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spirituality and the brain

How God Changes Your Brain By: Andrew Newberg, M.D.,Mark Robert WaldmanNaturopathic medicine looks to advance the progress of healing and health through non-pharmacological approaches, where it is appropriate and safe to do so. It is meant to provide supportive and nurturing approaches to health care, alongside the advances in medical diagnosis and knowledge of the functioning of body and mind. 

I am currently reading this book that was recommended, on the effects of spiritually on health and the ability to affect brain activity, which in turn, can have implications on the physical body. The book begins by explaining the different parts of the brain; the primitive brain, or limbic system (which consists of the amygdala and the thalamus, responsible for our emotional memory and our fight-or-flight response), the frontal lobes (planning, language, analysis), the parietal lobes (your sense of self in relation to the world and others), and the anterior cingulate (the most advanced and recent brain development in humans and few primates, responsible for compassion, empathy, social awareness, and intuition). The author, a neuroscientist, then gives evidence and reasoning for the effects of spirituality and meditation, which does not necessarily signify religious beliefs, although according to the author, do tend to positively affect brain or neuronal activity. Spirituality, meditation, religion, do not necessarily have to be according to any one religious practice if you choose. They are meant to provide you with your own set of values and moral guidelines to live a peaceful and meaningful life. It is very good to have open dialogues with someone to discuss your values and beliefs, and how your own practices of beliefs and virtues enhance your relationships and purpose in life. This book is an excellent resource for anyone interested in incorporating meditation in their lives to reduce stress.

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