May 22, 2015
Shakti Sutriasa, Huffington Post: We hear a lot about being mindful – not just within spiritual circles – but more and more in the work place.
What exactly is mindfulness?
Simply, mindfulness is awareness of the present or the ability to be present in all aspects of our lives. It’s a honing of the mind to focus on what is happening right now.
Since the 1970s, there’s been a growing recognition and movement towards embracing mindfulness in the United States. This is due in large part to the many Buddhists teachers who have come here as well as the American practitioner …
May 20, 2015
Rhonda Magee, GGSC: When I was promoted to tenured full professor, the dean of my law school kindly had flowers sent to me at my home in Pacific Heights, an overpriced San Francisco neighborhood almost devoid of black residents. I opened the door to find a tall, young, African-American deliveryman who announced, “Delivery for Professor Magee.” I, a petite black woman, dressed for a simple Saturday spent in my own home, reached for the flowers saying, “I am Professor Magee.”
The deliveryman looked down at the order and back up …
May 19, 2015
David Stroud, Las Vegas Review-Journal: Tina Encheva is sitting in a chair in front of five women, all of them lying on their backs on top of spongy yoga mats. The women’s eyes are closed and their hands rest palms down just above their hearts.
The hypnotic sounds of lilting flutes and humming Tibetan singing bowls are playing over a meditation tape, and Encheva’s delicate voice floats in and out like wind chimes tousled by a soft breeze.
Encheva guides them through the relaxation of their …
May 18, 2015
News-Medical: Certain meditation techniques can promote behavior to vary adaptively from moment to moment depending on current goals, rather than remaining rigid and inflexible. This is the outcome of a study by Lorenza Colzato and Iliana Samara from the Leiden Institute of Brain and Cognition at Leiden University, published in Consciousness and Cognition.
Different meditation types, different effects
Colzato and her fellow researchers were the first to investigate if meditation has an immediate effect on behavior, even in people who have never meditated before. “There are two fundamental types of meditation that affect us …
May 15, 2015
Lynne Malcolm, Radio National: Dr Jon Kabat-Zinn became interested in the Buddhist practice of mindfulness more than 35 years ago. With the scientific community skeptical, the at the University of Massachusetts Medical School professor decided to develop a more secular approach in the hope of opening the minds of people in the west.
By 1979 he’d designed a program called Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, which today is one of the world’s most well-respected secular mindfulness programs.
That was only the beginning of scientific interest in mindfulness, though. Psychiatrist Dr Elise Bialylew has practised mindfulness for …
May 14, 2015
Tayana Simons, Huffington Post: The ancient practice of mindfulness meditation has received a lot of hype over the past few years. Tens of thousands of people are signing up for courses all over the country, therapists are using it as a core part of their treatment for depression and anxiety, and millions have downloaded an app called ‘Headspace’ allowing them ‘meditation on the go’. Even Emma Watson calls it ‘genius’.
The funny thing is, its not like it’s a new discovery. Besides the fact that the basis of mindfulness is a form …
May 13, 2015
Michelle Boorstein, Washington Post: Are we about to enter the era of the political Buddhist?
On Thursday about 125 U.S. Buddhist leaders from across the spectrum will gather in Washington for what organizers say may be the biggest conference ever focused on bringing their faith communities into public, civic life. After the conference, the group will meet with officials at the White House, which longtime writers on U.S. Buddhism say is a first.
The daylong conference represents, some experts say, the start of a civic awakening not only among U.S. Buddhists, …
May 11, 2015
Jonathan Owen, The Independent: An ancient Buddhist approach to meditation rebranded as “mindfulness” should be made available to the millions of Britons who are suffering from stress, depression and anxiety, according to the Mental Health Foundation (MHF).
The call comes as new figures being released by the charity will show that more than one in four (29 per cent) of Britons regularly suffers from stress.
Nearly one in four (24 per cent) of people admit to being anxious on a regular basis, and more than one in seven (17 per cent) are often or always …
May 08, 2015
Patrick Cook-Deegan, Mindful.org: When I walked in to teach my first mindfulness class at a charter high school in Oakland, no one seemed interested. One student was sleeping in his chair; a few kids were messing around in the classroom.
Everyone looked at me like I was in the wrong place. I was nervous and not really sure what I would do. So I just started talking about stress. I asked students if they ever felt stressed, what they do when they are stressed, and asked each of them to share an experience …
May 07, 2015
Viatcheslav Wlassoff, PhD, BrainBlogger: Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you don’t need to be told about the relaxing effects of meditation. The practitioners vouch for it; and those who don’t, do not dispute it either. Those in the Far East have known for centuries that meditating brings mental peace and spiritual bliss. Now scientists claim that meditation can even alter the brain’s chemistry and functionality.
Over the years, neuroscientists have carried out brain imaging tests on long-term practitioners of meditation, including several Tibetan …