Diverse Perspectives on Healing (Part 4)

by Marilyn Schlitz, Ph.D., Program Chair at Sofia University for the PhD in Transpersonal Psychology programs

In this video excerpt, Swami Veda Bharati represents the Hindu and Vedic traditions as he speaks to the idea of universal energy as a conscious force. He particularly emphasizes a central Vedic idea that we must recognize ourselves within an awareness continuum, put aside the ego, and let the ocean of awareness flow in the healing process. As part of this process the healer facilitates a transference of holistic, selfless karma to the healee.

Click here to view video

 

Marilyn Schlitz, Ph.D. is a social anthropologist, researcher, writer, and charismatic public speaker. She is currently the Founder and CEO of Worldview Enterprises. She also serves as President Emeritus and a Senior Fellow at the Institute of Noetic Sciences. Additionally, she is a Senior Scientist at the California Pacific Medical Center, where she focuses on health and healing, and is a board member of Pacifica Graduate Institute.

For more than three decades, Marilyn has been a leader in the field of consciousness studies. Her research and extensive publications focus on personal and social transformation, cultural pluralism, extended human capacities, and mind body medicine. She has a depth of leadership experience in government, business, and the not-for-profit sectors. Her broad and varied work has given her a unique ability to help individuals and organizations identify and develop personal and interpersonal skills and capacities needed by 21st century leaders.

She produced the film Death Makes Life Possible with Deepak Chopra, and wrote a companion book of the same name, published by SoundsTrue. To see her other film credits, click here. To explore her current research projects, click here.

Diverse Perspectives on Healing (Part 3)

by Marilyn Schlitz, Ph.D.,  Program Chair at Sofia University for the PhD in Transpersonal Psychology programs

Welcome to Part 3 of this blog series that explores the many cultural and religious perspectives on healing. Using video excerpts from two DVDs, Consciousness & Healing, and Compassionate Intention, Prayer, and Distant Healing, this series illuminates the diversity of perspectives and the common threads that unite the many distinct approaches to healing.

In the video excerpt below Nancy Maryboy, who is Navajo and Cherokee and has a doctorate in Native American cosmology, shares Native perspectives on distant healing. She tells us that while there may be spatial differences between on-site versus distant (e.g. across the country) healing, one still calls upon the same cosmic elements to perform the healing. Maryboy also shares perspectives on time and healing, especially during and after ceremonial healing gatherings.

Click here to watch video.

nancy-maryboy

screen-shot-2016-10-04-at-6-37-54-pmMarilyn Schlitz, Ph.D. is a social anthropologist, researcher, writer, and charismatic public speaker. She is currently the Founder and CEO of Worldview Enterprises. She also serves as President Emeritus and a Senior Fellow at the Institute of Noetic Sciences. Additionally, she is a Senior Scientist at the California Pacific Medical Center, where she focuses on health and healing, and is a board member of Pacifica Graduate Institute.

For more than three decades, Marilyn has been a leader in the field of consciousness studies. Her research and extensive publications focus on personal and social transformation, cultural pluralism, extended human capacities, and mind body medicine. She has a depth of leadership experience in government, business, and the not-for-profit sectors. Her broad and varied work has given her a unique ability to help individuals and organizations identify and develop personal and interpersonal skills and capacities needed by 21st century leaders.

She produced the film Death Makes Life Possible with Deepak Chopra, and wrote a companion book of the same name, published by SoundsTrue. To see her other film credits, click here. To explore her current research projects, click here.

The Work of Byron Katie:The Effect of Applying Principles of Inquiry on the Reduction of Perceived Stress

