The human brain possesses plenty of functions but little is known about its scientific relationship with mind and spirit. Conferencesfocused on the connection between science and religion were held very recently in which neuroscientists, Buddhist scholars and Dalai Lama discussed attention, mental imagery, emotion, mind, brain functions and meditation, suggesting religious meditation offers an effective means to investigate the mystery of mind and spirit. In the past decade, scientists struggled to obtain brain mappings for various meditation styles using different brain imaging techniques and stimulating results have been observed. In this letter we report that, together with other brain regions, pineal body exhibit significant activation during meditation process, supporting the long lasting speculation that pineal plays an important role in the intrinsic awareness which might concern spirit or soul. Pineal is known as an endocrine organ which produces substrates including melatonin and has been ascribed numerous even mysterious functions but its activation during meditation has never been observed by brain imaging technique. In seventeenth century, based on anatomic observation, Descartes ventured to suggest that pineal serves as the principal seat of the soul. Inspired by its geometric center in the brain, physiologists, psychologists, philosophers and religionists have been speculating for centuries about pineal’s function relevant to spirit and soul. In this study, we chose Chinese Original Quiet Sitting, one style of meditation, to explorethis long lasting speculation by functional magnetic resonance imaging technique. Our results demonstrate a correlation between pineal activation and religious meditation which might have profound implications in physiological understanding of the intrinsic awareness.
Hoodoo is African American folk magic. That makes for a very unique tradition, African traditions blended with European immigrant traditions as Hoodoo Root workers read new materials and learned from different people and added to their practice those ideas and techniques they found effective.
Austin Osman Spare is not an influence on traditional Hoodoo. As a recipient of traditional Witch training and interviewed by Gerald Gardner as he sought to reclaim the Old Traditions, he may lay claim to influencing Wicca. Peter Carrol mined the writing of Austin Osman Spare, added to it his own and other ideas and branded the result ‘Chaos Magic’.
With the Doctrine of Signatures (the spiritual power of a thing is suggested in its form), it is possible to improvise within the Hoodoo tradition. Newly minted currency, such as the Sacajawea dollar coin, can be used in such a way the imagery suggests to the magician. Though more traditional items are locked into traditional associations.