What it means to be Zen: marked modulations of local and interareal synchronization during open monitoring meditation.
Bottom Line: Experienced meditators are able to voluntarily modulate their state of consciousness and attention.We found a correlation between graph measures in the 160-170Hz range and MAAS scores.The most prominent effects occur in brain structures crucially involved in processes of awareness and attention, which also show structural changes in short- and long-term meditators, suggesting continuative alterations in the meditating brain.
Affiliation: Center for Mind/Brain Sciences (CIMeC), University of Trento, Via delle Regole 101, 38060 Mattarello, TN, Italy. Electronic address: Anne.Hauswald@unitn.it.Show MeSH
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Mentions: A correlation analysis was calculated between mindfulness scores (MAAS) and the power data of the source transformed data for all frequencies. No significant correlations were found within the low-frequency range. A significant negative cluster (p = .015) was yielded for the entire high-frequency range, in particular between 100 and 245 Hz (Fig. 2A), indicating that high levels of mindfulness (reflected by low scores) correlate with increased power in the high frequencies. The same correlation analysis with meditation experience in hours also revealed a significant positive cluster for high frequencies (p = .036), indicating that a lot of experience goes along with increased gamma power. The generators underlying this practice effect showed a partly different pattern than the correlation effect with MAAS ratings. This means that results from the previous analysis cannot purely be explained by the amount of practice per se. Sources in which high gamma correlated with MAAS but not practical experience were mainly found in the globus pallidus, left cuneus, left anterior cingulate, right pre- and postcentral gyri (BA 2, 3, 4), bilateral middle frontal gyrus (BA 6, 10), right parahippocampal gyrus, right culmen, right medial frontal gyrus, subcallosal gyrus and thalamus (Fig. 2A). We also calculated the correlational analyses for the non-normalized meditation data and the non-meditation data separately, but none of these correlations reached significance.
Affiliation: Center for Mind/Brain Sciences (CIMeC), University of Trento, Via delle Regole 101, 38060 Mattarello, TN, Italy. Electronic address: Anne.Hauswald@unitn.it.