The Art and Science of Compassion | Thupten Jinpa


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It can be incredibly frustrating when life-changing, world-changing concepts such as compassion and kindness are often presented as cliches, because scientific research strongly suggests that learning how to practice compassion -- through meditation and other modalities -- can genuinely change your life. And enough of us did it, it could maybe change the world.

One of the people who is the best at getting this message out, in new and creative ways, is Thupten Jinpa. He is a former Tibetan monk who went on to go to Cambridge University, where he got a B.A. in philosophy and a Ph.D. in religious studies. Since 1985, he has been the principal English translator for His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

In this conversation, we talk about developing a compassionate meditation practice, building kindness and empathy, the connection between intention setting and compassion, and identifying and regulating negative emotional reactions.

A few technical notes: This episode is a rerun. We do reruns when we have episodes that are amazing that we think our newer listeners might enjoy. We also do them to give our staff a break once in a while. We actually recorded this conversation live in front of an audience at the Asia Society in New York City a few years ago. It was the day after the school shooting in Parkland, so you will hear a few references to that.

Check out Joseph Goldstein's course on compassion in the Ten Percent Happier app:

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