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3 Articles on Positive Applications of Mindfulness and Meditation

Article #1       Harvard neuroscientist: Meditation not only reduces stress, here’s how it changes your brain – The Washington Post

SOURCE

Washington Post, May 26, 2015, by Brigid Schulte

LINK TO RESOURCE

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/inspired-life/wp/2015/05/26/harvard-neuroscientist-meditation-not-only-reduces-stress-it-literally-changes-your-brain/

(shortened URL)   http://tinyurl.com/mepz6ds

Article #2   Mindfulness Training Improves Resilience Of Active-Duty Soldiers

SOURCE

The Huffington Post, February 18, 2015,  by Carolyn Gregoire

LINK TO RESOURCE

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/02/18/mindfulness-military-_n_6704804.html?ncid=newsltushpmg00000003

(shortened URL)   http://tinyurl.com/n9jxeja

Article #3   Meditation for a Good Night’s Sleep – NYTimes.com

SOURCE

New York Times, February 23, 2015, by Anahad O’Connor

LINK TO RESOURCE

http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/02/23/meditation-for-a-good-nights-sleep/?em_pos=small&emc=edit_hh_20150224&nl=subscription-3&nlid=38200791&ref=headline

(shortened URL)   http://tinyurl.com/of4j46m

DESCRIPTION

The Penn Medicine site for Mindful Meditation (see Website of the Week 06/15/2015) describes the process as “Mindfulness techniques cultivate steadiness, health and wholeness even during the most difficult moments. With training, you can learn to connect with your inner resources in a simple and satisfying way.”  Three articles on Mindful Meditation research empirically quantify the benefits of the process as well as what goes on the the brain.  The first article discusses the regions of the brain involved in meditation and points out that their are actual physiological changes that result from the technique.  The second article discusses a study wherein soldiers are taught the technique during training as a means of coping with the stressors of training and subsequent deployment.  The last article discusses the research using meditation as a technique for better sleep efficiency.  The articles can be read as how empirically based research investigates claims of meditation techniques as well as areas of application.  Further, the information regarding the technique can be integrated into discussions of “states of consciousness” found in most introductory Psychology textbooks.

CLASS DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

The first two questions are for use with related chapters in Intro Psychology textbooks.
•What is the meaning of “states of consciousness?”
•What methodology is used to empirically study “states of consciousness?”
•What is Mindful Meditation?
•How does alter physiology and the brain? (Article #1)
•What are the applications? (Articles #2 and #3)
•Discuss how Psychology can use methodology to investigate empirically a variety of techniques that make claims of their effectiveness but are often found to be hoaxes, useless, and generally fraudulent.

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