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EEG correlates of consciousness during sleep: a pilot study

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Vedic psychology, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, consciousness, transcendental consciousness, awareness, restful alertness, inner wakefulness, dreaming, sleeping, EEG

Abstract (summary)

Vedic psychology, as presented by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, delineates seven major states of consciousness (Maharishi, 1972). The daily cycle of waking, dreaming, and sleeping constitute the three ordinary changing states of consciousness. In addition, Maharishi's Vedic psychology describes an invariant sequence of higher stages of consciousness. The fourth state of consciousness, termed transcendental consciousness (TC), is characterized as a content-free state of "restful alertness", the ultimate ground state of the mind, pure consciousness (Maharishi, 1969).In this state "... awareness becomes completely 'self-referral' --consciousness has nothing other than itself in its structure" (Maharishi, 1986, p. 27).Maharishi describes TC as follows: This is a state of inner wakefulness with no object of thought or perception, just pure consciousness [TC], aware of its own unbounded nature. It is wholeness, aware of itself, [Self-awareness] devoid of differences, beyond the division of subject and object --transcendental consciousness (Maharishi, 1977, p. 123).TC is held to be as distinct from the ordinary waking state as waking is from dreaming or sleeping. Recent research reviews have identified over twenty physiological correlates distinguishing TC from simple relaxation, sleeping, dreaming and waking (See Alexander and Boyer, 1989; Alexander, Cranson, Boyer and Orme-Johnson, 1986; Wallace, 1986; for a complete review).

Publication Information

Mason, L., Alexander, C., Travis, F. & Gackenbach, J. (1990). EEG correlates of consciousness during sleep: A pilot study. Lucidity Letter, 9(2), 85-87.



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