4 Best Scientifically Proven Benefits Of Meditation (Science is Awesome)

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1. MEDITATION SPEEDS UP BRAIN PROCESSING POTENTIAL

According to a research journal article published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience in February 2012, meditation can alter the geometry of the brain’s surface. There was a study done at the University of California in Los Angeles involving 50 meditators and 50 controls that addressed a possible link between meditation and cortical gyrification, the pattern and degree of cortical folding that allows the brain to process faster. This study showed a positive correlation between the amount of gyrification in parts of the brain and the number of years of meditation for people, especially long-term meditators, compared to non-meditators.

This increased gyrification may reflect an integration of cognitive processes when meditating, since meditators are known to be introspective and contemplative, using certain portions of the brain in the process of meditation. Despite articles written from this journal article, more research is still necessary to determining more in depth on this specific link.

2. MEDITATION LOOSENS OUR NEURAL PATHWAYS

Rebecca Gladding, M.D. explains in an article published in May 2013 Psychology Today, how the brain functions better with meditation, and the positive affects it has on the brain, the longer you meditate. Basically, Gladding explains how the brain can be molded by meditation. Specifically, the connection to our fear center and our “Me” Center (place where the brain constantly reflects back to you) wither away – by meditating on a regular basis.

This loosening up lessens our feelings of anxiety, because the neural pathways linking our Me Center to our fear decreases. The unhelpful feelings of anxiety become regulated, meaning, sufficiently ignored, which enhances better neural pathways to form. New neural pathways include improved assessment and empathetic responses. The important thing that Gladding also mentions is that to maintain the benefits of meditation, you must keep meditating because “the brain can very easily revert back to its old ways if you are not vigilant.”

3. MEDITATION REDUCES THE RISK OF HEART DISEASE

A large cardiovascular study was done and published in November 2012, in the journal Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

There were 201 people with coronary heart disease given two choices. (1) Take a health education class promoting improved diet and exercise. (2) Take a class on transcendental meditation. Researchers studied these participants for five years and discovered something interesting. Those that chose (2) the meditation class had 48% reduction to the overall risk of heart attack, stroke and death. This was an initial study and again needs more research.

But it is promising, just the same.

4. MEDITATION CAN IMPROVE MEMORY RECALL

New research on meditation shows that meditation can further enhance the abilities of memory recall. Catherine Kerr is a researcher at the Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging and the Osher Research Center. She has found that those that practice meditation could adjust their brains waves better. They could screen out distractions and increase productivity faster than those that did not meditate. Less distractions gives room for the brain to integrate new information. This slight change in brain adjustment can dramatically aid in memory recall.

Kerr explained more in an article called, Meditation’s Effects on Emotion Shown to Persist, published in June 2013 at psychcentral.com. ”Mindfulness meditation has been reported to enhance numerous mental abilities, including rapid memory recall,” Kerr said. “Our discovery that mindfulness meditators more quickly adjusted the brain wave that screens out distraction could explain their superior ability to rapidly remember and incorporate new facts.”

Credits: Soul Spot TV via The Spirit Science

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Leader of the Pack (Business Philosophy) Adapt or Die

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No Woman (or Man), No Cry (Relationship Philosophy) – You’re really giving me a hard time…

The Leftovers – Gladys (No ticket, No Laundry)

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Written By Ryan Fu @fu_beatz

What a crazy but good episode of the Leftovers this week. First off, I’ve never seen someone really get stoned before unless you count last night when I gave my friend a pot brownie in which he got really stoned. (Sorry, I had too) This episode reminded of the Fight Club when Meat Loaf’s character Robert Paulsen got killed for their cause, making him a martyr for their group. The gruesome death of Gladys caused many people of the Guilty Remnant to question what they were going, especially Laurie Garvey. But just like Liv Tyler’s character calmly tells us, it was just a matter of time before people pushed back. The GRs finally pushed enough buttons to cause many people including one organization to react violently. As a society at what point do we chose to say that a particular group aren’t part of the human race because their values don’t match ours? Do we have the right to treat them less than human beings?

