Your brain is always busy. Even when you’re asleep, it continues with its electrical activity. The cells in our brain, called neurons, communicate with each other using electricity. A group of neurons transmits an electrical signal to another group are called brain waves. An electroencephalogram (EEG) is a tool used to measure brain waves. It creates an image showing this electrical activity in a way that it looks like waves.
You might be thinking if our mind is still working when we’re asleep, when can you say that it is resting? It rests when alpha brain waves dominate.
To better understand, let us take a look at the different brainwaves and what they do:
What are the 4 types of brainwaves?
1. Alpha waves
These waves are present when our brain is in a dormant state. It often happens when we are sitting still, and we are lost inside our thoughts, for example. They are very convenient when it comes to mind or body integration, calmness, or your overall mental coordination.
2. Beta waves
Beta brain waves occur when we are in our normal, waking state of consciousness. For instance, when we slowly regain consciousness from a deep slumber. It is present when we are engaged in things like decision-making, problem-solving, and other high-thinking activities.
3. Theta waves
These waves are present when we are in a state between sleeping and wakefulness. During theta, we are more focused on the signals within our bodies and not on the external world. It is compared to being in a dream where imagery or information is beyond our awareness. This is where we also store our fears and troubled pasts.
4. Delta waves
Delta brainwaves are considered the slowest but the loudest. The brain produces delta waves when we in our deepest form of meditation, such as in a dreamless sleep. They are the waves responsible for empathy and healing, and regeneration of the mind happens in this state.
How Meditation and Reiki Helps in Reaching Deeper Brainwaves
A brain produces alpha waves when it’s in a relaxed and restful state. This explains why people experience these waves when doing stress-relieving activities like meditation. A 2009 research shows that your brain may produce even more alpha waves at the back part of the brain when meditating and other similar relaxing activities. If meditation isn’t your thing, sitting on a beach or in the hills enjoying a sunrise or sunset could be another alternative.
When your brain is showing alpha brain waves, it usually means that you are focusing on a specific thought and not entertaining any unwanted distractions. Your brain is in a relaxed state and ignoring sensory activity. It’s not fully resting, but your brain isn’t trying to tackle anything big that needs concentration. Your brain is not processing a lot of information or trying to solve any huge problems.
According to neuroimaging studies by Malia F. Mason and colleagues at Dartmouth College NH as mentioned in Science Daily, the normal resting state of the brain is a silent current of memories, thoughts, and images not generated by intentional reasoning or sensory input, but surfaces spontaneously from within.
This spontaneous wandering of your mind is something you become more acquainted with when practicing meditation. According to a joint study by 12 researchers, this default brain activity is often downplayed. It is a type of mental processing that connects your emotional residues and different experiences, puts them into perspective and lays them to rest.
While you can increase the production of alpha waves through unwinding and stop focusing on a task, alpha waves are more abundant during meditation than simple relaxation. It is when meditating that you are in a wakeful rest.
The goal of meditation is to enter an alpha state and to eventually surpass alpha to reach theta and arrive at a delta state. However, most of the time, an average person can only reach alpha brain waves when meditating. This is where Reiki can help. When you go to a Reiki session, it will be easier for you to surpass alpha and go into theta and if you’re lucky, you can reach delta, too. How does Reiki make this possible?
According to a theory by researcher Bernadette Doran, the brains of a Reiki therapist are synchronized with the magnetic field of the earth around 7.83 Hz, which is at Theta’s frequency range, above (dreaming) and a little bit below Alpha. Some scientists refer to it as the planet’s tuning fork and claim that it promotes healing properties when living things are synchronized to its rhythm. This possibly explains the healing ability of Reiki as the body and mind experienced enhanced growth, rejuvenation, and healing during the theta phase.
Reiki therapists employ different techniques like compassion, intention, and visualizing symbols that can amplify the magnetic fields. The Reiki practitioner can help you tap into your subconscious and past experiences, stimulating Theta waves, and then if you’re very lucky, a transition to Delta.
Basically, a Reiki practitioner pulses the magnetic fields of the brain of the recipient and jumpstarts the process to reach deeper brain wavelengths.
The Benefits of Alpha Waves, Theta Waves and Delta Waves For Us And Our Holistic Health
Alpha Brain Waves Benefits
Some of the benefits of boosting alpha waves are lowering stress and anxiety, as well as reducing discomfort and pain. In short, when your brain produces alpha waves, you’re able to get into a state that can help you relax and rest.
There is also evidence that shows alpha activity helps with memory and enhances creativity. A research done in 2015 suggests that focusing on boosting alpha waves can trigger a surge in creativity.
The production of alpha brain waves also helps in fighting depression. They can act as a natural antidepressant by inducing the release of the neurotransmitter serotonin.
Moreover, when your brain is producing enough alpha brain waves, you’ll likely be in a good mood, see the world truthfully, and enjoy calmness. Alpha is also one of the most important brainwave frequencies of the brain to learn and use information.
You can boost alpha waves through closing your eyes or deep breathing or lower alpha by thinking. Alpha brain waves allow you to easily shift from one task to another. Think of it this way, when you’re driving a car, the alpha would represent neutral or idle. Generally, when your brain generates more alpha waves, you will feel relaxed, tranquil, but not drowsy.
Theta Brain Waves Benefits
When theta brain waves dominate, your body and mind are in deep levels of relaxation allowing enhanced growth, healing, and rejuvenation.
Boosting your theta waves can boost the immune system. It can also increase your intuition, allow you to connect to your subconscious, and even access the unconscious mind to promote core healing and change. This way it is easier for you to clear thoughts and behaviors you want to change and start with new, desirable thinking and attitude.
Theta waves also improve memory and even problem-solving and learning skills. It does not end there. Theta brainwaves are linked with your ability to feel emotions. During a Reiki session, theta waves are stimulated, making it possible to experience blocked or suppressed emotions, and release them.
Delta Brain Waves Benefits
Delta brain waves are the slowest recorded human brain waves and are linked to the deepest levels of relaxation and restorative sleep. Having enough production of delta waves promotes natural healing, restorative sleep, and will leave you feeling completely rejuvenated.
Ultimately, both tools, meditation, and Reiki can make your life happier and easier by helping you reach deeper brain waves that allow your mind and body to relax, rejuvenate, and heal from the inside and out.
In our Reiki lineage, as Reiki teachers, we commonly regard Reiki as a lazy man’s tai chi or meditation as it’s generally easier to move into a slower frequencies brainwave and effectively receive the holistic benefits more quickly compared to both practices.