Teaching millennials the power of plugging into mindfulness

March 16, 2015

wildmind meditation newsMeditation MP3 – Mindfulness Meditations for Teens Aran Levasseur, PBS: In our wired world it’s easy to extol the virtues of the web, mobile devices and social media. These time-bending technologies have generated previously unimaginable ways of searching, creating and sharing information instantaneously. Yet as our hours and days are filled with more and more time-saving devices, many of us seem to have less and less time. What is being lost in the process? As Gandhi reminds us, “There is more to life than increasing its speed.”

As a high school teacher I’ve noticed that most of the Millennial generation …

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Technology-assisted meditation

November 7, 2014

www.choosemuse.comHopefully I’ll soon be trying out a demo model of the Muse headband, which according to the makers is like a heart rate monitor for your mind. In other words it gives you real-time feedback by detecting your brain signals during meditation, the same way you might use a gadget to monitor your heart rate during physical exercise.

Apparently this can help us to train the brain to be more focused, attentive, and calm. I’ll let you know how I get on. (In the meantime we’ve joined Muse’s affiliate program so you’ll see ads promoting it in our sidebars.)

At the recent Buddhist Geeks conference, where I gave a presentation, there were several other … Read more »

Mindfulness is all about self-help. It does nothing to change an unjust world

August 7, 2014

wildmind meditation newsSuzanne Moore, The Guardian: Why are we trying to think less when we need to think more? The neutered, apolitical approach of mindfulness ignores the structural difficulties we live with.

Most of what is wrong in the modern world can be cured by not thinking too much. From psoriasis to depression to giving yourself a “competitive advantage” in the workplace, the answer touted everywhere right now is mindfulness. Just let go for few minutes a day, breathe, observe your thoughts as ripples across a pond, feel every sensation around you. Stop your mind whirring and, lo, miraculously, everything will improve “at a cellular …

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A lotus that blooms with your meditating mind?

July 3, 2014

lotus2Rohan Dixit is a former neuroscience researcher who studied meditation and the brain at Harvard and Stanford University. He also spent a year measuring the brainwaves of meditating monks in the Himayalas, which is nice work if you can get it.

Rohan has a fascinating project that he’s Kickstarting at the moment. It’s called the Lotus and it’s essentially a hand-made brass flower that blooms with your mind.

The Lotus responds to your brainwaves through a supported brain-sensing headset, which is hooked up to a smartphone app. When the headset detects that you’re calm and relaxed, the flower blooms and begins cycling through colors.

The Lotus gradually closes and slowly changes colors when it’s time … Read more »

ZenFriend: A new meditation timer for iPhone

May 30, 2014

zenfriend1I’ve recently been trying out a new meditation timer app for iPhone. It’s very nicely designed and has a lot of promise. And it’s free today, and for the next two days.

The app is called ZenFriend, and it has a very clean and, well, friendly design scheme. The other app I use for timing meditations is the well-known Insight Timer, which I enjoy using, although I don’t like the faux-wood design. Skeuomorphism is so iOS6!

As you’ll see from the first screenshot, there’s a nice blurred-out background image, beautiful typography, and nice clean “buttons” for pausing or ending your sit.

website_02The interface for selecting the length of your sit, whether there are stages, … Read more »

Google’s ‘Head of Mindfulness’ speaks out

wildmind meditation newsJo Confino, TopTechNews.com: A growing awareness of the importance of our emotional fitness is mirroring the same journey of acceptance that physical exercise took in the last century, says Chade-Meng Tan, Google’s head of mindfulness training. Tan says that mindfulness opens the doorway to loving kindness, which is at the heart of business success.

Chade-Meng Tan’s job description would never get past most companies’ human resources departments. As the head of mindfulness training at Google, his role is to enlighten minds, open hearts and create world peace.
But he hopes that one day, his role will become commonplace. A growing awareness of the …

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Thich Nhat Hanh: is mindfulness being corrupted by business and finance?

March 31, 2014

wildmind meditation newsJo Confino, The Guardian: The Zen master discusses his advice for Google and other tech giants on being a force for good in the world.

Mindfulness has become an increasingly popular topic among business leaders, with several key executives speaking publicly in recent months about how it helps them improve the bottom line.

Intermix CEO Khajak Keledjian last week shared his secrets to inner peace with The Wall Street Journal. Arianna Huffington, editor in chief of the Huffington Post, discussed mindfulness in Thrive, her new book released this week. Other business leaders who meditate include Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini, Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff …

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Tech companies find their inner Zen

December 18, 2013

Sharon Gaudin, Computerworld: A software engineer walks down a hallway at Intel, not thinking about the emails he needs to send or that he has a meeting later in the day about a new project.

Instead, he’s focusing his thoughts on his breathing and how the light feels as it comes through the windows in the hallway. His cellphone isn’t in his pocket. It’s back on his desk.

When he meets with colleagues to work on a critical software problem, he has pushed away any distractions, his mind is clear and still, and he’s focused solely on the problem in front of him …

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Guided meditation … by the riverside

November 2, 2013

I recorded this guided meditation using Google Glass while sitting by the river that runs by my office. Glass, which is like a mobile phone that you wear on your face like a pait of glasses, shows a first person view, so you’re seeing what I saw during the part of the meditation that my eyes were open. In fact this is a meditation that, unlike most of those I lead, involves starting with the eyes open.

If you have any problem viewing the video, you can watch it on Youtube instead.

My purchase of Google Glass was made possible, in part, by a kind donation from Adrian Lucas, who runs a hydroponic microfarm in … Read more »

Google seeks out wisdom of Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh

September 8, 2013

Thich Nhat HanhJo Confino, The Guardian: Why on earth are many of the world’s most powerful technology companies, including Google, showing a special interest in an 87-year-old Vietnamese Zen Buddhist monk?

The answer is that all of them are interested in understanding how the teachings of Thich Nhat Hanh, or Thay as he is known to his hundreds of thousands of followers around the world, can help their organisations to become more compassionate and effective.

In a sign that the practice of mindfulness is entering the mainstream, Thay has been invited later this month to run a full day’s training session at Google’s main campus …

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