All posts in Scientific research

Slimming with yoga?

Studies indicate health gains from mind-body techniques

By Erik Ekker Solberg, PhD, cardiologist, specialist in sports medicine

yoga vajraAccording to recent studies, yoga and meditation practices may help us to lose weight, reduce our blood pressure, lower cholesterol levels, and slow down our pulse. Both psychological and physical quality of life seems to improve. Read more…

The brain’s default mode network – what does it mean to us?

Marcus Raichle interviewed by Svend Davanger

“We discovered the default mode network accidentally, without any preconceived notion of it,” says the brain researcher Marcus Raichle. “Nobody had thought of anything like the default mode network in our brain. It is different from the brain’s visual and movement systems.” Read more…

Acem Meditation at Centurion University in India

On 25 February 2015, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between Acem and Centurion University in India. At the same time, 28 female engineering students at the university learned Acem Meditation.

Acem Meditation and Centurion University Read more…

Emotional processing increases when the mind is allowed to wander

– recent brain research attracts worldwide attention

The brain shows more signs of relaxation during meditation than during ordinary rest. Nondirective meditation has a greater impact than does concentrative meditation, especially in parts of the cortex associated with the processing of stress, emotions, and memories.

brain in nondirective meditation Read more…

Groundbreaking research on meditation and the brain

Nondirective meditation activates the brain’s resting network, allowing processing of thoughts, memories, and emotions

brain scanning of meditation
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How do you relate to your spontaneous thoughts?

Mind-wandering, brain and meditation

Svend Davanger, MD, PhD
Professor of Neuroscience at the University of Oslo
Meditation Instructor in Acem

meditation brain Read more…

Meditation goes mainstream

Der SpiegelAn increasing body of medical evidence confirms that meditation has a wide range of positive effects for the practitioner. The probably most influential and respected print media in Germany, der Spiegel, recently ran  the article: Der heilende Geist: Gesund durch Meditation und Entspannung (The healing spirit: Healthy through meditation and relaxation) on its front page.

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Free mental attitude – a metacognitive shift

By Øyvind Ellingsen

Øyvcind EllingsenThe brain’s natural resting state is not a void or an absence of thoughts, but a spontaneous wandering among thoughts, episodes, images and feelings (1). Usually only 50 % of us are aware of them, but if we ask people at random, we learn that we all have such activity 30-50 % of the time, also when we are preoccupied with other activities.

The spontaneous stream of thoughts is reduced during tasks that require concentration, and increases during routine activities and rest. During the practice of Acem Meditation, a free mental attitude often increases the spontaneous activity of the mind.

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Killing the common cold viruses with meditation?

Would you volunteer to participate in a study where viruses are injected in order to measure the risk that you catch a cold? 276 volunteers actually participated in an American study of this kind*). After the injection of the virus, the participants stayed in quarantine for five days. Then measures were taken of congested noses, and the snot was weighed.

The results indicated that stressed persons more easily catch a cold, which may not come as a big surprise, and those who experience chronic stress are most likely to catch a cold. The researchers wanted to assess the participants’ level of stress. After the necessary interviews, the conclusion left no doubt: those who had been most stressed were also the hardest hit by the cold.

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The Shaking Woman

Siri Hustvedt

Two and a half years after her father died, the Norwegian-American novelist Siri Hustvedt was about to give a speech in his honour at the place where he had worked. Before she had finished her first sentence, she began to shudder violently from the neck down, her arms flapping, and her knees knocking.

She kept shaking as if she was having a seizure, but her voice was not affected, and she managed to finish her speech. When the speech ended, so did her shaking, but similar fits returned to her on several later occasions. And then she wrote a book about it: “The Shaking Woman or A History of My Nerves”. I read the Kindle version on an iPhone.

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