Body-Mind Therpay, Mindfulness, Self Wellness

Simple Lessons of ISCS 2014

Simple Lessons of ISCS 2014

This is the last official post from Boston and the International Symposium on Contemplative Studies (ISCS) 2014.  Don’t worry; I will share all the research, ideas, and different contemplative practices with you in articles to come. In overview, the ISCS was simply amazing.  There were well over 1,500 participants, 400 research papers presented, and 38 countries represented.

The common thread that connected all the participants was that they were all interested in mindfulness practices in their fields.  However the cross section of participants were diverse ranging from scientists from physics, psychology, education, and neuroscience, just to name a few.  Also in attendance were educators, civil rights activists, students of many disciplines, and long time meditators.

ISCS 2014

ISCS 2014

A few of the many concepts presented at ISCS 2014 were:

Mindfulness helps children regulate and improve executive function.  Executive function predicts mental stability and long-term accomplishment in adult years better than IQ.

Yoga is about breathing and being in relationship to the position.  Richard Freeman and Mary Taylor, yoga gurus who gave daily classes, NEVER ONCE pushed a person into a position but always coaxed those to breathe into a position and to “appreciate the position you found yourself in.”  My favorite line of Richard Freeman is:  “If you are blessed with great stiffness…..”

Meditation is NOT about the act of Meditating.  Jon Kabat-Zin, a world-renowned meditator, researcher, and author always concluded our daily meditation with the reminder that LIFE is the meditation.  Pay attention to life, circumstances, and responses in life after you stop the active act of meditation.

More and more people in mainstream America are engaging in contemplative practices.  Meditation is no longer restricted to the long skirt-wearing hippies.  Heads of worldwide companies such as Arianna Huffington expounded on the emotional and spiritual effects of mindfulness.

There is still much more research to do.  Scientists presented promising preliminary findings in education, addiction, psychology, somatic (body) – mental awareness, aging, and much more.  Follow-ups and longitudinal studies are forthcoming in the years to come.

Looking Forward to ISCS 2016

Whoever attended this conference was blessed to be in the presence of His Holiness, the 14th Dalai Lama.  He was a joy just to be in the same room with.  john a powell offered great insight on how living from love and compassion can help us to effect real change in our relationships and in the world.    Ariana Huffington shared her personal story of how meditation transformed her life.  Scientists and authors such as Richard Davidson (University of Wisconsin-Madison), Patricia Jennings (University of Virginia), Catherine Kerr (Brown), and Tania Singer (Max Plank Institute) graced the audience with their immense knowledge, wisdom, and humor.

Everyone who attended felt blessed by all they learned and experienced this weekend.  I am grateful that Mind and Life gave The Inner Connection press credentials.  I am humbled that I attended and reported on this phenomenal conference and transformational experience. Can not wait till ISCS 2016!

A book for Mothers OR Fathesr  wanting to work with the most advanced theories for creating the dynamics you desire in your family

A book for Mothers OR Fathers wanting to work with the most advanced theories for creating the dynamics you desire in your family