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The Emotional Life of Your Brain: How Its Unique Patterns Affect the Way You Think, Feel, and Live - and How You Can Change Them

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The Emotional Life of Your Brain: How Its Unique Patterns Affect the Way You Think, Feel, and Live--and How You Can Change Them

By: Richard J. Davidson and Sharon Begley


The work of Richard Davidson has been a major influence on The CR Way of life. This groundbreaking study convinced us that meditation should be offered as part of a CR Way lifestyle:

Long-term meditators self-induce high-amplitude gamma synchrony during mental practice.

Lutz A, Greischar LL, Rawlings NB, Ricard M, Davidson RJ.

W. M. Keck Laboratory for Functional Brain Imaging and Behavior, Waisman Center, and Laboratory for Affective Neuroscience, Department of Psychology, University of Wisconsin.

Practitioners understand "meditation," or mental training, to be a process of familiarization with one's own mental life leading to long-lasting changes in cognition and emotion. Little is known about this process and its impact on the brain.

Here we find that long-term Buddhist practitioners self-induce sustained electroencephalographic high-amplitude gamma-band oscillations and phase-synchrony during meditation. These electroencephalogram patterns differ from those of controls, in particular over lateral frontoparietal electrodes. In addition, the ratio of gamma-band activity (25-42 Hz) to slow oscillatory activity (4-13 Hz) is initially higher in the resting baseline before meditation for the practitioners than the controls over medial frontoparietal electrodes. This difference increases sharply during meditation over most of the scalp electrodes and remains higher than the initial baseline in the postmeditation baseline.

These data suggest that mental training involves temporal integrative mechanisms and may induce short-term and long-term neural changes.

 

PMID: 15534199, NIH, NLM, PubMed access to MEDLINE bibliographic citations

 

After reading this and other research, supporting meditation -- we developed meditation practices and included them on the CR Way Web site and CR Way e-books. Guided meditation begins effortlessly in the meditation pages under Getting Smarter, A Happier You and in the CR Way to Happy Dieting, provided as a download to Healthful Weight Loss members.

This long-awaited book by a pioneer in brain research offers a new model of our emotions -- their origins, their power, and their malleability.

For more than thirty years, Richard Davidson has been at the forefront of brain research. Now he gives us an entirely new way to understanding our emotions, as well as practical strategies we can use to change them.

Davidson has discovered that personality is composed of six basic emotional "styles," including resilience, self-awareness, and attention. Our emotional fingerprint results from where on the continuum of each style we fall. He explains the brain chemistry that underlies each style in order to give us a new model of the emotional brain, one that will even go so far as to affect the way we treat conditions like autism and depression. And, finally, he provides strategies we can use to change our own brains and emotions -- if that is what we want to do.

Written with bestselling author Sharon Begley, this original and exciting book gives us a new and useful way to look at ourselves, develop a sense of well-being, and live more meaningful lives.

 


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