When I began this project in October 2014, I was the only subject (S1). Since then I have recruited family members, friends and sangha members of the Tahoma Zen Monastery in Freeland, Washington. Altogether, fourteen subjects have been involved. As of August 2015, I have recordedĀ a total of 111 sessions, in two-thirds of which I was the subject. Subjects reported their own meditation experience by estimating minutes of daily and weekly practice, plus attendance in meditation workshops or retreats. Total lifetime meditation experience of subjects ranged from 20 hours to over 21,000 hours.

Total lifetime meditation experience

Estimates of total hours of sitting meditation experience among experimental subjects (logarithmic scale).

The fourteen subjects (7 male and 7 female) ranged in age from 26 to 92 (Thanks, Mom!). All subjects with over 1000 hours of experience have trained with Shodo Harada Roshi, abbot of Sogenji Monastery in Okayama, Japan and Tahoma Zen Monastery of Freeland, Washington.

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