Cerveau et m ditation Dialogue entre le bouddhisme et les neurosciences
Huit années d'échanges entre deux esprits remarquables. Un dialogue approfondi entre les sciences contemplatives et les sciences modernes pour percer les mystères de l'esprit humain. Moine bouddhiste depuis quarante ans, Matthieu Ricard est un méditant chevronné, régulièrement sollicité par les universités du monde entier pour se prêter à des expériences sur le cerveau. Neurobiologiste, directeur émérite du Max Planck Institute for Brain Research, Wolf Singer est l'un des plus grands spécialistes mondiaux du cerveau. Pendant huit ans, ils ont partagé leurs savoirs et se sont interrogés ensemble sur le fonctionnement de l'esprit. La méditation modifie-t-elle les circuits neuronaux ? Comment les émotions se forment-elles ? Quels sont les différents états modifiés de la conscience ? Qu'est-ce que le " moi " ? Le libre arbitre existe-t-il ? Que peut-on dire de la nature de la conscience ?... Sur chaque thème, Matthieu Ricard et Wolf Singer confrontent deux traditions de pensée. L'une, la philosophie bouddhiste, est une connaissance à la première personne, résultat des pratiques millénaires des moines tibétains. L'autre, les neurosciences, est une connaissance à la troisième personne, issue d'expérimentations en laboratoire. Les deux approches sont radicalement différentes, mais elles aboutissent souvent aux mêmes conclusions. Pour développer une véritable " science de l'esprit ", leur rapprochement, esquissé depuis quelques années, est indispensable. C'est ce que propose cet ouvrage : un dialogue approfondi entre les sciences contemplatives et les sciences modernes pour percer les mystères de l'esprit humain. Préface de Christophe André
Beyond the Self
Buddhism shares with science the task of examining the mind empirically; it has pursued, for two millennia, direct investigation of the mind through penetrating introspection. Neuroscience, on the other hand, relies on third-person knowledge in the form of scientific observation. In this book, Matthieu Ricard, a Buddhist monk trained as a molecular biologist, and Wolf Singer, a distinguished neuroscientist -- close friends, continuing an ongoing dialogue -- offer their perspectives on the mind, the self, consciousness, the unconscious, free will, epistemology, meditation, and neuroplasticity. Ricard and Singer's wide-ranging conversation stages an enlightening and engaging encounter between Buddhism's wealth of experiential findings and neuroscience's abundance of experimental results. They discuss, among many other things, the difference between rumination and meditation (rumination is the scourge of meditation, but psychotherapy depends on it); the distinction between pure awareness and its contents; the Buddhist idea (or lack of one) of the unconscious and neuroscience's precise criteria for conscious and unconscious processes; and the commonalities between cognitive behavioral therapy and meditation. Their views diverge (Ricard asserts that the third-person approach will never encounter consciousness as a primary experience) and converge (Singer points out that the neuroscientific understanding of perception as reconstruction is very like the Buddhist all-discriminating wisdom) but both keep their vision trained on understanding fundamental aspects of human life.
Although we are materially better off than ever before, surveys show that we are depressed and listless. In his revolutionary book, Buddhist monk Matthieu Ricard shows that happiness is not just an emotion, but a skill that can be developed. Free of jargon, Happiness contains simple exercises that will train the mind to recognize and pursue happiness by concentrating on the fundamental things in life, and in doing so change the way we view the world.
