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Mathematics isn't popular because it originated in India and China; it's popular because it's practically useful in a variety of ways.

Why are Christian symbols popular in anime? It's not because they're inherently compelling in any way, it's because they're from a foreign culture and they have exotic appeal.

Why do people in the US practice meditation? Is it because they rationally considered all available peer-reviewed evidence, or because meditation is associated with a foreign culture and has exotic appeal?




I think that's largely true, but doesn't speak to whether meditation is actually worthwhile. And I'd think it's less true for people here. For myself, I never tried it until I started hearing of studies. After that, I found some nice secular material on it. I would have had a lot of trouble wading through much woo, and luckily that wasn't needed.


Things tend to exist because they're popular (QWERTY) or good (DVORAK). While there is certainly "evidence" in some form for meditation, it seems to exist mostly because it's popular.

If meditation is actually good, and it eventually permeates society, I'll just be a late adopter. No account I've ever read has pitched it as so wonderful a tool that being a late adopter would be terribly painful for me.

But for now, I'm predicting that meditation will be a fad. I don't expect to see ~5-10 meditation centers in my hometown in 15 years.




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