Video Resources for When Life Hits the Fan
The videos on this page are just a few available, a great start to understanding the value and promise of compassion.
Joan Halifax: Compassion and the true meaning of empathyhttp://www.ted.com Buddhist roshi Joan Halifax works with people at the last stage of life (in hospice and on death row). She shares what she's learned about compassion in the face of death and dying, and a deep insight into the nature of empathy.
TEDTalks is a daily video podcast of the best talks and performances from the TED Conference, where the world's leading thinkers and doers give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes. Featured speakers have included Al Gore on climate change, Philippe Starck on design, Jill Bolte Taylor on observing her own stroke, Nicholas Negroponte on One Laptop per Child, Jane Goodall on chimpanzees, Bill Gates on malaria and mosquitoes, Pattie Maes on the "Sixth Sense" wearable tech, and "Lost" producer JJ Abrams on the allure of mystery. TED stands for Technology, Entertainment, Design, and TEDTalks cover these topics as well as science, business, development and the arts. Closed captions and translated subtitles in a variety of languages are now available on TED.com, at http://www.ted.com/translate.
Where Does Compassion Really Come From?Can compassion be learned? The answer is yes! Sometimes, all it takes is truly paying attention to the people around us. Visit http://www.happify.com for guided meditations and fun activities to help you build compassion for yourself and others.
Narrated by Sharon Salzberg, Animation by Katy Davis (Gobblynne)
Build compassion through Happify's guided meditations and science-based activities http://www.happify.com
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Self-Compassion with Dr Kristin NeffDr Kristin Neff shows how we can be happier - and better placed to help others - by learning to be kind and compassionate to ourselves. This talk was filmed at an Action for Happiness event in London on 26 July 2016. www.actionforhappiness.org
The Neuroscience of Compassion | Tania Singerhttp://www.weforum.org/
Can training our brains help make the world a better place? Tania Singer from the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences thinks it can. She’s a social neuroscientist and psychologist who says the brain’s plasticity means it can be trained to make us less selfish and more compassionate. In this video for the World Economic Forum, Singer shows how our decision making is driven by a set of psychological motivations - from power to fear - that can be altered to help us make better decisions for society and for our health. Her research has also influenced the development of a new model of “caring economics” that hopes to work towards sustainability and global cooperation.
Watch Tania Singer’s presentation in the video above, or read key quotes below.
On the plasticity of the brain
“The concept of plasticity is really the concept of changeability and trainability, not only of our brain but also of our immune system and stress system. So, I’m not just talking about the brain but the whole body. I’m presenting very fresh data about a one year longitudinal study."
“You’ve probably have heard the concept of mindfulness, about training the attention of your mind, stabilising your mind, becoming present in the moment. This is what we spend the first three months training in the module we call presence. So it’s really just getting your mind stable and developing introspective body awareness. Then there’s a module called Affect, and this is about emotions and it’s about training compassion, loving kindness, empathy and how to regulate emotion in the context of anger or stress. This is juxtaposed with perspective - a cognitive model that allows you to get a perspective on yourself and on others.”
"People have to do these core exercises for 20 to 30 minutes each day, and integrate it into their daily routine, like brushing your teeth. We give them a cell phone and we can monitor their progress. We have exercises you do on your own and dyadic exercises where you have to call up a partner."
“Compassion is really important. Psychopaths are very good at manipulating and understanding what the other person needs, but they have no compassion and empathy, so they don’t care. Participants go into the scanner five times in the year and they see screens. One screen shows videos of people explaining real suffering stories of their lives. And you measure the brain, the empathic response to these stories and also what they say they feel. The stories need a lot of belief and understanding, so you can compute a social intelligence score based on how well someone can do cognitive perspective taking.”
“What we have shown in our study, that just being tested in these exercise doesn’t do anything, doesn’t improve your theory of mind. Doing three months of mindfulness training does nice other things, but doesn’t do anything with theory of mind. It’s really the perspective taking module which brings a huge increase in theory of mind. Just breathing doesn’t make you more compassionate, but compassion training makes you more compassionate.”
