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The Default Mode Network and Prayer

What's on my mind? The Default Mode Network. This is where you spend most of your time when you are not fixed on a mentally taxing task. When you are mindlessly clearing out your closet or washing the dishes or painting a room. The Default Mode Network (DMN) is not located in any one part of the brain, but in several areas of the brain that pass thoughts along to one another. This is at work when you are daydreaming and when you are anxiously obsessing about your world. Daydreaming and depression live in the same space. So does psychosis and addiction. In the image below, we show the physics of the DMN - what it means. When you are lost in your head and its not a positive experience, this is where it happens.

Let's compare this image to another image of the DMN taken with fMRI.(1) This study examined the interconnectivity of the brain across several regions with and without psilocybin. The brain that was induced with the drug showed high levels of connectivity. There is some evidence to show that it may help people who suffer from trauma. Our physics model above is a close correlate to this is the neurological phenomena. We are showing what it means for us, this example is showing what is happening (via blood flow and oxygenation).

Interestingly enough, contemplative prayer effects the brain in many of the same ways as psychedelics. Prayer can alter our brain state in very positive ways and move us out of trauma-induced responses. When we practice prayer regularly, as we practice in Deep Recovery, there is a letting go of the emotional and obsessive content that limits perception and possibilities. This process results in greater freedom over time.


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