Outstanding Challenges in Scientific Research on Mindfulness and Meditation

Perspect Psychol Sci. 2018 Jan;13(1):62-65. doi: 10.1177/1745691617718358. Epub 2017 Oct 10.


Van Dam et al. raise a number of critical issues in contemporary research on mindfulness and meditation and offer a prescriptive agenda for future work in this area. While we agree with all of the key points made in their article, there are a number of important issues omitted that are central to a comprehensive agenda for future research in this area. This commentary highlights five key points: (a) Many of the key methodological issues the article raises are not specific to research on mindfulness; (b) contemplative practices are varied, and the landscape of modern scientific research has evolved to focus almost exclusively on one or two types of practice to the exclusion of other forms of practice that are potentially highly impactful;

Keywords: attention; consciousness; meditation; mindfulness.

Publication types

  • Comment

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Meditation*
  • Mindfulness*
  • Research