1385612282115There has been a lot of press about the relationship between meditation and neuroplasticity recently.  What this means is, where before it was thought that after fully forming itself during childhood the basic structure of the brain always remained the same, now it’s been seen that the brain is continuously remodeling itself, according to a person’s needs and life experiences.

Neuroplasticity in the brain ranges from cellular changes in response to learning, to what’s called cortical remapping in response to traumatic injury, in which the brain reforms itself through a process of what’s called synaptic pruning, in which individual connections within the brain are removed or recreated, dependent upon how they are used.

This is particularly relevant to meditation as a practiced skill, because it emphasizes the fact that, regardless of whether meditation is pleasant, peaceful or unpleasant and chaotic, it is the daily practice of meditation that is most effective – not the perceived quality of it, or how it makes us feel in the short term.

Only regular and active practice remaps the way the brain functions, to bring it in line with the mental qualities we seek of mindfulness, mental clarity and an enduring sense of stillness within the storm of life.

Anyway, I found this interesting video, in which Dr. Dan Siegel describes the fundamentals behind mirror neurons, mindfulness and how we can begin to shape behavior through mindful practice.

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