The word MINDFULNESS has been literally translated from the Pali root, sati, (or Sanskrit translation, smṛti; Tibetan, dran pa), meaning “that which is remembered”. The term is closely related to the verb sarati referring to the process, “to remember”. The concept of mindfulness has its roots in the classical Buddhist Abhidhamma and is now rapidly being integrated into current psychological and neuropsychiatric treatment protocols as a state of awareness and a method of systematic training to stabilize attention, improve self-awareness, reduce perseverative forms of emotional reactivity, and increase prosocial skills; however, mechanisms by which mindfulness-based practices function are currently unclear.
Mapping the Meditative Mind is a research initiative led by David Vago, a core team member of the FNL. This research initiative aims at exploring the basic cognitive and neurobiological mechanisms by which mindfulness-based practices function, clarifying adaptive mind-brain-body interactions, and optimizing their therapeutic relevance in psychiatric settings.
Dr. Vago and the FNL have a number of translational research studies that are ongoing. A few of the studies supporting this initiative include the following:
- Neurobiological Substrates of Distinct Meditative States Across the Spectrum of Experience
- Performance-based Studies of Attention
- Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy for Depression
- Web-based Delivery of Mindfulness Interventions
- Real-time Neurofeedback and Neuromodulation.
- Mindfulness for Cardiac Health
- Mindfulness Influences on Self-Regulation
- Yoga-based Intervention for Depression