It’s true that meditation can be a relaxing activity that many people are attracted to for its health benefits. You can take a lucid dreaming course any day of the week if you wanted, and with a good pair of the best cheap noise-cancelling headphones you can choose to visit an audio environment that can simulate meditational practices. But the next step beyond that is controlling your brain waves yourself.
The Truth About Brainwave Entrainment for Meditation
Meditation is a deeply transformative practice that is backed by several scientific studies. Whether you’re an experienced practitioner or just beginning your journey, meditation offers a way to relieve stress, increase awareness, and become more optimistic about your life. There are several different types of meditation, some of which involve the use of specialized mantras or tools. One such tool is brainwave entrainment.
In your quest to discover the best meditation practice for yourself, you have probably come across guided meditations and other audio aids. Brainwave entrainment is a technique which uses audio stimulation to induce states of deep awareness in your brain. Although the technique might sound like new-age tripe, it has been around for thousands of years. Shamans, gurus, and spiritual practitioners throughout the ages have used hymns, prayers, and rhythmic drums to deepen their meditation practice.
Through the wonders of modern technology, there are several brainwave entrainment programs which are freely available for use on your computers or mobile devices. The process is uncomplicated: you find a quiet spot, put on a pair of headphones, press play, and let the entrainment track work its magic. Entrainment technology has become more sophisticated as researchers uncover more information about how the brain works.
What is brainwave entrainment?
Your emotions, behavioral patterns, and cognitive functions are governed by neurons communicating with each other within your brain. These communications can be divided into different bandwidths which correspond to distinct activities. For example, when you’re in deep sleep, your brainwaves operate at 0.5 to 3 Hertz. These brainwaves are called delta waves. When you’re awake and performing your day-to-day activities, you’re working with beta waves, which range from 12 to 38 Hertz. With brainwave entrainment, you are able to access these states by using a track which corresponds to the state you want to achieve. If you want to get your mind and body ready for sleep, you should use a delta track. If you want to start working on a new project and need a boost of creativity and focus, you can use a gamma track.
Brainwave entrainment research first began in the 1950s when scientist Robert Monroe first discovered the potential of this technology. Several decades later, Michael Hutchison published his findings in the seminal book Megabrain, which chronicled the profound effect of entrainment technology on his own life. The book also featured several case studies of people who had been helped by using entrainment methods.
Is it really meditation if I’m manipulating my brain waves?
Meditation purists might scoff at the idea of using audio tracks to guide a session. However, when you consider what a meditation practice is ultimately meant to achieve, the benefits of brainwave entrainment become clear. Entrainment allows you to reach the states that generate deep insights or quick healing, and in most cases you can sit for longer periods without getting impatient or restless.
Brainwave entrainment isn’t a shortcut. You’re not going to turn into an enlightened being overnight because you put on a pair of headphones while you’re focusing on your breath. You still have to show up regularly. However, as a tool to strengthen your meditation practice, brainwave entrainment is tremendously useful. You are able to access deep states of mind which can take years to reach if you don’t have the right kind of guidance.
If you want to understand yourself better, heal emotional scars, and move through life with an enriched perspective, you should definitely adopt a meditation practice. If you’ve been on the fence about meditation, you should try a few sessions with a brainwave entrainment track of your choice. There are several free applications available on the Android and Apple app store. Just pick one, find a quiet place where you won’t be disturbed, and breathe.