Is meditation backed up by real science? Does it change the brain?
Yes, but there’s a catch. While there happens to be a growing body of literature on the benefits of meditation—including improving immune function, stress reduction, and reduced neurodegeneration—the science is still a bit ambiguous. Hopefully that will change in time.
That said, there’s actually a deeper reason to meditate: to train your ability to prioritize what you pay attention to, and to no longer be merely a slave to your thoughts. With practice, this ability becomes a kind of superpower that allows you to let go of negative emotions more easily, connect with people more deeply, and generally live with more joy and equanimity.