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On Variation in Mindfulness Training: A Multimodal Study of Brief Open Monitoring Meditation on Error Monitoring

Department of Psychology, Michigan State University, Psychology Building, East Lansing, MI 48823, USA
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Brain Sci. 2019, 9(9), 226; https://doi.org/10.3390/brainsci9090226
Received: 5 August 2019 / Revised: 3 September 2019 / Accepted: 4 September 2019 / Published: 6 September 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Neuroscience of Mindfulness)
A nascent line of research aimed at elucidating the neurocognitive mechanisms of mindfulness has consistently identified a relationship between mindfulness and error monitoring. However, the exact nature of this relationship is unclear, with studies reporting divergent outcomes. The current study sought to clarify the ambiguity by addressing issues related to construct heterogeneity and technical variation in mindfulness training. Specifically, we examined the effects of a brief open monitoring (OM) meditation on neural (error-related negativity (ERN) and error positivity (Pe)) and behavioral indices of error monitoring in one of the largest novice non-meditating samples to date (N = 212). Results revealed that the OM meditation enhanced Pe amplitude relative to active controls but did not modulate the ERN or behavioral performance. Moreover, exploratory analyses yielded no relationships between trait mindfulness and the ERN or Pe across either group. Broadly, our findings suggest that technical variation in scope and object of awareness during mindfulness training may differentially modulate the ERN and Pe. Conceptual and methodological implications pertaining to the operationalization of mindfulness and its training are discussed. View Full-Text
Keywords: mindfulness; error monitoring; ERN; Pe; meditation; open monitoring mindfulness; error monitoring; ERN; Pe; meditation; open monitoring
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Lin, Y.; Eckerle, W.D.; Peng, L.W.; Moser, J.S. On Variation in Mindfulness Training: A Multimodal Study of Brief Open Monitoring Meditation on Error Monitoring. Brain Sci. 2019, 9, 226.

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