Published: March 31, 2016

asharCU Psychology and Neuroscience graduate student Yoni Ashar (Clinical, mentored by Sona Dimidjian and Tor Wager) was in the news as a result of his recent publication in the journal Emotion. The research was done in collaboration with several people from within and without CU. The studies examined multiple variables and their impact on compassion (sympathetic concern for the plight of others), behaviorally measured by, among other ways, participants' willingness to donate money to fictional people in need about whom they had read short vignettes. Using multiple measures resulted in relatively high accuracy predictions about the amount participants donated. A second study with new participants examined the effects of guided meditation sessions on the same measures. People in the meditation group reported stronger positive feelings toward those in need, and exhibited greater charity compared to two control groups. Read the CU press release about the research, or read the original research abstract (thus far only the abstract is available online).