SCIENCE & RESEARCH: Possible Neurobiological Explanation for Visions
New Brown University study of meditation says light experiences during meditation similar to visualizations caused by sensory deprivation
According to Brown University researchers, practitioners of meditation have reported seeing globes, jewels and little stars during meditation-induced light experiences. The neurobiological explanation for these visions was the subject of a recent study led by Willoughby Britton, assistant professor of psychiatry and human behavior, and Jared Lindahl, professor of religious studies at Warren Wilson College in North Carolina.
While I was in Self-Realization Fellowship, practicing yoga mediation, we monks would often talk about the lights one could see in meditation. Yogananda’s teachings claim that meditation-induced lights or little stars in meditation are “proof” of personal experience of the existence of Spirit. “When you see the spiritual eye perfectly, you will see at the center a five-pointed star, surrounded by a blue light, which in turn is encircled by a halo of golden light. This vision will come with faithful practice of this [Kriya Yoga] technique” (SRF Lesson K-7A).
A favorite of SRF, quoting Jesus: “The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light” (KJV Matthew 6:22). I’ve seen “little stars” when I’ve accidentally hit my head hard against a hard surface. Since seeing lights and stars in meditation are similar to visions caused by sensory deprivation, knocks on the head, and hallucinations shouldn’t we be a little suspicious that all or most of these experiences may not be divine revelations?
Read full article here Meditation study links history to science — Brown Daily Herald
See my post Natural Causes of the Spiritual Eye