On the brain as a muscle
“We are brain scientists, so we wanted to know if you can change the hardware of your brain. We always thought our brains are just declining after the age of 25. So this is showing whether you can increase in cortical thickness, the grey matter volume of your brain through training. We have data that shows that we can increase these abilities through training. You can train different networks in the brain, just as you train different muscles in the gym. This is what we do with the mind, so different mental practices cultivate different aspects.”
“I’m interested in how we can activate care and affiliation as this leads to prosocial behaviour and global cooperation. There are ways to shift our motivation system, like institutional design and changing laws, and there’s also internal mental training and education.”
Tara Brach Leads a Guided Meditation: The RAIN of Self CompassionTara Brach Leads a Guided Meditation: The RAIN of Self Compassion
This meditation is included at the end of the RAIN of Self-Compassion talk. This talk explores three key features of the trance of unworthiness and introduces this guided meditation based on the acronym RAIN that awakens self-compassion and de-conditions the suffering of being at war with ourselves.
To hear and download this meditation, go to: https://www.tarabrach.com/meditation-the-rain-of-self-compassion/
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Conversations on Compassion with Thich Nhat HanhThe Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education (CCARE) is honored to host a discussion with Thich Nhat Hanh about his life experiences and the role compassion has played.
Thich Nhat Hanh is an internationally renowned Zen master, prolific author, and teacher on the subjects of peace, mindfulness, and meditation. He became a monk at the age of sixteen and went on to help found the "engaged Buddhism" movement. His life's work has been dedicated to "inner transformation for the benefit of individuals and society" and he was nominated by Nobel Laureate Martin Luther King, Jr. for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1967.
Are you a Stanford student, alum, faculty or staff? Sign the Stanford Charter for Compassion now to get Stanford officially recognized as a compassionate university: http://compassionatestanford.weebly.com/about-the-project.html!
For more information about CCARE, visit: http://ccare.stanford.edu/
The Dalai Lama - Compassion is not a Sign of WeaknessAt the beginning a wonderful speech of a very young participant that impresses the Dalai Lama. Then the long inspiring answer... The Dalai Lama interacts with middle and senior high school students at the Kentucky Center for the Arts in Louisville, Kentucky on May 21, 2013. (www.dalailama.com)
The entire video "Youth Engaging Compassion" (79 Minutes) here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pJXPa1gCRWQ
Another excerpt "The Dalai Lama: The Great Importance Of Science" here: http://youtu.be/isvuWPtIU-I
The Space Between Self-Esteem and Self Compassion: Kristin Neff at TEDxCentennialParkWomenIn the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)
Paul Gilbert: How Mindfulness Fosters CompassionAuthor and therapist Paul Gilbert explores how awareness of how our own minds work can help break negative thought patterns and help us to become more compassionate.
OSHO: Compassion - The Ultimate Flowering of LoveOsho examines the nature of compassion from a radically different perspective. He points out that "passion" lies at the root of the word, and then proceeds to challenge assumptions about what compassion really is. He shows how the path to authentic compassion arises from within, beginning with a deep acceptance and love of oneself. Only then, says Osho, does compassion flower into a healing force, rooted in the unconditional acceptance of the other as he or she is.
Excerpt from an original, 104-minute talk by Osho now available on DVD with the book COMPASSION — St. Martin's Griffin (February 2007)
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This video is available for translation as part of the 'OSHO TALKS Video Translation Project.
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Self CompassionIt’s all too easy to be extremely tough on ourselves; we need – at points – to get better at self-compassion. Here is an exercise in how to lessen the voices of self-flagellation. If you like our films, take a look at our shop (we ship worldwide): https://goo.gl/dJJMFS
“When we fail and mess up in our lives (perhaps a project at work goes wrong or a relationship ends), our moods are at risk of heading towards two extremes: self-pity on the one hand, where it is exclusively everyone else’s fault and we bathe in a sense of our innocence and purity. And on the other, self-flagellation, where we blame only ourselves, tear ourselves apart and constantly replay evidence of our waywardness and sheer stupidity...”
You can read more on this and many other topics on our blog TheBookofLife.org: https://goo.gl/pJrNNO
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Directed by Joe Bichard
Music and Sound by Skillbard
Additional Voice Talent by Sophie Koko Gate
Additional Animation by Joe Sparrow
Desk Space Generosity by Moth Collective, Studio AKA and Joe Sparkes #TheSchoolOfLife