Summary of “There’s a Dark Side to Meditation That No One Talks About”

We’ve all heard about the benefits of meditation ad nauseam.
In addition to calming the mind and body, meditation can also reduce the markers of stress in people with anxiety disorders.
This demanding and sometimes intensely distressing side of meditation is rarely mentioned in scientific literature, says Jared Lindahl, a visiting professor of religious studies at Brown University, who has an interest in neuroscience and Buddhism.
Along with Willoughby Britton, a psychologist and assistant professor of psychiatry at Brown, the two meditators have co-authored a study that documents and creates a taxonomy for the variant phenomenology of meditation.
To conduct their research, the pair interviewed 60 Western Buddhist meditation practitioners who had all experienced challenging issues during their practice.
They included both rookies and meditation teachers, many of whom had accumulated more than 10,000 hours of meditation experience in their lifetime.
Most would not imagine that these side-effects could be hiding behind the lotus-print curtains of your local meditation center.
Who runs into the unexpected hurdles? What are the unique set of factors involved? In which ways do teachers assist students who are struggling? The answers, which still require future research, may one day be relevant to the ways meditation is used as therapy.

The orginal article.