Mindfulness for Life: science, practice and philosophy
A short course offered by Assoc. Prof. Craig Hassed
Mindfulness can be described both as a form of meditation and a way of living. For millennia the world's great wisdom traditions have embraced the principles and practice of mindfulness by various names but in recent times it has been 'discovered' by the mainstream. Mindfulness has generated enormous interest in fields as diverse as mental health, neuroscience, genetics, education, sport and leadership. It may be the single most important life skill we ever develop.
'Mindfulness for Life: science, practice and philosophy' will be presented by well-known mindfulness teacher, Associate Professor Craig Hassed. The course will be informative, experiential and interactive, exploring not just the theory, philosophy and science of mindfulness but also how to apply it to various aspects of life. The course will include a series of interactive presentations exploring the scientific underpinnings of mindfulness and the evidence regarding its use in various settings as well as various guided mindfulness practices and experiments. Participants will be encouraged to apply the practices between sessions.
The course will be offered over four Tuesday evenings running from 7.00pm to 9.30pm on February 26, March 5, 19 and 26. No prior learning or experience with mindfulness is required. The venue is MacLaren Hall, 45 Riversdale Road, Hawthorn (Erasmus School: enter car park from Through St) and the enrolment fee is $120 ($90 concession). Places are limited so booking ahead is recommended. For advanced bookings or more details contact the School of Philosophy on 9818 0804.
Week 1: Mindfulness for physical health
This session will focus on the mind-body interaction, the effect of attentional states on the brain, and how mindfulness practices have positive effects on physical health including its impact on immunity, genetics, pain, cancer and heart disease. The practical aspects will include an introduction to the formal practice of mindfulness meditation and the informal practice of being mindful in daily life.
Week 2: Mindfulness for mental health
This session will focus on the role of mindfulness for mental health problems, particularly stress, depression and anxiety, and will explore the principles of mindfulness-based approaches to psychotherapy. We will also debrief the formal practice of mindfulness meditation and the informal practice of being mindful in daily life introduced in week 1. Perception and non-attachment, the first two cognitive topics underpinning a mindfulness-based approach to psychotherapy, will be introduced as well as an experiment in dealing with distractor influence.
Week 3: The role of mindfulness in education and performance
This session will focus on the role of mindfulness in education and working life and include an exploration of the importance of attention for performance and mindsets. The negative effect of things like screen time and multitasking will also be explored. We will debrief the formal practice of mindfulness meditation, the informal practice of being mindful in daily life and the first cognitive topics, perception and non-attachment. The next two cognitive topics, acceptance and presence of mind, will also be introduced.
Week 4: A Philosophical look at mindfulness
This session will focus on mindfulness from a philosophical perspective with a particular interest in what it can teach us about self-knowledge and spirituality. We will also explore a little of what the world's great wisdom traditions have had to say about it. We will also debrief the formal practice of mindfulness meditation and the informal practice of being mindful in daily life and the four cognitive topics covered previously. We will finish with questions and how to consolidate mindfulness in one's life.
Term 1, 2019
The fee for the course is $120.
A concession fee of $90 is available to Pension Card holders, Health Care Card holders and full-time students.