Like with any practise, the more you do it, the easier it becomes and the quicker you can get into it. The same goes for meditation, to the point where you can alter your brain waves to experience differing levels of consciousness - just slightly insanely cool or is it just me?
So, here’s the low down. Let’s start with BETA.
BETA brain waves, between 14 and 24 Hz corresponds to the monkey in your head, that “busy mind” that so many of inhabit most of the time. It’s generally of left brain dominance and is characterised with unbalanced, chaotic and fragmented thinking.
(This always gets me thinking about school, they teach us how to “think” but no one ever explains how to stop thinking which, turns out, is fundamental for our mental health and wellbeing)
ALPHA brain wave frequency ranges between 8 and 12 Hz. Alpha waves calm the nervous system, lower blood pressure and heart rate and are associated with the early stages of meditation. The more alpha waves a person can produce in ordinary states of consciousness, the easier it becomes to access a deep meditative state.
THETA brain waves is where we start to drift into dreamland. Ranging at a frequency of 3.5-7Hz this is a state where balanced brain activity actually increases, creating “inner images and visions”.
(It’s seems as though images from deep within our subconscious, which we usually blur out with our logical minds, are finally allowed to rise to the surface in this state, allowing guidance, insights and even a foreseeing of a significant event to appear. Many who have done great things in this world have often reported that their greatest ideas, insights and “inner guidance” came when they were still, silent and calm. When we’re stressed, our creativity depletes)
DELTA is associated with a more transcendent state thats ‘beyond the mind’. Ranging between 0.5-4Hz, this state is characterised with masters of meditation who are able to reach what in yoga we call “Samadhi”, the final stage of the eight limbed path of yoga. When the “I”, or anything associated with duality, “you and I”, “You and the device you’re reading this on”, dissolves into a universal consciousness. A oneness with all things, known as the subtlest meditative state possible.
(DELTA waves are also associated with the deep stage 3 of NREM sleep, also known as slow-wave sleep (SWS), and aid in characterizing the depth of sleep.)
If you’ve read this far….I’m guessing, like me, you totally geek out on this stuff, the spiritual meets the scientific, and the wonder of our minds. Us humans really are quite miraculous when you consider what our minds our capable of.
SO, if you haven’t given meditation or breath work a go yet, yes there is a difference which I will explain in next weeks newsletter, take a seat, straighten your spine, breathe gently in and out through your nose, and allow all of your awareness to focus on the in flow and out flow of your breath. Just sit with “what is” for a moment, and witness yourself breathing. If your mind wanders, which it will, gently come back to the breath.
Notice what you notice. Maybe sit there for 2 minutes. Then tomorrow, maybe 3 minutes. Just a few minutes a day will make a noticeable difference to your mental health and wellbeing.
If you’re enjoying these weekly ponderings, reply to this email and let me know what you want to know more about!
Oh and, I’m running a weekly online breath work class on Monday’s at 6:00pm via zoom, where we will not only learn the difference between breath work and meditation, but also learn tools and techniques to master your mind and regulate your nervous system.
I’ll be sending out an email on Monday with the link, simply click it at 6:00pm (set a reminder so you don’t forget) and let’s BREATHE!
Shoot me a DM on instagram with any questions about the class or if you just fancy a natter!
Have a wonderful weekend and see you on Monday!
Your friend and mentor,