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The Physiology of Meditation

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Abstract

Reports that Ss during the practice of transcendental meditation manifested physiological signs of a wakeful, hypometabolic state: (a) reductions in oxygen consumption, carbon dioxide elimination, and rate and volume of respiration; (b) decreased blood-lactate level; (c) slowed heartbeat; (d) increased skin resistance, and (e) an EEG pattern of slow alpha waves with occasional theta-wave activity. These changes bore little resemblance to physiological changes associated with other relaxed states, e.g., sleep and hypnosis. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)

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... To understand the behaviour of Duc, the history of meditative neuroscience with an emphasis on the Yogi, Samadhi, Fakir, and expert meditators is worth reviewing. The present discussion is not meant to be another review on meditative science, several articles have performed this task gauging our progress from physiology (pulmonary and cardiology effects) to neurobiology (Bishop, 2002;Cahn & Polich, 2006;Canter, 2003;Canter & Ernst, 2003;Chambers, Gullone, & Allen, 2009;Delmonte, 1984;Deshmukh, 2006;Dobkin, 2008;Gelderloos, Walton, Orme-Johnson, & Alexander, 1991;Hofmann, Grossman, & Hinton, 2011;Jedrczak, Miller, & Antoniou, 1987;Jevning, Wallace, & Beidebach, 1992;Keng, Smoski, & Robins, 2011;Lindberg, 2005;Meyer et al., 2012;Orme-Johnson, 2006;Ott, Norris, & Bauer-Wu, 2006;Rubia, 2009;Salmon et al., 2004;Salomons & Kucyi, 2011;Shapiro & Giber, 1978;Wallace & Benson, 1972;Woolfolk, 1975;Zeidan, Grant, Brown, McHaffie, & Coghill, 2012). The current article aims to discuss expert meditators such as Duc, attempting to gain an understanding into how meditation allows one to become a monk on fire. ...
... bradycardia) and breathing (i.e. bradypnea; Wallace & Benson, 1972). An emphasis on breathing is either central or an indirect byproduct of many meditation experiences. ...
... Please see figure for more details (Figure 3). 8. Yoga meaning union has a general definition: A higher consciousness achieved through a rested and relaxed body and mind (yogi-yoga practitioner; Wallace & Benson, 1972). Samadhi is considered by practitioners a higher meditative form in which they become oblivious to both internal and external environmental stimuli, allowing them to reach a state of ecstasy (i.e. ...
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Thich Quang Duc was a Buddhist monk protesting in South Vietnam, when his image captivated the world. Malcolm Browne won the World Press Photo of the Year in 1963 photographing Duc committing an act of self-immolation, burning to death. Current research into mindfulness and meditation gives neuroscientists, scientists, and clinicians a glimpse into the physiology, structure and function of the brain of expert meditators such as Duc. A growing body of literature indicates that basic breathing techniques and meditation can alter cortical structures with very little training. Structural and functional MRI has revealed the anterior cingulate and insular cortex are altered in functioning due to meditation and mindfulness practice. Continued research into mindfulness and expert meditators should help us gain a greater understanding into how a monk like Duc was able to commit such a powerful behavioral act, becoming the monk on fire.
... przez kardiologa Herberta Bensona [Benson i Klipper, 1975]. Stan fizjologiczny określany tym terminem charakteryzuje się między innymi obniżeniem ciśnienia tętniczego krwi, szybkości oddechu [Wallace i Benson, 1972] oraz zwiększeniem synchronizacji półkul mózgowych [Jacobs, 2001]. Mówiąc krótko, wywoływanie OR stosuje się w celu obniżenia poziomu napięcia i stresu. ...
... ]. Świadome oddziaływanie na wzrost HRV za pomocą kontroli i modulacji oddechu (zazwyczaj z częstotliwością rezonansową, w przybliżeniu 0,1 Hz) wywołuje obniżenie objawów napięcia emocjonalnego [Wallace i Benson, 1972;Vaschillo, Vaschillo i Lehrer, 2006]. Wzrost ciśnienia tętniczego krwi zwiększa z kolei aktywność części współczulnej autonomicznego układu nerwowego poprzez zwiększoną aktywność baroreceptorów. ...
... joga). Mają one na celu pobudzenie przywspółczulnej części autonomicznego układu nerwowego [Wallace i Benson, 1972]. Współcześnie efektywnym sposobem wywoływania OR jest charakteryzowana technika biofeedbacku HRV, oparta na pomiarze zmienności rytmu serca [Wheat i Larkin, 2010]. ...
... Meditators have also demonstrated the ability to lower their metabolic rates significantly. In one study, oxygen consumption (a measure of metabolic rate) during meditation in three subjects showed a 16% decrease within less than 30 minutes (Wallace and Benson 1972). When we speak of metabolism or metabolic rate what we are really considering is the sum total of all of the chemical reactions taking place in every cell throughout the body. ...
... As temperature goes up, so does metabolic rate and as temperature decreases we see a corresponding decrease in metabolism. Humans (even meditating ones), as a rule, do not experience large swings in core body temperature (that is the temperature deep within the chest or abdomen) and the decrease in metabolism seen in Wallace and Benson's (1972) study cannot be attributed to this temperature effect. Naturally, the lower one can decrease metabolism, the slower the utilization of oxygen and, importantly for humans, the slower the production and buildup of carbon dioxide in the body. ...
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As a physiologist interested in contemplative practice and meditation I have enjoyed the opportunity of lecturing to students engaged in the study of contemplation. My pedagogic role was to expose them to some of what we know of the biological phenomena that are or may be taking place during various meditative states — explicating for them the details of how the human body actually works. In the course of working with students and faculty engaged in meditation I formulated the following questions relating biological science and contemplative practice: What should a practitioner or a teacher of meditation know about basic human anatomy and physiology? Is it necessary for someone engaging in contemplative practice to understand how the human organism is actually put together and how it works? Will knowledge of how the various organs work with one another enhance one's ability to meditate or can we dispense with this information and suffer no consequences in our practice? The fundamental importance of somatic or physical phenomena in meditative practice (for example in control of breath, heart rate, or metabolism) and most people's lack of understanding of basic human anatomy and physiology led me to answer yes to all of these questions. In this paper I outline the physiological knowledge and particular insights I have found useful for enhancing a person's understanding of how we breathe, how we regulate our heart rate, and how we control our metabolic rate in 'control' or non-meditative states and the kinds of changes we might expect in a meditating subject. I link what is perhaps the fundamental principle of physiology, the concept of 'homeostasis', with the balance and integration of the body systems sought by people engaged in contemplation. Mind-body harmony or an enhanced awareness of this linkage between the mind and the body can, in my opinion, be more fully realized when coupled with an understanding of what Hippocrates called, 'the nature of the body', that is, what the body actually does and how it does it.
... Physical and mental relaxation, as achieved during relaxation techniques, has physiological effects such as an increase in EEG alpha activity, reduction in respiratory rate, oxygen consumption, arterial lactate levels and other sympathetic activity. 1,3,4 The ancient yogic scriptures write about many variants of relaxation technique. Among these the SHAVASANA is a well established technique of yoga to relax the body & mind 5 . ...
