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Meditators and non-meditators: EEG source imaging during resting


Tei, S; Faber, P L; Lehmann, D; Tsujiuchi, T; Kumano, H; Pascual-Marqui, R D; Gianotti, L R R; Kochi, K (2009). Meditators and non-meditators: EEG source imaging during resting. Brain Topography, 22(3):158-165.

Abstract

Many meditation exercises aim at increased awareness of ongoing experiences through sustained attention and at detachment, i.e., non-engaging observation of these ongoing experiences by the intent not to analyze, judge or expect anything. Long-term meditation practice is believed to generalize the ability of increased awareness and greater detachment into everyday life. We hypothesized that neuroplasticity effects of meditation (correlates of increased awareness and detachment) would be detectable in a no-task resting state. EEG recorded during resting was compared between Qigong meditators and controls. Using LORETA (low resolution electromagnetic tomography) to compute the intracerebral source locations, differences in brain activations between groups were found in the inhibitory delta EEG frequency band. In the meditators, appraisal systems were inhibited, while brain areas involved in the detection and integration of internal and external sensory information showed increased activation. This suggests that neuroplasticity effects of long-term meditation practice, subjectively described as increased awareness and greater detachment, are carried over into non-meditating states.

Many meditation exercises aim at increased awareness of ongoing experiences through sustained attention and at detachment, i.e., non-engaging observation of these ongoing experiences by the intent not to analyze, judge or expect anything. Long-term meditation practice is believed to generalize the ability of increased awareness and greater detachment into everyday life. We hypothesized that neuroplasticity effects of meditation (correlates of increased awareness and detachment) would be detectable in a no-task resting state. EEG recorded during resting was compared between Qigong meditators and controls. Using LORETA (low resolution electromagnetic tomography) to compute the intracerebral source locations, differences in brain activations between groups were found in the inhibitory delta EEG frequency band. In the meditators, appraisal systems were inhibited, while brain areas involved in the detection and integration of internal and external sensory information showed increased activation. This suggests that neuroplasticity effects of long-term meditation practice, subjectively described as increased awareness and greater detachment, are carried over into non-meditating states.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Psychiatric University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Psychiatry, Psychotherapy, and Psychosomatics
04 Faculty of Medicine > The KEY Institute for Brain-Mind Research
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:November 2009
Deposited On:06 Jan 2010 15:42
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 13:39
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0896-0267
Additional Information:The original publication is available at www.springerlink.com
Publisher DOI:10.1007/s10548-009-0107-4
PubMed ID:19653090
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-25881

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