Can learning disabled college students attention benefit from Mahapraan sound Meditation, a technique of Preksha Meditation

Abstract Video :

Name of Principal Investigator (PI) : Samani Unnata Pragya

Abstract of the Project : We recruited 8 students who did not have a learning disability, and 6 with learning disabilities. They underwent training on how to breath, and how to make the mahaprana (buzzing) sound. These sessions were continued three times weekly, 20 minutes per session. Baseline, 2 week and 4 week assessments were made of their ability to prolong the buzzing sound, as well as physiological parameters of Peak flow rate on forced exhalation, blood pressure, pulse, oxygen saturation, as well as the computer based Conners Behavioral Test. The compliance to attending the sessions was greater than 90%. The results showed that both the control group as well as the learning disabled group could learn the technique of mahaprana sound, and that there was no statistical difference in this improvement from baseline for both groups (see table). In addition, both groups tended to show improvement in their peak flows. The CBT scores, as well as blood pressure, pulse rate, oxygen saturation, did not change significantly for either group before or after intervention. This showed how such a program could be learnt by LD students, and that both improved duration of buzzing sound and pulmonary function as measured by Peak flow rate could be attained even with short three times weekly sessions. In addition, the improvement in pulmonary function suggested, if corroborated with more detailed studies, suggests a rapid direct physiological change can be seen even with short duration training.

Name of Department : Department of Religious Studies

Name of the Institution of the PI : Florida International University, Jain Vishva Bharati Institute

Name of the other contributors in research : Dr. Devendra Mehta, Samani Unnata Pragya, Dr. Samani Chaitanya Pragya, Gabriela, Joscelin Chiu, Paulette Johnson

Project Funded by : Bhagawan Mahavir Professorship of Jain Studies, Florida International University

Key words : Preksha Meditation, Disabled students, Cognitive Skills, Mahapran Dhvani

Conclusion : College Students with learning disability can learn Mahapran sound meditation. They can participate equally. The significant improvement is seen in pulmonary function in the students without learning disability and similar trends are seen in students with learning disability. The ability to discern the difference from target letter from the non-target letter did show a significant improvement as well. Further studies on a bigger sample and with longer duration of intervention is required.

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Start Date of Project : March 2012

Estimated End Date of Project : Feb 2014