What is meditation?

Meditation is a set of ways to calm down one’s consciousness, damp down emotional exertions, increase one’s level of awareness and concentration and achieve deep relaxation.

meditation with music

Some people meditate while listening to special music that helps them relax and concentrate. The benefit of meditation is proved and confirmed scientifically. There are references to scientific researches listed in the end of the article.

But how can meditation help an ordinary person living in a world of traffic jams, co-working and Friday parties? And how can a person use progress to his or her benefit?

Meditation benefits:

  • Stress level decrease
Stress level decrease

All the sickness is caused by stress. That’s a plausible premise. The average stress level of the majority of people exceeds their tolerance threshold.

Cortisone is growth hormone and has a pretty harmful effect on human body: it causes aging, disrupts cognitive functions, causes insomnia and bone fragility.

Meditation decreases cortisone level in blood.

Fortunately, a group of scientists from Montreal established a powerful inverse relation between meditation and the level of cortisone: after the second week of practicing meditation the level of cortisone in an average person’s blood decreased by 50%, which has a positive effect on life in general.

  • Quality of sleep improvement
Quality of sleep improvement

If only I could get enough sleep in six hours… We spend one third of our life sleeping, and if the body doesn’t rest during sleep, then the time we’re awake doesn’t bring us any joy. It’s hard to concentrate; you feel sluggish and can’t work properly; you want to go to sleep, but you’re not able to relax in the evening and it gets even worse the next morning.

People who meditate regularly dream deeper, get enough sleep and eventually they start to need less time for good rest. There are some special music for sleep, meditation, relaxation and etc, that can be very usefull.

The melatonin hormone is responsible for our quality of sleep. It is produced by thyroid gland. Apart from ensuring our peaceful sleep, it prevents cancer and is necessary for our immune system to fight off most of the diseases. The sunlight helps is produce melatonin, but as most of the modern people spend entire days exposed to artificial light, they experience its deficit. That, however does not apply to those who dwell in tropical areas.

There’s good news, however: those who regularly practice meditation have twice the level of melatonin than those who do not. Special programs with music utilizing brainwave frequencies will be of great help. Meditation music helps people relax fast and effectively during the evening time and get better sleep by means of higher melatonin level in their blood.

  • Emotional stability increase
Emotional stability increase

All that news can make anyone dizzy. Our life consists of changes and the ability to adapt to them is the evolutional advantage of humankind.

Nevertheless, not everybody can respond to changes (especially negative ones) fast and calmly. GABA is a neurotransmitter responsible for stable psyche; “the hormone of calm” which 70% of people lack. In 2019, a research group from Boston University proved that after an hour of meditation the level of the hormone in blood increased by 27%.

So, meditation in that way is even more effective than physical exercise. Special neuro-acoustic programs deserve particular attention as they provide a vast list of meditative melodies that stimulate hormone production.

  • Preservation of youth
Preservation of youth

Who wouldn’t want to stay young? Somatropin is not the source of eternal youth, but that hormone helps you stay young. The body produces less of it as time goes, which leads to physical bodies frailty, bone and skin density reduction, age-related defects (disorder) and changes in appearance. Somatropin injections effectively delay aging. That procedure, however, is very costly and must be constantly repeated.

But meditation effectively helps stimulate the youth hormone production for free. Delta-meditations, which help activate delta-brainwaves, let the body produce enough somatropin to push back senility threshold for 10-20 years.

Modern approach to meditation

It would be great to go to Tibet, guided by practicing monks and discover all benefits of meditation. However, only millionaires can afford such pastime. What is an ordinary person to do, being obligated to go to work, keep the household and spend time with his family? Modern technologies come to the rescue, namely – binaural beats.

Modern approach to meditation

If you can’t make yourself sit in the lotus position for half an hour without moving and read mantras, if you’re not sure whether you’re doing it correctly or not and feel frustrated because of tons of information from the internet, then the following information is for you.

