Can meditation and mindfulness really reconfigure our brains to make us sharper, smarter, healthier, happier?
In Siddhartha's Brain, James Kingsland reveals that a complete scientific theory of how these practices work is now within our grasp and may be the key that unlocks a wide range of afflictions of the human mind.
Some 25 centuries
ago an Indian sage called Siddhartha Gautama - the man who would become
known as the Buddha - developed a programme for improving mental
wellbeing that has been passed down to us by generations of monks and
nuns. Far from being a New Age fad, secular mindfulness courses are
remarkably consistent with these ancient teachings and are proving their
worth for tackling many of the problems associated with the demands of
our frenetic, technology-driven modern world.
Research by psychologists and clinicians has shown that mindfulness can be used to treat stress, anxiety, depression, chronic pain, hypertension and drug addiction, as well as improving concentration, empathy, emotion regulation and the quality of interpersonal relationships. There have even been hints that it could enhance immune function, slow cellular ageing and help keep dementia at bay.
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