Understanding the nature and function of attention in Western Cognitive Sciences and Classical Mindfulness
A lecture by Dr. Lobsang Rapgay, PhD.
Classical Mindfulness is based on the original teachings of mindfulness that involves the integrated practice of concentration (samatha in Sanskrit) and penetrative insight (vipassana in Sanskrit). There is an increasing interest and need to go beyond current, westernized version of mindfulness, and study and apply mindfulness as an integration of concentration and insight processes and practice. The lecture will discuss and demonstrate how findings and strategies from Western cognitive psychology and neuroscience perspective can help to not only better understand the theory and practice of concentration (samatha) but more importantly learn strategies to develop sustained attention, and clinically apply it more effectively to treat anxiety and attention related disorders.
Lobsang Rapgay, PhD is a Research Psychologist in the Department of Psychiatry, a practicing clinical and health psychologist and the Director of the Sustained Attention, and Working Memory in Anxiety and Attention related disorders, UCLA. He was the Director of the UCLA Behavioral Medicine Clinic and Program, a training program for psychiatric residents and psychology interns for six years. His primary research focuses on the study of internal sustained and broadening of attention in anxiety and attention related disorders from a western cognitive psychology and neuroscience perspective, and at a secondary level he seeks to study how to translate these findings into computerized based treatment programs for anxiety and attention related disorders, as well as facilitate the understanding and practice of classical mindfulness.
He was a Tibetan Buddhist monk for 18 years and is well versed in Tibetan Buddhist theory and practice. He is currently writing a book on Clinical Neuroscience of Mindfulness and
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for the treatment of Anxiety.
This evening lecture was recorded on July 27th, 2013 at Unity Church, Santa Barbara.