There are different brainwave frequencies corresponding with different states of a person. Working with them is proved effective. It’s pretty simple: you download an app, take a comfortable position and listen to meditation music, which calibrates your brain. No more problems with entering meditative state; no more doubts and searching. Sounds amusing? Yes. However, there’s no magic – just science. Let’s figure it out.

Brainwave frequency list

Brainwaves are electric fluctuations measured by scientists with brainwave frequency charts. Different states match different brain fluctuation frequencies. They were popularized by an American researcher, Robert Monroe, in the beginning of 1950’s. He was the first to study the influence of binaural beats on people by conducting serious researches. Though, the beats themselves were discovered in 1939, before Monroe nobody conducted such extensive researches. So, here’s a brainwave frequency list and states matching them:

  • 7-13 Hz – Alpha-waves – relaxation
alpha waves

This pleasant state is reached when we close our eyes in a dim-lit room and relax. It’s the starting point of meditation. Its main feature is a peaceful state of mind while awake. The lack of alpha-waves is diagnosed when a person gets angry or scared. Their chronical deficit may cause depression and disrupt the work of several brain areas. A person who takes a time-out to take his mind off work and allows himself some rest or a person who gets away from endless business matters to meditate for a while during the day is in alpha-state.

  • 14-40 Hz – Beta-waves – keeping awake, concentration
beta waves

It is a state of wakefulness, a rhythm specific for a person awake watching something or solving a simple problem, which does not require full concentration. A person having an interesting conversation – that’s what a beta-state is.

  • 30-100 Hz – Gamma-waves – focus on the task
gamma waves

Such a state is usual for a human’s brain while intensely trying to solve a complicated problem. It’s a state of a person fully concentrated on a task. A person pooling together information from different sources; a person during a brainstorm – that’s a gamma-state.

  • 1-4 Hz – Delta-waves – recovery and rest
delta waves

It’s a state of deep meditation, complete rest and recovery. It is typical for people in deep meditation or during S-sleep.

  • 4-8 Hz – Theta-waves – sleepiness, liberated sub-consciousness
theta waves

That is the exact “borderline” state taking place while you’re about to fall asleep but haven’t just yet. Your sub-consciousness takes over and shows you intricate pictures. It is thought that that is the best state to address your own sub-consciousness with questions or tasks. It’s hard to balance on the edge before falling asleep and pretty often we don’t have time to “decipher” the answer, but either way the insights happening to us before falling asleep, in the bathroom or behind the wheel, when our consciousness is occupied with dull work are familiar to the most of us. In case of theta-rhythms special programs which help the brain to enter the necessary state are a great solution.

How do binaural beats work

How does it work? The headphones receive sounds of different frequencies and the brain generates the rhythm of necessary frequency. For example, if the left headphone receives 210 Hz frequency sound, and the right one receives 200, then they produce 10 hertz. The brain generates that frequency when it’s in a peaceful state of mind. Brain frequencies work only via headphones. If speakers were to be used, the brain wouldn’t be able to generate a rhythm the frequency of which would equal the difference of initial frequencies.

How do binaural beats work?

Simply speaking, when we hear different frequencies with our left and right ears, the brain syncs up with the difference between those frequencies sets itself up for the right state.

There’s nothing particularly innovative about it. Rhythmical dance music can cheer you up, and the sound of war drums helped warriors of the ancient go berserk. Even before the times of ancient Greece people had already known about sound’s direct influence on a person’s state. That influence would be used one way or another. Nowadays, it possible to pick out frequencies for deep meditation and full relaxation as well, but the scientists had already picked them out for us. You can create your own personal binaural rhythms and use set-ups from the internet. However, you should be certain about the source.

The pros of using binaural beats during meditation

  • Time management
time management

There’s never enough time, even for the most important things in life, and it’s much harder to spare a moment for meditation than for a TV show. If you are using brain rhythms, you don’t need to get in the zone for meditation and constantly keep yourself under control. The brain reaches dormant state itself, and you can continue this practice while the audio is playing for 10 to 40 minutes just when it’s necessary for you. That means you can indulge in fast and deep meditation and save the time you needed for preparation for it. Even the advanced users need about 15-20 minutes to calm the consciousness. With binaural beats the brain will need 7 minutes to sync up.

