Date of Conferral







Elisabeth E. Weinbaum


Creating is the highest level of intellectual functioning in the cognitive domain. As standardized testing has increased, U.S. K-12 education has shown a decline in creativity for students. Mindfulness meditation (MM) increases creativity and could serve as a solution to this dilemma. This study's purpose was to enrich findings regarding MM's role in enhanced creativity by conducting an exploration regarding lived experiences of creating for individuals who practice MM. A gap in the literature exploring the topics of MM and creativity together using qualitative methods was identified; therefore, research understanding lived experiences of creating within the experiential context of MM was necessary. The main research question, followed by 3 closely related questions, examined the subjective meaning of the experience of creating for MM practitioners. To provide lived experiences regarding creating, 3 participants colored in a mandala and were interviewed. Descriptive transcendental phenomenology was used to explore the act of creating from the perspectives of these 3 individuals. Participants' described experiences supported Sternberg's theory that creativity developed as a habit and suggested that MM actuated Csikszentmihályi's creative flow. Positive societal implications of bringing MM into U.S. K-12 schools as a conduit for creativity cannot be overrated. MM offers an integrated modality to increased creativity, communication, collaboration, and critical thinking, or the 4 Cs. Future studies regarding MM and creativity's relationship are recommended to further enrich current literature and address the existing gap.