Conversations on Wisdom: UnCut Interview with Richard J. Davidson (video)

by Jason Boulware and  Jean Matelski Boulware

Click here to watch the interview!

Richard J. Davidson, PhD, is a renowned neuroscientist and one of the world’s leading experts on the impact of contemplative practices, such as meditation, on the brain. He is the founder of the Center for Healthy Minds at the Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

The following is an excerpt from the documentary film The Science of Wisdom. In this interview, Dr. Davidson discusses how he came to studying meditation from a neuroscientific perspective, the role of the prefrontal cortex in meditation, the interaction of meditation and immunocompetance, and the intersection of wisdom and contemplative practice.
Question Index:
00:21 As a neuroscientist, how did you come to studying mindfulness?

1:40 So, when did things begin to change?

3:01 What are some of the specific benefits that you have found with the combination of neuroscience and meditation in terms of well-being?

5:11 In 2003, you reported on the effects of mindfulness-based stress reduction on the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). Would you discuss more about the prefrontal cortex, and how it’s affected by various forms of attention training?

8:08 In a few of your papers that you have co-authored, you’ve made mention of neurocognitive benefits with meditation, how does that work for the average person if they were to start meditating? How might they see these differences in their brain function or in their physiology?

10:31  More recently, you have published papers where you introduced mindfulness into classrooms? What kinds of results have you found from these studies?

14:08 There has been some recent research with meditation and wisdom. Would it be fair to say that you think there could be a link between wisdom and meditation in terms of a healthy society? 

Click here to watch the video.


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