Free the Mind follows neuroscientist Dr. Richard Davidson as he conducts an unusual experiment. Following the practices of Buddhist monks and the advice of his friend the Dalai Lama, Dr. Davidson uses meditation and yoga in an attempt to physically alter the brains of veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). To see how early in life these practices can take effect Dr. Davidson broadens the study to include children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
The film focuses on participants such as Steve, an ex-interrogator, and Rich, who led battalions in Iraq and Afghanistan. Their lives have turned into painful nightmares and they have become restless insomniacs tormented by their own consciences after events witnessed and deeds done during wartime. Then there’s Will, 5 years old, who suffers from ADHD and anxiety. His parents are eager to try other options than those provided by traditional medicine.
Can Doctor Davidson make a difference? Can he free these people from their miserable existences and help them lead ordinary lives? The film follows the three test subjects on a daring journey into the deepest recesses of the human mind. The film documents the promising effects of Dr. Davidson's non-medicinal methods of treating pain and anxiety, leading to relaxation and happiness.