by Fabrice Ange Nye, Ph.D 2011

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAStress has been associated with a variety of chronic and acute conditions and with higher use of health care services. This study examines the effects of a 6-week stress reduction program based on a process developed by Byron Kathleen Mitchell—better known as Byron Katie. This technique is called interchangeably The Work or Inquiry.
This study recruited nearly a hundred volunteers between the ages of 30 and 71, randomized into either an experimental group or a waiting-list control group. Both the treatment and the control groups received the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS), the Acceptance and Action Questionnaire (AAQ-16), the Satisfaction With Life Scale (SWLS), and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) at baseline, postintervention, and a six-week follow-up. The treatment was administered during the first 6 weeks.
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Prior to the assessments, all participants were pre-screened using a questionnaire about their stress level, mental health, and whether they were in therapy. In addition, a demographic questionnaire and the NEO Five Factor Inventory (NEO-FFI) were administered to establish covariates. The members of the treatment group were asked to participate in focus groups at the end of the treatment.
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The research hypothesis was that the treatment group receiving training in Inquiry would show an improvement superior to that experienced by the control group, as measured by the selected instruments for the study. A set of unpaired t-tests applied to measured data revealed iv significant changes at postintervention for perceived stress (p < .01) and acceptance (p < .05), and at follow-up for anxiety (p < .05), perceived stress (p < .001), acceptance (p < .05), and subjective well-being (p < .01). A set of unpaired t-tests applied to imputed data revealed no significant changes at postintervention or at follow-up.
A further refining of the analysis using analyses of covariance revealed significant changes (p < .001, except for AAQ/Post/Measured, SWLS/Post/Measured, and AAQ/Post/Imputed where p < .01) after correcting for covariates. Covariates for each analysis were chosen by forward selection model. Focus group interviews revealed that participants in the intervention found the treatment helpful and could point to improvements in their lives. Results suggest that an inquiry-based intervention with a nonclinical population may mitigate chronic stress.
To read more of this paper click here.
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Byron Katie is renowned for her process she termed The Work, after her personal experiences with depression in her early thirties. This successful process of self-inquiry began in 1986 and assists individuals in awakening to their suffering while providing tools on how to live an empowered, joyful life.

Diverse Perspectives on Healing (Part 2)

by Marilyn Schlitz, Ph.D.,  Program Chair at Sofia University for the PhD in Transpersonal Psychology programs.

Welcome to Part 2 of this blog series that explores the many cultural and religious perspectives on healing. Using video excerpts from two DVDs, Consciousness & Healing, and Compassionate Intention, Prayer, and Distant Healing, this series illuminates the diversity of perspectives and the common threads that unite the many distinct approaches to healing.

In the video excerpt above we hear from two unique healing worldviews — Sufi and Johrei. Arife Hammerle, a psychotherapist and Sufi teacher, describes how the process of meditation and prayer aligns the healer to the purity of the divine and enables him or her to transfer that healing essence to those who need healing. Yoshiaki Kato, a Johrei practitioner from Japan, demonstrates how he moves through the process of healing, from attention to God, to projecting intention, embracing non-attachment, and healing from a place of joy and gratitude.

Click Here to View Video

Marilyn Schlitz, Ph.D. is a social anthropologist, researcher, writer, and charismatic public speaker. She is currently the Founder and CEO of Worldview Enterprises. She also serves as President Emeritus and a Senior Fellow at the Institute of Noetic Sciences. Additionally, she is a Senior Scientist at the California Pacific Medical Center, where she focuses on health and healing, and is a board member of Pacifica Graduate Institute.

For more than three decades, Marilyn has been a leader in the field of consciousness studies. Her research and extensive publications focus on personal and social transformation, cultural pluralism, extended human capacities, and mind body medicine. She has a depth of leadership experience in government, business, and the not-for-profit sectors. Her broad and varied work has given her a unique ability to help individuals and organizations identify and develop personal and interpersonal skills and capacities needed by 21st century leaders.

She produced the film Death Makes Life Possible with Deepak Chopra, and wrote a companion book of the same name, published by SoundsTrue. To see her other film credits, click here. To explore her current research projects, click here.

