Monday, February 28, 2011

Plastic Brains

Here's an article my mother sent me this morning:

I think someone sent me an earlier article on this same study, but I was busy at the time and can't find it now. These sorts of study aren't immediately interesting, since I'm obviously convinced of the benefits of meditation myself already and it just seems like boasting to post these sorts of things without a good reason. The most interesting thing about this study to me, though, is that it highlights the elastic nature of the brain, a fact that should not be taken lightly:

The results of this new study offer further evidence for the “plasticity” of the brain, meaning it can change its shape over time. That suggests we’re not simply stuck with the neural cards we’re dealt; we can fundamentally improve our cognitive and emotional capacities.

This should be a warning to people who shrug off negative mental traits of any sort with words like, "I was born this way." Yes, maybe you were; and maybe you should work to make sure you won't be born this way again. The fact that we can is most encouraging. At the very least, the fact that we can work in this life to remove such negative traits as depression, stress, addiction, etc., is a kick in the pants to those who live with these states hopeless of any cure. The cure, it seems, is within.

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