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Compassion Meditation: How It Changes The Brain and Improves Stress Resilience

Date: 
Monday, December 4, 2017 - 18:30 to 20:30
Type: 
Official
All day: 
no

December 4, 2017
Compassion Meditation: How It Changes The Brain and Improves Stress Resilience    REGISTER HERE
Gaelle Desbordes, PhD
Location: Harvard University, Smith Campus Center (Bock Room), 75 Mt Auburn St. 6th Floor, Cambridge, MA 02138

What is compassion? Can we become better at it? Emerging scientific research suggests that compassion is a skill which can be trained through contemplative practices such as compassion meditation. This presentation will provide an overview of the current state of compassion research, including recent studies suggesting that compassion training may yield to changes in the brain and to improved stress resilience. Challenges associated with measuring compassion will also be discussed.

At the end of this event, participants will be able to:

  1. explain how compassion is investigated in the laboratory
  2. describe compassion meditation training
  3. discuss recent scientific findings on compassion meditation

Gaëlle Desbordes, Ph.D. is on the research faculty at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH)-Harvard-MIT Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging. There she investigates different types of meditation practices (e.g. mindful attention, compassion) from a neuroscientific perspective. Her main ongoing study is a clinical trial of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) for major depression. As a member of the Mindfulness Research Collaborative, she is also part of a research program to study the impact of mindfulness training on self-regulation and adherence to medical regimen. Her work with David DeSteno and Paul Condon to investigate how meditation training increases compassion was published in the journal Psychological Science and has been featured in the New York Times and on WBUR.

Register here for Compassion Meditation: How It Changes The Brain and Improves Stress Resilience