About the Vedic Meditation Research Fund
Vedic Meditation is a non-religious, mantra meditation practice with origins in the spiritual traditions of ancient India. It involves sitting comfortably with the eyes closed for about 20 minutes twice a day and silently repeating a mantra (a word or sound) to allow the mind to settle into a state of deep rest.
Research evidence suggests that mantra meditations can reduce stress and improve brain function, cardiovascular health, and overall wellbeing. Research into this meditation technique falls under the broader discipline of contemplative science, which integrates scientific methodologies and various contemplative traditions to investigate the impacts of these practices on human physiology and psychology.
UOW aims to add to this growing body of research by creating a Vedic Meditation research fund. We have the ambitious goal to raise $1 million to support 5 research studies that will significantly add to the field of research and help to leverage evidence-based public policy.
We have partnered with Be Here Nowra - Community Happiness Project, a documentary series being produced in Nowra, New South Wales. Project founder Barron Hanson aims to teach Vedic Meditation to 1% of the population in Nowra. Several parallel research projects that are led by academics at UOW are being developed to objectively measure the effect of this unique social experiment.
Studies currently underway:
- Evaluation of the ‘Be Here Nowra’ meditation program (School of Psychology)
Proposed studies (in order of funding priorities):
- Effect of meditation on public health
- Effect of meditation on musculoskeletal pain
- Cortisol changes in meditators
- Effect of meditation on mental health
- Memory clinic - dementia
How the fund will be used
- $8,000 - Fund a research assistant to conduct a systematic review that summarizes the evidence on the effectiveness of mantra meditation
- $25,000 - Fund a pilot study in one of the research streams
- $35,000 - Fund a PhD student for one year
- $140,000 - Fund a PhD student for 4 years to complete a series of studies
- $250,000 - Randomized Controlled studies for successful pilot studies
The importance of research in Vedic Meditation
Vedic Meditation is a time-honoured practice that has the potential to bring about significant cognitive, physiological, and emotional benefits to individuals. However, its integration into public health programs, education systems, and workplace wellness initiatives requires a rigorous scientific basis.
The comprehensive study of Vedic Meditation falls within the interdisciplinary field of contemplative science, combining neuroscientific, psychological, and medical research. We endeavor to scrutinize the neurophysiological mechanisms, measure the psychological effects, and assess the therapeutic potential of this ancient practice.
Your impact and the role of science-backed research
Your generous donation to Vedic Meditation research can be transformative. Here's how:
- Validating benefits: High-quality research can empirically assess the benefits of Vedic Meditation, ranging from stress reduction and improved cognitive function to enhanced emotional regulation and overall wellbeing.
- Building a scientific foundation: With your help, we can generate robust, science-backed evidence about Vedic Meditation's mechanisms and impacts. This foundation is essential for facilitating its recognition and adoption by authoritative bodies like the World Health Organization, national health agencies, and educational institutions.
- Public policy influence: Rigorous research can aid in influencing public policies and education curriculums, leading to the integration of Vedic Meditation practices for mental health promotion, stress reduction, and cognitive enhancement.
- Fostering global health: Your contribution can expedite the global adoption of Vedic Meditation, potentially transforming lives across the world, reducing healthcare costs, and enhancing societal health and productivity.
- Promoting a paradigm shift: By supporting the scientific study of this ancient wisdom, you're contributing to a paradigm shift in our understanding of health and wellness, underscoring the importance of mind-body practices.
The implications of this research are profound, and the potential upside is enormous. Through your support, we can ensure that Vedic Meditation and its benefits are not just anecdotal or restricted to ancient scriptures, but are backed by solid scientific evidence that can stand up to modern scrutiny and foster widespread acceptance.
Help us to unravel the science behind Vedic Meditation.
Your support will pave the way for a healthier, more balanced world, grounded in evidence-based scientifically validated knowledge. Together, we can make a significant impact on public health, individual well-being, and societal progress.