IONS Meditation Resources
The Impact and Effects of Meditation
IONS has many ways for you to explore the study and practice of meditation. On this page you'll find some key selections from IONS' comprehensive archive of consciousness-related media, including articles, recorded talks, interviews, and guided meditations.
To view a full search on the topic of meditation in our online library, go here.
[online database] With nearly 6000 citations and growing, the IONS Meditation Bibliography is the largest and most comprehensive known catalogue of published scientific studies of meditation in the world. IONS maintains this database and updates it quarterly.
[article] This printed dialogue is excerpted and edited from the Institute of Noetic Sciences’ teleseminar series “Exploring the Noetic Sciences.” IONS Director of Research Cassandra Vieten talks with neuropsychologist and meditation teacher Rick Hanson, author with neurologist Richard Mendius, MD, of Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom. In this interview we learn of a new pilot study suggesting that meditating for just 30 minutes a day for eight weeks effected physical changes in the gray matter of the brain associated with memory, stress, and empathy. The subject of the study was Jon Kabat-Zinn's Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program.
Mindful Motherhood: Practical Tools for Staying Sane During Pregnancy and Your Child's First Year by Cassandra Vieten, PhD, foreword by Sylvia Boorstein
[book] Mindful Motherhood is an educational program developed specifically for pregnant women and new moms. It teaches a set of practices and ways of being based upon the principles of mindfulness. Mindfulness can help you meet the challenge and approach every experience with your new baby with open eyes and an open heart.
The Physical and Psychological Effects of Meditation: A Review of Contemporary Research by Steven Donovan and Michael Murphy, foreword by Eugene Taylor
[book] When it first appeared, The Physical and Psychological Effects of Meditation drew wide attention within the meditation community and eventually sold out. Its authors, Michael Murphy and Steven Donovan, leaders in the American growth center movement and themselves seasoned meditators, presented their bibliography as a project of the Center for Exceptional Functioning, a newly-founded program within Esalen Institute.
Meditation: Relaxation or Awakening by Elliott Dacher, MD
[blog post] In this blog post Dr. Dacher talks about the importance of using meditation to awaken the mind to its fullest potential, not simply as a relaxation technique to calm the mind and alleviate stress and distress.
Mindfulness by Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD
[article] Mindfulness as an “inner technology” can heal the social body, writes meditation teacher and founding director of the Center for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts, Jon Kabat-Zinn.
The Power of the Collective by John Hagelin, PhD
[article] A remarkable series of scientifically credible studies has shown a link between group meditation and lowered incidents of violence and crime. And why not? argues Hagelin: If meditation is good for the individual, it should also be good for the collective.
Mindfulness 101: What They Should Have Taught Us Long Ago with Charles Tart, PhD
[audio] In this talk, recorded at the IONS 2007 Conference "Consciousness in Action," Charles Tart offers tastes - both experiential and intellectual - of basic "Controlled Attention Practices" that focus, stabilize, and clear our minds, leading to insights that work in everyday life.
Healing Power of Meditation with Dr. Susan Taylor
[audio] Imagine combining meditation science with time-tested nutritional, breathing and relaxation techniques. Dr. Susan Taylor, founder of the Center for Meditation Science, did. "The Healing Power of Meditation" will do for your mind what yoga does for your body.
Science of Meditation with Roger Walsh, MD, PhD
[audio] In this recorded teleseminar, Roger Walsh, a professor at UC Irvine, discusses how the meeting of meditative and Western psychological disciplines holds major theoretical and practical implications for each, as well as the promise of mutual enrichment and potential integrations.
Mindful Awareness of Breathing Meditation with Cassandra Vieten, PhD
[audio] This audio journey guides you through mindful awareness of breathing, an ancient and foundational practice for cultivating equanimity. This guided meditation was created by Cassandra Vieten, IONS Director of Research, as part of the Mindful Motherhood Project. It is intended especially for mothers and mothers soon to be, and readers of the book, Mindful Motherhood.
A Guided Meditation of Forgiveness with Azim N. Khamisa
[audio] When Azim's only son was murdered, he found that his practice of meditation had given him the compassion and grace to practice forgiveness. Azim offers this meditation as a way to cultivate forgiveness, as it is through forgiveness that we can create a culture of peace.
[audio] Living Deeply Practice audios are experiential practices guided by master teachers of transformative traditions, from Buddhism to Christianity to Islam. These recordings are a companion to the book Living Deeply, a book about personal transformation based on extensive research conducted over the last decade at the Institute of Noetic Sciences.