Psychophysiological correlates of meditation

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1975 Oct;32(10):1326-33. doi: 10.1001/archpsyc.1975.01760280124011.


The scientific research that has investigated the physiological changes associated with meditation as it is practiced by adherents of Indian Yoga, Transcendental Meditation, and Zen Buddhism has not yielded a thoroughly consistent, easily replicable pattern of responses. The majority of studies show meditation to be a wakeful state accompanied by a lowering of cortical and autonomic arousal. The investigations of Zen and Transcendental Meditation have thus far produced the most consistent findings. Additional research into the mechanisms underlying the phenomena of meditation will require a shifting from old to new methodological perspectives that allow for adequate experimental control and the testing of theoretically relevant hypotheses.

MeSH terms

  • Buddhism
  • Electroencephalography
  • Galvanic Skin Response
  • Heart Rate
  • Humans
  • Philosophy*
  • Psychophysiology
  • Respiration
  • Thinking*
  • Yoga