What Are Gamma Brain Waves?
Don’t confuse gamma brain waves with gamma rays… If you’re picturing a lab experiment gone bad – as in the Incredible Hulk – rest assured, gamma rays and gamma brain waves are NOT the same thing.
Gamma rays are the most energetic waves in the electromagnetic spectrum. On Earth, nuclear explosions and lightning produce gamma rays.
The ONLY similarity between a gamma ray and a gamma brain wave is that their frequency is extremely fast, with a small amplitude.
Gamma brain waves are a frequency pattern of normal brain activity that measures between 25 and 100 Hz, with around 40 Hz being typical in humans.
Gamma waves were essentially unknown before the development of digital EEG (electroencephalography) recorders, since analog electroencephalography could not measure brain waves at that high frequency (their upper limit is about 25 Hz). Neuroscientists are beginning to discover the marvelous properties of the brain when it produces the gamma frequency.
Gamma brain waves are the fastest brainwave frequency with the smallest amplitude. They are associated with the “feeling of blessings” reported by experienced meditators such as monks and nuns, and with peak concentration and extremely high levels of cognitive functioning.
Neuroscientists believe that gamma waves are able to link information from all parts of the brain – the gamma wave originates in the thalamus and moves from the back of the brain to the front and back again 40 times per second – not only that, but the entire brain is influenced by the gamma wave. This rapid “full sweep” action makes the gamma state one of peak mental and physical performance. Gamma is the brainwave state of being “in the Zone,” that feeling that you can do anything.
Everyone has gamma brainwave activity, but the amount of gamma waves produced varies. Low amounts of gamma brainwave activity have been linked to learning difficulties, poor memory and impaired mental processing.
Benefits of Gamma
People with very high levels of gamma activity are exceptionally intelligent, compassionate, happy, and have excellent memories and strong self-control. IQ scores of people with high gamma wave activity are correspondingly high.
High gamma activity also corresponds to a state of peak performance. Elite athletes, top-notch musicians and high achievers in all fields produce far more gamma waves than average.
The benefits of producing the gamma frequency are:
- Increased memory recall (the 40 Hz frequency is known to regulate memory processing); people with high gamma activity have exceptionally vivid and rapid memory recall.
- Increased sensory perception. Senses are heightened when the brain produces gamma waves. Food tastes better; vision and hearing sharpen; sense of smell becomes more powerful; and your brain becomes far more sensitive to all sensory input. This makes for a much richer sensory experience and a better perception of reality.
- Increased focus; but this enhanced focus is not necessarily aimed at one individual object or task. In the gamma state, your brain is able to process all sensory information faster and more fully with greater sensitivity; and combine the whole scenario into a highly memorable experience. People with high gamma activity can recall everything about any memorable event – the food they ate, the music they heard, the conversations, the names of people they met, the air temperature, etc.
- One of the most remarkable properties of the gamma state is the processing speed: the brain is able to process incredible amounts of information very quickly, remember it, and retrieve that memory later.
- People with high gamma activity are naturally happier, calmer and more at peace. This is Nature’s best anti-depressant (people suffering from depression typically have very low gamma activity).
- Gamma waves are present during REM sleep and visualization.
- Compassion comes from a feeling of one-ness with all creation. This is the “feeling of blessings” and ecstasy that accompanies high levels of gamma brainwave activity.
How to Produce More Gamma Brain Wave Activity
You are probably wondering how you can experience increased mental processing, happiness, better perception of reality, incredible focus, better self-control and richer sensory experience that comes with being in gamma? The answer is simple: meditate.
Neuroscientists believe that people can train themselves to produce more of the gamma frequency and it is believed that focusing on compassion and love is the way to do this.
When you look at elite athletes, you can see how love creates the gamma state – they love what they’re doing, and they’re immersed in what they love – so gamma is a natural state of consciousness for them!
Meditation sharpens your mental abilities, but by learning to produce more gamma brain waves, you will use your brain in its greatest capacity.
It’s as simple as putting on your headphones and using Omharmonics meditation audio to gently guide you into a relaxed state. And then, when your brain and body are relaxed and blissful, focus on love and compassion.
Many studies have been performed on experienced meditators, most notably Tibetan Buddhist monks and Celestine nuns. Both groups demonstrated the ability to produce gamma waves during meditation.
The studies showed a significant increase in brain activity in the left prefrontal cortex (associated with self-control, happiness and compassion) and greatly reduced activity in the amygdala – the brain’s fight or flight center. This suggests that meditation can actually make you a happier and more compassionate person!
Something remarkable happened when the monks in the study were asked to focus on feelings of compassion: their brain almost immediately went into the gamma frequency in a very rhythmic and coherent pattern. Food for thought… perhaps compassion meditation makes one’s brain “fire” at the rhythm of universal consciousness?
As you meditate with the help of meditation music and begin feeling that wonderful warmth of one-ness where you lose the sense of self and “melt” into universal consciousness, hang on to that feeling. Focus on it. Expand on it. Embody it. Feel love emanating from you and permeating you. Focus on love…and you will soon feel the ecstasy and bliss of gamma!