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The power of Neurofeedback

theta alpha gamma synchrony neurofeedback bipolar training ultralow frequency self-regulation

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#31 OpaqueMind

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Posted 28 April 2014 - 05:01 PM

Hey Novo, would you be able to get this paper? http://www.nature.co...n0401_229a.html

 

Also, I think it is reasonable to widen our search for the effects of TAG sync training to studies on both the immediate effects of meditation and changes in long-term meditators. If you guys find any particularly interesting studies post them here  ;)

 

 

Clin EEG Neurosci. 2013 Jan;44(1):39-43. doi: 10.1177/1550059412451705. Epub 2012 Nov 19.

Conscious attention, meditation, and bilateral information transfer.
Abstract

Recent findings indicate that conscious attention is related to large-scale information integration of various brain regions, including both hemispheres, that enables integration of parallel distributed modalities of processed information. There is also evidence that the level of information transference related to integration or splitting among brain regions, and between hemispheres, establishes a certain level of efficiency of the information processing. The level of information transference also may have modulatory influences on attentional capacity that are closely linked to the emotional arousal and autonomic response related to a stimulus. These findings suggest a hypothesis that changes in conscious attention, specifically during meditation could be reflected in the autonomic activity as the left-right information transference calculated from bilateral electrodermal activity (EDA). With the aim to compare conscious attention during meditation with other attentional states (resting state, Stroop task, and memory task), we performed bilateral EDA measurement in 7 healthy persons during resting state, Stroop task, neurofeedback memory test, and meditation. The results indicate that the information transference (ie, transinformation) is able to distinguish those attentional states, and that the highest level of the transinformation has been found during attentional processing related to meditation, indicating higher level of connectivity between left and right sides. Calculations other than pointwise transinformation (PTI) performed on EDA records, such as mean skin conductance level or laterality index, were not able to distinguish attentional states. The results suggest that PTI may present an interesting method useful for the assessment of information flow, related to neural functioning, that in the case of meditation may reflect typical integrative changes in the autonomic nervous system related to brain functions and focused attentional processing

 

 

Conscious Cogn. 2012 Sep;21(3):1322-44. doi: 10.1016/j.concog.2012.06.003. Epub 2012 Jun 27.
Genome-wide expression changes in a higher state of consciousness.
Erratum in
  • Conscious Cogn. 2012 Dec;21(4):1626. Dreu, Jurij [corrected to Dreo, Jurij.

 

Abstract

Higher states of consciousness in which the human mind can transcend the boundaries of logic and reason are envisioned as natural to the experience and potential growth of every human being. So far they have been mostly monitored by electrophysiological methods. In this study we were particularly interested in discovering the molecular transcriptional basis of higher states of consciousness. In addition to phenomenological reports of meditators who participated in this study the generated higher states of consciousness were also EEG recorded. We assessed the whole genome gene expression analysis of long-term meditators in four separate trials and detected significant differential gene expression in association with higher states of consciousness. The number of differently expressed genes as well as high proportion of genes themselves differed between meditators. Despite this, gene ontology enrichment analysis found significant biological and molecular processes shared among meditators' higher state of consciousness.

 

This last one blows my mind... it suggests that something way more fundamental than just increased awareness is going on here. The epigenetic alterations are genome-wide, which means not localised to the brain, but affecting the entire body. What it means I have no idea... do these states have a historic-genetic precedent, and we are reawakening them? Is it a spontaneous molecular reorganisation based on increased information transfer and the emergence of novel genetic expressions? Why is this so fundamental? Is this evidence that consciousness is body-wide, and the mind-body distinction is even more superfluous than we thought?


Edited by OpaqueMind, 28 April 2014 - 05:32 PM.


#32 Invariant

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Posted 28 April 2014 - 09:24 PM

I love the dynamical systems perspective on the brain. Certainly, the idea of viewing pathological cognitive/emotional patterns as attractors makes sense. I think that the self-organized criticality stuff is also going in the right direction, although it must be realized that this kind of theory only speaks to the aggregate, statistical behaviour of the system. To me, it seems like too vague a concept to really give us a handle for targeted intervention. But while I don't think we understand it well enough, I think it's a very fruitful direction, and in fact I have recently started a collaboration to investigate such edge-of-chaos type systems for applications in AI.

 

Nice find on the brainweb / phase-sync paper! I actually remember reading this a few years back when I was researching dynamic feature binding mechanisms. I'll send it to you in a PM.

 

Regarding the gene expression study, I'll quote a few sharp redditors:

http://www.reddit.co..._in_meditators/

 

 

This is a very weak correlational study. The first warning bells should go off when you read about a controversial topic such as linking genetic changes to states of "awareness" in a transient and poorly defined process like "meditation".

As a researcher, my first instinct is to look at 2 things: the quality of the journal it is published in and the laboratory the study came from. The journal is low impact and highly specific to the topic they want to discuss meaning they may overlook problems in the study in order to get their topic of interest more publicity (like this). This is off-putting because if it WAS a scientifically robust study with ground-breaking results, they could have (and would WANT to be) published in a high impact, widely read journal like Science or Nature. Second, since the lab is in a secondary science nation (sorry Slovenians), they are often still getting the hang of scientific integrity. Most of these nations still experience massive brain-drain, meaning the scientists still in the country often aren't the leaders in their field or are struggling to understand certain methodologies.

Neither of these two points are reason to dismiss the study, but should make you now read it with a bit of apprehension. Regarding the study itself: they have very poor methods for making the conclusion they did. First glaring issue: They have a sample size of 2. They took 2 very different meditators and analyzed their BODY WIDE genome for ANY changes. Even non-science people can see how easily they could find erroneous data in this kind of analysis. They weren't specifically looking at the changes in the brain, or changes in peripheral sensory receptors. They just looked for ANY changes and found that there were some. This is the worst kind of fishing expedition possible in science.

Second, wtfjen mentioned that they had changes in alpha and theta waves. I've been in neuroscience research for 9 years and EEG waveform analysis is still VERY poorly understood. We have some generalized ideas about what may be happening at different frequencies, but to make the assertion that 'increased alpha and theta waves correlate to an increased awareness of self and surroundings' is misleading. Increased alpha waves are also a signal that you are falling asleep and your brain activity is oscillating at a slower frequency. Sure they may correlate with people that claim to have increased awareness of self (how can your empirically measure this?), but they also correlate with sleepy people.

In summary, correlation is just correlation. Especially when it's regarding a study with an n=2. This is basically just a summary of 2 anecdotes.

 

 

Gene expression is constantly being shaped by all sorts of things, like the examples you gave. Based on the abstract and the figures I can access from home, it looks like the author's conclusion is that meditation caused the gene expression changes they observed without ruling out other possible causes.

 

Agreed. This is actually a phenomenally bad paper with very little substance to it.

1) 'Fishing' type studies are frequently performed (you need to start somewhere) but they do not constitute a finding by themselves. You really have to restrict yourself to using that information to come up with testable hypothesis. You can then follow up on these hypotheses with substantive experiments, but somehow the authors go away with simply presenting microarray data by itself. This is a bozo-no-no.

2) Uncommon events are inevitable with large datasets. Anyone doing microarray/RNAseq experiments will have no trouble finding differential expression, even in technical replicates! You have to throw out a lot of data via rigorous statistics. Typically you use something like a SAM (statistical analysis of microarray) score to even begin to clean up your data, but they only discussed fold-change. This is unacceptable. It's also standard practice to use 3 biological replicates, rather than the two they used. Considering the large differences they found between the two meditators, I would reject the data outright. It's also unclear whether they did technical replicates (I didn't look too closely, though).

3) Listing GO terms isn't a result. Not only that, but they don't even make sense! They didn't attempt to explain why those categories of genes might be associated with meditation. It also seems to me like those categories would be especially prone to systematic error, but I can't speak to that with any authority. Even if you buy the results, they aren't interesting. There don't appear to be attractive candidate genes to follow up on, which isn't surprising. It doesn't make much sense that so-called 'higher consciousness' (a problematic term if there ever was) would be mediated by just a few loci. This isn't a problem that seems amenable to genetic investigation in the first place.

