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Series: Destructive Emotions I

24.08.2010

These wise people, meditative, persevering, always possessed of strong powers, attain to Nirvana, the highest happiness.1

As an inaugural post, I’ll begin a series on the book Destructive Emotions: How Can We Overcome Them? narrated by Daniel Goleman.  This book is a transcription of the events from the 9th Mind and Life Conference (this year saw the 20th meeting), whose goal it was to determine the extent to which the brain and mind can be trained to bring an end to or transform destructive emotions.  I won’t bore you with a detailed play-by-play, but I’ll try to touch on the major themes brought up in this dialogue between Western psychological thought and Eastern, specifically Buddhist, psychological theory.

Now, this is not a new book, so I’m not claiming to be touching on any new ground here, but it is new for me, and is something I want to add to that squishy library called my “brain.”  I’m writing here to solidify my understanding of what I’ve learned and to keep track of it for my metaphorical book depository… and perhaps a graduate school admissions board?  We’ll see.

Next time I’ll be talking about some basic Buddhist doctrine and the nature of mind, but for now let’s begin with the first chapter.  It is pretty detail oriented, so the descriptions might be tedious.  But it’s good stuff, so stick with it.

Read more…

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