Nov 10, 2014
Stephen Adams, Mail Online: Meditating really is a workout for the mind, according to scientists who have found it can make the brain bigger.
Practicing simple meditation techniques such as concentrating on your breathing helps build denser grey matter in parts of the brain associated with learning and memory, controlling emotions and compassion.
Just eight weeks of meditation can produce structural changes large enough to be picked up by MRI scanners, American scientists have discovered.
Harvard neuroscientist Dr Sara Lazar said: ‘If you use a particular part of your brain, it’s going to grow because you are using it. It really is mental …
Nov 10, 2014
Margaret Jennings, Irish Examiner: Meditation and ‘knowing ourselves in a deeper way’ can reduce our anxieties and fears about getting old, and increase our acceptance.
IN 1981, Timothy Sweeney returned from a long meditation retreat and told his mother, with whom he had a “very difficult” relationship, that he would have to discontinue it, if she didn’t change.
His mother was 65 and had, he says, a “lot of unfinished business, emotional baggage”, and had pain from spinal surgery.
Sweeney, then 27, and his mother were living in California. She decided to do a ten-day meditation retreat with Jack Kornfield.
“She was still herself, the Jewish …
Nov 07, 2014
Lodro Rinzler, Bustle: We’ve all been there. That blind set up/Tinder match/person you flirted with briefly at the party shows up for your first official date and, lo and behold, they’re not at all who you think they were. They represented themselves so badly, so dishonestly, that when you met them you thought they were:
- a successful entrepreneur
- good looking
- sharp as a tack
In the light of day, they are:
- oddly racist
- trying to come up with “the next big app idea” out of their mom’s garage
In today’s dating world, most people do not represent themselves authentically. When …
Nov 06, 2014
Frank Martela, Fulfillment Daily: In a recent conference on Positive Psychology, Pharrell Williams’ song Happy seemed to be everywhere. He asked us to “clap along if you feel like happiness is the truth.” I didn’t clap.
There are certainly many benefits to being happy. Positive emotions broaden our thinking and imagination. Shared positive emotions help us to connect with other people. Being happy might be good for our health too. Furthermore – and this is quite self-evident – it feels good to be happy. But while being happy can be a good thing, pursuing happiness might actually be bad for us. As professor …
Nov 06, 2014
Melanie McDonagh, The Spectator: Separating meditation from faith is a dubious business, morally and sometimes in its effects.
The chances are that by now either you or someone you know well has begun to practise ‘mindfulness’ — a form of Buddhism lite, that focuses on meditation and ‘being in the now’. In the past year or so it’s gone from being an eccentric but harmless hobby practised by contemporary hippies to a new and wildly popular pseudo–religion; a religion tailor-made for the secular West.
Think how hostile an awful lot of companies are to organised religion; to any talk of ‘faith’. Now consider …
Nov 05, 2014
Phaedra Haywood, The New Mexican: Giggles and stocking feet aren’t something normally associated with a courtroom, but that’s what you’ll find if you enter state District Judge Mary Marlowe Sommer’s courtroom on a Thursday afternoon.
Offenders in the First District’s Drug Court and Treatment Court programs are now required to participate in mindfulness and body awareness exercises, Marlowe Sommer said, because studies have shown that they can help reduce recidivism, especially for people who struggle with addictions. The components were added to the court programs about six weeks ago.
Drug Court, aimed at repeat offenders with addiction issues, and Treatment Court, for those …
Nov 05, 2014
For the first time, researchers have shown that practising mindfulness meditation or being involved in a support group has a positive physical impact at the cellular level in breast cancer survivors.
A group working out of Alberta Health Services’ Tom Baker Cancer Centre and the University of Calgary Department of Oncology has demonstrated that telomeres — protein complexes at the end of chromosomes — maintain their length in breast cancer survivors who practise meditation or are involved in support groups, while they shorten in a comparison group without any intervention.
Although the disease-regulating properties of telomeres aren’t fully understood, shortened telomeres are associated with several disease states, as well as cell aging, …
Nov 04, 2014
Practising mindfulness meditation can have a positive physical impact at the cellular level in breast cancer survivors, a new study has found.
Canadian researchers from Alberta Health Services’ Tom Baker Cancer Centre and the University of Calgary Department of Oncology have demonstrated that telomeres – protein complexes at the end of chromosomes – maintain their length in breast cancer survivors who practise meditation or are involved in support groups, while they shorten in a comparison group without any intervention.
Although the disease-regulating properties of telomeres aren’t fully understood, shortened telomeres are associated with several disease states, as well as cell ageing, while longer …
Nov 03, 2014
Elena Weissman, Brown Daily Herald: Practices of mindfulness, such as meditation, may affect more than just the mind. According to a recent study conducted by University researchers, these activities may also potentially benefit cardiovascular health.
Headed by Eric Loucks, assistant professor of epidemiology, the research team measured cardiovascular risk factors and levels of mindfulness among 382 middle-aged people in 2010 as part of the wider New England Family Study. They found a significant correlation between mindfulness and four of the seven risk factors, as well as a positive relationship with physical activity and a negative one with smoking, BMI and fasting glucose.
Oct 31, 2014
Rob Asghar, Forbes: How did something like “mindfulness” become the latest workplace craze anyway? And why are its fans increasingly egging on their colleagues, insisting “You gotta try this stuff”?
The simple answer is that many people now see mindful meditation as a powerful way to quiet their minds, calm their emotions and experience psychological and medical benefits as a result. Many practitioners now liken it to a movement, something that could save our world.
As it spreads, I suspect we’ll see some pushback:
- Some of its more zealous fans will show the proselytizing zeal you associate with those Jehovah’s Witnesses who knock …