A very condensed summary about their “open focus brain” method is that we are habituated to a narrow object-oriented way of paying attention to everything, and the method uses prompts to shift attention, to help people become aware of the spaces between things as entry into a more open focus way of paying attention. This may correlate to or explain some of my recent experiences of “we-space”, the relational field or Patricia Labare’s fascinating “mutual awakening” ideas. Here is the slightly paraphrased quote the book:
“Consciousness might be said to consist of three primary elements: 1-attention 2- the contents of our attention and 3-the witness of both. Each of these elements is represented by the brains electrical rhythms in different regions of the brain. When the activity between these regions is out of phase then a distinction is made between internal and external attention content. When the activity is in phase between the two regions then this distinction is lost, and these two elements are undifferentiated, becoming a unified whole. Out of phase activity between the two regions also creates an interference pattern where they abut which is the mechanism that gives rise to the witnessing self, the I am self. Out of phase activity between regions allows us to separate self from attention and its contents, that is, from our surroundings. In narrow/objective focus the sense of self is most pronounced.”
“when we move into a more diffuse/immersed attention style, self merges into attention and its contents, leading to more synchronous activity and increasing our ability to become volitionally un-self-conscious. When attention and its contents brain activities are in phase, however, conscious distinctions disappear, because abutting brain regions do not create interference patterns. There is a lack of differentiation or separation between attention and its contents. All is one, and the self disappears.”
“at its most profound level, this lack of differentiation between self, attention and its contents, expands to a universal embrace, resulting in ecstatic experience, a sense of complete oneness.”
But do please take these ideas in the spirit of openness. The same ability to focus on space rather than only the objects in it seems wonderfully aligned with the power of having a good question, rather than always going straight for the answers/solutions.
Sometimes I can feel a bit down that I don’t have all the answers. What if it’s not about the answers? What if answers are just mental attempts to freeze something that’s really vitally alive and evolving? And continuing to ask better and better questions is what matters?