 


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#33 OpaqueMind

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Posted 28 April 2014 - 10:37 PM

I love the dynamical systems perspective on the brain. Certainly, the idea of viewing pathological cognitive/emotional patterns as attractors makes sense. I think that the self-organized criticality stuff is also going in the right direction, although it must be realized that this kind of theory only speaks to the aggregate, statistical behaviour of the system. To me, it seems like too vague a concept to really give us a handle for targeted intervention. But while I don't think we understand it well enough, I think it's a very fruitful direction, and in fact I have recently started a collaboration to investigate such edge-of-chaos type systems for applications in AI.

 

It's true, it's too broad a framework to guide targeted intervention. I find it fun to ponder though, and maybe to serve as a broad framework which we can use to build on more specific models of what's happening. Then again since it's such a ubiquitous neural process, maybe that isn't feasible. I find it fascinating that many natural systems display this kind of self-organised criticality. Perhaps in the future, as technology progresses, we will find a way to modulate this activity more directly. Then again TAGsync seems to be a very effective way to fine-tune the dynamic stability of the network as a whole.

 

That work sounds really interesting! Are you working with artificial neural networks or some other approach?

 

By the way, thanks for the article, I'll give it a read now :)

 

That's unfortunate the paper was weak, it looked really interesting. The finding makes sense, as we know that mental states can influence epigenetic expression via indirect routes (eg. hormonal changes), or maybe even a more direct route (consciousness/bioelectric fields causing epigenetic alteration). Such drastically altered autonomic variables as are noted in even novice meditators also indicate some deeper changes occuring (such as are shown in this abstract), so engaging in these states for prolonged periods while also deepening them should theoretically cause epigenetic changes in relation to these changes. For example, the complete lack of stress of any kind reported by 'enlightened' individuals.. it is not a stretch to think that such a profound and persistent change has an underlying genetic basis.

 

I wonder about this because although I'm not a biologist, I do know that every living cell in the body is made with reference to the genome, which would imply that if a specific physiological state is to continue to be produced then the epigenetic expression of the genome from the cells which underlie that state will have shifted also, in order to continue to produce the altered higher-level structure. As I understand it there is kind of a feedback loop between epigenetic dynamics, cellular dynamics, and higher-level dynamics (eg thought, muscular contraction etc), so any significant change on one level thus feeds back into the other levels, with varying levels of influence from the highest level to the lowest. As such we might expect profound changes in mental/physical states to both cause and be guided by epigenetic alterations.


Edited by OpaqueMind, 28 April 2014 - 10:39 PM.


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#34 BigPapaChakra

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Posted 09 May 2014 - 05:31 AM

Just wanted to poke in here and say I will soon be able to post updates about my experience with the TAG-Sync.

 

OpaqueMind was urging me to get on board with it for many months, and unfortunately I couldn't because I never had the funds and more recently when I did, I had a lot of expenses that I had to take care of. Nonetheless, I contacted the two TAG-Sync NFB clinicians in my state to pick their minds. I've been speaking to Dr. Lori Russell-Chapin, in particular. On the 19th I'm taking a longggg ride (3.5hrs, approximately) to meet her before she heads back to Bradley University to do some work. I'll probably get a "mini QEEG" (5-channel), take a TOVA assessment, provide medical information, etc. Afterwards I'll be doing sessions with her using the TAG-Sync. Interestingly, her mentor was Douglas Dailey, whom she speaks to frequently. We'll be doing consultations with him to see what he thinks would be appropriate for me due to my extensive and odd set of symptoms, along with extreme sensitivity to some forms of stimuli. In her words we have the "direct line to god" in terms of NFB, lol. 

 

The only problems I currently have are (1) it's quite a long way from my home, and Dr. Lori Russell-Chapin stated that many of her clients derived the best results using TAG-Sync 2x/week (though some needed more, some less) and (2) it's quite expensive at $175/session+$525 for the QEEG. I'm hoping that we find that one of the protocols OpaqueMind spoke about previously (BiPolar, Infra low frequency, etc.) may work for me and I'll get some results within a session or two, even if they're not significant. If that's the case, after a few sessions I'll just purchase the TAG-Sync x1 and x2 and do the exact protocol that I did with the clinician as to save money, followed by branching off into other protocols and lastly getting nIR HEG gear. 

 

I'm excited. 


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#35 Invariant

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Posted 10 May 2014 - 07:39 AM

Looking forward to hearing about year experiences, BigPapa.

 

I just found this amazing real-time source-localized EEG display: http://neuroscapelab...ts/glass-brain/

Imagine having that on a screen in front of you while doing NFB training.. 

 

 


Edited by Novotropic, 10 May 2014 - 07:40 AM.

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#36 Strangelove

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Posted 10 May 2014 - 11:09 AM

Take a look at Dr. Gazzaley's Keynote at the NVIDIA GTC Conference 2014: 

 

Amazing video from the same site.

 

http://neuroscapelab.com/



#37 OpaqueMind

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Posted 10 May 2014 - 06:10 PM

Just wanted to poke in here and say I will soon be able to post updates about my experience with the TAG-Sync.

 

OpaqueMind was urging me to get on board with it for many months, and unfortunately I couldn't because I never had the funds and more recently when I did, I had a lot of expenses that I had to take care of. Nonetheless, I contacted the two TAG-Sync NFB clinicians in my state to pick their minds. I've been speaking to Dr. Lori Russell-Chapin, in particular. On the 19th I'm taking a longggg ride (3.5hrs, approximately) to meet her before she heads back to Bradley University to do some work. I'll probably get a "mini QEEG" (5-channel), take a TOVA assessment, provide medical information, etc. Afterwards I'll be doing sessions with her using the TAG-Sync. Interestingly, her mentor was Douglas Dailey, whom she speaks to frequently. We'll be doing consultations with him to see what he thinks would be appropriate for me due to my extensive and odd set of symptoms, along with extreme sensitivity to some forms of stimuli. In her words we have the "direct line to god" in terms of NFB, lol. 

 

The only problems I currently have are (1) it's quite a long way from my home, and Dr. Lori Russell-Chapin stated that many of her clients derived the best results using TAG-Sync 2x/week (though some needed more, some less) and (2) it's quite expensive at $175/session+$525 for the QEEG. I'm hoping that we find that one of the protocols OpaqueMind spoke about previously (BiPolar, Infra low frequency, etc.) may work for me and I'll get some results within a session or two, even if they're not significant. If that's the case, after a few sessions I'll just purchase the TAG-Sync x1 and x2 and do the exact protocol that I did with the clinician as to save money, followed by branching off into other protocols and lastly getting nIR HEG gear. 

 

I'm excited. 

 

Wow, that's awesome man! I gotta say I'm pretty jealous. Consultation with the master himself. Going this route is great, as you'll get custom tailored advice from pioneers in the field, and then learn to use those protocols in your own home setup. I literally can't imagine how you could be better prepared to get into Neurofeedback.

 

As far as immediate effects go, both TAGsync and ILF had significantly noticeable effects for me after just a single session. Because you're going to be able to tailor these protocols to your EEG signatures, I would be doubly surprised if you didn't notice a shift after the first session. Then again I'm mainly extrapolating from my experience here, so we can't really say for sure. Anyway, I'm very much looking forward to your reports. Good luck Papa!



#38 tdmonster99

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Posted 11 May 2014 - 10:04 PM

BigPapaChakra, it is funny you mention Dr. Lori Russell-Chapin because I am currently a grad student at Bradley University and never have heard of her lol, until now.  I am interested in neurofeedback so I may have to contact her now.



#39 BigPapaChakra

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Posted 11 May 2014 - 10:22 PM

Haha that's funny - you should contact her, though. She's a nice woman and from what I can tell rather educated and experienced in the field. Her and her husband authored a book on NFB, too. As far as I can tell from Douglas Dailey's websites, there's only four others that are experienced in utilizing the TAG-Sync in the clinical realm, and her and her husband are two of them. Pretty lucky that they're in the same state! 