... Like wise other authors also observed reduction in respiratory rate, oxygen consumption, arterial lactate levels and other sympathetic activity. 1,3,4 This is also supported by findings of Stefano GB etall 2 who narrated that relaxation has the opposite of the stress response. ...
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Stress affects mainly on autonomic nervous system of individuals and relaxation techniques has the opposite of the stress response. 61-point relaxation technique is one of the relaxation techniques but there are some factors on which its grading of response is dependent. So this study is aimed to find out the effect of age on response of 61-point relaxation technique on cardio-vascular variables. Study was conducted on 30 healthy females of equals to or less than 30 years and 30 healthy females of more than 30 years. Before and after relaxation technique data regarding systolic blood pressure (SBP), diastolic blood pressure (DBP), Heart rate (HR) and respiratory rate (RR) were recorded. Significance of difference in means of baseline and end line data SBP, DBP, HR and RR of both the groups were inferred by unpaired't' test. It was found that there was significant reduction of SBP, DBP, HR and RR in both the groups but significant difference in reduction was observed only in SBP and RR not in DBP and HR. Reduction in SBP was significantly more in more than 30 years than the other group whereas reduction in RR was just reverse.
... Em meio a essa crescente demanda, pesquisadores de diversos campos científicos passaram a desenvolver estudos relativos às práticas orientais. Os primeiros trabalhos neste sentido iniciaram-se na década de 50 (Wallace & Benson, 1972), mas foi principalmente nos últimos 30 anos que houve um grande crescimento da investigação neste setor (Cahn et al., 2017;Engert et al., 2017;Kiran et al., 2017). Pesquisas realizadas neste campo envolvem diversas áreas do conhecimento, principalmente no campo da saúde, como as neurociências (Lau et al., 2015;Taren et al., 2015), psicologia (Orellana-Rios et al., 2018), psiquiatria (Schonert-Reichl et al., 2015), medicina (Yoshihara et al., 2014), entre outras. ...
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The therapeutic use of meditative practices on the stress’ effects is recognized for its efficiency with a long history of scientific investigation. In this field, the Eastern traditions stand out, with a wide range of existing techniques, on which different research metodologies have been adopted to investigate the underlying neurophysiological mechanisms and the on stress’ effects and associated clinical conditions. This systematic review aims to identify the main characteristics of the investigative and methodological context regarding the use of cortisol measures to assess the therapeutic effects of meditative practices on stress. The survey was conducted using the PubMed and Web of Science platforms, with adaptation to the PRISMA protocol guidelines. Studies that used cortisol as the main biological marker of stress were included. A total of 52 articles were organized according to the main methodological characteristics identified in the review. The results were organized and discussed considering the main experimental design observed such short-term interventional studies; longitudinal researches for clinical and non-clinical population and cross-sectional comparisons between advanced meditators with a control group or beginners.
... 94 Vgl. Wallace, R. K. (1970); Wallace, R. K., et al. (1971); Wallace, R. K., et al. (1972);Vester, F. (1995), S. 126. 95 Vester, F. (1995), S. 126;Wallace, K. ( ), S. 1752 In der folgenden Abbildung 4 wird die EEG-Kohärenz in Abhängigkeit vom zeitlichen Umfang der Meditationserfahrung dargestellt. ...
... as compared to relaxation ? an increase in alpha amplitudes was observed (Wallace, 1970; Wallace and Benson, 1972; Banquet, 1973; Glueck and Stroebel, 1975) which appeared to be most pronounced in the frontal cortex (Kesterson, 1989; Sudsuang et al., 1991; Jevning et al., 1992). An increase in theta power was reported by several authors in different types of meditation (e.g. ...
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Visiting the dentist is often accompanied by apprehension or anxiety. People, who suffer from specific dental phobia, a disproportional fear of dental procedures show psychological and physiological symptoms which make dental treatments difficult or impossible. For such purposes, hypnosis is often used in dental practice as an alternative for a number of treatments adjuvant or instead of sedation or general anesthetic, as medication is often associated with risks and side effects. This is the first study to address the effects of a brief dental hypnosis on the fear processing structures of the brain in dental phobics using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). 12 dental phobics (DP; mean 34.9 years) and 12 healthy controls (CO; mean 33.2 years) were scanned with a 3T MRI whole body-scanner observing brain activity changes after a brief hypnotic invervention. An fMRI event-related design symptom provocation task applying audio-visual pseudorandomized strong phobic stimuli were presented in order to maximize the fearful reactions during scanning with video sets; control videos showed the use of familiar electronic household equipment. In DP group, main effects of fear condition were found in the left amygdala, bilateral ACC, bilateral insula and bilateral hippocampus (R>L). During hypnosis DP showed a significantly reduced activation in all of these areas (p<0.01). Reduced neural activity patterns were also found in the control group (p<0.01). No amygdala activation was detected in healthy subjects in the two experimental conditions.Compared to DP, CO showed less bilateral activation in the insula and ACC (p<0.01) in the awake condition. Thus, anxiety-provoking stimuli such as undergoing dental surgery, endodontic treatments or insufficient anaesthetics, can be effectively reduced under hypnosis. The present study gives scientific evidence that hypnosis is a powerful and successful method for inhibiting the reaction of the fear circuitry structures.
... Previous studies investigating the cardiometabolic responses to yoga utilized Hatha yoga methods and concentrated on the meditation portion of yogic practices, typically reporting that subjects enter a hypometabolic state during meditation. 19,26,27 Danucalov et al., 28 investigated the cardiorespiratory and metabolic changes during the pranayama breathing exercises and meditation portion of a Hatha yoga session in male and female yoga instructors. They found that oxygen uptake increased during the breathing exercises when compared to resting and during meditation. ...
... Therefore, blood pressure could be reduced through the reduction of the SNS's activity (McGrady et al., 1981;Patel et al., 1981). As a matter of fact, earlier studies using PMR and other types of relaxation had a similar impact on heart rate (Wallace, 1970, Wallace andBenson, 1972) and blood pressure (Detay et al., 1969. ...
Article
Purpose: To explore the effect of Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR) and Guided Imagery (GI),in reducing anxiety levels among parents of children diagnosed with any type of malignancy receiving active treatment at a Paediatric Oncology Unit in Republic of Cyprus and in Greece. Method: A randomized non-blinded control trial was conducted between April 2012 to October 2013, at two public paediatric hospitals. Fifty four eligible parents of children hospitalized with a malignancy were randomly assigned to the intervention (PMR and GI) (n = 29) and a control group (n = 25). The study evaluated the changes in anxiety levels(HAM-A) and mood changes(POMSb). Results: There was a statistically significant difference in the mean scores of the subjects in the intervention group in HAM-A scale between the T0 (14.67 ± 9.93) and T1 (11.70 ± 8.15) measurements (p = 0.008) compared to the control group in which a borderline difference (16.00 ± 11.52 vs 13.33 ± 8.38) was found (p = 0.066). The effect size for the intervention group was low to moderate (0.37). Regarding mood changes, there was a statistically significant difference in tension for parents in the intervention group between T0 and T1 (11.15 ± 5.39 vs 9.78 ± 4.26), (p = 0.027). Furthermore, the parents in the intervention group were significantly less sad following the intervention (T1) (2.81 ± 1.07 vs 2.19 ± 1.21), (p = 0.001), and felt significantly less tense (2.93 ± 0.91 vs 2.26 ± 0.90), (p = 0.001) and anxiety (2.63 ± 1.21 vs 2.19 ± 1.07), (p = 0.031) compared to those in the control group. Conclusions: These findings provided evidence on the positive effect of the combination of PMR and GI in reducing anxiety and improving mood states in parents of children with malignancy.
