Friday, February 23, 2024

OmmmmmMy God! Compassion is a 2-Way Street

June 21, 2010 by  
Filed under Parenting From Balance©

You Can Reach Enlightenment in 1 Easy Science-backed Step!




I have been waiting for this one!!

Science now has documented evidence that anyone CAN reach enlightenment, (or at least find peace, joy, or satisfaction) in one easy step!   I am tossing out my meditation beads… they have found the holy grail!

Recent studies have shown that a very specific region of our brain is activated both when we have an experience, and also when we watch someone else have an experience.

This region is called the mirror neuron system, and is responsible for this higher brain function of learning vicariously through others.

This system forms the basis for how we learn by imitation, and how we understand the actions and intentions of others.  That’s how we are able to learn everything from motion dynamics (like kicking a ball,) to emotion dynamics (like joy and grief,) simply from watching another human’s experience with the same.

Surprisingly, all humans, and also many mammals including elephants, dogs, and probably dolphins, have this neurological ability.

Most recently, in 2005, a team of scientists found that mirror neuron are also activated when adults simply listened to someone describing certain actions.

SO if listening to someone can activate that higher order learning section of our brains, then what about thinking about an experience?

Maybe this is why so many masters of mindfulness caution us to be careful of what we put our minds on… about being conscious, being intentional, being aware of the power of our words, and our thoughts.  As they say: “what we believe is what we see.”

Our words are pearls, strung together from thoughts, and they creates the reality we live within.  And now science has proven it:  a simple way to reposition our consciousness is by paying closer attention to the words we choose to use.

So next time you are tempted to thrash yourself for spilling coffee down your shirt or forgetting to pay the gas bill, replace those self-deprecating thoughts with something compassionate.  Instead of “that was stupid, you dummy” veer over to something you would want to say to your child, and apply liberally!

Lots of Love,


Riviera PlaySchool in Redondo Beach, CA
A Mindful program for the ‘Whole Child,’ inspired by the best of Attachment Parenting, Reggio Emilia, Bev Bos, Montessori, Waldorf and Non-Violent Communication.

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