Sunday, February 4, 2018

Novice Buddhist Monks are unenlightened idiots

A surprising study found that fear of the annihilation of the self was most intense among the monastic Buddhists, and that the monastic Buddhists were less willing than any of the other groups to sacrifice years of their own life for a stranger.

Strangely, the researchers chose to survey something more along the lines of novices rather than experienced practitioners.

Emotional Empathy increased by Psilocybin

According to Effect of Psilocybin on Empathy and Moral Decision-Making, psilocybin significantly increased explicit and implicit emotional empathy.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Are You Sleepwalking Now?

In a dense piece, neuro-philosopher Thomas Metzinger explores fundamental questions of the self, and the need for mindfulness to achieve "mental autonomy".

There can be no politically mature citizens without a sufficient degree of mental autonomy

The Transpersonal Revolution

The Transpersonal (beyond ego) Revolution through meditation and psychedelics, and the need for society to adapt to people having spiritual crises along the way.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Benefits to Psilocybin Plus Meditation

Another piece of research from Johns Hopkins showing that high dose psychedelics with proper set and setting, combined with high support for meditative practice, cause enduring positive changes.

The study showed robust interactive positive effects of psilocybin dose and added support for spiritual practices on a wide range of longitudinal measures at 6 months including interpersonal closeness, gratitude, life meaning/purpose, forgiveness, death transcendence, daily spiritual experiences, religious faith and coping, and rating of participants by community observers. Analyses suggest that the determinants of these effects were the intensity of the psilocybin-occasioned mystical experience and the rates of engagement with meditation and other spiritual practices.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Meditation and PTSD

TM meditation, which is simply meditation using a repeated mantra like "Om", reduced PTSD symptoms significantly.  I'm not excited that the research is, unsurprisingly, from the TM Mahariji foundation, but this is a result that makes sense.  Participants didn't re-experience trauma, but I would expect that at some point this might come up.