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Furthermore, linear mixed effects models reveal differential effects of mental trainings on the subcomponents of prosociality: Only training care and compassion effectively boosted altruistically motivated behaviour. Self-reported prosociality increased with all training modules; this increase was, however, unrelated to changes in task-based measures of altruistic behaviour.These findings corroborate our motivation-based framework of prosociality, challenge economic views of fixed preferences by showing that socio-affective training boosts altruism, and inform policy makers and society about how to increase global cooperation.Interestingly, dramatic acts in the name of religion, such as being pierced by hooks and swung from a crane didn't send the strongest messages -- instead, the connection was strongest for the simple act of regular worship."That has often a bigger effect on your reputational standing than big, extreme acts," Power says.All three factors are theoretically rooted Mindfulness- and compassion-based contemplative practices are of particular interest as a tool for mental interventions boosting human prosociality as these have been shown to alter prosocial behaviours).

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Panel (A) Design and timeline of the longitudinal study.Signaling theory's key prediction is that people will pay a price in time, money, or even physical pain to demonstrate something to others -- in this case, people would engage in religious acts to demonstrate their generosity, devotion, and so on to others.There's evidence to suggest that regular churchgoers, for example, really are more generous than others.Contemplative mental interventions typically involve numerous different practices, and prosocial behaviours can be motivated and expressed in various ways, limiting conclusions based on mixed training programs such as MBSR.To systematically address if, how, and to what degree prosocial behaviour is enhanced by mental training, we need to investigate the specific effects of different types of trainings on distinct facets of human prosociality.

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