Mind Alive Blog

Wednesday, February 3, 2010



Welcome to the Mind Alive blog. Your hosts are Dave Siever and Amanda Jackson. Dave Siever has been designing neuro-stimulators and biofeedback devices as far back as 1981. He was involved in temporo-mandibular dysfunction (TMD) research at the University of Alberta. He invented the first high-quality AVE device (the DAVID1) in 1984 to help Performing Arts students overcome stagefright.  He has been continually researching and developing BWE/AVE technology ever since.  Dave wrote "The Rediscovery of Audio-Visual Entrainment Techonology", the first complete book on AVE back in 1989. Dave is a prominent researcher, author and lecturer on stimulation technoligies and wellness in general. Amanda Jackson is a psychology student and the new education coordinator for Mind Alive Inc.

This blog is all about various stimulation technologies:

1) Audio-visual entrainment (AVE): Also known as brainwave entrainment (BWE). Some people also refer to this technology as "mind machines." Using flashes of light and pulses of tones, AVE can safely and easily guide people into various brainwave states depending on the rate of stimulation.
2) Cranio-electro stimulation (CES): By attaching small electrodes behind the ear (or on the ear lobe) and pulsing a small current, CES can help the brain produce endorphins.  There are over 120 studies on CES, covering drug/alcohol rehabilitation, depression, anxiety, insomnia and mental performace.

3) Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS):  By putting a small polarized DC current across the cranium, tDCS can enhance or reduce brain activity under the electrode.  Most people use it to enhance brain function, but sometimes it is used to inhibit brain activity for reducing seizures. There are over 75 studies on tDCS, most of them from the University in Gottingen, Germany and some from Harvard Medical School.

In this blog, we will also be discussing nutrition, which also stimulates the brain in a chemical way. Many health challenges can be improved with a proper diet and healthier lifestyle.

We are interested in promoting non-drug approaches to reducing the symptoms of psychological disorders and improving overall well-being. We will be sharing information and suggestions to help you feel great and keep your "mind alive".

Now, let's have some FUN!

Dave Siever
Amanda Jackson

Thank you for starting this Blog, and may it become very successful.

I have two questions regarding light stimulation, and one regarding audio stimulation.

My first question relates to whether it makes a difference in how the brain responds to Field-Independent Stimulation via Tru-Vu Eyesets, if the eyes are kept opened vs closed - i.e. light entering directly through the exposed pupil as in the diagram on the Website, versus light striking the closed eyelids first and diffusing within the eyeball?

My second question relates to how the brain reacts to light stimulation if the stimulus is omitted from the closest regions to the ridge of the nose – i.e. stimulus coming from the extreme left corner of the left eye & extreme right corner of the right eye, only?

My last question is whether it is best to use only visual stimulation and avoid audio stimulation for people who are deaf of one ear?

Thank you for sharing of your knowledge & research… your published manuals are my most trusted source of information.

When in "Focus" or synchronized mode, both fields are stimulated at the same time. But with 2 frequencies, the right-hand fields of both eyes will stimulate the left brain and vice versa. It's best to run eyes-closed as the eyelids diffuse the light and stimulate a broader visual field. Also, blinking the eyes (when eyes are open)disrupts the dissociative state, so it's best to keep the eyes closed for that reason as well. When using view-hole TruVu eyesets for cognitive work, the dissociative effects are not so much of a concern.

If the stimulation is omitted from the nasal area, then the brainwave driving will be cut in half and dissociation (drifting into trance) will be reduced and perhaps not possible for some people.

The audio produces about 1/3 of the entrainment, so using the headphone will reinforce the AVE mildly to that hemisphere. More importantly, a noisy environment hampers entrainment, so the headphones will help to reduce ambient external noise.

dave siever
Hello. Glad you're blogging. I bought a DAVID Pal a few years ago for my daughter. We unwisely loaned it to somebody to try on their daughter. They returned it with the headphones broken. Can we use regular headphones with our machine?
Hello, nice to see this Blog. Several years ago I bought the DAVID PAL 36 with CES. I bought it because I want to add it to my wellness centre (that is still under construction) and offer treatments BUT before I do that I need to take sufficient training and would like to know if I can come to your Edmonton location for that.
Also, even though I haven't used my DAVID machine yet, my daughter took the headphones and they are now "overused" and one side doesn't work. I too would like to know if it is safe to use any other headphones with the unit.
Hello, I am wondering if someone who has been known to have seizures could benefit from the DAVID and obviously you wouldn't be able to use the visual stimulation? I would like to learn how to offer the Audio stimulation to benefit the person that has seizures. Is it possible or has there been any documented cases that the Audio stimulation has helped alleviate seizures?
Melanie and Anonymous:

Yes, you can just use regular stereo headphones for your units. We also sell replacement headphones for $39 USD/CAN.

Unfortunately, we are not offering training this year at our Edmonton location. The only AVE training offered this year will be in Atlanta, Georgia. The information for this training is available at:

Hello Janine,

We are often asked about seizures, so Dave has written a new blog post responding to your question.
Hi, I use a DAVID Paradise XL+. I heard that CES is supposed to be relaxing, but I have never felt anything but anxious using it. I suppose I'm still quite dubious about the thought of sending an electric current through my skull! As soon as I think I can feel anything (although in reality, it's probably just the pressure of the sticky pads behind my ears), I panic and turn the current down or off. Could this be because in fact I need to turn the current UP to have the desired effect, and I'm using it at too low a level due to being a Nervous Nellie?
CES has been found to be a safe and effective for relaxation and anxiety.

“CES has been in clinical use in the U.S.A. since 1963 and Europe since 1953. Hundreds of thousands of patients have been treated with CES over the years… ” (Smith, 2007, p. 19)*

You do not need to feel the stimulation in order for it to be effective. We usually recommend increasing intensity until you can feel the stimulation, then decreasing intensity so that you can just barely feel it or not at all. “High intensity” is not required for it to work.

*Smith, R. B. (2007). Cranial electrotherapy stimulation: its first fifty years, plus three: a monograph. Mustang, OK: Tate Publishing.
Thanks for sharing, this is a fantastic post.Thanks Again. Fantastic.
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I purchased a David Pal some years ago. I haven't used the unit for quite some time but have been having a problem with blood pressure.
Are any of the sessions on the David Pal good to use to bring BP down?
I refer you to this link about hypertension and the research done on it: http://www.mindalive.com/3_5.htm
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The Mind Alive Blog is a blog that provides information on brainwave entrainment (AVE) and other brain stimulation technologies. The blog is written by Mind Alive, a company that manufactures brain stimulation devices.It is a valuable resource for anyone who is interested in learning more about brainwave entrainment. The blog is well-written and informative, and it provides a comprehensive overview of the topic.
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Incorporated in 1981, in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Mind Alive Inc specializes in brain technology. Our flagship technology is audio-visual entrainment (AVE), and we manufacture the DAVID brand devices. Other products include the Oasis line of cranio-electro stimulators (CES) and transcranial DC Stimulators (tDCS). Mind Alive is the leader in all of these technologies and has patents for both AVE and CES.


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