There are many variations on the general concept of "Pranayama Meditation" -- The meditation of the breath. At Meditation Treks, we have released the Healing Breathwork Album, which creates an oxygen rich environment in the body while guiding you through this state of consciousness with meditations that focus the mind on different cognitive behavioral states to clear old patterns and establish new ones. The pranayama practice of the Breathwork album is strikingly similar to (though not exactly the same as) the "Wim Hof Method" of breathing, invented by its namesake, Wim Hof. While the GMT Breathwork album focuses on improving mind patterns through a breath that acts on the heart, the Wim Hof method focuses on improving the cardiovascular system itself through a breathing practice that also includes breath suspension. In this blog we present the background as well as a free guided meditation from Wim Hof himself, which you can try at home.
NPR reports... In mice and one person, scientists were able to reproduce the altered state often associated with ketamine by inducing certain brain cells to fire together in a slow, rhythmic fashion... The finding also could be a step toward finding non-drug methods to control states of consciousness... The team used a tool called optogenetics, which Deisseroth helped invent. (As opposed to binaural beats, which use sound, optogenetics) uses light to control the firing of specific cells in the brain. As a result, the team was able to artificially generate this rhythm in the brains of mice.
The concept of Binaural Beats was first discovered by Heinrich Wilhelm Dove in the early 1800s(1), when he mounted tuning forks at different frequencies at the end of tubes that went into listeners' ears. The listener perceived a third frequency, which was a difference between the two tones. This concept was mostly just a curiosity until the 1970s, when Dr. Gerald Oster wrote a scientific article that fully outlined the phenonenon(2). In the 50 years that followed, there has been much research on the topic, and this blog outlines the scientific studies which have tested the efficacy of binaural beats on everything from pain management to curing insomnia, making people more focused or relaxed, helping with ADHD, and many more outcomes, depending on the frequencies programmed.
Watch the Breath
Articles on mindfulness meditation.