Now that we know how to start meditating and the basic methods to get going(from here and here), let’s dive in deeper. With meditation, you will have the power to take your brain to levels you’ve seldom touched before. Remember people often say we use only a certain part of our brain while most of it remains untouched? That is exactly where we’re heading.
When you enter the deeper levels of mind, you unlock the ability to reprogram your subconscious mind. If there are certain fears, thoughts and beliefs you know are holding you back and haven’t been able to do anything about it, getting into a deeper meditative state can help you modify your beliefs and thus make a world of difference in your life.
To help channelize your brain’s power and move into the deeper zones, it is necessary to understand brain waves. Our brain works on electromagnetic waves – now if you’re not a science geek and don’t understand a lot about it, don’t worry I’ll take you through it.
What are Brain Waves
Every human brain has its own wave length and bandwidth; we do things, understand them and relate to aspects that fall in that bandwidth. Has it ever occurred that you suddenly connect with someone and hit it off immediately? Wondered why? It is because your brain waves have similar frequencies! Two people speak the same thing simultaneously in a certain context? Yes that’s another instance when both your brains are in the same zone.
Let us move on to understand what these waves are, and what meditation has to contribute in helping you tap the different wavelengths that your brain can produce. Initially after conducting several experiments, scientists believed there were five different brain waves, but now as we know more about the subject it is expanding further and the number of levels are opening up. At this point, though, we shall stick to the most commonly understood five.
The 5 Wavelengths
The five frequencies of brain waves are named Alpha, Beta, Theta, Delta, and Gamma. Each of these waves have a different frequency in Hz, which can be calculated when you hook your brain to an EEG (Electroencephalography) machine.
- Alpha (7.5-14 Hz)
Alpha is the state you experience when you’re relaxed, feel tranquil, and are just entering the initial stage of meditation. It is deeper than Beta and can be used for a lot of things but it is at the very surface of how deep you can go with meditation. The starting point, so to say.
You can enter the alpha state of mind by closing your eyes and counting down from 100 to 1 while visualizing the numbers in front of your eyes. Relax your body and all the muscles from the stress you’ve been in through the day, and you will experience a different state of mind already.
Accessing the alpha frequencies heightens your creative abilities, helps you visualize better, and improves memory and focus. You can slow time down and have more time to respond to the events and ensure you’re not in the fight-or-flight mode. Often sportsmen of the highest order use this state to have more time than others to make decisions on the field which eventually give them the winning edge.
- Beta (14-40 Hz)
Beta frequencies are the state we operate in by default. We operate and function in the Beta zone for a major part of our day. It is a level where the brain is alert, creates logic and reasoning.
But Beta has a drawback. If you are constantly in this state, you also tend to be stressed, experience anxiety and restlessness. And as your feelings of stress and anxiety grow stronger, you go deeper into Beta – thus producing a vicious cycle.
The best way is to use the Beta zone as a default level, but understand and learn to switch when you know things might get out of control in the head.
- Theta (4-7.5 Hz)
You are in the Theta state when you’re just about to fall asleep. You’re neither fully awake nor in deep sleep.
How do you know you are in Theta? When you are aware of your surroundings and grounded in reality, but your body is relaxed and thus the mind too.
This is THE state you want to be in, to make the shift from one wavelength to another, and eventually to alter your beliefs and reprogram the subconscious mind. With little practice, you can easily enter the Theta zone, and you will know that with the feeling of relaxation that you experience in the body, the brain is much more active and can visualize things at your command.
- Delta (0.5-4 Hz)
What we do by entering the deeper states of mind is slow down the functional brain processes. That’s when you’re able to focus on things that you really want to and use the highest order of your brain to actuate your desires.
You are naturally in Delta while sleeping – it is that phase where you don’t dream but are in very deep sleep. It can also be achieved with meditation when you are in a deep transcendent state; where you’re no longer aware of your surroundings and have tapped into that state of thoughtlessness.
Your body repairs itself when in deep sleep and you can achieve the same with Delta.
- Gamma (<40 Hz)
Not a lot is known about the Gamma brain waves and is an area where the researchers are still figuring out and deducing more aspects to it. But the findings suggest that you can process information with exceptional precision at this level.
Now, the possibilities that open up if and when our brain accesses these levels/zones are unimaginable! Sages and yogis have practiced unlocking such levels with years of meditation. And all those stories of miracles worked by them, of incredible healing ‘mantras’ and telepathic connections, all those documented and undocumented instances of ESP (extra sensory perception) and transcendental experiences… perhaps there is more than a moiety of truth in them when you look at what the human brain is actually capable of doing if properly controlled.
So, why not start meditating to unlock the secrets of the marvelous human brain!
Author credits – Ankit Mishra