What is a Mind Machine?
These are all better termed mind tools. Mind tools focus on stimulating individual or combinations of auditory, visual or kinesthetic (touch) centers of the brain for a given purpose. A lot of research has been done and continues to prove the effectiveness of mind tools to accelerate learning, healing, facilitating deep meditation as well as provide a host of other benefits.
All of these devices utilize vibrations of sound at specific frequencies sent through the body. It is believed that this vibrating stimulation releases pleasurable neurochemicals such as endorphins.
CES may have an effect on the reticular activating system. The part of the brain that is believed to moderate our state of alertness and general sense of consciousness and arousal.
CES may stimulate parts of the brain that have taken a backseat to more dominant units of an individuals brain. This stimulation actually encourages use of both left and right hemispheres of the brain along with other required centers of the brain. This strengthening of the brain as a whole allows you to utilize the entire brain as a resource as opposed to some stronger, some weaker components.
Used in drug addiction rehabilitation clinics as an addiction fighting tool, CES has proven to have a dramatic effect on personality. Patients psychologically tested before CES use and after have yielded interesting results. Levels of self sufficiency, ego strength & confidence doubled after CES technology was utilized. In some cases improvements almost tripled.
Developed in the early 1920's, an electroencelograph device can be considered
one of the earliest mind tools. This technology allows us to register the
waves of neural "firings" that occur between brain cells constantly. Sensors
or electrodes extremely sensitive to the electrical signals processed by
the mind are placed against the scalp. The firing detections of the electrodes
can then be seen on a monitor to examine wave frequency changes. Reading
this mind map can lend clues as to how the mind works. Using this technology,
scientists have been able to locate four distinct varieties of brain
These waves are the most powerful and dominant. This is the mental
state the average individual generally functions in on a day to day
basis. From focusing on daily issues to holding a conversation.
A relaxed or passive state best achieved by closing your eyes and slowing down brain wave activity. Once you are in this state, alpha waves become dominant. In this state we become calm and begin to focus inward. The alpha state is extremely satisfying and nurturing. It is important to attain an alpha or neutral state at least once a day to reduce your unwanted stress level.
Once we sink below alpha level waves, we reach theta. An elusive euphoric
and mysterious state best associated with deep meditation. Many people find
it hard to reach and maintain this level. Mind Machines help you reach this
state faster. With practice it also becomes easier to maintain without falling
asleep. This state is much like being on the edge of sleep and wakefulness.
In this state you may have many reveries (mental images) or thoughts pour
forth. Much of our unconscious becomes revealed. This state is most conducive
to hypnotic trance, placing mental suggestions, accelerating learning,
facilitating healing and implementing peak performance techniques.
For most people, once were in this state we are either asleep or unconscious. In this level we produce large quantities of healing growth hormone which both strengthens and replenishes us. There is growing evidence which suggests that it is possible to attain this state and maintain consciousness. Well practiced (at least 20 yrs.) Zen Buddhist monk masters are said to be able to do just this, even while engaged in everyday affairs! With the help of Mind Machines and practice, it is possible for an individual to benefit from this state and learn to attain it in significantly less time than an accomplished Zen monk.
An EEG alone wouldn't constitute a mind machine. Because by itself it doesn't place you in a deep meditative state or directly exercise your mind. An EEG is more of a monitoring tool, a window into the mind. Through the use of EEG as a biofeedback device we can than fully benefit from this window. An individual can be trained to reach a theta wave state by being made aware of when they're actually "there. The EEG unit may create a tone or ring when it detects a theta like wave pattern developing. In this way the biofeedback device gives us feedback and allows us to monitor our performance. Ultimately helping us reach mind states that are optimal.
This can be verified by EEG readings that show a decline from Beta Waves to as slow as Delta.
We are hardly aware of how much information our brain must constantly process not to mention filter out. Often concentration is made difficult when we are over stimulated. You probably wouldn't be able to study beneficially while at a party with people screaming and music blasting from the concert sized speaker directly behind you. Your reticulars job along with other components of your brain must decide what to filter and what to retain. With close to nothing to filter, in a flotation tank the immense amount of focus and energy put into the filtering process can be more effectively used to simply think.
A premise developed is that a light flickered into an individuals eye will place you into a trance like state and encourages the brain to function at the same frequency as the rate of flicker. Its this effect that is referred to as brain entrainment.
When precisely controlled tones are combined in the brain the olvary nucleus becomes "entrained" to resonate to the binaural beat. Once entrained, it sends a signal to the cerebral cortex thereby mixing with existing patterns of neural activity ultimately producing altering & mind expanding state changes.
The ear not only hears. the vibrating waves it receives stimulate sensory nerves in the inner ear. then the signals are received by the hearing centers and is translated into sound. Some signals reach the cerebellum where motion, balance and equilibrium are controlled. The Limbic system , responsible for emotions & the release of hormones & other biochemicals is also affected. The cerebral cortex responsible for higher functions of consciousness is affected. In the same manner that a piece of music can have a personally emotional affect on you, the sounds our signals receive can stimulate, recharge and expand the entire body & mind.