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The Conscious

An altered state of consciousness is "a mental state other than ordinary waking consciousness, such as sleep, meditation, hypnosis, or a drug-induced state."The alternate state of consciousness, sleep, is a necessary one.It is something that every living human must have to live.However, there are some alternate states of consciousness that are voluntary.Some of these are meditation, hypnosis, and drugs.Of these two alternate states, meditation interests me the most.The concentrative form of meditation is "a group of techniques that involve focusing attention on an object, a word, one's breathing, or body movement in order to block out all distractions, to enhance well-being, and to achieve an altered state of consciousness."Some forms of meditation originated in Eastern religions and were used to "attain a higher spiritual state".However, in the modern United States, those same forms are used as techniques to relax, and achieve other things.
This alternate state of consciousness is voluntary, and so it is in contrast with sleep by that factor.Meditation is in contrast with hypnosis, because hypnosis is used to change thoughts, feelings, behavior, and a few other things.Hypnosis is also induced by another, a hypnotist; whereas, meditation is self-induced.Drugs are taken to deal with emotional or psychological problems, or simply for the thrill.This is not natural.So, since meditation is natural, it is also in contrast with a drug-induced state.
I don't really understand how meditation works.I see that it is basically not thinking about anything else, but one thing.Concentrating on this one thing, takes away all the distractions in the world around the person who is meditating.However, I would like to see research done on all the different methods and the exact details of how they work.I would like to know the effects meditation has on people, both short…

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