  • Can be used anywhere
can be used anywhere

It’s much easier to maintain mental silence with binaural beats, because you don’t need to look for a silent place or kick out your family outside. All you need is a phone and headphones. In subway, in a queue or in your favorite restaurant – it doesn’t matter. Meditation is accessible anywhere. However, you shouldn’t meditate while driving or crossing a street, that is, in situations where you need concentration. Aforementioned, of course, includes only mobile devices. If you use a computer program, then alas…

  • The effect lasts even after the end of meditation
What is meditation?

You may have finished the meditation, but the effect lasts on and on: the thoughts are clearer, decisions come faster, and the level of stress doesn’t go up.

How safe is meditation with binaural beats?

Binaural beats are absolutely safe. They activate the same brain areas which usually work anyway. So, you can’t overdose on them.

  • It’s natural
What is meditation?

Technically, there’s no difference between the rhythm of the brain during “natural” deep meditation and meditating with the help of binaural beats. Maybe except that the second way is much easier and doesn’t require long spiritual practice, which is hard to find time and energy for.

  • No unpleasant discoveries
What is meditation?

It’s impossible to harm oneself using binaural beats, which cannot be said about traditional meditation. An unprepared person can suffer nervous breakdown or depression because of transcendental experience. Wrong practice of meditation may seriously harm one’s psychological health.

It is rarely spoken of, but a researcher, Willoughby Britton, found out during a survey that a hundred people out of hundred asked experienced “undesirable states” during their practice, which include terror, a sense of meaninglessness of life, emptiness and panic. Binaural beats help the brain tune in to the needed frequency, but don’t make it experience states, which it is not ready to experience.

  • You control the process
What is meditation?

You can adjust the duration of the meditation and choose the desired effect in advance, which is not something any beginner can achieve. You can’t get rid of annoying thoughts or calm your mind? You want to address the subconsciousness to solve the problem? The science will help you with syncing up brainwave frequencies and solve the problem for you.

How to use binaural beats?

You will basically need a device and binaural beat to play.

  • Mind-machines

You’ve definitely heard of them. They are devices which use sound and image to help the user’s brain find certain frequencies. It is the most effective technology as it combines several ways to influence the brain. Usually, a mind-machine includes a pair of glasses and headphones or a headset. The only downside of modern mind-machines is their rather high price and some models’ immobility.

  • Computer app

They can provide only sound tracks or a sound combined with the image. The main downside is their low mobility. It is necessary to either sit at a computer or carry a laptop.

  • Phone app

You can take your phone anywhere, which is a huge advantage. Several programs come with special glasses allowing to utilize the phone screen or VR-glasses. Such a set gives you an opportunity to enjoy all the features of mind-machines without buying expensive equipment.

Conclusion and research references

Now, you know why to meditate and how to utilize the latest technologies. Binaural beats make your practice easier if you are an advanced user or give you an easy start. They are based on brain functioning principle, thus, they can’t harm you and they will keep you from undesirable effects of spiritual practice.

Usually, it takes a few years to achieve an advance user level, however, practicing with binaural beats shortens that time. You will be able to control your meditation, choose its duration and desired effects, which might be deep concentration or isolation from reality, working with subconsciousness or resting.

No matter, which way to use them you choose – an expensive mind-machine or a reasonably-priced app turning your smartphone into a full-featured machine for audio-visual effect – meditation will improve the quality of your life, prolong youth, improve your sleep and reduce stress.

Meditation can really change your life. Here is just a small list of scientific researches confirming that.

  • Medical News Today
  • American Psychological Association
  • American Psychosomtic Medicine Journal
  • NCBI
  • DoctorsOnTM
  • Time Magazine
  • http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fnhum.2012.00038/full
  • http://psychcentral.com/news/2013/06/23/meditations-effects-on-emotion-shown-to-persist/56372.html
  • http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10943-013-9679-0

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