... Therefore, blood pressure could be reduced through the reduction of the SNS's activity (McGrady et al., 1981;Patel et al., 1981). As a matter of fact, earlier studies using PMR and other types of relaxation had a similar impact on heart rate (Wallace, 1970, Wallace andBenson, 1972) and blood pressure (Detay et al., 1969. ...
... Physiological outcome refers to bodily changes because of stimuli responses (Mnich et al., 2019;Salomon, 2013). Mindfulness-based interventions can reduce heart and respiratory rates, hypertension symptoms, and skin conductance and pain levels (Zeidan et al., 2010;Cahn & Polich, 2006;Delmonte, 1984Delmonte, , 1985Wallace and Benson, 1972;Ditto, Eclache, & Goldman, 2006;Dahl & Lundgren, 2006;Hilton et al., 2016) and increase heart rate variability (Krygier et al., 2013), which is associated with well-being and positive affect. ...
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Virtual reality (VR) is increasingly being used in the field of mindfulness, but the effectiveness of VR-based mindfulness interventions is unclear. This systematic review of empirical studies was performed to assess the effectiveness of VR-based mindfulness interventions on psychological and physiological outcomes in adults based on five databases. Databases were reviewed from the start of the records to February 21, 2020. Nine studies met the inclusion criteria and consisted of 236 participants. Studies were principally examined for psychological and physiological outcomes, such as anxiety, depression, and pain level. VR-based mindfulness interventions were generally associated with positive outcomes in relation to most measures. Nevertheless, there is an argument regarding the effectiveness of VR-based mindfulness interventions compared with traditional mindfulness-based interventions (MBIs). Overall, VR-based mindfulness interventions do not have the potential to exert a positive impact on individuals’ psychological and physiological outcomes. However, the absence of follow-up studies might not allow sufficient time to illustrate the psychological and physiological outcome changes or catch the potential long-term effectiveness of VR-based mindfulness interventions. Therefore, further long-term randomized controlled trials with standardized psychometric measures are required.
... Because LC activity is known to vary with CO2, it is important to consider not only the level of blood-CO2 but also the sensitivity of the organism to it. There is evidence that CO2 is reduced during meditation (Wallace & Benson, 1972;Wolkove, et al., 1984) and studies also suggest that CO2-sensitivity in the respiratory centers of the brainstem is decreased with prolonged practice of pranayama (Joshi, 1992;Miyamura, 2002;Stanescu, et al., 1981). If true, this could cause a reduction in the amplitude and variability of the LC oscillation at respiratory frequency. ...
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The locus coeruleus (LC) has established functions in both attention and respiration. Good attentional performance requires optimal levels of tonic LC activity, and must be matched to task consistently. LC neurons are chemosensitive, causing respiratory phrenic nerve firing to increase frequency with higher CO2 levels, and as CO2 level varies with the phase of respiration, tonic LC activity should exhibit fluctuations at respiratory frequency. Top-down modulation of tonic LC activity from brain areas involved in attentional regulation, intended to optimize LC firing to suit task requirements, may have respiratory consequences as well, as increases in LC activity influence phrenic nerve firing. We hypothesize that, due to the physiological and functional overlaps of attentional and respiratory functions of the LC, this small neuromodulatory nucleus is ideally situated to act as a mechanism of synchronization between respiratory and attentional systems, giving rise to a low-amplitude oscillation that enables attentional flexibility, but may also contribute to unintended destabilization of attention. Meditative and pranayama practices result in attentional, emotional, and physiological enhancements that may be partially due to the LC's pivotal role as the nexus in this coupled system. We present original findings of synchronization between respiration and LC activity (via fMRI and pupil dilation) and provide evidence of a relationship between respiratory phase modulation and attentional performance. We also present a mathematical dynamical systems model of respiratory-LC-attentional coupling, review candidate neurophysiological mechanisms of changes in coupling dynamics, and discuss implications for attentional theory, meditation, and pranayama, and possible therapeutic applications.
... motivou-o a realizar a primeira pesquisa sobre o tema com controle dos parâmetros fisiológicos, apresentada na Universidade da Califórnia em 1970 como tese de doutorado, intitulada Os efeitos fisiológicos da meditação transcendental: uma proposição do quarto maior estado de consciência. Esta pesquisa sugeriu a existência de um novo estado de consciência, responsável por alterações como aumento da resistência galvânica da pele, aumento da intensidade de ondas alfa lentas e atividade ocasional de ondas teta, o que veio a demarcar o campo da Fisiologia da Meditação (WALLACE; BENSON, 1972;KOZASA, 2006). ...
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Resumo Este artigo analisa as evidências de estudos observacionais que avaliaram o desempenho es-portivo de atletas sob programas de meditação. A pesquisa foi realizada nas bases: LILACS, SCIELO, PubMed e MEDLINE. Qualificaram-se as evidências pela escala PEDro e tabula-ram-se os protocolos utilizados para o treino, os parâmetros avaliados e os efeitos da medita-ção na performance e as modalidades esportivas. Treze trabalhos foram analisados e apresen-taram associação positiva entre meditação e aumento da performance esportiva, entre os quais houve predominância de abordagens comportamentais e avaliação dos preditores cognitivos do desempenho esportivo individual. Apesar dos resultados positivos, os protocolos de medi-tação utilizados demonstraram inconsistências com os fundamentos do treinamento esportivo. Palavras-chave: Meditação. Desempenho atlético. Esporte.
... Changes of heart rate and respiration accompanying a Yogic subjective activity are intended to alter the state of mind alone. 15 It has been seen that certain Yogis can alter the patterns of their cardiovascular functions voluntarily create atrial fibrillations or stop their heart at will. 16 Other types of voluntary control of heart such as tachycardia, bradycardia, reduction of P wave amplitude, achieving T-wave amplitude more than that of R-wave and atrial flutters have also been recorded. ...
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Objectives : 1. To study the effect of forty days of Yogic exercises on cardiac functions in Type 2Diabetics. 2. To study the effect of forty days of Yogic exercises on blood glucose level, glycosylatedhemoglobin.Methods : The present study done in twenty-four Type 2 DM cases provides metabolic and clinicalevidence of improvement in glycaemic control and autonomic functions. These middle-aged subjectswere type II diabetics on antihyperglycaemic and dietary regimen. Their baseline fasting and postprandialblood glucose and glycosylated Hb were monitored along with autonomic function studies. The expertgave these patients training in yoga asanas and they pursued those 30-40 min / day for 40 days underguidance. These asanas consisted of 13 well known postures, done in a sequence. After 40 days of yogaasanas regimen, the parameters were repeated.Results : The results indicate that there was significant decrease in fasting blood glucose levels frombasal 190.08 ± 18.54 in mg / dl to 141.5 ± 16.3 in mg / dl after yoga regimen. The post prandial bloodglucose levels decreased from 276.54 ± 20.62 in mg / dl to 201.75 ± 21.24 in mg / dl, glycosylatedhemoglobin showed a decrease from 9.03 ± 0.29 % to 7.83 ± 0.53 % after yoga regimen. The pulse rate,systolic and diastolic blood pressure decreased significantly (from 86.45 ± 2.0 to 77.65 ± 2.5 pulse /min, from 142.0 ± 3.9 to 126.0 ± 3.2 mm of Hg and from 86.7 ± 2.5 mm of Hg to 75.5 ± 2.1 mm of Hgafter yoga regimen respectively). Corrected QT interval (QTc) decreased from 0.42 ± 0.0 to 0.40 ±0.0.Conclusion : These findings suggest that better glycaemic control and stable autonomic functions canbe obtained in Type 2 DM cases with yoga asanas and pranayama. The exact mechanism as to how thesepostures and controlled breathing interact with somato-neuro-endocrine mechanism affecting metabolicand autonomic functions remains to be worked out. (PDF) Role of yoga in modifying cardiovascular functions in Type 2 diabetic patients.. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/328214156_Role_of_yoga_in_modifying_cardiovascular_functions_in_Type_2_diabetic_patients [accessed Sep 27 2020].
