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Posts Tagged ‘Johns Hopkins Medical School’

“True meditation practice becomes how you live your life, not how well you sit on a cushion.” That is the conclusion of author, Barbara Stahura in her article “Changing the World, One Brain at a Time” in the May 2012 edition of Science of Mind magazine.

Asserting that that the practice of Mindfulness has the power to heal us emotionally and physically and thus changing the world individually and collectively, Stahura sites the present scientific and medical research findings that point to empirical proof that contemplative practices actually produce healthy physiological changes in the body —  and specifically in the mind and brain of a person.

The Dalai Lama is one of the world’s best known meditators. He is also a life long student of science. He has explored environmental crisis, human rights and neuroscience with his curious and brilliant mind.

Neuroscience research is in its infancy but the Dalai Lama has been involved in a series of dialogues with leading researchers in neuroscience, medicine and psychology since 1989.

His purpose is to serve humanity through the promotion of awareness.  One of his aims is to try to bring to people’s awareness the correlation that medical science is finding between positive mental states and greater health and well-being.

In the 1950’s, the promotion of exercise was not even in the daily mindset of people, for the greater part like it is today. Maybe the black and white television advent of Jack LaLanne and his message began to change that as we sweated in our living rooms while he performed on the sultry island beach.

It is likely that within fifty years, the same thing will happen with meditation. People will come to see it as mental exercise.

The most recent dialogue occurred in 2005, co-sponsored by The Mind and Life Institute, John Hopkins School of Medicine and Georgetown University Medical School.  One of the researchers present in these dialogues is Jon Kabat-Zinn, a pioneer in neuroscience and the clinical uses of meditation.

A transcript of the entire 2005 conference, with intriguing research findings, is included in his book, “The Mind’s Own Physician.” He believes inquiry into both the mind and meditation will continue to open the door on the real nature of the mind and the ways in which training in mindfulness can change the physical brain and also the ways the roles of the mind affect our overall health.

Kabat-Zinn allows that the word “meditation” can be a loaded word for many, who do not want to bring a spiritual connotation to the practice. He states this is not a barrier.  Meditation, he says, is about the cultivation of attention and awareness with an openhearted and non-judgmental attitude.

This, I note, is the same thing that Barbara Marx Hubbard, is describing in the process of Emergence — which she calls going from (and beyond Ego, where all judgment lies) to Essence, where the True Self in peace and grandeur is — and you do this in regular quiet time in your “inner sanctuary.” There you will learn and be all you need to be — and you can bring this gift of your Essence into your world of experience from your time of communion and union in the quiet.

Now, I can see that as changing the world, one person at a time — starting with myself. That seems to be just the exact way it is happening, not only for me but for many others.

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