Neuroscience of meditation

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We will show what happens in the brain of meditators, not only experts but beginners and people with moderate practice in their lives.

With what we have learned about the neuroscience of meditation now I invite you to do an exercise together It is a exercise that is going to take us inside the brain, we are going to familiarize ourselves from neuroscience with What happens in our brain with Something that doesn't happen because almost every time we start to meditate We imagine that we have sat down to meditate, we are in a class, we are at home

We have taken care of the Posture of our body as cabachin says is very important to have a dignified posture

Sensation to know how it is our body Before To start meditating then we sit down and start meditating for example By paying attention to the sensations of the breath in the nose only then we who have just started to meditate still don't have a lot of experience in meditation we are very obedient and we start to observe how it enters And the breath comes out of our nostrils

In those little minutes that won't last much longer in which we are attending to our breathing Our brain so to speak is everything Silence Whole brain It's practically silent except for The bark Frontal ventro medial and lateral dorsal This particular part Of the brain is holding Attention is breathing is watching the air going in and out Through our nose at this moment what we could say is that we are just breathing

We are just the sensations Of the air that enters and exits through our nostrils But we've been there for a few minutes we don't have a lot of experience in meditation and after a few minutes which sometimes may not even get to a minute or two minutes our brain gets distracted He's gone behind a feeling my back hurts my knee itches I remember what I have to go do I don't know what A thought comes to me a memory starts the discomfort but what do I do here start the doubts then what we see at the neuroscientific level that that brain that was in Silence That it was all silent except for the Prefrontal cortex Suddenly flooded colorful that's what we see on the machine When we see many colors In the brain it means that there are many parts of the brain that are doing A lot of activities but our brain has moved on from the stillness of a sea Which is practically Calm with only a focus on the frontal crust to a very busy sea

With a lot of waves in different parts of our brain

There is at this moment We have gone behind a distraction our brain our attention has suffered a Interference There we are especially remembering many things, especially imagining many things

But mostly talking Talking a lot We have a lot of inner dialogue And here it is important to say that this dialogue The brain perceives it not as a dialogue that we conduct But as a dialogue that we listen to, it is the auditory parts that are activated more than the auditory parts

Parts of speech that is to say we are listening to ourselves, so as we are then some Practitioners who don't have a lot of experience in meditation we have gone behind of that distraction and we can stay there One minute 10 minutes half an hour there are times that the whole class And we don't realize that we have been distracted and this is the important thing We don't realize that we have been distracted many times when we are studying beginners in meditation are asked how many times have you been distracted along the way Of the class and in the beginning they say once, twice as they progress in their experience

As meditators, do you say how many times you have Distracted then a lot 10-15 times now I am worse They usually say now I attend less now I have lost concentration ability no What they have done is they have increased their ability to realize what we observe with the neuroimaging machines

It's just that many times we've been distracted and we can spend long minutes there without realizing it

and so this is where it comes in that makes it the most difficult step for neuroscience to generate a Neural circuitry That he realizes that I'm distracted there is where the insula intervenes It is a part of Brain that is in charge of who It's me She is the one who is more involved in me, what do I do, I do me I watch myself And the crust cingulate that's why To say it a kind of fan That collects All the sensations of the emotional parts And also those of the body When the insula and the cingulate cortex are synchronized i

e

When they form a neural circuit Part of the cingulate cortex insula forms a sort of mirror that warns me From that distracted me warning me of the What am I doing, we realize One of the most important steps in meditation is to realize what you are doing

then as we are meditating Well let's not be distracted we have been there a good while let's say about 10 minutes Distracted but As we meditate and we have a little bit more experience in meditation that circuit is activated When we are distracted and it warns me You've been distracted then I notice That I got distracted and stopped paying attention to the sensations of breathing

This circuit What it does Like a mirror of the what we are doing warns To memory And he says ok I got distracted I've gone behind a thought behind a memory behind Of a feeling What do you have to be doing asks the memory And the memory tells him So at this moment what you should be doing is attending to the sensations of the breathing And as such the brain and this step is Easier the brain reorients its circuits and it comes back To the prefrontal cortex Then if we see it a little bit more in fast motion we are Observing the sensations of our breathing Prefrontal cortex We get distracted A lot of things come up Of activities in Different parts of our brain The default network is activated there we stay Distracted A good time depends on the Practice we have in meditation It activates The cingulate cortex insula circuit to realize that we have been distracted

Once we have become aware it activates the memory areas you have to be remembering

Breathing sensations And we return To the prefrontal cortex A person who is a beginner is a a little while alone In that calm brain With just a little bit of the prefrontal cortex and you spend more time In the default network From time to time it is noticed And the frontal cortex returns to attend to sensations Of respiration A meditator Experienced He is spending a lot of time With a brain in silence And only one focus in the cortex prefrontal I

e

passes A long time Holding your attention on the sensations of the breath Occasionally distracted Becomes active The default network but immediately It realizes this and returns That is to say It is longer in that brain Calmly With a spotlight In the prefrontal cortex, that in the default network circuitry Full of colors A beginner spends more time In that brain full of default network colors That in the sustained attention of the prefrontal cortex Therefore The step that is perhaps more Important and the one that has the most implications for the management of emotions and for the regulation of the self Is to learn To give us Account and as a final note a note Which always seemed to me to be one of the great contributions that neuroscience has made to the world of meditation

And it is that when we have said That we have distracted And the one that notices the distraction is the cingulate cortex the cingulate cortex and the insula When we have realized a distraction And we get angry The cingulate cortex Retracts That is to say Technically we say that the cingulate cortex learns by positive reinforcement

If every time we become aware of a distraction We act in a kind way with ourselves the cingulate cortex learns more

It makes us more aware it helps us to give ourselves more times Account that we We have distracted And that's what it's all about learning to realize where our mind is at any given moment

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