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After finding the mangled body Gladys, Laurie has a mini panic attack, which causes the leader of the GRs, Patty Levin, to take Laurie to a retreat to calm her down. At the retreat, Patty tells Laurie to take a break from being a GR, giving her civilian clothes, buying her breakfast and allowing her to talk. But Laurie does not utter a single word as Patty tells her that she brought Gladys there a year ago in the same booth, in which Patty wants to know if she is still part of the team because in her words,

“There is no room for doubt. Doubt is going to fire you up until you are ash.”

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Laurie silently reassures Patty that she’s still down for the cause while Chief Garvey is starting to realize that everything he does for the town is going unnoticed. As he tries to protect the people of Mapleton with a mandatory curfew, the town people turn on him especially his new buddy/dog killer, Dean, tells the Chief why should we even care about the GRs, they don’t care about us, which leads the council to not pass the curfew. Garvey still decides to protect the GRs by giving them “rape whistles” but he also is trying to figure out where his wife is with the help of Liv Tyler’s character, Meg, but she tells him,

“She’s not your wife anymore.”

Kevin and Matt discover that Gladys' body is already gone.

To exacerbate Chief Garvey’s problems, he finds out the ATFEC would gladly exterminate the GRs as the agent tells Garvey that the group are an infestation that should be taken care of like rodents. This leads Garvey to wonder what the hell is going on in his life? He is starting to lose his mind and material things like his white shirts and bagels but he is also starting to lose his family which leads him to drink more as we see the Chief slowly coming apart. He realizes he still has to be strong for his daughter, which we can see in a great scene with Garvey and his daughter, telling her that he is divorcing her mother, Laurie.

That scene was very powerful because Garvey and his daughter are still in love with Laurie but they recognize that she is not the same person anymore. Really good episode of the Leftovers but fantastic acting on the part of the actors and actresses especially from Justin Theroux, in which I hope Chief Garvey gets his shit together because I think there is going to be “shit-storm” coming soon from different groups that are trying to get the heart and minds of the people.

Fu’s Observations:

  • You can add “stoned to death” to my biggest fear list now.
  • His name was Robert Paulsen. Didn’t you want the GRs while they were in the woods to start chanting, “her name was Gladys.”
  • Chief Garvey is kinda of a perv checking his daughter BF and the cheerleaders at school.
  • Dean kills dog and goes ballroom dancing like every tough, self respecting, mid-west man. I can’t tell yet if he is there to help Justin Theroux character or not?
  • Are those tattoos really real on Justin Theroux’s character because I thought I saw a “Hello Kitty” tat?
  • Chief Garvey swears like a sailor, which apparently the Reverend does as well, “I say Fuck too.”
  • Didn’t you want the Reverend to tell Laurie to “Fuck off” as she used the “rape whistle” at him.
  • Bacon makes everything better.
  • I was “inebrited” this week at Comic Con. I feel the liquor attendant is also an English teacher at Mapleton.
  • No ticket, no laundry. Unless, you’re the drunk Chief of the Police looking like a total psycho then you get your way.

CHECK OUT OUR LEFTOVERS:

The Pilot “The Rapture”

Penguin One, Us Zero (Where did the Bagels go?) 

Two Boats and Helicopter (Life is Roulette Table)

B.J. & A.J (Sweet Baby Jesus)

Happy Motivation Monday – The Most Dangerous Workout Ever Seen

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Please do not try to attempt this unless you’re highly skilled

Comic Con – Day 4 Celebrities (Part 2) – Robert Kirkman, Stephen Moyer, Michael Chiklis plus more

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Best Team Costumes at Comic con 2014

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The Hobbit star, Orlando Bloom and Andy Serkis do selfies with fans at Comic Con

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The Walking Dead Parade – Comic Con Style!!!

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Brain Ninjas – Guess which Celebrity is this in a costume? Happy Comic Con Day 3

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Photo Credit: Ryan Fu