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#40 Closer

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Posted 30 May 2014 - 11:36 AM

BigPapa, any updates? Have you any sessions yet? Results? Experiences? Thanks :)


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#41 BigPapaChakra

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Posted 30 May 2014 - 06:45 PM

Interesting you ask, I just completed my second session yesterday. Though, these past two sessions have been SMR neurofeedback at specific areas, so as to quiet my brain. I can give a write up right now, but I'd like to wait to write anything very significant until I get down my next two sessions (there will actually be a lot of details missing below, despite it's length).

 

I did a 5-site QEEG and a TOVA test with Dr. Lori Russell-Chapin (LRC) the first time I saw her. After this we did an SMR session primarily at Cz (according to the 10-20 EEG system). I explained that I was really nervous about doing this session, despite the short length (20mins) due to my negative reaction to the NeurOptimal (due to doing it for too long in one session) and the fact that I was up for well over 24hrs. Nonetheless, I completed the session. Shortly into it I felt immense sensations of euphoria, really akin to what I would feel after smoking some weed after after a period of abstinence (which is interesting, because I haven't smoked weed in almost 2 years). For the rest of the day I still had my really bad dissociation, but I also felt more mindful, less panicked, and really physically "light". I could actually sleep that night, too. The following two nights I still had some sleep disturbances/night terrors, but they were less significant, and if I woke up on a smaller amount of sleep than what I'd like (say, 5hrs), I could handle it better.

 

My second session was yesterday. Dr. LRC said that she was a bit worried about running multiple sessions in one day with me (which is what we discussed as an option since it's hard for me to go like 3hrs out of my way 2x or more each week), but she spoke to Douglas Dailey and he said we should definitely do it, lol. Regardless, yesterday we ran another SMR session, though I believe the targeted areas were located near my mastoid/ears, and the session lasted 5-7 minutes longer. Dr. LRC also tried "challenging" me more, though I'm not quite sure what she does to do this (I'll ask and report back) but when she does this the NFB gets noticeably more difficult - I think this is attempting to strengthen connections between different areas, but I don't know.

 

Nonetheless, I felt extremely euphoric again, so much so it was hard to keep my eyes open because they were really tingly. I went about the day being noticeably more mindful with a complete lack of anxiety, panic, and fear. As we got back into our city of residence, I brought my mom and fiance to a local sushi/steak house and was a lot more social (probably comparable to my pre-HPPD days). I also thought about my symptoms much, much less. Normally I go about my day "looking" for my symptoms to see if they're present (and they always are). I then got some surges of creativity and enhanced verbal fluency. This isn't placebo - I use to rap with a few friends of mine who have become local producers/artists, but as of late have entirely stopped that. I randomly wanted to freestyle over different forms of music, not even hip-hop related. And words were just arising in my mind like no other and coming out and sequencing so well. I don't enjoy the "hip-hop" on the radio, and if that's all one has heard unfortunately they have been exposed to nothing the art has to offer. One of my inspirations is Sadistik, an old friend of Eyedea for those of you who are aware of him (a really talented "underground" rapper and battle rapper that died); Here's a song he dedicated to Eyedea - this is how lyrics started flowing out of my mouth - meaningful, hidden messages between lines, wordplay, etc. It was really awesome to experience. Later at night I finished editing my articles with ease and was filled with a lot of confidence and ended up even emailing a professor from last semester asking for a letter of recommendation - something I've put off for weeks. 

 

My next session will be TAG-Sync at a couple different areas. I think the occipital lobes, considering some of my head injuries were located there and there were really odd brain waves at those lobes. I'm actually kind of hopeful that TAG-Sync at the occipital lobes will cause me to have less visual disturbances such as flashes of light, halos, auras, and visual snow. Overall, if these results stick and increase to any degree, I'm buying Dr. LRC's book on NFB, a book on how to read QEEGs, then getting all the equipment and software and running TAG-Sync and Infra-Low training on myself.


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#42 OpaqueMind

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Posted 02 June 2014 - 04:01 PM

Hey BigPapa, great to hear you found the training beneficial already... it surprises me that you found it helpful so quickly! I'm sure doing training with someone very well versed in operating the equipment and protocols is a big boon to the efficiency of the training, which is why it's a great idea that you went to see her. I bet in your last sessions with her you could let her know of your intention to buy the relevant equipment and train yourself, then maybe she could help you develop a training plan well suited to your needs and goals? Anyway, I look forward to reading your next updates man!

 

I came to write a few other things. One is that I just watched a brief video log of a military guy who had PTSD and significant brain damage from repeated concussions who had gone through 4 and then 14 TAGsync sessions respectively. The second video was of him watching the first and then commenting on his transformation. I wish I'd thought of this last year! It's such a cool idea, even if it's not for broadcasting on the webs... just to get a sense of your own evolution through this whole process. I thought I'd mention it to you guys, as I know a few of you are actually getting started with this whole thing now, and it might be something you could consider, as a way to get a deeper sense of how you respond to this training. I just started one up, as I'm just properly getting in to TAGsync now, after a fair while doing ILF/SMR training, and I'm interested to see my cognitive progression unfolding, or as much as a video log allows that. It would probably be more suited for people starting with significant problems, as the change from 'zombie' to 'normal' is I think much more externally noticeable than 'normal' to 'beyond-normal'. Still, there is some merit to the exercise even if you're not starting from a place of significant dysfunction, if you're interested in tracking your progress at least.

 

I also wanted to say that the combination of cerebrolysin and neurofeedback is insanely synergistic. I'm going on a 10 day meditation retreat in about 9 days so I thought I'd go hard on the TAGsync front for the two weeks prior, training every day that I'm on cere (as a 5 on/2 off cycle) and meditating to otherwise consolidate the alterations. I'm doing this because I noticed that doing TAGsync seemed to plant the seeds of a much deeper meditative state, as if some parts of my brain have come to resonate permanently at that frequency, and when resting into silence that resonance brings surrounding neural oscillators into harmony with it. Resting in the meditative space thus cultivates this seed and deepens the integration of the TAG state into both meditative practice and daily life. So I thought, if I training TAG intensely before the retreat, I will plant many seeds and then be able to cultivate them all at once, giving my brain plenty of time, space and silence to reconfigure itself around these newly spawned systems. Even daily I can feel changes in my cognition, especially after meditating to integrate the changes. So, to relate this post to you guys, I highly recommend starting meditating when you've been doing TAGsync for a few sessions. It will deeply increase your integration of the changes, as well as give you really awesome, deep and enjoyable meditations.


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#43 OpaqueMind

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 10:24 AM

I'm going to post a reply to this reply from Major Legend from the Fasoracetam thread in here, since I don't want to derail the other thread and it is about neurofeedback.

 

Nicely written as usual. Hardware cognitive enhancement is very interesting, however it remains to be applied in as wide scale as the vast amount of chemicals used in medicine so the evidence is limiting. I think they would probably coexist and support each other in the future. I don't think people are willing to give up "the chase" just yet, and :

 

1) neurofeedback is inaccesible for most compared to ordering chemicals,

 

2 ) it remains to be seen whether neurofeedback or brain stimulation works in a wider cohort. Stuff like this is worrisome ( I know you were talking about neurofeedback, but I think its a too early presumption in general that hardware is immune to side effects, especially we have zero long term studies vs chemicals):

 

Quote

 

