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Mind of the Meditator

November 07, 2014

Contemplative practices that extend back thousands of years show a multitude of benefits for both body and mind.

Comparing brain scans of medtitators who have experienced thousands of hours of practice with those of non-meditators explains why techniques for training the mind hold great potential for supplying cognitive and emotional benefits. The goals of meditation overlap with many objectives of clinical psychology, psychiatry, preventive medicine, and education. A growing body of research suggests that meditation can be effective in treating depression, alleviating stress and chronic pain, and cultivating a sense of overall well-being. The discovery of meditation’s benefits coincides with recent neuroscientific findings showing that even the adult brain can deeply transform through experience.

Meditation is relatively simple and can be practiced anywhere. The meditator begins by assuming a comfortable physical posture, neither too tense nor too lax. The practitioner must stabilize the mind, which is often disorderly and occupied by a stream of inner chatter. Mastering the mind requires freeing it from automatic mental conditioning and inner confusion. Two popular types of meditation are “mindfulness” and “love and kindness”.

Over 15 years of research indicates that meditation and mental training have the potential to enhance human health and well-being. We welcome you to experience them during Penn Law’s Mindfulness Drop-In Sessions every Monday from 12-1.