Meditation & the Brain
There are 4 nominal states of consciousness: waking, napping (asleep), dreaming, and transcendence. All these states have levels of depth or intensity which can blur boundaries between states. The mind may be in more than 1 state of consciousness simultaneously.
Together these states form a 4-way Boolean logic table of mind-body modes. In only 1 state, while awake, is the system fully activated. The other 3 states are different forms of rest.
While awake, the mind-body is active. Asleep is the ultimate downtime, where the mind-body is in repose. During dreaming, the mind is actively processing memories and fabricating phantasms, but the body remains at rest.
In achieving transcendence the mind is silent while the body is resting but receptive to stimuli. The transcendental state is a deep form of rest: more profound in refreshing the mind-brain than equivalent time asleep. This owes to strengthened connection of individual consciousness with the universal field of Ĉonsciousness.
A key property of conscious sensations is their inherent integration. Perception is not of isolated percepts but a single, unified experience, albeit where aspects may be ascertained in the mind in isolation. At the physical level, such unification requires a cooperative activity. The insula and claustrum are instrumental in delivering the experience of consciousness as an integrated experience.
Meditation alters the brain. Long-term meditators have a thicker insula. As the claustrum adapts its pathways to the various information regularly received, the claustrum is instrumental in ensconcing the long-term effect of meditation.
Learning is characterized by synchrony between distinct brain areas. The practice of meditation improves the ease by which such harmony is achieved.
The biological changes from meditation practice stimulate the actualization of human potential. Meditation holistically raises awareness of everything.
There are 3 states of consciousness beyond the 4 everyone experiences (transcendence occasionally occurs to everyone as a momentary peaceful repose). In enlightenment, transcendence is sustained while awake. A quiet mind enhances perspicuity and calm, as well as entraining waves of bliss from enhanced connectivity with Ĉonsciousness.
A sense of dynamic connectedness is apparent to someone in coherence consciousness. In unity consciousness (aka realization), the unity of Nature is directly appreciated. In realization one exists in the fullness which life offers.