Rahmani et al 2023 - BPMS.pdf (1.4 MB)
Believing in the Powers of Mindfulness: A Thematic Narrative Approach and the Development of a New Scale
journal contributionposted on 2023-09-27, 02:02 authored by Masoumeh RahmaniMasoumeh Rahmani, Valerie van Mulukom, Miguel Farias
Objectives: The beliefs and expectations people bring into mindfulness practice can affect the measurement outcomes of interventions. The aim of this mixed-method study was to examine the key beliefs in the powers of mindfulness—understood as non-judgmental awareness of the present moment—to transform the individual and the society, and to develop and validate the Belief in the Powers of Mindfulness Scale (BPMS). Method: In-depth, semi-structured interviews were conducted with mindfulness meditators (n = 32), including follow-up interviews (n = 22). Qualitative data were analysed through a thematic narrative approach. Participants (n = 458) completed a questionnaire that included the new scale. Results: Participants’ key beliefs were thematically analysed in three transformation themes: interpersonal relationships and compassion, peace and violence, and the inner world—themes were encapsulated in the BPMS. Ideas presented in each theme were undergirded by a host of ideologies, epistemic claims, and metaphysical assumptions about the nature of mind, self, and reality—which are predicated by broader cultural trends such as expressive individualism, perennial philosophy, and New Age sentiments and ideals. The BPMS showed strong internal consistency and convergent validity, and individuals who were older and more spiritual practised mindfulness more often and for longer, and self-reported greater mindfulness skills, and scored higher on the BPMS. Conclusions: Findings illustrate the persisting importance of attending to people’s beliefs and expectations in mindfulness interventions and further the call for a contextual approach that accounts for cultural factors. The newly developed BPMS may assist with the measuring of peoples’ beliefs and expectations.
Mindfulness meditation: A secular religion for unbelievers? | Funder: University of Kent
Preferred citationRahmani, M., van Mulukom, V. & Farias, M. (2023). Believing in the Powers of Mindfulness: A Thematic Narrative Approach and the Development of a New Scale. Mindfulness, 14(7), 1689-1704. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12671-023-02164-x
Online publication date2023-06-21
160104 Social and Cultural Anthropology170111 Psychology of Religion2204 Religion and Religious StudiesMindfulnessMixed methodsNarrative analysisBeliefsScale development5203 Clinical and Health Psychology52 PsychologyMind and BodyComplementary and Integrative HealthClinical Research5201 Applied and developmental psychology5205 Social and personality psychology