The front part of the brain, which is usually involved in focusing attention and concentration, is more active during meditation.
The image above shows the results from a baseline scan on the left and during a "peak" of meditation shown on the right. During meditation there is decreased activity in the parietal lobe. This area of the brain is responsible for giving us a sense of our orientation in space and time. It is hypothesized that blocking all sensory and cognitive input into this area during meditation results in the sense of no space and no time which is so often described in meditation. More information can be found in the paper by Drs. d'Aquili and Newberg entitled, "Religious and Mystical States: A Neuropsychological Substrate" (Zygon 28: 177-200, 1993).
The Endless Search © 2004 - 2005 Ian C. MacFarlane