Mindfulness no better than watching tv

A recent systematic review and meta-analysis of the effects of mindfulness meditation on prosocial behavior found, essentially, that there is no evidence that it works. I find these results entirely unsurprising, and they yet again highlight the need for rigorous research before concluding that a phenomenon is real.


  • As a 'Buddhist sympathiser' I have my doubts about this - as mindfulness training can have real benefits. But as I suspected, the article raises more questions than it actually answers (especially about the legitimacy and validity of the research). For example, it even admits that the study did not have a clear definition of just what constituted 'mindfulness' (if the definition in the article is anything to go by, they missed the mark entirely. But if you can't define the phenomenon, how can you measure against it or make meaningful correlations?).

    For me, mindfulness practice does help (especially when driving, whereby I find I can get distracted by a lot of unnecessary stimuli).

    Essentially, this piece concludes that 'that there is no evidence that it works' AND 'there is no definitive evidence that it does not work'.

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