The Use of Virtual Reality in Mindfulness Meditation

Gabriela Górska, Daniel Cnotkowski, Paweł Kobyliński, Cezary Biele

2020 W: ACHI 2020 : The Thirteenth International Conference on Advances in Computer-Human Interactions / Jaime Lloret Mauri, Diana Saplacan, Klaudia Çarçani, Prima Oky Dicky Ardiansyah, Simona Vasilache; Valencia : IARIA, s. 196-303

International Conference on Advances in Computer-Human Interactions ACHI 2020, Valencia, 2020-11-21 - 2020-11-25

Virtual Reality (VR) is widely used in different areas of research in psychology. Its use seems irreplaceable since it allows the simulation of many previously unreachable interactions in laboratory settings. In our research, we designed an environment to facilitate meditational training. We tried to prove that VR can support mindfulness through immersion. We also hypothesized that mindfulness meditation would show significantly higher results than relaxation on mindfulness-related constructs such as decentration and curiosity. The same effect would be also visible on positive mood or social skills questionnaires. A total of 80 participants took part in the research. However, the results did not support our hypotheses. Whether meditation or relaxation took place, with or without VR, none of these conditions seemed to differ significantly from one another. The psychometric issues related to the research were discussed as well as the qualities of VR that could have inhibited the effects of immersion, such as real world similarity, level of abstractness of the virtual environment, landscape and virtual enhancement of transcendence.