The hormone Oxytocin has been the subject of numerous research after being first discovered as early as 1906 by Henry Dale, with its molecular structure discovered in 1952.
During the past few decades, the so-called “cuddle hormone” has been most notably linked to social bonding, childbirth and sexual reproduction. However, as new research shed more light to the mysterious “bliss” hormone, it turns out Oxytocin may play an even bigger role in the psyche and mental development of a person.
In a recent study, published in Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, researchers concluded that Oxytocin plays a major part in spiritual enlightenment.
The study itself subjected as much as 83 middle-aged men and separated them into two groups, one of which was given a placebo and the other Oxytocin.
The results showed that those who were given the “cuddle hormone” were far more likely to agree with statements, such as All life is interconnected and There is a higher plane of consciousness or spirituality that binds all people. Both of those statements are usually considered to be such of spiritual growth.
The study further subjected the men to a guided meditation. The Oxytocin group showed staggering results of being more likely to experience “interest, love, sincerity, hope, inspiration and interest,” among other feelings. The effects remained even a week after the initial hormone boost given.
The study also found that men with the CD38 gene, related to the release and control of oxytocin to the brain, had a much better understanding of the spiritual world and meditation.
The research gives further evidence suggesting there’s more to Oxytocin than meets the eye.
Previously believed to be the reason behind the mother-child bond, the hormone is now being studied in relation to other social bonds and to spiritual growth.
According to a new recent study, as reported by ScienceDaily, Oxytocin has also been linked to the bonding between fathers and their children. The study itself focused on brain scans, showing that the hormone plays a major part in regions associated with reward and empathy, in the brains of fathers, who were showed the photos of their toddlers.
Oxytocin has also been linked to being a prime reason behind the numerous benefits of sexual experiences, alongside dopamine.
With these new findings, studies and research on the effects of Oxytocin, it becomes even more obvious that there is much to this world and ourselves that we are not aware of and which can’t be explained by science.