest meditation and dreamless sleep.

Theta Waves (3-8 Hz)

These brainwaves occur most often in sleep but are also dominant in deep meditation. Theta is our gateway to learning, memory, and intuition. Whenever there is disconnect from the outside world and more focus on signals from within, theta waves are dominant.

Alpha Waves (8-12 Hz)

These brainwaves are usually associated with wakeful relaxation which means whenever the mind is at rest in a wakeful state. Alpha waves are dominant if someone engages in deep and relaxed breathing.

Beta Waves (12-35 Hz)

These brainwaves are associated with wakeful consciousness. Beta waves are dominant when someone is engaged in daily routine tasks associated with the outside world.

Gamma Waves (35-42 Hz)

Gamma waves are the fastest of all brainwaves. They are associated with high electrical activity when a large number of neurons from different parts of the brain are in synchrony. These waves are dominant when someone is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement and enjoyment in the process of the activity.

 

An excerpt from the book, Buddha's Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love & Wisdom by Rick Hanson and Richard Mendius states that "An awakening mind means an awakening brain. Throughout the history, unsung men and women and great teachers alike have cultivated remarkable mental states by generating remarkable brain states. For instance, when experienced Tibetan practitioners go deep into meditation, they produce uncommonly powerful and pervasive gamma brainwaves of electrical activity, in which unusually large regions of neural real estate pulse in synchrony 30-80 times a second (Lutz et al. 2004), integrating and unifying large territories of the mind."

A meditator can explain his awakened mind by expressing what he feels during transcendental state but it's hard to present any data on the awakened brain. MyOm's experiment of recording of brainwaves during meditation is an attempt to show the powerful synchrony in the awakened brain when the mind is also awakened.

However, the question still remains unanswered if an awakened mind triggers awakening of the brain or an awakened brain triggers awakening of the mind. MyOm hopes to solve this mystery soon :)

 

Reach us at info@myom.in to know more about the experiment.


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