By B. Alan Wallace
By means of constructing a discussion during which the meditative practices of Buddhism and Christianity communicate to the theories of contemporary philosophy and technology, B. Alan Wallace finds the theoretical similarities underlying those disparate disciplines and their unified method of making feel of the target world.
Wallace starts by means of exploring the connection among Christian and Buddhist meditative practices. He outlines a chain of meditations the reader can adopt, displaying that, although Buddhism and Christianity fluctuate of their trust platforms, their tools of cognitive inquiry offer comparable perception into the character and origins of consciousness.
From this convergence Wallace then connects the ways of up to date cognitive technology, quantum mechanics, and the philosophy of the brain. He hyperlinks Buddhist and Christian perspectives to the provocative philosophical theories of Hilary Putnam, Charles Taylor, and Bas van Fraassen, and he seamlessly comprises the paintings of such physicists as Anton Zeilinger, John Wheeler, and Stephen Hawking. Combining a concrete research of conceptions of recognition with a advisor to cultivating mindfulness and profound contemplative perform, Wallace takes the clinical and highbrow mapping of the brain in fascinating new instructions.
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Extra resources for Mind in the Balance: Meditation in Science, Buddhism, and Christianity (Columbia Series in Science and Religion)
On the basis of patients’ verbal reports of their subjective experiences while awake and while dreaming, Freud sought to fathom the hidden mechanisms of the mind. By the early twentieth century, neither academic psychologists nor psychoanalysts had succeeded in devising rigorous means of observing mental processes firsthand. So after only thirty years, introspection was largely abandoned as a means for scientifically investigating the mind. 11 One was that researchers working in different laboratories had a difficult time replicating each other’s findings, for their subjects who practiced introspection tended to “observe” what the researchers expected them to experience.
Soften the lighting and find a comfortable place to sit for twentyfive minutes—on a chair or, if you’re comfortable, sitting crosslegged on a cushion. You can also lie on your back on your bed, for instance, with your head resting on a pillow, your legs straight, your arms out to the sides, palms up, and your eyes either shut or partly open. Whatever your position, see that your back is straight and that you feel physically at ease. Now focus your attention on your body, experiencing the sensations from the soles of your feet up to the top of your head, both within your body and on its surfaces.
Reason was important for interpreting empirical findings, and the  PART 1: MEDITATION: WHERE IT STARTED AND HOW IT GOT HERE authority of tradition was accepted only as long as it was not contradicted by rigorous observation or sound reasoning. What an enormous shift! Galileo abandoned the Aristotelian emphasis on understanding why things are the way they are and focused instead on painstaking observations and measurements of how celestial and terrestrial objects move. The scholastic philosophers of his time uncritically accepted Aristotle’s views that celestial bodies were unchanging and moved in perfect circles, with the Earth at their center.
Mind in the Balance: Meditation in Science, Buddhism, and Christianity (Columbia Series in Science and Religion) by B. Alan Wallace