Rick Hanson PhD
Apr 19, 2013
Your brain evolved in three stages (to simplify a complex process):
Reptile – Brainstem, focused on AVOIDING harm
Mammal – Limbic system, focused on APPROACHING rewards
Primate – Cortex, focused on ATTACHING to “us”
With a fun use (to me, at least) of animal themes, the first JOT in this series – pet the lizard – was about how to soothe the most ancient structures of the brain, the ones that manage the first emotion of all: fear. The next one – …
Dec 24, 2012
Do Buddhists celebrate at Christmas? This one does!
As a Buddhist I’ve spent Christmases in a variety of ways. My first substantially non-traditional Christmas was 20 years ago when I went on a two-week intensive meditation retreat in Carn Dearg lodge in Gairloch, Wester Ross, in Scotland. It was well into the afternoon of Christmas Day before I even realized it was the 25th, and I remember it struck me then that there was nothing intrinsically Christmasy about Christmas. If I hadn’t checked the date I would never have known that it was a special day in the western calendar.
The lesson of this for me was that the festivity of festivals comes …
Jan 23, 2012
The Buddha Walks Into A Bar: A Guide to Life for a New Generation is the literary debut of 28 year-old Shambhala Buddhist teacher, Lodro Rinzler. The book is aimed at “Generation O” and makes no assumptions about any prior knowledge or experience of Buddhism. Having said that, despite being a ‘young Buddhist’ I have almost a decade of experience of Buddhism yet I still found this book enjoyable, useful, and interesting.
I must admit, I did wince slightly at some of the expressions in the book, such as “Sid said…” when referring to the Buddha, but perhaps this is due to not being so ‘down with the kids’ these days. However, …
Jan 22, 2012
Someone on Facebook just introduced me to this very moving clip from Luc Besson’s 2005 film, Angel-A, about an angel, played by Danish actress Rie Rasmussen, who intervenes to rescue, André (played by Jamel Debbouze), a self-loathing scam artist on the verge of killing himself.
This makes me long for the days when I used to live around the corner from the Glasgow Film Theatre, where I enjoyed many fine foreign movies…
Wildmind Meditation News
Nov 07, 2011
Cristina Pinzon: Ruben Lambert was educated in Catholic schools and grew up as a faithful Roman Catholic. As he grew older, the first generation Cuban-American decided to adopt a religion more rooted in meditation and enlightenment.
Now he follows the practices of Zen Buddhism and has assumed the name Venerable Mooh-Sang Sunim.
Like Lambert, many Latinos are shedding their traditional spiritual beliefs for non-traditional, non-Christian religions. Whether it involves praying five times a day or forsaking a suit and tie for long robes, these people are firm believers in the doctrines of their chosen convictions.
While the numbers of Latinos converting to these religions …
Wildmind Meditation News
Oct 26, 2011
My Reincarnation, a film about the burden of being told that you’re a reincarnated lama, opens October 28 in New York and Los Angeles, before moving nationwide.
My Reincarnation is said to be “an epic, intimate father-son drama wrapped in a spiritual documentary — spanning 20 years and three generations.” It follows renowned reincarnate Tibetan lama Chögyal Namkhai Norbu as he struggles to save his spiritual tradition, and his Italian-born son, Yeshi, who strains against the weight of being recognized as the reincarnation of his father’s uncle.
The film of the latest work by Jennifer Fox, producer of An American Love Story, Learning to Swim, and Flying: Confessions of a Free Woman.
For twenty years, Fox followed Norbu and Yeshi with her camera. …
Oct 05, 2011
I’m sad that Steve Jobs has died. No one has had as much effect on the computer industry as he has. His company, Apple, has transformed the way we relate to computers.
I only recently learned that Jobs was a Buddhist. According to his Wikipedia biography, he went to India in the 1970s and came back a Buddhist. In 1991 his wedding ceremony was performed by a Zen priest. He was a very private man, and I don’t think he talked much about his religion.
I thought a fitting tribute would be Jobs own words, from his 2005 commencement address at Stanford University, in which he eloquently discusses how an awareness of …