Sham meditation involves designing control strategies that overtly resemble the intervention, but which do not actually trigger the effects purported to be specifically associated with meditation.

Sham techniques are used in research when the researcher wishes to examine the specific effects a meditation technique may elicit, while controlling for the non-specific effects.

Sham meditation procedures necessarily involve deception of participants and the ethicality of this in clinical trials is open to dispute. Further, this kind of strategy can be logistically challenging and there is always a risk that the deception might be uncovered, thereby immediately invalidating the entire study.

Ramesh Manocha.