I finally have the courage to share this. In January of 2013 I did a total of 3 anode on left DLPFC (fp1) attention montage sessions with an Activa Dose II with 3x3" armex electrodes in a saline solution with the cathode on the contralateral shoulder for 2ma x 20min each over 3 days (1 session at night each day). On the third day after doing a tdcs session I was drinking a few more cups of coffee than I normally do. I went to a coffee shop, the lights flickered, I thought that I was still seeing phosphenes and got anxiety. I decided to leave the coffee shop after about 35 mins. I went to a restaurant and there were too many appliances in the wall as well and the lights flickered. (I confirmed it from an individual who worked there that the lights were flickering.) I ended up going home with my togo order and ate it at home. Around 50 mins. from originally doing tdcs I was watching a documentary when my hands started to tingle for no reason. I looked down at my hands and then boom! Instant panic attack. I thought I was having a stroke and ran out of my apartment in the fight or flight fashion. I thought I was originally having a seizure or stroke or something. I felt like I was choking on air. I had experienced something that my coping mechanisms could not handle and my psyche would be damaged forever. I thought I was going to die for real. I ended up walking back home after searching my iphone on google my symptoms and realizing I had a full blown panic attack. For the next 3 days I didn't want to leave my covers, I had gastrointestinal stress through repeat toilet visits, I had crippling anxiety and depression. I stayed in my bed eating cheerios for a week, skipping class and friends. It didn't go away. I was diagnosed by a psychiatrist with panic disorder, GAD, and major depressive disorder. It's now been a year and a half since this happened. I have no panic attacks or constant anxiety, but I still have major depression. I did 35 sessions of CBT just to get over my traumatic event. I have to take 50mg Zoloft and 300mg Wellbutrin just to get by. My quality of life is almost ruined compared to how it was before. My brain is still young and plastic (22 years old) and I've had tremendous progress in going from not being able to leave my room and bed to going back to school, yes I dropped out of college with a medical emergency withdrawal from a psychologist written appeal. know I had genetic predispositions to anxiety and depression, but why was the tdcs and caffeine a trigger that unleashed this black dog. I always think about going back in time and never attempting tdcs. If anyone else had something like this, please chime in. Ask away... In my opinion, it is definitely invasive not noninvasive. /u/level6159 please join in as well with your panic attack experience. I still don't know what went wrong to this day. I had a theory of amygdala stimulation, but I've thrown that out based on the current path.

also: If any neurologists or tdcs specialists want to study me, contact me by sending me a pm. I'm in the Atlanta area near that Atlanta tdcs clinic.

edit1: I also have a friend who did the same montage over 60 times or so and had a panic attack and is now in the same situation. We don't know if we can attribute it to the tdcs, our genetics, our environment, or a combination of everything (the perfect storm of conditions).

edit 2: http://www.mrn.org/f...hole_Letter.pdf (1-in-500) adverse effects of a panic attack

edit 3: I forgot to mention, for the first 6 months after the panic attack I had the worst tension headaches and pressure behind my eyes.

edit 4: new speculation by talking with private individuals has come up with the possibility of stimulating my cns because of the contralateral cathode placement causing the hand tingling, also the possibilty of vagus nerve stimulation causing the gastrointestinal distress, and lastly and most important speculation of the panic attack and following anxiety through potential stimulation of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex which is known to operate in this realm. The only strange thing so far is the prolonged potentiated anxiety and anxiety-reaction of depression due to there being not much long-term potentiation (only 3 sessions over 3 days, yet the adverse effects remained.) With the contralateral shoulder cathode montage, it should be noted that we now know the current is gratest in the middle, which again reinforces the ventromedial prefrontal cortex stimulation hypothesis.

edit 5: I think another topic of discussion here would be: what are the consequences if something emotionally traumatic happens to you (such as a panic attack) within the first hour post tdcs session. Will the longterm potentiation have a greater long term effect since emotional events such as panic attacks cause a release of many different neurotransmitters such as norepinephrine, etc. If there is emotional trauma during this period of plasticity, is the plasticity a potential negative factor if the experience is a bad one?

 

3 ) Tolerance/homeostasis is a huge issue with chemicals, but if neurofeedback is similar to how I imagine it is, then there are probably limitations to how much it can shift the brain. I think of the comparison of exercise vs supplements/steroids.

 

4) Piracetam, caffeine, etc is instaneous. Neurofeedback, epigenetics and so on isn't. The feedback from chemical is generally very direct, if it doesn't work then ditch it and swap for something else.

 

Again as usual I just like to throw in the other side of the coin for discussion. I am VERY interested in neurofeedback, TDCS and light stimulation, but I think its too early to rule out pharms just yet.

 

First off, thanks for the thoughts man, I appreciate you playing devil's advocate, it is how we move things forward. I'm going to reply on a point by point basis.

 

1) It is true that the setup and cost of neurofeedback are greater than your average investment into nootropics, at least in any single case. But the amount of time spent researching noots and searching for the best deal, and the amount of money most people spend in doing so (I know I've easily spent £5,000+ on this stuff in the last few years) will for most people outstrip the initial investment of time and money in NFB, if not now, then at some point along this never-ending wild goose chase. One of the benefits of NFB equipment is that once you've got it and learned how to use it, you have essentially unlimited usage of it without any further investment required.

 

2) I get the sense that more traditional approaches to NFB have mostly been limited to those with brain dysfunction, having limited applicability to healthy individuals. Yet brain dysfunction is more prevalent than is generally realised. Environmental toxins, exposure to drugs, trauma (which we all have experienced, to a degree), knocks to the head, significant stress/depression etc often result in the disorganisation or disrupted maturation of the cortical timing relationships which underlie effective information processing and healthy mental/emotional states. The vast majority of people have dysfunctions they're not even aware of, which possibly explains the efficacy of treatments like SMR neurofeedback in many subjects, which supposedly correct (and possibly enhance) thalamo-cortical feedback loops.

 

NFB has been around a long time, and there are many studies on its positive efficacy in a wide range of people (check out this comprehensive bibliography if you're interested), and if done correctly the incidence of side effects is practically non-existent. Before the advent of universally applicable protocols such as Infra-low frequency training or Alpha-Theta synchrony training I gather NFB was quite difficult to operate, the setup was more complicated and it was therefore easier to mess up and cause problems. With these newer protocols, since they are universally applicable and the parameters controlled by the programs themselves without requiring adjustment of which frequencies you're training, they are harder to mess up with. NFB isn't really comparable to tDCS, since the latter introduces foreign elements into the system, while the former simply tightens the loop of self-regulation usually mediated by external behaviour to that of internal behaviour ie the development and enhancement of mind-brain control. Because all that is trained is the specifics  of perception/action dynamics inherent within the system (I'm talking on a micro-scale here), the chances for problems, when done right, are practically non-existent. Certainly orders of magnitude less than the risks involved with ingesting foreign agents (by which I don't mean cannibalizing Russian spies haha).

 

3) The limits were more in place before the advent of TAGsync. I cannot understate the revolutionary nature of this approach; previous NFB techniques were based on normalizing some aspect of cortical function to within some optimal range. They were a kind of negative feedback loop of 'tightening up the brain game', and this approach reaches limits quickly ie when those frequencies/systems are tuned optimally. TAGsync, as I interpret it, is a whole other beast, because here we're talking positive feedback loops, which is to say, of evolution rather than stabilisation. This is because we're literally strengthening important neural systems within the brain, while at the same time strengthening the brains ability to optimally communicate with itself via the neural dance of synchronisation/desynchronisation, as opposed to the training single areas and frequencies to optimal ratios. By training the interconnectivity between regions and working at a systems level, the possibilities are hugely amplified. Optimal developmental dynamics tend towards greater synchrony across wide frequency ranges and within certain specific brains systems (such as the default mode network/task positive network), and this dynamical pattern is the natural tendency of the brain when given space to evolve in an optimal biopsychosocial environment. That these patterns emerge in both highly intelligent individuals as well as meditators who simply learn to rest their minds deeply shows that this is the natural trajectory of the mind once disruptions are removed and a richness of experience is provided. But unfortunately many of us never make it that far, or even close to it, due to a large variety of biopsychosocial stressors we have encountered throughout our lifetime. 