Embodied Writing and Reflections on Embodiment

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By Rosemarie Anderson

Embodied writing brings the finely textured experience of the body to the art of writing. Relaying human experience from the inside out  and entwining in words our senses with the senses of the world, embodied writing affirms human life as embedded in the sensual world in which we live our lives. As a style of writing, embodied writing is itself an act of embodiment. Nature feels close and dear. Writers attune to the movements of water, earth, air, and fire, which coax our bodily senses to explore. When embodied writing is attuned to the physical senses, it becomes not only a skill appropriate to research, but a path of transformation that nourishes an enlivened sense of presence in and of the world.
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Seeking to relay the living experience of the human body, embodied writing portrays experience from the point of view of the lived body, Leib rather than Körper in Edmund Husserl’s (1952/1989) sense. The researcher collects, analyzes, and reports findings, fully intending to invite readers to encounter the narrative accounts for themselves and from within their own bodies through a form of sympathetic resonance. Ultimately, as a research tool, the efficacy of embodied writing depends on its capacity to engender a quality of resonance between the written text and the senses of the readers that allows readers to more fully experience the phenomena described. The readers’ perceptual, visceral, sensorimotor, kinesthetic, and imaginal senses are invited to come alive to the words and images as though the experience were their own, akin to the way we might read fine poetry or fiction. Embodied writing tries to let the body speak.
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Embodied writing tries to make the experience “present” in the writer while writing and in the reader while reading. For this reason, I’m not so much going to tell you about embodied writing, but I will do it as I go along. Rather than pointing with words as though from a distance, I will write from this full-bodied perspective as best I can, even in the didactic sections to follow. I will “cut loose” especially in the last section, in which I reflect on what I’ve learned about embodying the present through embodied writing.

Click here to read more of this paper.

The Effects of Transcranial Ultrasound on Brain Disorders

lindsay-brinerBy Ph.D student Lindsay Briner

Introduction

As a student at Sofia University, who is not typically exposed to such rigorous experimental experience – it was an incredible learning experience to both have hands on experience analyzing the efficiency of the experimental design, as well as working directly with participants and collecting data.

It was also very meaningful to be working alongside Dr. Hameroff and his team, recognizing that scientific experiments are never done single handedly. It was an honor to be on the team even temporarily – to learn and to create great new friendships.

Over the last year I have been working alongside Dr. Jeffrey Martin at the Transformative Technology Lab  at Sofia University, where we are studying similar technologies on healthy people to enhance well-being. It was fascinating to dive into the other end of the spectrum of these brain technologies from a medical perspective in consideration to human pathology conversely.

Pictured below: Dr. Stuart Hameroff, Dr. Jay Sanguinetti, and Lindsay celebrating our time spent together on the TUS study.

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The Study

In April 2016, a new study was launched at the University of Arizona Center for Consciousness Studies, Effects of Transcranial Ultrasound on Memory and Mood in Cognitively-Impaired Human Subjects. I had the honor to volunteer as a Research Assistant Visiting Scholar in April and May 2016 to contribute to the study. The study is still in progress, assessing and collecting participants. The study is an uncontrolled pilot study to determine direction of future controlled clinical research.

This study is specifically investigating the effects of transcranial ultrasound (TUS) noninvasive brain stimulation on Alzheimer’s, dementia, and traumatic brain injury (TBI) patients for cognitive function and memory. Due to a lack of success in other approaches to resolving these neurological disorders (such as pharmaceuticals and brain training programs), non-invasive brain stimulation techniques are being explored, such as transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) (Fregni 2005; Hameroff et al, 2013). tDCS creates a weak electric current in the brain from electrodes placed on the scalp, and has had some success in improving verbal working memory (Fregni 2005). TMS imposes a magnetic field in the brain, and has shown promise for some cognitive symptoms of depression (Guse et al, 2010). But both tDCS and TMS are inconsistent, have poor spatial resolution and lack a reliable neurophysiological mechanisms of action (Hameroff et al, 2013).

Although in this study, ultrasound stimulation is being used, which historically has only been used for medical imaging. It consists of mechanical vibrations, usually in low megahertz (MHz). Recently, there has been a plethora of both animal and human subject research utilizing ultrasound for therapeutic treatment. As well, a neuronal culture study inferring low intensity ultrasound increased neuronal growth and synaptic formation (Bucci et al, 2015). In humans, it has been found that sub-thermal TUS (~150 mW/cm2) can safely and painlessly stimulate brain activity without long-term effects or damage to the brain (Dalecki, 2007). Given the found safety, several recent studies demonstrate electrophysiological and behavioral effects of TUS on human subjects (Bystritsky, 2015; Legon et al, 2014; Tyler, 2011; Yoo, 2011). As well, the primary contributing researchers of the current study were the first to demonstrate the positive effects of TUS on mental states with human subjects (Hameroff et al, 2012, c.f. Sanguinetti et al, 2014a; 2014b).

All of these findings have been remarkably groundbreaking. Although given the dead-end treatment options for Alzheimer’s disease, a recent study on mice with genetically-induced Alzheimer’s disease was published subjugating especially interesting results. TUS was applied to the temporal cortex of the mice, resulting in a restoration of behavioral memory functions, and reduced amyloid plaques, a bio-marker for Alzheimer’s (Leinenga and Götz 2015).