The Quantum and the Lotus
Matthieu Ricard trained as a molecular biologist, working in the lab of a Nobel prize—winning scientist, but when he read some Buddhist philosophy, he became drawn to Buddhism. Eventually he left his life in science to study with Tibetan teachers, and he is now a Buddhist monk and translator for the Dalai Lama, living in the Shechen monastery near Kathmandu in Nepal. Trinh Thuan was born into a Buddhist family in Vietnam but became intrigued by the explosion of discoveries in astronomy during the 1960s. He made his way to the prestigious California Institute of Technology to study with some of the biggest names in the field and is now an acclaimed astrophysicist and specialist on how the galaxies formed. When Matthieu Ricard and Trinh Thuan met at an academic conference in the summer of 1997, they began discussing the many remarkable connections between the teachings of Buddhism and the findings of recent science. That conversation grew into an astonishing correspondence exploring a series of fascinating questions. Did the universe have a beginning? Or is our universe one in a series of infinite universes with no end and no beginning? Is the concept of a beginning of time fundamentally flawed? Might our perception of time in fact be an illusion, a phenomenon created in our brains that has no ultimate reality? Is the stunning fine-tuning of the universe, which has produced just the right conditions for life to evolve, a sign that a “principle of creation” is at work in our world? If such a principle of creation undergirds the workings of the universe, what does that tell us about whether or not there is a divine Creator? How does the radical interpretation of reality offered by quantum physics conform to and yet differ from the Buddhist conception of reality? What is consciousness and how did it evolve? Can consciousness exist apart from a brain generating it? The stimulating journey of discovery the authors traveled in their discussions is re-created beautifully in The Quantum and the Lotus, written in the style of a lively dialogue between friends. Both the fundamental teachings of Buddhism and the discoveries of contemporary science are introduced with great clarity, and the reader will be profoundly impressed by the many correspondences between the two streams of thought and revelation. Through the course of their dialogue, the authors reach a remarkable meeting of minds, ultimately offering a vital new understanding of the many ways in which science and Buddhism confirm and complement each other and of the ways in which, as Matthieu Ricard writes, “knowledge of our spirits and knowledge of the world are mutually enlightening and empowering.” From the Hardcover edition.
A Plea for the Animals
Every cow just wants to be happy. Every chicken just wants to be free. Every bear, dog, or mouse experiences sorrow and feels pain as intensely as any of us humans do. In a compelling appeal to reason and human kindness, Matthieu Ricard here takes the arguments from his best-sellers Altruism and Happiness to their logical conclusion: that compassion toward all beings, including our fellow animals, is a moral obligation and the direction toward which any enlightened society must aspire. He chronicles the appalling sufferings of the animals we eat, wear, and use for adornment or "entertainment," and submits every traditional justification for their exploitation to scientific evidence and moral scrutiny. What arises is an unambiguous and powerful ethical imperative for treating all of the animals with whom we share this planet with respect and compassion.
Journey to enlightenment
A personal assistant to the late poet, scholar, and master of Tibetan Buddhism chronicles in words, photographs, and passages from Khyentse Rinpoche's writings, his journey with his mentor through Tibet, Bhutan, India, and Nepal.
Colorful stories about and profound teachings of Patrul Rinpoche, one of the most impactful teachers and thinkers in the Tibetan tradition from the nineteenth century. The life and teachings of the wandering yogi Patrul Rinpoche—a highly revered Buddhist master and scholar of nineteenth-century Tibet—come alive in true stories gathered and translated by the French Buddhist monk Matthieu Ricard over more than thirty years, based on the oral accounts of great contemporary teachers as well as written sources. Patrul’s life story reveals the nature of a highly realized being as he transmits the Dharma in everything he does, teaching both simple nomads and great lamas in ways that are often unconventional and even humorous, but always with uncompromising authenticity.
Consciousness at the Crossroads
This book addresses some of the most fundamental and troublesome questions that have driven a wedge between the realms of Western science and religion for centuries.
The Embodied Mind
A new edition of a classic work that originated the "embodied cognition" movement and was one of the first to link science and Buddhist practices.
This book invites the reader on a journey to an exotic land and into one’s heart and soul. The pictures are accompanied throughout by contributions from nineteen eminent specialists on the region, who discuss the culture, customs, politics and faith of the Himalayan world; past and present. Reflecting not only the cycle of human existence but also the history of the Himalayas, this lavish volume offers an unparalleled insight into Himalayan Buddhism in the 21st century.