"Brain research is beginning to produce concrete evidence for something that Buddhist practitioners of meditation have maintained for centuries: Mental discipline and meditative practice can change the workings of the brain and allow people to achieve different levels of awareness... "
"What we found is that the longtime practitioners showed brain activation on a scale we have never seen before," said Richard Davidson, a neuroscientist at the university's new $10 million W.M. Keck Laboratory for Functional Brain Imaging and Behavior... "It demonstrates", he said, "that the brain is capable of being trained and physically modified in ways few people can imagine."
"Scientists used to believe the opposite -- that connections among brain nerve cells were fixed early in life and did not change in adulthood. But that assumption was disproved over the past decade with the help of advances in brain imaging and other techniques, and in its place, scientists have embraced the concept of ongoing brain development and "neuroplasticity."
"What we found is that the trained mind, or brain, is physically different from the untrained one," he said. "In time, we'll be able to better understand the potential importance of this kind of mental training and increase the likelihood that it will be taken seriously."