There have been an accelerated activity in studying the benefits of meditation on the brain and on physical health in general. Here are some very recent publications:
- Scientific American November 2014 (volume 311, Number 5) cover story is “Mind of the Meditator”, by M. Ricard et al. : Ricard-Mind of the Meditator- Scientific American – November 2014
- A paper that just came out online in early November (in the journal Cancer) reports that the telomeres – the protein caps at the end of our chromosomes that determine how quickly a cell ages – stayed the same length in cancer survivors who meditated or took part in support groups over a three-month period: Carlson-Mindfulness based Cancer recovery-2014
I have discussed the effects of changing habits on the brain (which is more related to insight meditation): see, “Truine Brain: How the Mind Rewires the Brain via Meditation/Habits“. Insight meditation can be expected to have much more significant changes in the brain as well as in physical health. But such studies have not been conducted yet. Selected references on research studies (2011-2012) and books related to meditation can be found in that post; there have been many more publications since then.
I was surprised to come across the following article in the prestigious journal “Science” which, using real time input from 5000 people all over the world, confirmed what the Buddha said 2500 years ago: that a wandering mind is an unhappy mind; see, A wandering mind is an unhappy mind-Science-Killingsworth-2010.
Much merits to Neranga Abeyasinghe and his family for sending me the second publication.