... While dif-ferent meditative disciplines may produce different psychophysiological responses (e.g., see Kasamatsu and Hirai 1966;Anand, China, and Singh 1961), there nonetheless appears to be physiological similarities across disciplines. These are manifested in: a shift toward parasympathetic dominance (e.g., reductions in cortical arousal, in muscle tension, in skin conductance, in cardiac function, and in respiration rate); an overall decrease in frequency of the brain wave pattern to alpha and theta ranges; and an increase in alpha and theta amplitude and regularity in the frontal and central regions of the brain (Davidson 1976; Kasamatsu and Hirai 1966;Gellhorn and Kiely 1972;Taylor, Murphy, and Donovan 1997;Wallace and Benson 1972). ...
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Würzburg, den 18.09.2012 Korrekturfahnen Ihres Beitrages aus der Publikation Ekstasen: Kontexte – Formen – Wirkungen Sehr geehrter Herr Winkelmann, hiermit übersende ich Ihnen die Korrekturfahnen Ihres Beitrages aus der o.g. Publikation. Bitte bringen Sie evtl. notwendige Korrekturen unter Verwendung der gängigen Korrekturzeichen (DIN 16 511) gut les-und eindeutig zuordenbar am Rand der Fahnen an (möglichst mit rotem Fine-liner, Bleistiftkorrekturen können nicht berücksichtigt werden!) und senden Sie uns dann bitte den kompletten Ausdruck so rasch wie möglich wieder zurück. Bitte beachten Sie, dass sich Korrekturen beim gegenwärtigen Stand der Verarbeitung nicht mehr auf den Seitenumbruch auswirken dürfen, sich also auf kleinere Verbesserungen (Orthogra-phie, Interpunktion usw.) beschränken müssen. Änderungen bzw. Überarbeitungen in Form größe-rer Streichungen oder Ergänzungen sind nicht mehr möglich. Die Seitenzahlen im Inhaltsverzeichnis sollten wegen des neuen Umbruchs auf Stimmigkeit über-prüft werden. Wenn während der Durchsicht Fragen auftauchen, wenden Sie sich bitte jederzeit an mich. Könnten Sie mir bitte den Erhalt der Fahnen per Email (matthias.wies@ergon-verlag.de) kurz bes-tätigen und mir evtl. schon sagen, bis wann etwa wir mit dem Rücklauf der Korrekturen rechnen kön-nen? Mit herzlichen Grüßen aus dem Ergon Verlag, Matthias Wies Herstellung
... Benson conducted his studies on transcendental meditation (TM), where the meditator recites a mantra provided to him or her by the meditation instructor, as well as on mindfulness meditation, which is a form of meditation that emphasizes the stabilization of attention by acknowledging discursive sensory events as momentary and observing them without affective reaction or attachment. Benson showed that TM and mindfulness meditation result in physiological changes indicative of a heightened activation of the parasympathetic nervous system and lowered sympathetic activity, such as decreased oxygen consumption and carbon dioxide elimination, lowering of heart and respiratory rates, and a marked decrease in arterial blood lactate concentration (e.g., Benson et al. 1974;Wallace and Benson 1972) as well as psychological outcome measures that indicate relaxation (e.g., Kutz et al. 1985). As these physiological and psychological results are characteristic responses that occur during relaxation, Benson termed the responses that occur during meditation as a relaxation response. ...
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Phenomenological studies suggest the existence of enhanced cognitive states, termed flow or peak experiences, in which specific cognitive processes (e.g., attention, perception) can be dramatically increased for limited durations. Here we review new scientific evidence that shows that specific types of meditation that developed out of certain religious traditions such as Vajrayana (Tantric Buddhism) and Hindu Tantra lead to the enhanced cognitive states, characterized by heightened sympathetic activation and phasic alertness (a significant temporary boost in focused attention). This is in contrast to the meditation practices (Shamatha, Vipassana) from other traditions such as Theravada and Mahayana that elicit heightened parasympathetic activity and tonic alertness. Such findings validate Buddhist scriptural descriptions of heightened arousal during Vajrayana practices and a calm and alert state of mind during Theravada and Mahayana types of meditation. The finding demonstrates the existence of enhanced cognitive states—the unique and energized states of consciousness characterized by a dramatic boost in focused attention.
... Two presented experiments show that pulse decreasing does not depend on the meditation technique. Moreover, this decreasing is also presented in general meditation exploring [9,10], but the decreasing tendency cannot be easily unified. ...
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This paper presents a study related to human psychophysiological activity estimation based on a smartphone camera and sensors. In recent years, awareness of the human body, as well as human mental states, has become more and more popular. Yoga and meditation practices have moved from the east to Europe, the USA, Russia, and other countries, and there are a lot of people who are interested in them. However, recently, people have tried the practice but would prefer an objective assessment. We propose to apply the modern methods of computer vision, pattern recognition, competence management, and dynamic motivation to estimate the quality of the meditation process and provide the users with objective information about their practice. We propose an approach that covers the possibility of recognizing pictures of humans from a smartphone and utilizes wearable electronics to measure the user’s heart rate and motions. We propose a model that allows building meditation estimation scores based on these parameters. Moreover, we propose a meditation expert network through which users can find the coach that is most appropriate for him/her. Finally, we propose the dynamic motivation model, which encourages people to perform the practice every day.
... Most of the alternative methods include psychological treatment, meditation and herbal medicine. Meditation has also been demonstrated to aid in the recover and cure from high blood pressure, alcoholism, drug addiction and stress as confirmed by Wallace & Benson (1972) where medication elevates higher alpha brain waves which was documented with electroencephalographs. ...
... Early studies on subjects practicing Transcendental Meditation showed increased skin resistance, decreased breath rate, oxygen consumption, and plasma lactate, and EEG alpha waves in the frontal areas of the brain during the practice [22][23][24]. The early studies also showed decreased cortisol levels during TM and lower levels of cortisol both during the day and at night in a TM group as compared to controls [25,26]. ...
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In our increasingly stressed world, especially with the COVID-19 pandemic, the activation of the threat network in everyday situations can adversely affect our mental and physical health. Neurophysiological response to these threats/challenges depends on the type of challenge and the individual’s neuroadaptability. Neuroadaptability is defined as the ability of the nervous system to alter responsiveness over time to reoccurring stimuli. Neuroadaptability differs from neuroplasticity, which is more inclusive and refers to the ability of the nervous system to change and learn from any experience. We examine neuroadaptability and how it affects health from the perspective of modern medicine and Ayurveda.
