Heart & Mind: January 2011
Can you tell who is compassionate just by looking at them?
According to a new study, yes.
Imagine this: you walk into the laboratory, and are a shown a series of 20-second video clips. In each clip, a different person is shown listening to another person. You can’t hear what the speaker is saying; there is no sound to the clip. But you’re told that the speaker is talking about a time when they suffered.
The researchers ask you to rate how compassionate the listener is, just by what you can see: his or her body language and facial expressions.Read more »
Imagine that you and a stranger are participating in a psychology study. The experimenter gives the stranger $20. "Divide this money between you and your partner," the experimenter tells the stranger. "You can keep any amount for yourself, and give any amount to your partner. But your partner gets to decide whether or not to accept the deal. If your partner refuses the offer, nobody gets any money, and the game is over."Read more »
It’s not too often that my first response to pain is, “Fantastic!”
But when I collapsed to the ground after banging my ankle on a hardwood meditation bench, I knew this was an opportunity for a scientific experiment. I had spent the last few days preparing a talk on the neuroscience of meditation. More specifically, how meditators process pain differently than non-meditators.Read more »