Millions of people meditate daily. Many believe it affects how we feel and behave. But can we actually change through meditation? Does it work like a pill to alleviate stress? Can it put us on the path to personal transformation?
Psychologists Dr Miguel Farias and Catherine Wikholm explore the human ambition for personal change and its potential illusions, with a focus on meditation, mindfulness and yoga.
They examine the psychological and biological evidence, from early research on Transcendental Meditation to recent brain-imaging studies on mindfulness. They also include personal accounts from practitioners, as well as recounting their own experiences of testing the effects of meditation and yoga on incarcerated criminals.
This isn’t simply another book about the route to enlightenment and happiness, nor is it a ‘how to’. Farias and Wikholm challenge assumptions about the uses and effects of meditation and yoga.
Controversially, The Buddha Pill argues that personal change effected by these spiritual practices can vary widely from one individual to another, and that peace and compassion may not always be the end result.
Combining insights from decades of scientific research with fascinating accounts from gurus and prisoners, The Buddha Pill weaves together a unique story about the science and the delusions of personal change.