The last decade has witnessed an enormous increase in research examining the effects of mindfulness meditation. One of the basic assumptions guiding this research is that meditation ultimately makes people happier. In this article in two studies we tested whether meditators actually look happier. To address this question outside ratersjudged the happiness of meditators and non-meditators based on a 15-s video clip of their behaviour. Study 1 demonstrated that novice meditators looked happier after an intensive 9-day meditation retreat (as compared to before the retreat) while Study 2 demonstrated that experienced mindfulness meditators looked happier as compared to controls. The interpersonal implications of these findings are discussed.
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