One perspective on the cause of Alzheimer’s disease is where a malfunction in the tao protein creates amyloid plaque buildup in the microtubules of neural cells. This is a highly favored inference of causation for Alzheimer’s disease and therefore the findings of Leinenga and Götz (2015) have been received by the scientific community as upstanding.

The mechanism of action for TUS is unknown, although according Hameroff (2016) at the Science of Consciousness conference, speculations of mechanism could include “mechano-sensitive membrane proteins, and/or microtubules, major components of the cell cytoskeleton, and single most prevalent protein in the brain.” Microtubules are cylindrical lattices of the protein tubulin, forming Fibonacci quasi-crystals with self-similar vibrational patterns across scales, from terahertz (10^12 Hz, infra-red) to gigahertz (10^9 Hz, microwave) to megahertz (10^6Hz, radio electromagnetically, ultrasound mechanically), kilohertz (10^3 Hz, audio) and hertz (EEG) (Hameroff, 2016). These resonances of the microtubules were discovered by Anirban Bandyopadhyay’s research group at NIMS in Tsukuba, Japan; which inspired Stuart Hameroff’s current investigations as per similarity to ultrasound frequencies (2016).

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Stuart Hameroff is an anesthesiologist and professor at the University of Arizona known for his studies of consciousness.

 

 

 

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Jeffery Martin, PhD, heads the Transformative Technology Lab at Sofia University. As a Harvard trained social scientist, Jeffrey researches personal transformation who specializes in bringing rigorous empirical research and testing to transformational techniques and theories that have previously been supported anecdotally.

References

Bocchi L., Branca J. V., Pacini S., Ruggiero M. (2015). Effect of ultrasounds on neurons and microglia: Cell viability and automatic analysis of cell morphology. Biomedical Signal Processing and Control, 22, 44–53.

Bystritsky A., Korb A. S. (2015). A Review of Low-Intensity Transcranial Focused Ultrasound for Clinical Applications. Current Behavioral Neuroscience Reports, 60–6.

Coronado, V. G., et al. (2012). Trends in Traumatic Brain Injury in the U.S. and the 
public health response: 1995-2009. J Safety Res, 43 (4), 299–307.

Dalecki, D. (2007). WFUMB safety symposium on echo-contrast agents:

Bioeffects of ultrasound contrast agents in vivo. Ultrasound in Med. & Biol., 33 (2), 205–213.

Edwards E.R., Spira A.P., Barnes D.E., Yaffe K. (2009). Neuropsychiatric symptoms in mild cognitive impairment: differences by subtype and progression to dementia. Int J Geriatr Psychiatry, 24, 716–722.

Eurostat. Demography report 2010. http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/cache/ITY_OFFPUB/KE- ET-10-001/EN/KE-ET-10-001-EN.PDF (last accessed May 2014).

Fiebach C. J., Friederici A. D., Müller, K., & von Cramon, D. Y. (2002). fMRI Evidence for Dual Routes to the Mental Lexicon in Visual Word Recognition. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 14 (1) 11–23.

Fleisher, A. S., Sherzai, A., Taylor, C., Langbaum, J. B. S., Chen, K., Buxton, R. B. (2009). Resting-state BOLD networks versus task-associated functional MRI for distinguishing Alzheimer’s disease risk groups. NeuroImage 47 (2009) 1678–1690

Guse, B., Falkai, P., Wobrock, T. (2010). Cognitive effects of high-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation: a systematic review. Neural Transm, 117, 105–122.

Hameroff S., Trakas M., Duffield C., Annabi E., Gerace M.B., Boyle P., Lucas A., Amos Q., Buadu A., Badal J.J. (2013). Transcranial ultrasound (TUS) effects on mental states: a pilot study. Brain Stimulation, 6 (3) 409–15.

Harrison, J., Minassian, S. L., Jenkins, L., Black, R. S., Koller, M., Grundman, M. (2007). A neuropsychological test battery for use in Alzheimer disease clinical trials. Arch Neurol, 64 (9), 13239.

Legon W., Sato T.F., Opitz A., Mueller J., Barbour A., Williams A., et al. (2014). Transcranial focused ultrasound modulates the activity of primary somatosensory cortex in humans. Nature Neuroscience, 17, 322–9.

