Way Cool Big Words: From Neuroscience to Consciousness

Way Cool Big Words: From Neuroscience to Consciousness

What is a way cool big word? It’s a word that delights, intrigues, jolts the mind or satisfies its curiosity. Such a word leads to an explosion of ideas with the same pre-fix or root, as in “neuro” words, neuroscience, neurotransmitters, neuropsychology, neuroplasticity, neurolinguistics, etc. “Neuroscience” sounds grander than “brain science,” because it implies something beyond the physical self. I won’t attempt to define it further here. Way cool big words like these lead us inward to explore, lighting our linguistic neurons. But they also radiate out, connecting us to larger worlds of thought.

For example, the word “neuroscience” encompasses the studies of psychology, behavior, biology, the mind-body connection and Consciousness itself, which is Infinite. When we contemplate Consciousness and connect to Universal Mind, we surpass our limited identification with “my mind” or “my thoughts.” This may occur just for a moment, in meditation or as we lose ourselves in some artistic or athletic pursuit. It may happen unintentionally, without our permission. But the intentional practice of meditation—with proper guidance and instruction—assures that it will happen safely, in our own best interest, with our willing, if not always fearless, and full participation. To expand your connection to higher Consciousness, practice Sky Meditation:

1.Set a five or ten minute timer. (You can go for longer, next time).

2.Breathe in deeply, allowing the space in back of the throat to expand, before breathing out. Follow the rhythm of the breath for several rounds. You may want to count as you breathe—inhale 4, pause 7, exhale 8.

3.Come to a place of stillness, quietly aware of any sensations or thoughts. Let them come and go, without judging or engaging them.

4.Picture a vast sky. Direct your awareness up and above your head; see and fly as far as the sky will take you. Let yourself go.

  1. After 5-10 minutes, open your eyes, coming back to an expanded sense of self.  Try for longer before going to sleep at night.

When I look at the sky, what do I see? How can I go beyond my limitations?


About sheilaklewis

As a writing coach, meditation teacher, writer, and academic tutor, I'm passionate about words and the silent spaces between words. In this context, I run book clubs and writers' groups where the resonance of carefully crafted words can spark readers and writers to share their own stories. Connecting through conversation; making memories matter; embracing editing and revision, and imaginative wordplay are some solo and collective outcomes. I came to what I call my "Meditate Write Now" practice after years of art-making, writing grants, curriculum, children's stories, and more. Meditation kept my mind from meandering too far off point and also led me to write from the still point within. May our paths cross in creative journeys across time and internet connections! Other details: My husband and I are the parents of two amazing sons and one daughter-in-law, and smitten grandparents of Micah (born December, 2013). I don't drive, and have lived in the same apartment on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, for too long.
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9 Responses to Way Cool Big Words: From Neuroscience to Consciousness

  1. Aiyana says:

    This is wonderful, Sheila. Thank you.

  2. Kathleen says:

    Great meditation Sheila!

  3. sheilaklewis says:

    and short enough for busy parents and grandparents. Fly high, Kathleen!

  4. Lia says:

    Sheila, sorry I have to dispel the infatuation with the word “neuro” but, having worked in the clinical sciences for over 30 years, I am very sensitive to propagandistic buzzwords that mean absolutely nothing for the advancement of the human race. I don’t know how you made the connection, but your meditation instructions are wonderful: I will try them at the first opportunity and fully expect, since you are an advanced spiritualist and meditation teacher, to get great results —- hopefully expunging the word “neuro” from my consciousness on a permanent basis! Lia

  5. sheilaklewis says:

    Thanks Lia. You bring up a fascinating point. I don’t much love “neuro” anything either, and am attempting in this writing project to de-jargon or de-construct buzzwords. I am intrigued by the large number of “neuro” words there are, and how repetition makes people accept certain words as “god-given.” By the way, “neuro-typical” is a recent addition to the lot, and refers to people who are “typical or normal” and without neurological disabilities (as if we can measure any of this with absolute certainty). Consciousness, a lofty word, barely captures the expanse of its definition. We are left with our limited vocabularies.

  6. I like the meditations and explanations.

  7. AJ says:

    Speaking of a way cool big word, I have a way cool small word and you used it above. The word is vast. Though it is a short word, when you say it you feel as though you are standing on a mountain top or sailing the high seas. The sound of words and of course their meaning can perhaps cause any length of word to come across as a way cool big word.

  8. sheilaklewis says:

    Thanks, AJ, for the way cool smaller word–yes, vast immediately opens up space. I love it! Keep sending in those wcbw, big or small, everybody, and have a way cool (as in cool) Labor Day weekend.

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