 

Since the general goal of neurofeedback is to learn to fully enter the trained states at will, I think the ceiling of TAGsync training is a looong way off. I've been doing it a fair while, and I still have difficulty entering the state and cannot by far enter it consistently, yet I notice significant gains even between sessions. It is fair to assume that the ceiling of effect will be reached once I can hold synchrony perfectly, either across my entire brain or across the relevant systems (I'm not sure what the limits are). At this point, I assume I will have reached, or come close to, what the mystics call enlightenment, since TAGsync was designed as a kind of reverse-engineering of people who hold those states. The analogy of neural with muscular development is I think a bit misleading, because the brain kind of repeatedly resets its foundation so that new baselines are established, with no feasible ceiling,by which I mean, there is never a point at which you stop learning, stop developing mentally (unless you've gone insane or stare at walls all day), whereas there is a definite physical ceiling. There doesn't seem to be any point at which your brain gets 'full', is what I'm getting at, the potential for growth is never exhausted. On the other hand there is a definite limit to the size of your musculature and strength. Even then though you get people like Ross Enamait, who is really small (in comparison to for example bodybuilders) but is insanely strong and has been progressively building his strength for years. What he can do blows my mind. Anyway, I'm not saying there are certainly no limitations to being human, I'm just pointing out that where those limitations lie is a very blurry line, and we are still charting that territory, constantly pushing that edge. I have a feeling that TAGsync can take us a significant amount of the way there. One way in which it seems to be able to do this is by greatly increasing the depth and ease of entering into the profound state of flow, in which neuroplasticity is boosted to a considerable degree and which is applicable to every area of life when learned deeply. Not that I've reached it yet, but I'm getting a better feel for it daily.

 

4) The feedback from NFB is also very direct. With protocols like ILF and TAGsync (and especially the latter) you notice an immediate and deep shift in mental state when hitting synchrony (and especially something called a phase reset) which can be relaibly expected to precipitate a shift in cognitive development. So, in the session itself you have direct feedback, then for the rest of the day you are enhanced (for instance, I feel pretty clear right now, even though I only had 6 hours sleep last night, mostly because I just did a TAGsync session, but also because my need for sleep has decreased since I've been using it), and then these changes get embedded, reinforced and unified over time. So you can tell immediately if it's working, and also get some immediate benefit. In fact I'd say it's far more immediately noticeable than any nootropic I've ever tried, and I've tried a few bucketloads.

 

Also, I should clarify, I'm not saying that pharms don't work some of the time for some people, as evidently they do. I just think they're a very blunt tool to sculpt a very delicate system, and I believe we're now coming into the age of their obsoletion, at least in terms of deep cognitive enhancement.


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#44 Strangelove

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 12:32 PM

 That these patterns emerge in both highly intelligent individuals.

 

 

Wow your post was great value as usual, I am very interested in what you wrote above, how do you mean it? Who are these highly intelligent individuals, do you have in mind any specific research?

 

In many ways "I am in my own world" overanalyzing things in my own life, have a kind of addiction for information, in a bad way, reading for hours books, and on line and leave behind work I want and need to do. The last years going through an undiagnosed chronic infection my brain has taken some serious "beating" make me detach from everyday life, even more, than what I am naturally inclined to. Only now after more than a half year of seriously trying to treat the infection, I am starting to really see how detached I am from everyday reality.

 

I am writing this, because what I need at this time, is something that would push me to interact more with the external world, have a little more interest in social events, even make me "more down to earth" (I never thought I would say that). I am wondering if Tagsync even with all the great positive effects that you described, could possibly give a push in a more "extroverted" state? That is in a general Jungian sense of mental energy directed in the outside world. I do not remember where I read this but is there an emphasis in the tagsync training process to synchronize the prefrontals with other parts of the brain? 


Edited by Strangelove, 04 June 2014 - 12:33 PM.


#45 OpaqueMind

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 10:37 PM

The original research was done by Douglas Dailey, the inventor of the TAGsync approach. He didn't refer to the original research in his posts on the matter but I gathered some information relating to these things. These are primarily around the nested fractality/small-world network layout of cortical networks of progressively intelligent individuals (these things correlate, which makes sense in terms of optimum information distribution) and also the parieto-frontal integration theory of intelligence. I haven't got links for the latter right here, but some searching will give you what you need. I may have linked things to this theory earlier in the thread. Increasing EEG coherence/synchrony across nested frequencies reflects the increasingly fractal/small-world network organisation of the brain. In the same way that a river delta self-organizes to optimise flow between, so too does the brain, given the right physical and experiential nourishment and barring significant disturbances, naturally evolve towards a state of optimal information propagation. Parieto-frontal integration can also be directly targeted and increased by the application of TAG sync. Optimal developmental dynamics also progressively move towards increased default mode network integration and increased phase resets across wide regions of the brain (interesting but long paper on the latter part can be found here - http://www.appliedne...Development.pdf). Self-organised criticality is also relevant to this, and I believe it is tuned up by way of TAGsync.

 

Douglas joined these dots initially, but didn't post the assumedly long and complicated paper trail which led him to these conclusions, so I had to try and retrace some of his steps myself. My understanding of how criticality relates to this can be found in this post. I believe that what the psychedelic psychotherapy pioneer Stansilav Grof meant by condensed-experience (CO-EX) systems, attractor patterns of perception-action tendencies, bound by a thread of emotional resonance, act as disruptions to criticality, causing the self-organising impetus of the brain to adjust itself to accommodate and embed these attractors around which so much of our mental lives are built (and are very often negative in origin and tone). These are pockets of unmindfulness, automatic programs which get triggered and run beneath the radar of awareness, yet direct so much of our activity. The use of TAG sync in reintegrating trauma is I believe also useful in integrating non-traumatic repressed memories, any kinds of un-integrated (ie automatic, non-contextual) perception-action knots which riddle and distort our minds, inhibiting the free-flow of information and thus our degree of intelligence, out freedom to act spontaneously and creatively in any given situation. The gist of the approach is optimising information flow throughout the brain, which is reflected in the particular network dynamics and EEG signatures outlined above.

 

Certain brain processes (which roughly follow the left-right hemisphere divide) seem to underlie your experiential dysfunction. Briefly, the right hemisphere tends to support experience, holisms, intuition and social skills, while the left supports abstractions, atomism and logical operations. No one hemisphere performs one of these, but there are significant divisions of labour between them (read the fascinating book 'the master and his emissary' for more information on this topic). I experienced a similar kind of dysfunction from extensive drug use, where I became essentially divorced from experiential reality and my mind went into constant abstraction mode. I was terrible at socialising, didn't enjoy it at all, and could barely process information in parallel. My mind was reduced to empty logical propositions, about essentially, nothing. Since using TAG sync, and specifically on the right side of the head, at the right parieto-frontal networks, I have noticed significantly increased pleasure in social interactions, increased creativity and increased big-picture thinking. My experiential awareness has also increased significantly. It is somewhat difficult to isolate these effects from the overall effects of TAGsync, but these definitely seem particularly improved on the days that I do right hemisphere training. Since learning about the lateralisation of function and my identification with extreme left-hemisphere dominance, I have stopped training TAG on the left side of my brain. I also noticed that I can already induce synchrony on that side with significantly greater ease than I can on the right, so I'm focusing there for a while. I also saw an interesting study on long-term meditators a while ago which showed the increase in cortical interconnectivity occurred mostly from front to back in the right hemisphere, as well as between the parietal networks of both hemispheres. Since I aim to eventually achieve these states, that further reinforced the case for my use of TAGsync in this way. I am definitely more extroverted now, feeling no unwarranted compunctions about letting go or any neurotic obsession with keeping up appearances. I am much more easily myself. To your last point, yes the frontal and prefrontal parts of the brain are central in TAGsync, used in most protocols, and I read somewhere that one of the aims is increased prefrontal phase resets. Are you thinking of buying the equipment to get into this stuff?


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#46 Major Legend

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 05:11 AM

You've sold me opaque, are you still taking your ADD stack? Are you just using the EEG cap with the device, or the head band? I've been doing a fair amount of reading on this.

 

It's funny this state you talk about sounds extremely similar to the state I constantly had on before my cerebral accident...in a way I'm looking for something different. I think i'm not looking to transcend my current state but just to stay very grounded in reality, like the way I am now but with the ability to work for many more hours, but I imagine I would combine a few different methods together after trying out the method individually to understand them.

