NeuroQuantology | June 2007 | Vol 5 | Issue 2 | Page 233-240Cardoso R et al. Prefrontal cortex in meditation
ISSN 1303 5150www.neuroquantology.com
obtains not to become involved in thestream of thoughts that appears duringthe meditative practice.We can say that, basically, ameditation technique is a simple duetthat involves the “anchor” (self-focus skill)and the “logic relaxation”. The individualwill gradually exercise his capacity of being “focused in the anchor”. At the verymoment he perceives himself involved inthe stream of thoughts, he willimmediately return to be “focused in theanchor”. But if he, despite his "intentionto" maintain the so-called “logicrelaxation”, he perceives himself involvedin the stream of thoughts he will – againand again – “return to the anchor” (figure1).
The base of a meditative exercise. Duringmeditation, all the attention should be kept in self focus skill, so-called anchor. This artifice allowsso-called “logic relaxation”. When the apprenticeperceives himself involved in thoughts, he shouldreturn all his attention to the anchor.
Recently, the NIH´s NCCAM (NationalInstitutes of Health – National Center forComplementary and Alternative Medicine)published a text in which meditation ispresented as a procedure to be utilized inHealth interventions (NCCAM, 2006). Inthis paper, the “anchor” is cited as “focusof attention”, and the so-called “logicrelaxation” is cited (in certain way) as “anopen attitude”. According to this paper,an “open attitude” involves
“…lettingdistractions come and go naturally without stopping to think about them.When distracting or wandering thoughtsoccur, they are not suppressed; instead,the meditator gently brings attentionback to the focus. In some types of meditation, the meditator learns toobserve the rising and falling of thoughtsand emotions as they spontaneously occur…”
. Amongst the references, citingthe papers that had given base to this text,our operational definition is pointed(Cardoso et al., 2004).Naturally, the term "logic relaxation"raised some questions by some membersof the scientific community. In fact, it ishard to figure out a technical procedure(any one) put into practice without theaid of the logic. Some neuroscientistsargued that
“...it is not clear that duringmeditation there is no purpose or expectation (of course we can have thebelief, although unfounded, that we haveno purpose or expectation) because, at the very minimum, we have theexpectation of remaining in themeditative state for a few minutes and the expectation that the state will end at some time. We cannot forget that we aremeditating...”
The strongest argument of commentators, however, was the