News FocusNeuroscience

Concentrating on Kindness

Science  20 Sep 2013:
Vol. 341, Issue 6152, pp. 1336-1339
DOI: 10.1126/science.341.6152.1336

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Neuroscientist Tania Singer, a director at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig, has embarked on an ambitious study involving 160 participants to find out whether meditation can make people more compassionate. Meditation research does not have a very rigorous reputation, and some scientists are skeptical about the work, but Singer—who has long practiced meditation herself—hopes her study will be methodologically rigorous enough to withstand criticism. By increasing compassion, she hopes her research will contribute to a better world.