Which takes more self-control? Lying well or telling the truth? Your answer might say a lot about how trustworthy you are.
According to a study by Harvard psychologists, telling the truth is the more challenging of the two—but only for those who are also willing to cheat.
Researchers invited participants to play a game in which they could, if they wanted to, lie for profit. Every round, the participants had to report whether they had correctly guessed the answer—but only after they saw what the answer was. If they guessed correctly, they earned money.
Imagine that you and a stranger are participating in a psychology study. The experimenter gives the stranger $20. "Divide this money between you and your partner," the experimenter tells the stranger. "You can keep any amount for yourself, and give any amount to your partner. But your partner gets to decide whether or not to accept the deal. If your partner refuses the offer, nobody gets any money, and the game is over."Read more »
Do you have a moral set-point? New research sheds light on why we’re instinctively drawn to both redemption and temptation.Read more »
Barely a week goes by without some new clinical trial showing how programs which teach mindfulness can help people minimize suffering and enhance their well-being. Whether it be through reducing stress, managing illness, boosting the immune system or moving away from addictive habits, science is confirming what meditators have reported for thousands of years—that mindfulness is beneficial in a wide range of ways. At the same time, it's important not to get carried away by all the data, sucked into viewing meditation as a quick-fix solution.Read more »
A study in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology provides more evidence that violent video games desensitize players to violence, and makes them more violent in real life. This is not the first study to report such an effect; the evidence has been steadily accumulating over the last decade. But this study is worth looking at because it accidentally reveals both the immediate and long-term consequences of play.Read more »
Now on newsstands: The second issue of Mindful magazine. Check out the online extras on Mindful.org.
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