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Mind-body plasticity: Evidence for mental training effects on body awareness and regulation of the autonomous nervous system

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Bornemann,  Boris
Department Social Neuroscience, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Bornemann, B. (2016). Mind-body plasticity: Evidence for mental training effects on body awareness and regulation of the autonomous nervous system. Talk presented at European Summer Research Institute (ESRI). Chiemsee, Germany. 2016-08-22 - 2016-08-28.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002B-2FE8-0
Abstract
Bodily changes and their perception are implicated in virtually all psychological processes, particularly in emotion. Contemplative traditions have long recognized the connections between bodily and mental processes and have devised practices that involve and cultivate certain types of body awareness. In this presentation, I will describe methods to assess body awareness and regulation of the bodily (autonomic) nervous system. Using recent data from a large-scale longitudinal study, the ReSource Project, I will investigate which aspects of body awareness and autonomic regulation are affected by various types of contemplative practice and which are not. I will discuss the implication of these measures for emotional awareness and their relationship to altruistic behavior. Finally, I will critically evaluate the current measurement procedures with regard to their capacity of capturing the body-related transformations that contemplative practices may induce and propose directions for future development.