... Other mentions of performance enhancement were seen in that experienced meditators were found to be able to habituate more quickly to distracting and stressful stimuli, showing the anxiety reducing properties of meditation [11,[22][23][24]. Meditation practice was also shown to acutely reduce levels of anxiety [23,25]. Although far from systematic, meditation research did have these occasional mentions of potential performance enhancement. ...
... 300-600 nach Christus ein Leben in Abgeschiedenheit, Kontemplation und Askese führten und die für ihre Methoden im Umgang mit negativen Gedanken und Gefühlen bekannt waren (Grün, 1999). Evagrius hat eine ganz bestimmte Gebetsmethode, die so genannte antirrhetische Methode entwickelt, in deren Rahmen immer wiederkehrenden negativen Gedanken ein anderes, positives Denken entgegengesetzt wird (Hell, 2004;Grün, 1984 (Klein, 2002;Newberg et al., 2003;Shapiro, Schwartz & Santerre, 2002;Wallace & Benson, 1972). ...
Article
Am Ausgangspunkt der vorliegenden Arbeit steht ein als gut gestützt geltender Befund der weltweiten Forschung zum subjektiven Wohlbefinden, welcher besagt, dass sich religiöse Personen im Durchschnitt als leicht glücklicher und zufriedener beschreiben als nicht religiöse Personen. Erklärt wird dieser Befund meist etwa über Gesund- heitsverhalten, soziale Unterstützung, religiöses Coping oder Sinn- und Zweckerleben. Bisher ausgeklammert wurde demgegenüber die Frage, inwiefern religiöse Tätigkeiten selber mit subjektivem Wohlbefinden einhergehen und sich als wohlbefindensfördernd erweisen können. Um diese Wissenslücke zu schliessen, befasst sich die vorliegende Arbeit mit der Qualität des affektiven Erlebens bei religiösen Tätigkeiten. Diese wurde in einer Gruppe von 25 Ordensleuten (15 Frauen), die in Klöstern leben, anhand der so genannten Experience Sampling Method (ESM) untersucht. Hierbei handelt es sich um ein signalkontingentes Zeitstichprobenverfahren, mit dem sich momentanes Geschehen und Erleben im Alltag «in situ» erfassen lässt. Während einer Woche konnten aus dem Alltag der Untersuchungspersonen rund 1200 Momentaufnahmen zum aktuellen Befinden bzw. affektiven Erleben bei unterschiedlichen Alltagstätigkeiten (Arbeits-, Freizeit- und Verpflichtungstätigkeiten sowie religiöse Tätigkeiten) gewonnen werden. Davon dokumentiert rund ein Fünftel das affektive Erleben bei unterschiedlichen religiösen Tätigkeiten. Das affektive Erleben wurde anhand von 10 bipolaren Items erfasst, welche eine konstruktvalide Operationalisierung der drei Dimensionen Positive Aktivierung (PA), Negative Aktivierung (NA) und Valenz (VA) darstellen. Religiöse Tätigkeiten zeichnen sich im Sinne der Theorie Positiver und Negativer Aktivierung durch ein optimales Befinden aus: Während der Ausübung religiöser Tätigkeiten beschreiben sich die Ordensleute als überdurchschnittlich positiv aktiviert, glücklich und zufrieden und im Vergleich zu anderen Momenten im Alltag als deutlich entspannter. Diese affektive Erlebensqualität hebt sich dabei klar vom affektiven Erle- ben bei anderen Alltagstätigkeiten ab. So sind Arbeitstätigkeiten etwa stets auch mit einem gewissen Ausmass an Stresserleben verbunden, während viele Freizeittätigkeiten aufgrund ihres entspannenden und oftmals anforderungsarmen Charakters schnell einmal als eher langweilig erlebt werden. Die Befunde zur Qualität des affektiven Erlebens bei religiösen Tätigkeiten in der Untersuchungsgruppe der Ordensleute lassen sich mit entsprechenden Daten aus der «Normalbevölkerung» (weltliche Personen) absichern. Abstract The starting point for this study is an apparently well-supported finding from worldwide research into subjective well-being, which indicates that religious people describe themselves as happier and more satisfied on average than non-religious people. This finding is generally explained in terms of healthy behaviour, social support, religious coping or a sense of purpose in life. Until now, however, no thought has been given to the question as to how far religious activities per se are associated with subjective well- being and may actually prove to promote well-being. To close this gap, the present study addresses the quality of the affective experience of religious activities. This was investigated in a group of 25 members of religious orders (15 of them women) living in monasteries and convents, based on the Experience Sampling Method (ESM). This is a signal-contingent random sampling process, which allows transient events and experiences in everyday life to be captured “in situ”. In the course of a week, around 1200 snapshots of the current mood or affective experience were obtained from various everyday activities of the subjects (work, leisure and duties as well as religious activities). About a fifth of these document the affective experience during various religious activities. The affective experience was recorded based on 10 bipolar items, which represent a construct-valid operationalisation of the three dimensions of positive activation (PA), negative activation (NA) and valence (VA). Based on the theory of positive and negative activation, religious activities yield optimum results: while engaged in religious activities, the subjects describe themselves as more positively activated, happy and satisfied than usual, and significantly more relaxed than at other times of the day. This quality of affective experience is clearly distinct from the affective experience of other everyday activities. Work, for example, is always associated with a certain amount of stress, while the relaxing and often undemanding character of many leisure activities means that they may even be perceived as rather boring. The findings on the quality of the affective experience of religious activities in the “monastic” subject group are backed up by equivalent data for the “normal population” (secular people).
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David McClelland studierte an der Wesleyan University und an der University of Missouri. Er promovierte 1941 in Yale. Nach Stellungen in Wesleyan und Bryn Mawr, ging er zur Harvard University, wo er zur Zeit Professor am Department of Psychology and Social Relations ist. Seine Forschungen auf dem Gebiet der Motivation, insbesondere der Leistungs-und Machtmotivation, verkörperten einen neuartigen Ansatz. Sie führen zu bedeutenden theoretischen Beiträgen und höchst kreativen Testverfahren. Zusätzlich wurden seine Forschungsergebnisse auf eine Vielzahl von sozialen Problemen angewandt; etwa in solchen Bereichen wie Management und Organisation, Alkoholismus und Zunahme der Produktivität in den Entwicklungsländern.
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Coronary heart disease (CHD) is the most common of all causes of death. In men aged 45–64 years, up to 37% of deaths are attributed to CHD (207). In the U.S.A., the epidemic of CHD has been on the wane since the mid-60’s and on the balance of evidence, it seems unlikely that this could be due to changes in reporting. There has been a sharp decline in cigarette smoking, a shift in diet from animal to vegetable fats, an increased interest in exercise and more frequent treatment of hypertension in the U.S.A. However, the relationship between the decline in cardiovascular mortality and change in life styles are far from clear (63). The largest decline occurred in black women and it is unlikely that they are the greatest beneficiaries of health education or hypertension treatment. Neither are they likely to be the most avid joggers! In England and Wales, despite an early hint of a decline in the incidence, the mortality figures have remained disappointingly constant (199).
