Spirituality and Resting Brain Activity in a Sample of University Students

Ikanga, Jean, Douglas MacDonald, Anthony McMahon, Simon Lilley, Eliza Gedge, Sally Barbat, Krista Switzer, Brandy Wright, Mary Golla, Eric Strongin, Tyler Boonstra, Katherine Lewitzke, Carmela Martin, Matthew Kadrich, and Donald Deering

Using a volunteer sample of 20 undergraduate students, the study attempted to examine the relation of spirituality, defined as a multidimensional domain of functioning and measured by the Expressions of Spirituality Inventory (ESI; MacDonald, 2000) to resting brain states measured via quantitative electroencephalography (qEEG). Across both eyes-open and eyes-closed conditions, data analyses suggest that higher versus lower levels of spirituality may be associated with a number of differences in brain wave activity which themselves may be tied to differences in cognitive, affective, and behavioral functioning.  Implications of the findings including directions for future research are discussed.