Heart-centered, Gratitude-meditation, Adolescent School and Life Satisfaction: A Quasi-experimental Intervention

Heart-centered, Gratitude-meditation, Adolescent School and Life Satisfaction: A Quasi-experimental Intervention

Author: 
Lunthita M. Duthely
Program of study: 
Ed.D.
Abstract: 
The purpose of this pretest-posttest, quasi-experimental study was to determine the extent to which a meditation intervention (independent variable) that included visualizations on the quality of gratitude affected school satisfaction, life satisfaction, and measured gratitude (dependent variables), among a culturally diverse cohort of adolescents. Instrumentation consisted of a three publicly-available, validated positive psychology tools—the School Satisfaction Subscale (Huebner, 1994), the Student Life Satisfaction Scale (SLSS; Huebner, 1991), and the Gratitude Questionnaire-Six-Item Form (GQ-6; McCullough, Emmons, & Tsang, 2002). The intervention was instructed by the researcher, using the heart-centered meditation techniques of Chinmoy (1989) and gratitude visualizations outlined in Chinmoy (2010). Participants were randomly assigned either to the delayed intervention, no-treatment control group, or to the experimental group. Three ANCOVA models were constructed to establish causality between the intervention and participants’ posttest scores of school satisfaction, life satisfaction, and gratitude. Pretest scores were entered as covariates into the ANCOVA models. The cohort consisted of middle school students living in the tri-county region of Metropolitan Miami. The intervention significantly affected posttest school satisfaction, life satisfaction, and gratitude of the experimental group, when compared to the control group.
Dedication: 
This dissertation is lovingly dedicated to my parents, Marie B. and Gerard Duthely, my aunt, Mireille “Mimi” Moise, and Sri Chinmoy Kumar Ghose. My gratitude to these very dear people who have guided me from infancy, and continue to guide me on this earthly journey, is immeasurable. My mother’s unwavering support, love, and faith in me is incomparable. My aunt Mimi was my second mother. My father believed that there was not anything that I could not do. The guidance of my aunt, my father, and Sri Chinmoy, all of whom reside now in heaven, is ever so strong. O Mother-Earth of compassion-ocean, Before I leave You, I shall offer my gratitude-song. —Sri Chinmoy 1 This dissertation is dedicated also to all the children in this world who, like me, search for happiness, and dream to live a peaceful life of satisfaction. There shall come a time When all children of the world Will enjoy one thing: Peace-dream. —Sri Chinmoy 2
Acknowledgements: 
I would like to acknowledge my committee members—my dissertation chair, Dr. John T. Avella, and my dissertation committee members, Dr. Linnaya Graf and Dr. Leah B. Hammond, for their faith in me, as I worked through this process. I would also like to acknowledge the many colleagues and friends who helped me along the way. First, I would like to acknowledge Drs. Kris Arheart, Tamara Beauboeuf-LaFontant, John Coleman, Sara Messiah, Mahatapa Palit, Durjaya Thomas Pliske, JoNell Potter, Olga Villar-Loubet, and Andrew Wawyrziniak for their encouragement, research, and statistical expertise. Second, I would like to acknowledge my original “team”—Carolyn Nellis, Enrollment Advisor, and Joshua Godoy, Academic Advisor, whose continuous support guided me through the many steps and processes of my doctoral program. I offer my gratitude to my “sisters”—Akuli, Drishti, Nandita, Prakhara, Regine, Shatapatri, Sukantika, Tilvila, and Udasina—my educator-friends—Bhikshuni, Hilda, Mitali, and Shephali—and my aunties—Taunte Carm, Jeanine, Marie-Denise, and Ninninne, for their encouragement and inspirations—big and small—that shaped this study. To my Annam-Brahma sisters—you kept me inwardly and outwardly nourished! Most importantly, I would like to thank Dr. Agraha Levine, AUM Publications, and Miss Ranjana Kumar Ghose, Jharna-Kala Card Foundation, for maintaining the legacy of the writings, music, and artistic creations of Master Sri Chinmoy. Only a gratitude-heart Knows how to value Each and every human being. —Sri Chinmoy 3