Our Brain At Its Absolute Best
As a result, brain function in these monks had reached levels never before reported in the scientific literature. The readings on Gamma Wave activity, signaling higher mental activity, was off the chart. The highly developed neural circuitry generated a flow of intelligence that was emotionally peaceful, positive, and fearlessly self-confident, all of which made the monks immune to stress. Even more astounding was the finding that when the monks were not actively practicing mindfulness meditation, they continued to sustain these optimal brain states.
It’s In Every One Of Us
The conclusion of science: Inner peace builds a powerful brain. When the scientists drilled into the basic approach to inner peace that these monks practiced they found it consisted of four essential qualities that any of us can develop. Better still, science found that a little practice goes a long way in building brain structure.
These four qualities not only produce a great monk; they produce peak performers. The dynamically peaceful attitude the monks mastered is the zone athletes work toward. It’s the calm under siege that drill-sergeants ingrain in soldiers. It is the stream of creativity that entrepreneurs call the top of your game.
I call this dynamically peaceful attitude “Mystic Cool,” which is the name of the book I wrote on the subject. In the book I provide a simple set of tools for integrating each of the four qualities into daily life to sustain this powerful attitude. The reward is a powerful brain generating a joyful intelligence that can excel at work and at life.
1. The first quality of Mystic Cool focuses our attention. We are quietly engaged, fully present. We drop the incessant thinking that produces a pointless preoccupation with the past or endless worries about the future. We practice being present, right here, right now, engaging whatever is before us with an open, alert mind.
2. The second quality sets our stance in life. We are peaceful inside regardless of what is happening outside. We are not afraid or threatened by the outside. Thus, we can face a challenge confidently and feel our way to the best possible response to the situation.
3. The third quality creates our sense of connection. Our hearts are open and empathic, with the intention of creating an atmosphere of interpersonal resonance. We consciously connect with our own internal center, with the people we happen to be with, and to that which we conceive of as greater than ourselves. We practice listening better, judging less, and forgiving more.