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Publisher's Summary

Ever noticed that trying to calm down often produces more agitation? That trying to change bad habits can seem impossible? Or that real fulfillment can be elusive, despite living a successful life?
Often, such difficulties stem from the human brain's hardwired tendency to seek pleasure and avoid pain. Modern science demonstrates that this survival mechanism served the needs of our earliest ancestors, but is at the root of many problems that we face today, such as depression, compulsive and addictive behaviors, chronic pain, and stress and anxiety.
For thousands of years, people have used mindfulness practices to deal effectively with a wide range of life challenges. But how exactly does mindfulness work, in scientific terms? How can the human brain, which gives rise to so many of our problems, actually provide a solution?
We are now in the midst of an explosion of scientific research demonstrating that mindfulness practice changes both the function and the structure of the brain. Numerous studies show which parts of the brain are affected by mindfulness practice, and how these neurobiological changes benefit our minds and bodies.
Now, in the 24 fascinating lectures of The Science of Mindfulness, Professor Siegel, a clinical psychologist at Harvard Medical School, reveals the science behind mindfulness in compelling detail and demonstrates its application to a wide range of issues - psychological, social, and medical. You'll examine the neurobiology underlying ancient practices that are now profoundly influencing the contemporary world. And you'll learn many practical ways you can use mindfulness techniques in your own life.
This playful, caring course demonstrates the effectiveness of mindfulness in responding to many of humanity's fundamental existential problems.
©2013 The Great Courses (P)2013 The Teaching Company, LLC
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Cluelass on 07-19-15

Even more worthwhile with these study aids

I have been enjoying this course enormously. It presents concepts I have heard many times, but not really understood until I heard Prof. Siegel’s clear, everyday explanations. The longer audio forms of the meditation practice are available for download (free) at his website. The material in his book "The Mindfulness Solution" is basically the same as this audio course—very helpful for reviewing. I am thrilled that Audible has added these courses.

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54 of 55 people found this review helpful


By bonster on 12-20-14

Well organized, thorough and entertaining

If you could sum up The Science of Mindfulness in three words, what would they be?

Well organized, thorough and entertaining

What did you like best about this story?

I learned many different applications of mindfulness that were not immediately apparent to me. For example, how mindfulness can be used to become comfortable with anxiety producing situations. I like that this isn't just presented in theory - there are short and longer meditations for dealing with specific things like that throughout the course.

What about Professor Ronald Siegel’s performance did you like?

His tone is very conversational - not stiff or rehearsed. He also puts a lot of little jokes throughout the course which keeps it light and entertaining.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The one chapter talks about using mindfulness to increase empathy. There is a suggestion that every time you interact with someone think of the whole life they have lived - that they were a child like me at one point, and have had many vulnerable moments in their life. I'm paraphrasing from memory and probably butchered it, but it's helped me to be more empathetic especially in dealing with frustrations or people that I tend to not give much attention as I go through my day.

Any additional comments?

I have gone back and re-listened to many of the chapters. I like that this does not need to be listened to sequentially. I wish there was a chapter list included with the book description. This is the chapter list from 'The Great Courses' website:<br/><br/>1 Why Mindfulness Matters<br/>2 Our Troublesome Brains<br/>3 Informal, Formal, and Intensive Practices<br/>4 Who Am I - The Perils of Self<br/>5 Mindfulness or Psychotherapy<br/>6 Attention and Empathy in Relationships<br/>7 The Science of Compassion and Self-Compassion<br/>8 Tailoring Practices to Fit Changing Needs<br/>9 Modifying Our Brain Function and Structure<br/>10 Solitude - An Antidote to Loneliness<br/>11 Connecting with Children and Adolescents<br/>12 Seeing Sadness and Depression in a New Light<br/>13 Befriending Fear, Worry, and Anxiety<br/>14 Transforming Chronic Pain<br/>15 Placebos, Illness, and the Power of Belief<br/>16 Interrupting Addiction and Troublesome Habits<br/>17 Overcoming Traumas Large and Small<br/>18 Groundbreaking Mindfulness Programs<br/>19 The Neurobiology of Self-Preoccupation<br/>20 Growing Up Is Not Easy - Facing Impermanence<br/>21 Toward a Science of Wisdom<br/>22 The Promise of Enlightenment<br/>23 Mindful Ethics as a Path to Freedom<br/>24 The New Science of Happiness<br/>25 Bonus Meditation - Breath Awareness Practice<br/>26 Bonus Meditation - Loving-Kindness Practice<br/>27 Bonus Meditation - Mountain Meditation<br/>28 Bonus Meditation - Breathing Together<br/>29 Bonus Meditation - Stepping into Fear Bonus Meditation - Stepping into Fear

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217 of 224 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Denise on 02-27-15

Excellent!

Would you consider the audio edition of The Science of Mindfulness to be better than the print version?

I've never tried to read this. Audio version is Great!

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Science of Mindfulness?

The listening! The knowledge attained! Priceless!

What does Professor Ronald Siegel bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

Personality. Very enjoyable.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Because I chose to listen to this book, I can actually say that the entire book moved me on a very deep level and changed my essence. It gave me a full understanding of who we are. And how to change that within us that is negative.

Any additional comments?

Very beneficial. Very educational, glad I invested the time.

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10 of 10 people found this review helpful


By S. Nanra on 06-26-15

Incredible humanity

Wonderful introduction to the topic of mindfulness. Lovingly narrated by Professor Siegel. The guided meditations aren't specially marked, but can be found in the final chapters..

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7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Y Skoryk on 08-12-16

Easy listening

Very engaging and informative audiobook. Easy to follow, every chapter is different, humour is present. Good investment.

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful


By John Robinson on 12-29-16

Comprehensive

Research findings and science behind mindfulness meditation is covered, as well as guided meditations at the end. I'm just a beginner/novice, but in my opinion these lectures are excellent.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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