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The relaxation response is believed to be an integrated hypothalamic response which results in generalized decreased sympathetic nervous system activity (11). This response, termed the “trophotropic response,” was first described by Hess in the cat (24). Electrical stimulation of hypothalamic areas results in hypo- or adynamia of skeletal musculature, decreased blood pressure, decreased respiratory rate, and pupil constriction. Hess states, “Let us repeat at this point that we are actually dealing with a protective mechanism against overstress belonging to the trophotropic-endophylactic system and promoting restorative processes. We emphasize that these adynamic effects are opposed to ergotropic reactions which are oriented toward increased oxidative metabolism and utilization of energy” (24). The “ergotropic” reactions of Hess correspond to the “emergency reaction” first described by Cannon, popularly referred to as the fight or flight response and also called the “defense reaction” by others (1, 25).
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Medical high technology and superior medical skills cannot substitute for individual responsibility for health care today. One of the primary causes of chronic disease today is our psychological and psychophysiological reactions to psychosocial stress and our maladaptive (smoking, obesity, drug abuse) ways of coping with psychosocial stress. These psychological A part of this paper was first read as an invited presentation to the American Association for the Advancement of Tension Control, Chicago 1977, and a summary of it without reference to self-hypnosis was printed in the proceedings of the American Association for the Advancement of Tension Control. This paper was also read at the American Psychological Association Convention in Toronto, 1978, at the annual convention of the Illinois Psychological Association in 1978, and at the annual convention of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Houston, Texas, 1979. and psychophysiological reactions are consequences of fixed perceptions of threat and fixed perceptions of the ways of coping with threat. Hence, giving patients tools and the responsibility to use these tools to alter their own perception of threat is a major step toward restoring individual responsibility for health care. Self-hypnosis may be a useful prototype of such a tool to alter fixed perceptions of threat arousal and resolution.
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Blood pressure (BP) is maintained by cardiac output and peripheral vascular resistance that, in turn, are modified by stroke volume, pulse rate, total blood volume, blood viscosity, elasticity of blood vessels, and humoral and neurogenic stimuli. Changes in one or more of these variables by pharmacological, behavioral, physiological, or environmental means normally affect BP only transiently because a variety of homeostatic reflexes, responding to the change, act to maintain a relatively stable mean arterial BP. When a homeostatic mechanism chronically maintains BP at abnormally high levels, it is sometimes due to a surgically or medically correctable condition (e.g., coarctation of the aorta, primary hyperaldosteronism, Cushing’s syndrome, pheochromocytoma, or unilateral renal disease). However, more than 90% of all cases of chronically elevated BP are not secondary to one of these correctable conditions, and are therefore referred to as primary, or essential, hypertension (Whelton & Russell, 1984). The nature of essential hypertension (HBP) has been a topic of controversy for some time (Laragh, 1965). The tendency for an individual to develop HBP often runs in families, and population studies have demonstrated a familial resemblance at all levels of the BP continuum. Environmental stimuli also seem to play a significant role in most cases of HBP (Whelton & Russell, 1984). Predominantly environmental factors that have been implicated in the genesis of HBP are increased ingestion of sodium, excessive caloric intake, and emotional stress. Although BP has been demonstrated to rise in response to diets extremely high in sodium and to fall in response to diets extremely low in sodium, a relationship between dietary salt and HBP still has not been clearly established. Similarly, although weight reduction is often associated with BP reduction, even when dietary sodium and potassium are held constant, obesity is rarely the primary cause of HBP. Acute responses of BP to emotional stress also have not been shown to have a role in the etiology of chronic HBP. The role of other environmental factors (eg., alcohol consumption, cigarette smoking, heavy metal intake, and calcium content of water intake) is also unclear although there is evidence that some role exists in each case (Whelton & Russell, 1984). Because these environmental factors are not mutually exclusive in their influence on BP, the view that HBP has a multifactorial etiology is now gaining wide acceptance.
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The connection between the mind and body is a concept that is increasingly being accepted in mainstream Western culture. Technological advances have made it possible to understand and map the connection among emotion, mood, and biology. As a result, we now have a mounting body of evidence that supports the link between psychological state, autonomic activity, and the development of coronary heart disease (CHD) (1–6). This basic mind—brain—body paradigm has been diagrammatically represented by Sloan et al. (7), as seen in Fig. 1 below. In this model, the autonomic nervous system is seen as a factor linking psychology and chronic stress to CHD development and outcome.
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Physiologists, psychiatrists, and psychologists have long been interested in the impact of stress on the organism. Years ago Selye (1936) identified a general adaptation syndrome which characterized the way the body responded to any demands made upon it. Eyer (1975) has described the syndrome this way. “Stress@@@ leads to psychological and physiological arousal. Arousal consists of a series of internal changes that prepare the body for ‘flight or fight’ @@@among the acute changes (over seconds, minutes) are: a rise in heart rate and blood pressure; changes in the distribution of blood, e.g., more to brain and muscle, less to skin and stomach; a release into the blood of energy producing compounds such as glucose and fatty acids @@@ both the acute and restorative changes are initiated and coordinated by the brain through its control of the autonomic and endocrine systems. For example, during the acute response the changes in blood pressure, blood flow, and heart rate are mediated by activation of many parts of the sympathetic nervous system and corresponding suppression of activity in many parts of the parasympathetic system. During this period there is also heightened release of such hormones as cortisol, epinephrine, norepinephrine, growth hormone, thyroxine, etc., from endocrine organs. At the same time release of other hormones, for example, insulin and sex hormones, is suppressed. The net effect of these hormonal changes is an accelerated breakdown of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins to provide energy (catabolism) and a slowing of the body’s synthetic processes (anabolism).” Repeated stress and mobilization of the body in this way eventually predisposes the individual to all sorts of pathology, particularly cardiovascular diseases (cf. Levi, 1971). People suffering from essential hypertension and heart disease in turn are described frequently as having a particular behavioral style which suggests chronic sympathetic activation. They display “extremes of competitiveness, striving for achievement, aggressiveness (sometimes stringently repressed), haste, impatience, restlessness, hyperalertness, explosiveness of speech, tenseness of facial musculature, and feelings of being under the pressure of time and under the challenge of responsibility” (Jenkins, 1971). Psychiatrists studying essential hypertensives (individuals with chronic high blood pressure) conclude “that they live under a permanent life stress from which they are unable to free themselves, that they are sinking under the burden of responsibility @@@ that they are unable to cope with their duties @@@” (see Brod, 1971, Jenkins, 1971). Similarly, Wolf (1971), notes that individuals susceptible to heart attack seem to be forever struggling very hard to live up to the demands of a situation which they cannot quite satisfy.
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During the past decade there has been a surge of interest in the feasibility of applying new techniques in “biofeedback” to the alleviation of psychosomatic and psychiatric disorders. In addition, there has been a proliferation of advertising in the lay press and in some professional journals describing the development of centers devoted to the enhancement of personal growth and creativity through the utilization of biofeedback techniques. The purpose of this chapter is to review the current state of research on the efficacy of biofeedback as a therapeutic tool for psychosomatic and psychiatric disorders and to evaluate the degree to which the use of biofeedback as a growth and creativity facilitator is justified by the research results.
