Health

Physiotherapy could be done at home using virtual reality

Virtual reality could help physiotherapy patients complete their exercises at home successfully thanks to researchers at WMG, University of Warwick, who managed to combine VR technology with 3-D motion capture.

Psychology & Psychiatry

Using virtual reality could make you a better person in real life

If you've ever participated in a virtual reality (VR) experience, you might have found yourself navigating the virtual world as an avatar. If you haven't, you probably recognise the experience from its portrayal in film and ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

Virtual avatars may impact real-world behavior

How you represent yourself in the virtual world of video games may affect how you behave toward others in the real world, according to new research published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological ...

Autism spectrum disorders

The gaze that hinders expression

Empathy - the ability to identify and understand other people's emotions - has many components, some sophisticated and involving complex thought processes, others basic but essential nonetheless. The latter include joint ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

Better apps might improve health, study finds

Ever wondered why after a while you got tired of using that weight loss or meditation app on your phone? For Max Birk, a University of Saskatchewan recent Ph.D. graduate, the answer could be that you need a customizable avatar ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

Interactive avatar boosts performance of children with ADHD

A new study has shown that an interactive avatar, which gives both instructions and feedback on the attention of the learner, can improve the performance of ADHD children on a complex problem-solving task. Researchers concluded ...

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Avatar

In Hinduism, an avatar (English: /ˈæv.ə.tɑːr/, from Sanskrit avatāra, अवतार in the Devanagari script, meaning "descent") is a deliberate descent of a deity to earth, or a descent of the Supreme Being (i.e., Vishnu for Vaishnavites) and is mostly translated into English as "incarnation," but more accurately as "appearance" or "manifestation".

The term is most often associated with Vishnu, though it has also come to be associated with other deities. Varying lists of avatars of Vishnu appear in Hindu scriptures, including the ten Dashavatara of the Garuda Purana and the twenty-two avatars in the Bhagavata Purana, though the latter adds that the incarnations of Vishnu are innumerable. The avatars of Vishnu are a primary component of Vaishnavism. An early reference to avatar, and to avatar doctrine, is in the Bhagavad Gita.

Shiva and Ganesha are also described as descending in the form of avatars. The various manifestations of Devi, the Divine Mother principal in Hinduism, are also described as avatars or incarnations by some scholars and followers of Shaktism. The avatars of Vishnu carry a greater theological prominence than those of other deities, which some scholars perceive to be imitative of the Vishnu avatar lists.

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