Military Experiments with Meditation to Help Soldiers Cope with Stress

Military Experiments with Meditation to Help Soldiers Cope with Stress


“Resiliency”—what used to be called “psychological hardiness” or “mental toughness”—is a person’s ability to cope with stress and anxiety and bounce back when confronted with hardship. Can meditation help a soldier become more resilient?

A recent article reports on how the military is using new technologies (like real-time brain scans and neurofeedback) as well as centuries-old techniques (like yoga and meditation) to “train” soldiers’ minds to perform better and avoid psychological injury during combat.

Why is this important?

More troops are serving multiple deployments, and despite increased awareness and new treatment options and improvements, the rate of injury (physical and mental such as PTSD), suicides and relationship stress/divorce continue to climb. So it makes sense to go to the source, so to speak.

According to this article, the Pentagon and the Department of Veterans Affairs have not only studied the benefits of meditation for quieting minds jostled by disturbing wartime experiences. They are using meditation to prepare solders’ minds for the battlefield, giving them mental tools to stay focused in combat, cut through the fog of war, and perhaps limit psychic damage.

The article follows a platoon in the use of this new training method. Read more here.

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