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Old May 24th, 2008, 05:32   #1 (permalink)
Foojoy (Offline)
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Lightbulb Gamma waves

I have heard a lot of talk recently about gamma brain waves. Can anyone here provide me with some general information about this brain state? Specificly:

1. Is it true this brain state has been observed in advanced meditators? If so why is there no information on gamma brain states here?

2. I have heard that gamma is a higher form of beta. But isn't to much beta stressful? If so, why would advanced meditators be producing it?

Ive tried looking this up on the net but have found that there is often as much misinformation as there is factual.


Can Michael, moderators or my fellow meditators shed some factual light on my queries?

-Foojoy
 
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Old May 26th, 2008, 13:05   #2 (permalink)
Michael Mackenzie (Offline)
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Thumbs up Gamma waves

Hi Foojoy,

This is an area of ongoing research and disagreement among neurological professionals. It was once thought that human brainwaves topped out with Beta, but there is growing EEG evidence that much higher brainwave states exist. Once you get to 40Hz, researchers have dubbed this to be "Gamma". This is generally considered to run from about 40Hz up to 100Hz, though the classification is not yet set in stone as the debate around the existence of Gamma still goes on. Brainwaves have been measured with the EEG at 100Hz up to 200Hz. When researchers are discussing this range they've given it the name of "Hyper-Gamma". At 200Hz and above (and yes, there have been measurements of these frequencies in humans,) the term "Lambda" is being applied.

In short, yes, these states, far higher than traditional Beta waves are associated with ecstatic states of consciousness in highly experienced and developed meditators. I'm talking here about people who have spent their entire lives cloistered in monasteries practicing meditation and mental disciplines.

What is truly interesting is that brainwave states lower than Delta have also been measured, that is, lower than 0.5Hz. These have been dubbed "Epsilon". But what is fascinating about them is that these Epsilon waves, too, have been observed in meditation during ecstatic states. Observations suggest there is some kind of circular relationship going on here. Above Beta you get high states of ecstasy. Below Delta you also get high states of ecstasy. If you were of an eastern religious orientation you would refer to these states as Nirvana, Samadhi or shamanic trance. In a more common manner of speaking they would call such states "Christ Consciousness" or "Krishna Consciousness".

So in short, yes, these states do exist. Yes, they are associated with extremely advanced "spiritual" development. The 40Hz frequency has received the most research so far and it is intriguing because it tends to entrain the brain (when using a 40Hz entrainment track) at multiple frequencies in accordance with the brain's own natural rhythms. This is a frequency that has had great success in dealing with conditions such as ADD. Hope this helps you, Michael.
 
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Old May 27th, 2008, 08:29   #3 (permalink)
PookDo68 (Offline)
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any chance LifeFlow may offer Gamma Meditations?
 
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Old May 29th, 2008, 12:32   #4 (permalink)
Michael Mackenzie (Offline)
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Default Gamma brainwaves

I just wanted to post to see how much (if any) interest there may be by the group to explore these higher brainwave frequencies using entrainment.

If I see there is sufficient interest among the group to financially support track developments, I will look into this further for you.

If you have an interest in exploring these Gamma frequencies, just post a "YES" below. Michael
 
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Old May 30th, 2008, 00:30   #5 (permalink)
Edwin (Offline)
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yes

message is too short so post in short why or cheat like me
 
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Old May 30th, 2008, 05:22   #6 (permalink)
Foojoy (Offline)
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Yes I would be interested in exploring Gamma frequencies. Thank you Michael for taking the time to bring some factual information to this thread. You made it clear that these brain states are are common in extremely advanced meditators. Does it matter what "style" of meditation is being practiced? For example, would only advanced mantra meditators achieve this, or could someone advanced in breath meditation also achieve this state? I hope these questions make sense.

Last edited by Foojoy : May 30th, 2008 at 05:39.
 
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Old May 30th, 2008, 08:49   #7 (permalink)
Raven (Offline)
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Default Technique vs. Meditation

Originally Posted by Foojoy View Post
Does it matter what "style" of meditation is being practiced? For example, would only advanced mantra meditators achieve this, or could someone advanced in breath meditation also achieve this state?
Foojoy,

Methinks you're falling into a false trap that many people get stuck in, namely, you may be confusing the "technique" being used to reach a state of meditation with the experience of being "in meditation" itself. These two things are not the same.

Take the most familiar, mantra technique, for instance. Sitting in your posture, repeating your mantra over and over again is not meditation. It's a technique that you hope will lead you into a state of meditation. But if that heightened state of clear awareness we call meditation is not attained, then despite the fact that you've repeated your mantra for your target time, you have not been in meditation. You've just been repeating a word or sound, nothing more. Meditation is the natural state of consciousness you're trying to experience by clearing away all the junk that's keeping it hidden from you. The mantra is just the technique you use as an aid to clearing out all that junk.

The same can be said of any technique, be it mantra, pranayama, kriya, bhakti, or shabda yoga, vipassana, chanting, Taoist energy practices, Tibetan Kum Nye, Yoga Nidra, zazen, Sufi dance, or whatever. Don't confuse the tool/technique with the state of consciousness that tool/technique is employed to help you realize.

So to answer your question, if you are in that ecstatic state of deep meditation you're likely to see those very high or very low brainwave frequencies Michael described regardless of which technique you used to get yourself into the meditative state. The salient point is the meditative state itself, not the technique you used to help you reach it.

~R~
 
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Old May 30th, 2008, 15:01   #8 (permalink)
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Thumbs up

That was clarifying Raven !

Very well explained !
 
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Old May 30th, 2008, 15:20   #9 (permalink)
Larry Gessner (Offline)
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I must totally concur with that statement. Very Good.
 
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Old May 30th, 2008, 17:35   #10 (permalink)
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Well said Raven. It could be said though that certain methods of meditation might be more appropriate for reaching such states.

And I would be interesting in exploring extreme high/low freq. meditative states too Michael.
 
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