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Biofeedback refers to the display of some aspect of the physiological functioning of the individual with the expectation that observation of the characteristics of the display will enable the individual to attain increased voluntary control over the physiological function being displayed. The means by which the increased voluntary control is attained is currently a matter of much controversy which will be considered in detail in a later chapter.
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Twenty hypertensive patients treated by psychophysical relaxation exercises were followed up monthly for 12 months. Age- and sex-matched hypertensive controls were similarly followed up for 9 months. Statistically significant reductions in blood-pressure (B.P.) and antihypertensive drug requirements were satisfactorily maintained in the treatment group. Mere repetition of B.P. measurements and increased medical attention did not in themselves reduce B.P. significantly in control patients.
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This study examined the effect of light on relaxation associated with flotation restricted environmental stimulation therapy (REST), as measured by plasma Cortisol, mean arterial pressure, and psychometric parameters. Twenty subjects were paired by baseline Cortisol levels into two groups; one experiencing flotation REST in the presence of light (REST-L) and one experiencing flotation REST in the absence of light (REST-D). Subjects were fifteen male and six female students aged 22–28 in normal health and naive to REST. Repeated flotation REST (8 sessions) either with light or without light was associated with a decrease in plasma Cortisol and a decrease in mean arterial pressure, with no differences in effectiveness between groups. The psychometric assessment of mood using the POMS scale, before and after sessions 1 and 8 revealed mood state improvement in both REST-L and REST-D groups. These data suggest that the presence of light did not compromise the flotation REST experience, as evidenced by the lack of difference between REST-L and REST-D groups.
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Self-hypnosis appears to be a prototype of five other techniques currently marketed to control psychological stress. These techniques like self-hypnosis, are self initiated, self regulated, and follow an educational model. All these techniques appear to enable the trainee to access at least one or more of three useful conditions (hypersuggestibility, “allocentric mode of perception”, cognitive control of autonomic functions) for psychophysiological and behavioral change. The probability of accessing these three therapeutic elements is increased by four procedural variables (sensory restriction, relaxation, credibility enhancing packaging, and therapeutic expectations) built into self-hypnosis and the other five psychophysiological stress reduction techniques.
Article
Background An increasing number of studies have examined the efficacy of meditation, showing performance enhancement in a variety of sports fields, but few attempts have been made to derive outcomes based on evidence from the preexisting groundwork. The present study empirically reviews reports on meditation in athletes to investigate (a) the efficacy of these interventions in augmenting athletic attainment, (b) the methodological quality of studies (risk of bias), and (c) a possible conceptual framework for how meditation affects athletes’ performance. Methods A systematic search was conducted in Ovid MEDLINE (Ovid Medline(R) In-Process & Other Non-Indexed Citations and Ovid Medline(R)); EMBASE; EBSCO; CINAHL; SPORTDiscuss; and SCOPUS from June 16, 2019 to July 18, 2019. All studies published were screened and included if they met the eligibility criteria. Two independent reviewers assessed the risk of bias and extracted the data. The available evidence was summarized. Results Our initial search returned a total of 734 articles. After screening abstracts and full texts, 6 studies were included. Participants reported changes that might be considered positively in sports events after experiencing planned intervention. However, in the methodological quality assessment measured in seven domains of Cochrane criteria, the risk of bias of each study was generally high. Discussion From the results derived, the theoretical insights of imagery, relaxation and self-talk, which can catalyze the development of a new form of meditation program, were obtained. However, given methodological defects of RCTs, further precisely designed RCTs are needed.
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Kitabın bu bölümünde genel hatlatıyla travmayla nasıl başa çıkarız, bu süreçte farklı stratejiler var mıdır ya da koruyucu faktörler neler olabilir sorularına cevap aranmıştır. Travma sonrası başa çıkmayı destekleyen ya da kolaylaştıran koruyucu faktörlerden sosyal destek, aidiyet duygusu, bağlanma stilleri, psikolojik sağlamlık/ psikolojik dayanıklılık/ kendini toparlama gücü/ yılmazlık, öz şefkat, düşünce kontrol becerileri (dkb), metabiliş, üst biliş, yürütücü biliş, bilinçli/farkındalık, doğa ile ilişkililik, atılganlık ve girişkenlik faktörleri kısaca açıklanarak travmayla baş etmeyi neden kolaylaştırdığına değinilmiştir. Bölümün sonunda ise geçmişten günümüze sıklıkla kullanılan travmanın etkilerini önleme ve müdahale süreçlerinden bahsedilmiştir. Özellikle EMDR, şema terapi, doğa terapi, bilinçli farkındalık terapisi gibi günümüz popüler yöntemlerinden travma sonrası nasıl yararlınabileceği ile ilgili bilgiler sunulmuştur.
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In this paper, I hope to share some information that was told to me by informants from the Native American communities in Canada and the USA. I humbly present this information in the hopes of stimulating a discussion of the value of traditional healing. Furthermore, I would like to suggest that modern medicine does benefit from investigating these well-worn practices and will continue to benefit from integrating this knowledge into contemporary health practice.
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Introducción 1. Técnicas de relajación física 2. Técnicas de relajación mental 3. Técnicas de relajación de personalidad 4. Meditación y personalidad 5. Fisiología de la meditación 6. La guía hablada-Adjunto A: EEG en meditación-Bibliografía Aprender a relajarse es la mejor inversión para él y la profesional, el hombre y la mujer de negocios, los y las educadores, los y las político/as... Funcionamos mucho mejor si podemos limitar el estrés y evitar el cansancio intelectual. Con practicar una técnica de relajación apta para nosotros durante un cuarto de hora al día, no hará falta que nos refugiemos en los fármacos, el alcohol o la droga. La relajación es un bien deseado, pero no siempre alcanzado. Hay muchas nociones irreales en cuanto a la relajación, y mucho misterio en cuanto a cómo conseguirla. Intentaremos aclarar algunos conceptos básicos, antes de dedicarnos a explicar una docena larga de formas eficaces y sencillas de relajarse. Además, explicaremos algunos aspectos básicos de la meditación: disciplina con que aprender a evitar el estrés vital. Este libro está dedicado a los y las profesionales de la psicología clínica, pero servirá no sólo de manual sino de guía de uso propio. ¿Cómo relajarse y por qué? Démonos cuenta de que lo que llamamos "relajación" no tiene el mismo contenido ni el mismo objetivo para todas las personas.
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Ayurveda, the ancient Indian traditional system of medicine is essentially the science of life and longevity. It carries a treasure of pro-nature holistic geriatric health care modalities. It deliberates on the science and philosophy of life and longevity with the goal of healthy aging and long life to achieve the Purusartha catustaya ie the Four fundamental Instincts of human life viz. Dharma, Artha, Kama, Moksa. It considers aging as Swabhava or the natural tendency of life and describes in details the pattern of sequential losses of biological strength with advancing age in relation to the doctrine of Tridosa. The central focus of strength of Ayurveda in geriatric care swings around the concept of Rasayana/Rejuvenation therapy which compensates the age-related biological losses in the mind-body system and affords comprehensive rejuvenative effect. Combining Ayurvedic Rasayana, healthy dietetics, positive life style, yoga and spirituality it is possible to develop an effective package for geriatric care today for global use. New scientific evidences have been accumulating during last few decades which validate the age-old time tested science of life and health warranting further research and development. This strength of Ayurveda in geriatric health care is becoming more relevant today than ever before because of the rapid rate of population aging world over including India with an obvious shift in the age distribution denoting population aging with increased life expectancy of the people. Such an increase in the number of elderly people in the society is reflecting overtly in rapid rise in the incidence of diseases of old age warranting strategic plans for Geriatric health care and hence Geriatrics is fast emerging as an important medical discipline where the elements of holistic Ayurvedic geriatrics will find an important place.