Leininga G. & Götz J. (2015). Scanning ultrasound removes amyloid-β and restores memory in an Alzheimer’s disease mouse model. Science Translational Medicine, 7, 278–833.

Mustafa, A.G. & Alshboul, O.A. (2013). Pathophysiology of traumatic brain injury. Neurosciences (Riyadh), 18 (3), 222–34.

Penrose, R., Hameroff, S. (2011). Consciousness in the universe: Neuroscience, Quantum Space-Time Geometry and Orch OR Theory. Cosmology of Consciousness: quantum physics and the neuroscience of mind, 3, 51–103.

Pike, K. E., Rowe, C. C., Moss, S. A., Savage, G. (2008). Memory profiling with paired associate learning in alzheimer’s disease, mild cognitive impairment, and healthy aging. Neuropsychology, 22 (6), 718–728.

Ready, R. E., & Ott, Brian, R. (2003). Quality of life measures for dementia. Health and Quality of Life Outcomes, 1 (11).

Sanguinetti J.L., Smith E., Allen John J.B., Hameroff S. (2014). Human Brain Stimulation with Transcranial Ultrasound: Potential Applications for Mental Health. Bioelectromagnetic and Subtle Energy Medicine, 2, 355–360.

Spann, P. E. J., (2016). Episodic and semantic memory impairments in (very) early Alzheimer’s disease: The diagnostic accuracy of paired-associate learning formats. Cogent Psychology, 3, 1–25.

Tyler, W.J. (2011). Ultrasound for neuromodulation: A continuum mechanics hypothesis. The Neuroscientist 17 (1), 25–36.

World Health Organization. (2012). Dementia Fact sheet N°362 http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs362/en/ (last accessed May 2014).

Woods, D. L., Kishiyama, M. M., Yund, E. W., Herron, T. J., Edwards, B., Poliva, O. et al. (2011). Improving digit span assessment of short-term verbal memory. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology33 (1), 101–111.

Yoo, S. S., Bystritsky, A., Lee, J. H., Zhang, Y., Fischer, K., Min, B. K., McDonald, N. J.,  et al. (2011). Focused ultrasound modulates region-specific brain activity. Neuroimage, 56 (3) 1267–1275.

Awakening Non-Symbolic Consciousness with Jeffery A. Martin

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Click here to watch Jeffrey Mishlove and Jeffrey Martin discuss non-symbolic consciousness.

Jeffery Martin, PhD, heads the Transformative Technology Lab at Sofia University. As a Harvard trained social scientist, Jeffrey researches personal transformation who specializes in bringing rigorous empirical research and testing to transformational techniques and theories that have previously been supported anecdotally.

Jeffery is a leading expert on intentionality and non-symbolic consciousness. He holds graduate degrees in information technology, management, and transformative studies and has co-edited, authored, or co-authored over 20 books and numerous other publications; appeared in a wide variety of electronic media; and lectured widely in both academic and public forums.

Jeffery is currently the director of the Center for the Study of Non-Symbolic Consciousness, and the Center for the Study of Intent. Portions of his research on power of thought and non-symbolic consciousness are also available in the popular fiction book, The Fourth Awakening.

Here he describes his research, beginning with neurophysiological measurements of individuals reputed to have attained a measure of spiritual enlightenment. He encountered over 200 related terms such as transcendental consciousness, god consciousness, and unity consciousness.

His primary finding concerned changes that took place deep within the brain. Much was also learned by querying participants as to how they achieved their state of well-being. This led to a specific protocol for enabling people to shift into a state of persistent well-being. He concludes by defining, in everyday language, what the experience of non-symbolic consciousness is like.

New Thinking Allowed host, Jeffrey Mishlove, PhD, is author of The Roots of Consciousness, Psi Development Systems, and The PK Man. Between 1986 and 2002 he hosted and co-produced the original Thinking Allowed public television series. He is the recipient of the only doctoral diploma in “parapsychology” ever awarded by an accredited university (University of California, Berkeley, 1980). He has served as vice-president of the Association for Humanistic Psychology, and is the recipient of its Pathfinder Award for outstanding contributions to the field of human consciousness. He is also past-president of the non-profit Intuition Network, an organization dedicated to creating a world in which all people are encouraged to cultivate and apply their inner, intuitive abilities.