 

I used to just not make any sense to anyone just because I was constantly seeing beyond others, it was like if I looked at something there would be so much detail and so much 3 dimensionality to everything that I would just be unable to express this "compounding of emotional understanding" that you would have to express it in art or creativity. I guess this is the power to create something from nothing. Sound familiar? This advanced state allowed me to do things other people deemed impossible, but the frustrations of others not understanding me eventually led to a huge build up of ego and ultimately a lot of loneliness,

 

it also lead to a significant amount of frustration during my youth as I was very advanced for my age (I had jumped a year in school and two years in several classes in school, I got put in with alot older kids). I was constantly harassed and bullied because of not being able "to fit in". Even though I was already an CGI animator who won awards in competitons and had my work published by Computer Art  by something like 14, it didn't mean a thing. I was miserable, my "specialness" meant that people were around me, but their "happiness and friendship" would never involve me as I didn't think like anyone I knew. No I wasn't like a aspergers person, I was extraordinarily empathetic, which made it even weirder as the weird people just seemed "off" to me. I would go on to several other "feats", but the further I got the more apparent it became that having the support of society is way more important than being gifted. This is why I talk about the importance of the "support network" in intelligence.

 

Sorry for derailing this, I just had a moment of nostalgia when I realized you may be experiencing what I once had but no longer seek to recover.

 

BTW you guys sounds like you are all high of Piracetam :-D . I can barely follow the "highness" on this thread.

 

again : Are you just using the EEG cap with the device, or the head band? Do you think this would work on less than scanning 24 sites all at once?


Edited by Major Legend, 05 June 2014 - 05:49 AM.


#47 Sunifiramses II

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 07:55 AM

I'm very intrigued by this idea. Feel free to skip the next paragraph if you don't want to read my sob story (which is, of course, the reason why I'm so intrigued).

 

I'm beginning to strongly suspect that I might have HPA dysregulation from a combination of way too many stims/noots and extremely stressful personal life over the past few years. This has manifested as severe anxiety including panic attacks. This condition peaked several months ago, and when I finally became fed up with it, I cut out all stimulants (prescribed for ADD) and made a drastic change in my personal relationships. Part of my reasoning for thinking HPA dysregulation is the cause, is that since I made these changes, I can feel the anxiety issues receding slowly, as though my brain is gradually reestablishing a kind of homeostasis. I am doing everything I can to speed up this change and return to "normal." On the one hand, I'm grateful that I haven't had a panic attack in several weeks, but on the other hand I'm frustrated that I'm still functioning at ~50% capacity. And I can barely drink tea, let alone coffee, lest my anxiety start to flare up again. Things that have no direct relation to my life can feel so disproportionately threatening. Sometimes, even listening to music that's too energetic or watching movies/shows that are too action-oriented can make me feel dangerously overstimulated (an episode of Sherlock being the most recent example). I'm taking 200mg Gabapentin BID, and I think that has helped ward off the panic attacks. Also, some positive social interactions recently left me feeling almost anxiety-free for several days. But I want to try to make the process move faster.

 

So, OpaqueMind, are there any machines for this cheaper than the $1000 one you linked to? Personally, I think this type of therapy would absolutely be worth $1000 to me if I were certain it would work. I wonder if someone on Longecity wouldn't be willing to buy the machine from me if it didn't work for me? Does eBay allow you to sell that sort of thing? Also, are we certain that it's cheaper to do DIY than pay for professional neurofeedback sessions, in the first place? (Not that I have any illusions that my insurance would cover that shit.  ;))

 

EDIT: I guess the most important question is, do I fit the profile of someone who would benefit from this? I feel weird enough spilling my guts in a forum like this, but I guess the deed is done, and I did it in order to be able to ask that question. So I might as well make the question explicit. And I'm happy to talk about it further if anyone cares enough to do so.


Edited by Sunifiramses II, 05 June 2014 - 08:00 AM.


#48 Invariant

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 11:24 AM

Hey Sunifiramses II (awesome name), I'm planning to start NFB in september, so if you buy the pocket neurobics machine and it doesn't work for you, I'd be willing to buy it. 



#49 Strangelove

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 12:43 PM

Certain brain processes (which roughly follow the left-right hemisphere divide) seem to underlie your experiential dysfunction. Briefly, the right hemisphere tends to support experience, holisms, intuition and social skills, while the left supports abstractions, atomism and logical operations. No one hemisphere performs one of these, but there are significant divisions of labour between them (read the fascinating book 'the master and his emissary' for more information on this topic). I experienced a similar kind of dysfunction from extensive drug use, where I became essentially divorced from experiential reality and my mind went into constant abstraction mode. I was terrible at socialising, didn't enjoy it at all, and could barely process information in parallel. My mind was reduced to empty logical propositions, about essentially, nothing. Are you thinking of buying the equipment to get into this stuff?

 

Its very interesting that right now I am in a very similar state as you used to be before Tagsync. I am sure that the chronic infection has a part on this as a combination of natural and synthetic antibiotics, and strong natural antiinflammatories lift brain fog and make me feel mentally awake, but not nearly in the state I would like to be (leaving NZT aside...).

 

I have read chapters from the master and his emissary (the ones discussing left/right funtions) and yes it was helpful to see where I am off balance with my brain.

 

Yes buying equipment and Tagsync is my top priority when I ll have the money as I have quite some responsibilities these days.


Edited by niner, 07 November 2014 - 01:58 AM.


#50 Strangelove

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 12:46 PM

 I think i'm not looking to transcend my current state but just to stay very grounded in reality, like the way I am now but with the ability to work for many more hours, but I imagine I would combine a few different methods together after trying out the method individually to understand them.

 

 

 

This 



#51 OpaqueMind

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Posted 07 June 2014 - 09:22 AM

 

You've sold me opaque, are you still taking your ADD stack?...

 

For TAGsync I use a 2 channel EEG setup, which involves 2 main channel electrodes, 2 referents and a ground electrode. An EEG cap isn't necessary or even more effective for TAG, it's more for doing qEEG or some other kind of whole brain EEG analysis. The headband is for HEG training, which I'm not doing at the moment as I want to maximize the gains I'm getting from TAG, and I only have so much biological energy to devote to the task of recuperation and growth. Also, you might have me confused with someone else cause I've never taken an ADD stack... lots of noots haven't agreed with me historically because they exacerbated my insomnia, which pretty much all of them did. Now it's a different matter, and I'm certainly looking forward to rediscovering that world, especially given that my increasingly heightened awareness will make it much easier to judge precisely how different approaches are affecting me.

 

I feel you on the isolation that a certain level of intelligence brings, not that I'm that intelligent, but it's all relative. It's like it's a way of approaching the world, a mode of thinking, of endlessly dissecting, which separates you from those who simply move unquestioning through life, or who don't have the capacity to follow your thoughts to any real degree, which gets frustrating, and people generally don't like feeling intellectually inferior (or inferior in any sense), so those who are naturally gravitate more towards people who reflect their abilities. Still, I don't know if I'd trade an active mind for societal support, although if I was completely isolated, maybe. As long as you find a few who you can talk with, your intellectual equals, or close to, your sanity will remain and you'll be able to grow through the interactions. I agree wholeheartedly with the importance of a support network in intelligence, even beyond the obvious one of the baseline levels of stress which come with loneliness and hinder cognition; just as neurons join together and share information to become something greater than they are in separation, so too do human beings. In conversation, the feedback loops (fucking love feedback loops, such a useful concept) of critical analysis and progressive evolution by way of diffraction and reintegration of ideas through the disparate but overlapping experiential pools of two minds elevates both beyond what either could be alone... the essence of the dialectic. Douglas talks about the 'hyperbrain' on his site, which I think is a useful way of conceiving of social relations... it's also interesting in that social organisation, as does the brain, follows a patterned distribution of small-world networkness which partially contributes to optimal information propagation throughout a network. My experience is that TAGsync increases your ability to absorb information from the hyperbrain network by increasing your empathy and intelligence, as well as your ability to reconfigure the nodes you are more closely connected to, simply by way of increased information transfer. I bet if you did TAGsync on your closest nodes (ie friends/family) you could spark a profound and synchronised intellectual ascendency.

 

Alternately, have you considered crafting a tulpa within your own mind in order to have an intellectual equal you can converse with? It's like another locus of self-consciousness within your mind, with a separate set of memories, thoughts and emotions which evolve over time, created in the same way that 'you' were created, by way of intention and interaction. I'm considering crafting one at some point in the future, so I can have someone as a constant companion and to bounce ideas off of. This would be another way to cultivate a mini hyperbrain, but actually within your own brain! The evolution of two minds brought about by their interaction would then be accelerated The concentration abilities cultivated by TAGsync will make it significantly easier to create one. Sound crazy? Maybe. It's an interesting idea nonetheless.

