The Science of Yoga (Part 1 – Meditation)

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this is an ancient Indian dude with far too much time on his hands and These guys are [cutting-edge] pioneering brain scientists now. What could they possibly have in common? Welcome to the science of Yoga and what it means to [us] part 1 let’s Go back thousands of [years] to the ancient world the first mystics would leave their towns Villages and everyday distractions To find solace [in] the [forests] there in isolation they studied their own inner experience As they looked within what they found was a myriad of thoughts and emotions. Just like most people would and also, like most people these thoughts seemed to cause [anxiety] and seemed to serve no real practical purpose with but with Vigilant observation the mystics found that when they stopped feeding their thoughts they started to get quieter and quieter They were quite literally changing their state of mind from the inside out the mystics in India called this practice Vipassana Which means clear seeing? Today, we call [it] meditation Now fast-forward to the early 2000s scientists studying the brain and the effect of brain exercises started to make some surprising discoveries Brain science was still in its infancy [and] in fact up until late into the 20th century It was still thought that the brain was solid like concrete unable to change in its structure But then they discovered a phenomenon called brain plasticity it seemed the brain could actually change It could be shaped and rewired by exercise and guess what they found had the power to cause structural changes Yep meditation Several studies found a whole host of structural changes in the brains of people who meditated here are some of the changes they found The default mode Network which could stimulate wandering and aimless thought grooves was quietened down the Amygdala which processes fear and anxiety reduced in size and activity Gray matter in the sensory regions of the brain increased which in turn enhanced sense perception These were startling discoveries, and it became clear [that] there was something to this ancient practice after all But it’s not just neuroscience the field of pSychology also owes some recent developments to this Eastern philosophy the mystics of old times claimed the simple fact With regular insight you’ll see that your thoughts are not real and the recent success of cognitive Talk therapy uses this exact same strategy the subject learns to see the falseness of their own repetitive thinking they’re simply an interpretation of what is going on not the actuality of what’s going on, so [what’s] the difference you might ask well say someone next to you makes a sarcastic remark? This may trigger you to start thinking about a number of possible explanations, and they could all [be] completely false for example She did that on purpose Everyone does this to me. They’re all planning to keep me down Etc See how these thoughts lead to other thoughts which multiplied with each other The Philosophy of Vipassana is to see that these thoughts are nothing more than stories in your head and as you get better They stop multiplying so quickly, but don’t be disheartened it takes practice By the way, you don’t necessarily have [to] look like a yogi or sit like a pretzel to meditate, so whether it’s breathing meditation Watching meditation dancing or fishing meditation. Whatever clears your mind is a great place to start All of these techniques contribute to a healthier mind There is something that brain science is starting to substantiate and it’s what ancient mystics said all those years ago you

 

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