Paper Review: Source-space EEG neurofeedback links subjective experience with brain activity during effortless awareness meditation

Judson Brewer ran a study to test whether source-localized EEG neurofeedback could follow effortless awareness in novice and expert meditators.1)van Lutterveld, R., et al., Source-space EEG neurofeedback links subjective experience with brain activity during effortless awareness meditation, NeuroImage (2016), http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neuroimage.2016.02.047 The EEG neurofeedback was done with the gamma-band (40-57 Hz) measuring PCC activity. Verbal probes were used to assess the correlation with subjective experience of effortless awareness.  The suggests brain activity within the PCC is strongly correlated with the subjective experience of effortless awareness.

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References   [ + ]

1. van Lutterveld, R., et al., Source-space EEG neurofeedback links subjective experience with brain activity during effortless awareness meditation, NeuroImage (2016), http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neuroimage.2016.02.047

Cognitive Benefits of Neurofeedback Training

Neurofeedback is used for self-regulation of ongoing brain oscillations. It has been postulated that optimal brain functioning depends on a homeostatic setpoint which balances network flexibility and stability. 1)http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4270171/

Individuals note improvements in attention and memory. With increased fluidity in cognitive processing, an individual is able to move between objects of awareness much more easily. Our neurofeedback program emphasizes increasing embodied awareness to open up the field of perception. Clients report a feeling a balance between internal and external perception.

 

References   [ + ]

1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4270171/

Self Organized Criticality and the Brain

Theta(4-8Hz) amplitude change is proportional to ADHD symptom changes.

Complexity exists in nature, order and disorder. Synchronization emerges from the coupling between individual elements. There needs to be coupling. Increased synchronization leads to more order.1)Complexity and coherency: integrating information in the brain, https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Giulio_Tononi/publication/222493040_Complexity_and_coherency_Integrating_information_in_the_brain/links/0fcfd50ff3a2f562c7000000.pdf

In real-world biological systems, the system self organizes to highest complexity for optimal information procesing and dynamic range.  High criticality corresponds to high correlation over space.

Random walk model can be used as a statistical model for critical dynamics.

References   [ + ]

1. Complexity and coherency: integrating information in the brain, https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Giulio_Tononi/publication/222493040_Complexity_and_coherency_Integrating_information_in_the_brain/links/0fcfd50ff3a2f562c7000000.pdf

Contemplative Practice Starts with The Body: Understanding Somatic Awareness, Brain Dynamics, and Healing Presence in Mindfulness and Other Disciplines

Catherine Kerr’s alpha framework elucidates 3 points”

  1. Body scan – training alpha aynamics by shifting attentional spotlight
  2. Trainig generalizes up to encompass regulation of thoughts
  3. Spontaneous sensations arising during practice appear may play a calibrating role in maintaining network “volume” levels1)http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fnhum.2013.00012/full

References   [ + ]

1. http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fnhum.2013.00012/full