The Neuroscience of Meditation and Yoga

Via | Sid Jordan | July 31, 2016

For over 50 years, advances in western science have been validating the wisdom of eastern mysticism.  Today, vibrant interest and research in the neuroscience community is demonstrating that the practices of meditation and yoga are profoundly transforming our bodies and minds.  A recent Scientific American article (2014) entitled “The Neuroscience of Meditation: How it Changes the Brain, Boosting Focus and Easing Stress” explains how changes in the amount of brain tissue in key areas of the brain are associated with focused attention, emotional calm, compassion and overall stress reduction.  These results are achieved by a variety of meditative approaches including focused attention on the breath, repetition of mantra, and mindfulness.

This wedding of ancient spiritual practices and modern science will be highlighted in our upcoming Science and Practice of Meditation and Yoga seminar (August 26-28). We will review the recent neuroscience and neurohormonal research for the two fold purpose of deepening our knowledge of our body-mind-spirit connections and of the practices of meditation and yoga postures that transform them.

For example, we’ll look at Candace Pert’s groundbreaking research outlined in her book, Molecules of Emotions.   Her ideas help us to understand the role of endorphins as natural pain killers in our brain as well as “bliss hormones”.  We’ll discuss how endorphins help us balance of our emotional and mental life and experience higher states of consciousness.  

This seminar will explore the science of yoga postures in connection with the endocrine glands, our emotional states, and the subtle chakra system. Participants will also be introduced to the system of Ayurveda and learn about their own constitutional makeup and its importance in selecting the most suitable practices.

Join us in August for this fascinating journey into the Science and Practice of Meditation and Yoga.

Learn more about our upcoming Science and Practice of Meditation & Yoga retreat!


About The Author

Sid4Dr. Sid Jordan (Acarya Vishvamitra) has combined a career as a licensed clinical psychologist and meditation teacher since 1971.  As a clinical psychologist, he taught individual, group and family psychotherapy, meditation, yoga and community psychology in the Department of Psychiatry at the Medical University of S. C. from 1969-93.  During this period he also served for five years as director of the Mental Health, Alcohol and Drug Services at the Franklin C. Fetter  Neighborhood Health Care Center in Charleston S. C.

In 1994 he moved to Asheville NC to develop an eco-village to support the service community of Ananda Girisuta (Blissful Daughter of the Mountain) on the French Broad River near Marshall, NC.  In 1997 he trained to be an Ananda Marga Family Acarya (Yoga Teacher) in India committed to giving personal instructions in meditation and yoga.  He currently serves as president of the Ananda Marga Gurukula Inc. Board in the US, supporting Neohumanist Education k-colleges worldwide. He is Director of the Prama Institute on the Ananda Girisuta property where he helps direct programing and teaches yoga psychology and spiritual practices.  At the Prama Wellness Center he teaches yoga therapy and stress management to individuals and groups.   He continues to offer his 40 years of experience and teaching of yoga psychology, philosophy and practices to audiences worldwide.

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