 

I'm very intrigued by this idea....

 

NFB is exactly what you need. Infra-low frequency and TAGsync are both incredibly effective for reducing the sensitivity of the stress response. The first few times I did ILF training, I noticed soon after that I had a deep feeling of stress release, as though my baseline levels were lowered... and I thought I was a really calm guy! I guess you can be stressed but still feel somewhat calm. It seems that we get acclimatized to certain ways of being which fall into the background of consciousness and become unrecognisable. It was a great weight lifted. Another interesting thing I noticed recently is that TAG has furthered this process of lowering my baseline stress, which manifests as my no longer being jumpy or feeling stressed for any prolonged period after being surprised. I used to be very jumpy and paranoid, but I noticed two things yesterday which were unprecedented... I got into an impassioned and somewhat heated (though not in a bad way) discussion with my dad, and usually in any conversation with raised voices my body would react with stress and make me mirror the state of stress occurring in the other person. No such thing happened, I was highly calm and reasonable, never reactive within the conversation. Another was, I was walking down the road and some idiot shouted out his car window at me... usually that would shock me and I would feel a bit on edge for a while afterwards. This time I simply felt it ripple through me, then it was gone, not a trace of stress. These sound like insignificant examples but for someone who was historically easily startled and paranoid, these are great strides forward. Interestingly, I also notice, after meditation, a supremely relaxed voice, like those yogis who sound like they just smoked a bunch of opium or something. This accompanies a deep feeling of peace and seems related to the stress response, or lack thereof. There have been a few studies on the cortisol levels of long-term meditators, which are reduced significantly (can't remember the exact figures, do some digging if you're interested). Anything which applies to long-term meditators applies to TAGsync, since it trains towards the same, or very similar, neural patterns. Perhaps something else to consider... the combination of ILF and TAGsync (or either alone) has been shown effective at reversing Post-Traumatic-Stress-Disorder in many cases. HPA dysregulation is implicated in PTSD. Also, I believe that I myself had HPA dysregulation, due to the symptoms of stress, temperature control and insomnia issues. They're all pretty much gone now. Take a look at the ISNR resource I linked in the post to Major Legend a few back, there's a whole bunch of studies there.

 

I can't comment on machines other than the Q-Wiz, since I've only had experience with that one... it's worked perfectly so far. Pocket Neurobics in general seem like a great company, so maybe you could get the U-Wiz, which is a bit cheaper than the Q-Wiz, but doesn't have HEG or more than 2 channel ability, although neither of these are important for ILF/TAGsync. I'm not sure if the U-Wiz can support ILF though, you'd have to inquire about that. About the cost of sessions compared to doing it yourself, depending on where you go, it works out at something like 10-20 sessions equals the cost of buying all the equipment and being set up for life. I've probably done about 70 sessions of ILF/BiPolar/TAGsync combined, and I'm still making gains every session, with no sign of it letting up. Going to a (good) practitioner would surely be beneficial in some ways, especially if you have significant dysfunction in certain areas, although I did and I've managed absolutely fine on my own. These universally applicable protocols practically do away with the need for sustained professional guidance, at least in terms of the specifics of application.

 

Its very interesting that right now I am in a very similar state as you used to be before Tagsync...

 

 

Thanks for the offer man, although I don't think I'd risk taking my NFB equipment on my travels... It's too close to my heart to risk losing it or getting it nicked! I look forward to reading your reports when you finally get into TAG. I wonder the extent to which it can be applied for not only advancing cognition but also rectifying dysfunction... the potential is huge. We should have more reports soon, by my count there's about 6 people, that I know of, who are now doing or about to do TAGsync NFB.


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#52 Strangelove

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Posted 07 June 2014 - 02:32 PM

 

 the potential is huge. We should have more reports soon, by my count there's about 6 people, that I know of, who are now doing or about to do TAGsync NFB.

 

 

Great to hear! I am starting saving money also.



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#53 Major Legend

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Posted 07 June 2014 - 06:23 PM

 

 

You've sold me opaque, are you still taking your ADD stack?...

 

For TAGsync I use a 2 channel EEG setup, which involves 2 main channel electrodes, 2 referents ...

 

 

Hah - your thoughts remind me of my younger self when I would have these endless thoughts like a never ending self documenting diary, memories that will eventually crystallise into useful experiences and references I would imagine.

 

Oh yeah I got you mixed up with this guy, who I though had a similar style, though less introspective:

http://www.longecity...in-development/

 

Though I must say: I think people of our generation focus too much on themselves to be critical of themselves, to be perfect, to find the next best thing, to the point of obsession.

 

At the end of the day life is a rollercoaster, like watching a movie where you can only play, but never rewind fast forward or pause. If you don't stop and look eternity in the eye, you might just miss it. (does that even make sense? like eternity is the moment now, and all the experiences you have accumulated already but don't have in active recall) (well perceptive time is just this thing evolution invented to make sure energy expenditure is measured and isn't wasted, its just this scale your brain uses, to shrink your past experiences, once this scale is gone all your experiences meld together into one, without time the past, present and future are all one thing experientially, there is always only one moment and that moment is now, so its through this moment you can experience all that there ever is and all that there ever will be...)

 

As much as I like to think of myself as a pilot with my hand on a huge rainbow of controls at my disposal (well actually i'm trying to build my own EEG device). You know the beauty of simple people is that they don't quite worry about what can go wrong, or rather they don't quite have the comprehension for it, and within that I've always envied that quality. That they live life more than you or I.

 

The awesomeness of extended intelligence is the ability to perceive and conceive things that do not exist yet or will not exist, yet use that ability too much and you start forgetting that there is a real world right now in front of you. Enjoy everything because believe it or not, rationality is a dead end.

 

I should go to bed. Sorry for derailing the thread for the second time. It's just your "feedback" is so philosophical in nature I couldn't help but chime in. I did have a "tulpa" at some point, but I gave up the guy because the internal self talk got too much, and I found myself having these back and forth conversations.

 

 

 

 


Edited by Major Legend, 07 June 2014 - 06:51 PM.

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#54 OpaqueMind

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 03:20 PM

Hah - your thoughts remind me of my younger self when I would have these endless thoughts like a never ending self documenting diary, memories that will eventually crystallise into useful experiences and references I would imagine.

 

Oh yeah I got you mixed up with this guy, who I though had a similar style, though less introspective:

http://www.longecity...in-development/

 

Though I must say: I think people of our generation focus too much on themselves to be critical of themselves, to be perfect, to find the next best thing, to the point of obsession.

 

At the end of the day life is a rollercoaster, like watching a movie where you can only play, but never rewind fast forward or pause. If you don't stop and look eternity in the eye, you might just miss it. (does that even make sense? like eternity is the moment now, and all the experiences you have accumulated already but don't have in active recall) (well perceptive time is just this thing evolution invented to make sure energy expenditure is measured and isn't wasted, its just this scale your brain uses, to shrink your past experiences, once this scale is gone all your experiences meld together into one, without time the past, present and future are all one thing experientially, there is always only one moment and that moment is now, so its through this moment you can experience all that there ever is and all that there ever will be...)

 

As much as I like to think of myself as a pilot with my hand on a huge rainbow of controls at my disposal (well actually i'm trying to build my own EEG device). You know the beauty of simple people is that they don't quite worry about what can go wrong, or rather they don't quite have the comprehension for it, and within that I've always envied that quality. That they live life more than you or I.

 

The awesomeness of extended intelligence is the ability to perceive and conceive things that do not exist yet or will not exist, yet use that ability too much and you start forgetting that there is a real world right now in front of you. Enjoy everything because believe it or not, rationality is a dead end.

 

I should go to bed. Sorry for derailing the thread for the second time. It's just your "feedback" is so philosophical in nature I couldn't help but chime in. I did have a "tulpa" at some point, but I gave up the guy because the internal self talk got too much, and I found myself having these back and forth conversations.

