Schizotypy and mindfulness: Magical thinking without suspiciousness characterizes mindfulness meditators

Antonova, E., Amaratunga, K., Wright, B. ORCID: 0000-0003-1256-5503, Ettinger, U. and Kumari, V., 2016. Schizotypy and mindfulness: Magical thinking without suspiciousness characterizes mindfulness meditators. Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, 5, pp. 1-6. ISSN 2215-0013

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Abstract

Despite growing evidence for demonstrated efficacy of mindfulness in various disorders, there is a continuous concern about the relationship between mindfulness practice and psychosis. As schizotypy is part of the psychosis spectrum, we examined the relationship between long-term mindfulness practice and schizotypy in two independent studies. Study 1 included 24 experienced mindfulness practitioners (19 males) from the Buddhist tradition (meditators) and 24 meditation-naïve individuals (all males). Study 2 consisted of 28 meditators and 28 meditation-naïve individuals (all males). All participants completed the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire (Raine, 1991), a self-report scale containing 9 subscales (ideas of reference, excessive social anxiety, magical thinking, unusual perceptual experiences, odd/eccentric behavior, no close friends, odd speech, constricted affect, suspiciousness). Participants of study 2 also completed the Five-Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire which assesses observing (Observe), describing (Describe), acting with awareness (Awareness), non-judging of (Non-judgment) and non-reactivity to inner experience (Non-reactivity) facets of trait mindfulness. In both studies, meditators scored significantly lower on suspiciousness and higher on magical thinking compared to meditation-naïve individuals and showed a trend towards lower scores on excessive social anxiety. Excessive social anxiety correlated neg- atively with Awareness and Non-judgment; and suspiciousness with Awareness, Non-judgment and Non-reactivity facets across both groups. The two groups did not differ in their total schizotypy score. We conclude that mindfulness practice is not associated with an overall increase in schizotypal traits. Instead, the pattern suggests that mindfulness meditation, particularly with an emphasis on the Awareness, Non-judgment and Non-reactivity aspects, may help to reduce suspiciousness and excessive social anxiety.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Schizophrenia Research: Cognition
Creators: Antonova, E., Amaratunga, K., Wright, B., Ettinger, U. and Kumari, V.
Publisher: Elsevier
Date: November 2016
Volume: 5
ISSN: 2215-0013
Identifiers:
NumberType
10.1016/j.scog.2016.05.001DOI
S2215001316300063Publisher Item Identifier
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Depositing User: Jonathan Gallacher
Date Added: 01 Dec 2016 17:41
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2017 14:09
URI: http://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/29215

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