By Karin Leonard
enough our brain size hasn't increased much over the last 300,000 years.
However, even after such a long time, we're only using a small
percentage of our gray matter (about 5%).
Much of our further evolution - both collectively and personally
- is going to depend on learning how to use our neocortex (the newer
brain parts) more fully - and integrating itís use with the
functions of some of the older brain parts.
Philosopher Ken Wilber says that some of the geniuses, prophets
and shamans of the ages may represent fore runners of what is possible
for the evolutionary future of humanity. In a way evolution - a process that has been guided by
natural forces for billions of years - has become a self- directed
adventure through the rather recent past, present and future of Homo
The Internal Weather
So how does one use the
brain more effectively? Research
shows us that "inner work" like meditation, processing
experiences, therapy - anything that has sustained effects on our state
of mind - also changes the activity patterns of the brain. Meditation
and relaxation techniques especially change the brain wave patterns;
regular meditators tend to have a higher percentage of alpha waves
ongoingly. Albert Einstein
is said to have been in a fully relaxed state (high percentage of alpha)
when solving mathematical mysteries. Most of us are far from that when
engaged in life. The
majority of our thoughts are like interference or static, reducing both
the quality of our daily experience and our effectiveness as human
beings. Awareness is the
first step. Just noticing
what goes through your mind on a regular basis brings you closer to
being at choice. A great
practice to engage in during the day is to just stay present - noticing
your thoughts and returning to center.
This is much like coming home and resting there peacefully.
As you begin to practice mindfulness - and understanding that it
is practice protects from perfectionism - you'll notice that all at a
sudden there is a sense of spaciousness in your life, a feeling of inner
The Super-conscious Net
Great achievements of any
kind - be it in science, the arts or sports - tend to occur in states of
excellence often described as "being in the flow".
Remember the last time you were engaged in an experience or task
so completely that time flew by and maybe it seemed that you weren't
even producing the results - it just happened through you and ideas
showed up out of nowhere.
You were unconsciously
accessing the super-conscious computer - a storehouse of information
that seems to be available to all of us. Mozart "received"
complete works of music this way - written down perfectly on first
also happens in your interactions with the world around you and it shows
up as synchronicities - chance encounters and unexplainable
"coincidences" that give you a feeling of being on track with
your life. Flow tends to
occur more as you clear your mind from internal clutter, follow your
intuition and do what you feel passionate about.