Updated: Apr 23
Anyone can be a meditation guide these days, even non-persons. Last week, I queried ChatGPT to write a meditation script. I was curious. ChatGPT is an artificial intelligence (AI) chatbot. It returned the following script:
Find a quiet, comfortable place where you can sit undisturbed for a few minutes.
Sit down with your back straight and close your eyes.
Take a few deep breaths through your nose.
Begin to focus your attention on your breath. Notice the sensation of air flowing in and out of your nostrils.
If your mind begins to wander, simply acknowledge the thought and then gently redirect your attention back to your breath.
Continue to focus your attention on your breath for several minutes, noticing the rise and fall of your chest and the sensation of air moving in and out of your body.
If you become aware of any physical sensations or thoughts, simply acknowledge them and return your focus to your breath.
When you are ready to end the meditation, take a few deep breaths, slowly open your eyes, and stretch your body.
Take a moment to notice how you feel and try to carry the calm and centered feeling into your day.
Remember, the goal of meditation is not to eliminate all thoughts and distractions, but rather to develop the ability to return your focus to the present moment and cultivate a sense of inner peace and calm.
ChatGPT was released on November 30, 2022. Many pundits, journalists, and technologists alike predict that content creating artificial intelligence like ChatGPT will disrupt many industries.
ChatGPT can solve complex math equations in seconds, write code, translate foreign languages, draft legal contracts, discover new drugs and materials, produce more than a dozen recipes from an inventory of the contents in your refrigerator, and even guide you toward greater self-realization. Here are its recommendations:
Cultivate self-awareness: Pay attention to your thoughts, emotions, and behaviors, and become aware of patterns that may be holding you back. This could involve mindfulness meditation, journaling, or other introspective practices.
Develop wisdom: Seek out knowledge and insights from a variety of sources, including spiritual texts, philosophical writings, and scientific research. Reflect on the nature of reality and the nature of the self.
Practice compassion: Cultivate empathy and kindness towards yourself and others. This could involve volunteering, practicing loving-kindness meditation, or simply making an effort to be more understanding and accepting.
Let go of attachment: Recognize that clinging to material possessions, relationships, or even concepts and beliefs can create suffering. Practice detachment and non-attachment to cultivate a sense of inner peace.
Surrender to the present moment: Let go of regrets about the past and worries about the future, and fully embrace the present moment. This could involve mindfulness meditation or simply paying closer attention to the world around you.
Embrace impermanence: Recognize that everything is in a constant state of flux and that clinging to any one state is futile. Practice acceptance and equanimity in the face of change.
Seek guidance and support: Connect with teachers, mentors, or spiritual communities who can offer guidance and support on your journey. It can also be helpful to surround yourself with like-minded individuals who share your values and goals.
Keep in mind that these steps are not necessarily sequential or linear, and that the path to self-realization may involve setbacks and challenges. However, with perseverance and an open mind, it is possible to move closer to a state of greater awareness, understanding, and fulfillment.
These recommendations are sound. But, there are no tidy manuals or step-by-step instruction guides for being more fully human. A chatbot cannot relate to our humanness- with all of its messiness and ignorance and brokenness and confusion. Indeed, suffering is inevitable.
AI has ventured into the mindfulness headspace. I tuned in to a podcast on meditation and mindfulness generated entirely by AI. The scripts, the ambient music, and the narrators were created by machines.
These AI models learn through human input. What is most telling is how superficial the inputs are. G.I.G.O is a common acronym in computer science: Garbage In, Garbage Out. The AI bot is ingesting saccharine and shallow content from blogs, websites, online magazines, and other sources- which speaks to the superficiality of the content out there. These AI bots rise to the level of human consciousness. But we are not very enlightened beings- we kill, we lie, we distort, we harm, we exploit, we destroy. The danger is that AI will pull from our unrepentant ids.
Perhaps progress is inevitable. A.I. is integrating with biofeedback tools, metabolic trackers, neurotechnologies, and other wearables. The recommendations that come from big data will likely be more useful to consumers than the generic content being peddled today.
In a recent proof of concept study published in Nature, researchers built and trained machine learning programs based on 1.6 million electrocardiograms performed on 244,077 patients between 2007 and 2020. The algorithm predicted the risk of death with 87% accuracy. The predictions were even more accurate when demographic information (age and sex) and six standard laboratory blood test results were included.
Inside Tracker, the popular biotracker, is powered by A.I. Inside Tracker provides accurate blood marker analysis and personalized recommendations based on results. Following these AI generated recommendations, I was able to improve many biomarkers and bring my glucose levels into optimal range.
The integration of AI with neurotechnology and other wearables has enormous potential to improve mental health outcomes and optimize brain health. By analyzing large amounts of data from various wearable devices, AI can provide more accurate and timely diagnoses. This could result in earlier interventions, better outcomes, and more effective treatments.
Wearable technology can monitor brain activity during cognitive training exercises, and AI can analyze this data to optimize training for specific cognitive functions. I much prefer data to vague and esoteric instructions from gurus.