Buddhists here in Syracuse are known to spend a great deal of time meditating. The practice of meditation is seen as a Buddhist religious ritual. However, it has been shown that meditation also helps Buddhists here make wise decisions.
The Buddhist Channel has reported “Meditation helps us take wise decisions”, http://bit.ly/i3d5dG. It has been suggested by a new study that sustained training in mindfulness meditation may impact distinct domains of human decision-making, thus enabling them to make decisions rationally. And so Buddhists taking time for meditation at the Zen Center of Syracuse are enriching both their religious awareness and the power of their minds to make wise decisions, http://bit.ly/ewfxJ4..
In this study, which has been published in the journal Frontiers in Decision Neuroscience, Ulrich Kirk, a physics professor, and Jonathan Downar, an assistance professor of Neuropsychiatry, have discovered that Buddhist meditators use different areas of the brain than other people when confronted with unfair choices, which enables them to make decisions rationally rather than emotionally, http://bit.ly/h0ytYf.
It was found that meditators had trained their brains to function differently and make better choices in certain situations. For this study 26 Buddhist meditators and 40 control subjects were recruited for comparison. Their brain processes were studied using functional MRI while the subjects played the “ultimatum game,” in which the first player proposes how to divide a sum of money and the second can accept or reject the proposal. The researchers had hypothesized that “successful regulation of negative emotional reactions would lead to increased acceptance rates of unfair offers” by the meditators. The behavioral results in this study confirmed the hypothesis.
The neuroimaging results showed that Buddhist meditators engaged different parts of the brain than expected. The researchers commented “In meditators, the anterior insula showed no significant activation for unfair offers, and there was no significant relationship between anterior insula activity and offer rejection. Hence, meditators were able to uncouple the negative emotional response to an unfair offer, presumably by attending to internal bodily states (interoception) reflected by activity in the posterior insula.” And so there now appears to be scientific evidence to support a rational explanation of why Buddhist meditators can often be trusted to make more rational decisions than people who do not meditate.
Mandel News Service: http://www.mandelnews.com