 

I sympathise with this view massively. Precisely because excessive and endless abstraction is inhibitive to actually existing, experiencing and doing have I found TAGsync so amazing (well, among other reasons). It enhances your abilities in all areas that I can think of, but one of the most immediately profound is the increase in sensory acuity. Umop earlier in the thread compared it to low-dose psychedelics, which I would agree with. The facing of eternity within the now is much easier to slip into, to let go of temporal narratives which distort perception and force it into the background.

 

Although I disagree that 'simple' people generally live life more... sure being mired in abstraction completely takes you out of the world. But we needn't be this way, indeed I'm gradually shifting into a more world/experience-oriented existence or perhaps rather a healthier and more vital balance between abstraction and interaction. Being more intelligent, we have the space in which to realise how we might alter ourselves in order that we don't feel the stress which grinds the acute mind more greatly than the dull one. The same elevation of consciousness allows joys which also exceed their experiential range in intensity.

 

TAGsync not only facilitates the increase of one's intelligence but also the intensification of awareness, of consciousness itself. In this sense it doesn't create the kind of one-sided abstraction-focused mind you were hinting at, although my writing probably reflects that mode of thinking since that is my historical tendency and I like to think in that way. But I agree, ultimately abstraction and rationality are secondary, almost like parasites on experience, which when they don't subjugate themselves to it and positively feedback into they are worse than useless.


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#55 Strangelove

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 07:00 PM

I sympathise with this view massively. Precisely because excessive and endless abstraction is inhibitive to actually existing, experiencing and doing have I found TAGsync so amazing (well, among other reasons). It enhances your abilities in all areas that I can think of, but one of the most immediately profound is the increase in sensory acuity. 

 

TAGsync not only facilitates the increase of one's intelligence but also the intensification of awareness, of consciousness itself. In this sense it doesn't create the kind of one-sided abstraction-focused mind you were hinting at, although my writing probably reflects that mode of thinking since that is my historical tendency and I like to think in that way. But I agree, ultimately abstraction and rationality are secondary, almost like parasites on experience, which when they don't subjugate themselves to it and positively feedback into they are worse than useless.

 

 

Nice, the above description is what I am looking for! Would you also say that made internal self talk clearer for you? This is the most I have lost due to the mental/bodily stress from the infection, I am feeling better now, but not near were I used to be. I used to have a very "clear" internal dialogue, having a good memory of my developing self and a "strong will" with a persistent internal talk that was mostly positive. What I am interested the most is to cultivate again a proactive consciousness with the urge to interact with the external world and not only trying to understand it. 


Edited by Strangelove, 09 June 2014 - 07:05 PM.


#56 OpaqueMind

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Posted 10 June 2014 - 04:14 AM

My internal self-talk has always seemed to be the most prominent aspect of my mental life, so it didn't really have much room to become clearer. Yet in some ways it has done... if thoughts could have edges, those edges would be sharper. That's a general effect of the raising of consciousness I think, the sensory apprehension of the nuances of experiences (including thoughts) and the intensity with which the foreground makes itself known from the background becomes intensified.

 

With TAGsync we can train what is known as the task-positive network, which is engaged when, you guessed it, doing tasks! I'm not sure of the exact benefits of this, and it's hard to separate out the many effects of TAG training from one another in order to trace placements to effects, but I would imagine it has effects on motivation to act. I have experienced this to a degree, although not in an incredibly pronounced way. I hadn't thought about this before, but I'm generally more willing to just get up and do things without analysing the situation to death. Before, if I was uncertain about the outcome of something, or there was much chance involved, I would by default shrink from acting. Now I just engage with things more effortlessly. We might chalk that down to increased ability to enter the state of flow and to reside more in the moment in general, which agonizing about future possibilities or discomforts is antagonistic to.

 

Some other really cool effects are my newfound ability to be cognizant after only 6 hours of sleep. Previously I would be a zombie even after 8-9 hours, and have had sleep problems for as long as I remember. This isn't just down to TAGsync, but also ILF and SMR training over a few months... my sleep is getting better all the time. I find myself remembering random details much more easily, and the readiness to mind of previous experiences and ideas brings a greater unity to my thinking. Observations now spark deeper chains of thought, references coming to consciousness unbidden, analyses conducted instantaneously in the background. I also enjoy an increase in dream intensity/recall and I've also had a few spontaneous lucid dreams since I started, something which never used to happen. Lastly, I'm deeply into meditation and my concentration abilities are steadily progressing at a much faster rate than before, and the states of absorption and bliss I can touch are more readily available and deeper. I'm going on a 10-day meditation retreat tomorrow, the first I've ever been on, and I'll report back to you guys on the effects when I return... no doubt these TAG sessions I've been doing will strongly influence how my mind unfolds. I'm excited to say the least! There couldn't really be a better way to explore the ways in which this extensive use of neurofeedback has reconstructed my mind.



#57 Strangelove

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Posted 12 June 2014 - 09:09 PM

Thats great OpaqueMind, I hope you get great results from the retreat! There are some great books on advanced meditation on Amazon you might want to check out (if not done already).

 

 



#58 BigPapaChakra

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 09:10 AM

Found some cool information which really adds to the immense amount of potential between TAG-Sync (as I stated in the Bulletproof Forums, I'd recommend reading Douglas Dailey's posts in the yahoo brain-trainer group):

 

Breakthrough study on EEG of meditation "One could say (I would not) that the gamma synchrony/coherent 40 Hz corresponding with contentless meditation implied a blank slate, perhaps like a radio station carrier wave, that the coherent amplitude increase was due to lack of interference stemming from lack of cognitive processing. But the trained meditators were conscious—highly conscious—of the feeling of pure compassion. So my impression, as suggested above, is that their enhanced gamma synchrony reflected a release from external (e.g. thalamic) distractions, allowing pure qualia to fill consciousness. Why gamma synchrony (or any brain activity) should be conscious is, of course the ‘hard problem’. As those familiar with my views might suppose, my guess is that conscious experience derives from quantum mechanisms in cytoskeletal structures within coherently excited components of hyper-neurons. These in turn facilitate a more direct absorption in what Buddhists call fundamental luminosity. My guess is also that intensity of experience corresponds not only with coherence, but also frequency, that the 80 to 120 Hz coherence is present in the trained meditators and represents the highest form of consciousness." - this is an article by Stuart Hameroff, check out the citations, too!

 

A New Marriage of Brain and Computer - a presentation by Stuart Hameroff which discusses gamma synchrony, the underlying mechanisms of consciousness, and a bunch of neurobiological information relevant to TAG-Sync
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#59 arvcondor

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Posted 25 June 2014 - 07:56 AM

This is a long thread with long posts, so I may have missed this, but, are there any risks to all this?



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#60 BigPapaChakra

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Posted 25 June 2014 - 08:27 AM

Yes, there are some, but there are some variables at play. Firstly, some of the potential negative effects can simply be attributed to the nervous system and brain re-wiring and one then undergoing a process of re-experiencing to eventually let go of trauma and then re-assimilate. Also, this some of this is protocol and 'dose' dependent (by 'dose', I mean, how long are you doing a session? How often? There have often been reports of adverse reactions to relaxation exercises, autogenic training, and meditation, when doing it for too long too soon). This NeurOptimal neurofeedback survey of providers speaks about some adverse reactions. A couple people have spoken about the resurfacing of memories and emotions during cycles of NSI-189, I see it very much like that. 

 

I did a NeurOptimal session before, because there is a practitioner down the street from my house, and our session went way too long for my sensitive nervous system, and the entirety of the next day I was in a complete stay of angst. It took awhile for me to recover from that. As I've said before, I've done 2 SMR neurofeedback sessions; after the first one I felt great, but the next day I was a little off; had a bit more anxiety and disorientation, but it faded by the following day and I felt a bit better than I normally do. The same thing happened after my second session, too. I've since started doing nIR HEG one a week (will start doing it more frequently) and daily biofeedback, but after my first nIR HEG session I also had acute anxiety and disorientation, though overall I've received some good benefits from that in addition to the biofeedback. I can't wait to see how I feel after 20-30 sessions.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: theta, alpha, gamma, synchrony, neurofeedback, bipolar, training, ultralow, frequency, self-regulation

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