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Nicht nur alltägliche Redewendungen in den Sprachen vieler Völker bringen das Herz in Verbindung mit Gefühlen; auch in der medizinischen Literatur finden sich von alters her Berichte über den Einfluß von Emotionen auf das Herz und auf Veränderungen seiner Funktionen. Der römische Enzyklopädist Aulus Cornelius Celsus — wir wissen nicht sicher, ob er auch Arzt war — faßte in seinem Werk „De medicina“ die medizinischen Kenntnisse seines Kulturkreises zu Beginn unserer Zeitrechnung zusammen. Wenngleich es auch damals noch kein genaues Wissen über anatomische Grundlagen und Funktionsweise des Blutkreislaufs gab, weist er doch — neben der Wirkung körperlicher Anstrengung oder auch der eines Bades — auf den, wie wir heute sagen würden, psychophysiologischen Zusammenhang von Angst, Furcht oder anderen Gemütszuständen und der Beschleunigung des Pulses hin (zitiert nach East 1957). 1628 schreibt der Entdecker des Kreislaufsystems William Harvey: „Every affection of the mind that is attended with either pain or pleasure, hope or fear, is the cause of an agitation whose influence extends to the heart“ (Harvey 1623).
Research
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This is a qualitative research consisting of three objectives, namely: - (1) to explore the concept of happiness access according to Buddhist principles and the concept of Gross National Happiness (GNH); (2) to examine the theory of biofeedback; and (3) to propose a conceptual model of Bi-Dimensional development for happiness access by biofeedback process. The data collection and in-depth interviews were carried out with 8 key-informants from 6 countries. They are monks and Buddhist scholarly representatives with the IOC examined by 3 experts. The findings show Buddhism suggests the access of superior happiness by dealing with the dukkha-sukha dichotomy of dualism; while the practice of GNH constructed by the four pillars with the middle path, contentment and social engagement. The Biofeedback skillfully employed the instruments, EMG, EEG, etc. into treatments. When they are integrated with the Buddhist meditation, a practitioner can entrain the assessment of happiness in a tangible way. As for the Model created suggests the Bi-Dimensional development for happiness access. First, MENTAL Dimension to access the fivefold happiness in concentration, namely: - Gladdening (pāmojja), Happiness (pīti), Tranquility (passaddhi), Bliss (sukha), and Concentration (samādhi). The biofeedback means can be utilized for happiness measurement from the mind-body phenomena in the practice. Second, WISDOM Dimension for perpetual happiness access is Nibbāna, the supreme happiness.
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Die notwendige Effizienzsteigerung in modernen westlichen Gesundheitssystemen, sowohl im medizinisch-therapeutischen als auch im ökonomischen Bereich, erfordert ganzheitliche medizinische Konzepte, speziell auf dem Gebiet der Prävention und der Behandlung chronischer Erkrankungen. Die vedische Medizin in ihrer ursprünglichen Form als Teil der vedischen Wissenschaft beinhaltet das ganzheitliche theoretische und praktische Wissen über die grundlegenden Gesetzmäßigkeiten und Prozesse zur Aufrechterhaltung und Wiederherstellung von Gesundheit. So wie das Erbgut auf materieller Ebene den Speicher der Informationen über die Funktionsabläufe in den Zellen des Organismus darstellt, ist der Veda die Informationszentrale des gesamten Universums auf der transzendenten Ebene des Bewusstseins.
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This chapter discusses different connotations of meditation and what it truly means. It goes on to review the various forms of meditation used in contemporary research against the backdrop of Buddhistic and Hindu traditions. Meditation is an important step in the eight-step practice of yoga. It is the seventh of the eight steps involved in yoga practice. It is meant essentially to control the natural wanderings of the mind. In Buddhist meditation, concentration as well as mindfulness is practiced. They help to achieve a higher state of awareness where the mind is unobsessed, and free from the compulsions of the ego and the delusion of permanence. Buddhaghoṣa’s Viśuddhimagga is an important source book of Buddhistic meditation in the Theravāda tradition. Meditative techniques used in empirical research include (a) focused/concentrative form of meditation, (b) transcendental meditation (TM), (c) Benson’s relaxation response, (d) mindfulness or passive meditation, and (e) vipassanā and Zen meditation.
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This Chapter contains a review of empirical studies of meditation. Included in the discussion are psychological and neurophysiological effects and correlates, EEG, and neuroimaging studies of meditation. This chapter concludes with a discussion on whether the meditative state is a unique physiological state. Studies of meditation by practitioners of yoga, Zen, and transcendental meditation (TM) suggest that meditative state is a distinct and unique state of mind and that it lowers arousal and is conducive to better health and well-being. However, considering the fact that practices of meditation vary significantly in different meditative traditions, it is difficult to pinpoint precisely what it is in meditation that is conducive for promoting health and wellness. Also, there is no compelling neurophysiological configuration which may be considered as unique to a meditative state. Empirical research shows that meditation enhances one’s ability to focus attention, and attention is the key ingredient in the control of mind. Other cognitive effects of meditation include improved memory. The paranormal effects of meditation are a significant part of Patanjali’s Yoga Sūtra.
Article
Yoga is one amongst the six basic philosophical systems of India. It is defined as “the restraint of mental modifications”. It is a practical science based on the laws of Samkhya Philosophy that govern the evolution of the universe, can be extended for the evolution of an individual; thus the individual is a microcosm of the macrocosm. Yoga is above caste, creed, and religion; a positive system for the unification of the humanity. In yogic technique the breathing system is brought under control which ultimately keeps the mind under control, makes it free from unwanted vibrations either being induced internally or influenced externally. This finally leads the mind to vacuous (thoughtless) condition and checks the mental pollution or thought pollution that works in obscurity, negatively throughout the human environment. Yoga enables to overcome the effects of Gunas, which are the root of all changes, the foundation of reality, the essence of everything and responsible for the diversity and nature; thus causes the harmonization of the human society. Every Yogi works as a broadcasting centre of calmness and serenity, that influences, the whole human diversity in positive track.
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The attempt to view disease in a generic sense — as an attribute of living forms, with special focus on its adaptational significance — is an approach that deserves acclaim and further study. It is somewhat difficult, however, on first hearing Dr. Fabrega’s position on the importance of viewing disease as a symbolic category, to see the connections between this point of view and current debates about how to conceptualize and categorize mental health and mental illness. It is perhaps easier to imagine how the development of what he calls ‘ethnomedical science’ [5] might contribute to the ongoing debate about whether there are any universal characteristics of illness — mental or otherwise — or whether the nature and varieties of human diseases are relative to the cultures in which they exist. But a close look at the details of Dr. Fabrega’s position reveals several links between his proposal to view disease in a generic sense and the development of an adequate theory of mental health.
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