ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2020, Vol. 28 ›› Issue (6): 978-986.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2020.00978

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The effects of loving-kindness and compassion meditation on altruistic behavior and its cognitive neural mechanisms

JIN Guomin, LI Dan()   

  1. Department of Psychology, Shanghai Normal University, Shanghai 200234, China
  • Received:2019-09-05 Online:2020-06-15 Published:2020-04-22
  • Contact: LI Dan


Loving-kindness and compassion meditation is a type of meditation practice that aims to cultivate the unconditional kindness and compassion for oneself and others. Specifically, interventions related to such meditation practice mainly include Loving-Kindness Meditation (LKM) and Compassion Meditation (CM). A large number of studies have demonstrated that LKM and CM can promote practitioners’ altruistic behaviors. By reviewing its mechanisms, LKM and CM seem to influence practitioners’ altruistic behaviors by enhancing their empathetic responses to others’ distress, promoting emotion regulation, and improving prosocial motivation. Future research would benefit from selecting more ecologically valid measurements of altruistic behaviors, further exploring the dynamic neural processes of how LKM and CM influence on altruistic behaviors, and applying the practice of LKM and CM to clinical populations.

Key words: loving-kindness and compassion meditation, altruistic behavior, empathy, emotion regulation, prosocial motivation

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