More than twenty years ago, Jon Kabat-Zinn changed the way we thought about awareness in everyday life with his now-classic introduction to mindfulness, Wherever You Go, There You Are . He followed that up with 2005's Coming to Our Senses , the definitive book for our time on the connection between mindfulness and our well-being on every level, physical, cognitive, emotional, social, planetary, and spiritual.
Now, Coming to Our Senses is being repackaged into 4 smaller books, each focusing on a different aspect of mindfulness, and each with a new foreword written by the author. In the fourth of these books, Mindfulness for All (which was originally published as Part VII and Part VIII of Coming to Our Senses ), Kabat-Zinn focuses on how mindfulness really can be a tool to transform the world--explaining how democracy thrives in a mindful context, and why mindfulness is a vital tool for both personal and global understanding and action in these tumultuous times. By "coming to our senses"--both literally and metaphorically--we can become more compassionate, more embodied, more aware human beings, and in the process, contribute to the healing of the body politic as well as our own lives in ways both little and big.
Jon Kabat-Zinn, Ph.D., is founding Executive Director of the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. He is also the founding director of its renowned Stress Reduction Clinic and Professor of Medicine emeritus at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. He teaches mindfulness and Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) in various venues around the world. He received his Ph.D. in molecular biology from MIT in 1971 in the laboratory of Nobel Laureate, Salvador Luria.
He is the author of numerous scientific papers on the clinical applications of mindfulness in medicine and health care, and of a number of books for the lay public: Full Catastrophe Living: Using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain and Illness (Delta, 1991); Wherever You Go, There You Are: Mindfulness Meditation in Everyday Life (Hyperion, 1994); Coming to Our Senses: Healing Ourselves and the World Through Mindfulness (Hyperion, 2005); and Arriving at Your Own Door: 108 Lessons in Mindfulness (Hyperion, 2007). He is also co-author, with his wife Myla, of Everyday Blessings: The Inner Work of Mindful Parenting (Hyperion, 1997); and with Williams, Teasdale, and Segal, of The Mindful Way Through Depression: Freeing Yourself from Chronic Unhappiness (Guilford, 2007). Overall, his books have been translated into over 30 languages.
His major research interests have focused on mind/body interactions for healing, clinical applications of mindfulness meditation training, the effects of MBSR on the brain, on the immune system, and on healthy emotional expression while under stress; on healing (skin clearing rates) in people with psoriasis; on patients undergoing bone marrow transplantation; with prison inmates and staff; in multicultural settings; and on stress in various corporate settings and work environments. His work in the Stress Reduction Clinic was featured in Bill Moyers’ PBS Special, “Healing and the Mind” and in the book of the same title, as well as on Good Morning America, the Oprah Winfrey Show, and NPR. It has contributed to a growing movement of mindfulness into mainstream institutions such as medicine, and psychology, health care and hospitals, schools, corporations, the legal profession, prisons, and professional sports.
He has trained groups of CEOs, judges, members of the clergy, and Olympic athletes (the 1984 Olympic Men’s Rowing Team) and congressional staff in mindfulness. The Stress Reduction Clinic has served as the model for mindfulness-based clinical intervention programs at over 200 medical centers and clinics nation-wide and abroad. Dr. Kabat-Zinn has received numerous awards over the span of his career. He is a founding fellow of the Fetzer Institute, and a fellow of the Society of Behavioral Medicine. He received the Interface Foundation Career Achievement Award, and the New York Open Center’s Tenth Year Anniversary Achievement in Medicine and Health Award (1994); the Art, Science, and Soul of Healing Award from the Institute for Health and Healing, California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco (1998); the 2nd Annual Trailblazer Award for “pioneering work in the field of integrative medicine” from the Scripps Center for Integrative Medicine in La Jolla, California (2001); the Distinguished Friend Award from the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies (2005), and an Inaugural Pioneer in Integrative Medicine Award from the Bravewell Philanthropic Collaborative for Integrative Medicine (2007).
He is the founding convener of the Consortium of Academic Health Centers for Integrative Medicine, and serves on the Board of the Mind and Life Institute, a group that organizes dialogues between the Dalai Lama and Western scientists to promote deeper understanding of different ways of knowing and probing the nature of mind, emotions, and reality. He was co-program chair of the 2005 Mind and Life Dialogue: The Clinical Appl
I’ve never read a spiritual book, which touched upon politics. It’s a bit unsettling. I understand the author trying to convey his message, but there are other ways to do it.
The premise of the book is very true that mindfulness is very important and should be an integral part of our lives. But most of the people in our busy world don’t pay attention to being mindful. And collectively you can achieve much more when you have a mindful society.
The text is not to the point, missing day-life examples, as a result the read is not engaging.
I received an ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This was really dry and boring. It was interesting how political it was as well. I would recommend his book, Wherever You Go, There You Are.
Great ending to the book and perspective given about your being. The karma meets Dharma was interesting and connection to the universe. For me the start was hard to connect with and there were a lot of references to the other books (which I had not read) but I respect the author and there are some huge takeaways about your own being near the end of the book.
Kabat-Zinn's 2019 book finds him in full prophetic thought leader mode, something he "trained" for in previous books. I've come to this one hoping for a practical, pragmatic update on the brand of everyday meditation that made him famous. There's not a modicum of practical advice or considerations in the book. It is one unbroken 190 page treatise on "the wisdom to transform the world", which, if we are less forgiving, translates to a super-wordy rehash of his better earlier books.
I am listening to assorted spiritual audiobooks while running, do that for a decade now, because that is when I find the time and focus required for an inner journey like that. This particular book fails as an inner journey, it feels more like a meandering, half-confused walk in an all too familiar neighborhood, which is Kabat-Zinn's mind. He's a great guy and I regret that I can't recommend his latest offering.
A disappointment of a book, poorly written (stream of consciousness style) and poorly edited (continents include North America, Europe, Africa, Asia and Latin America (see foreword) -- not only is Latam not a continent, it doesn't mention Oceania which is...)
I kept wanting to drop it through the really bad chapter "Lessons from Medicine" -- but I am one of those irrational readers who just won't give up on a book...so I stuck with it til the end... and lo and behold half way through a couple of chapters got interesting i.e. "Mindfulness and Democracy" and "Talking Vietnam Meditation Blues".
All in all however, this book is not about how to practice mindfulness and doesn't teach you anything about it. It's just hell bent on convincing you that the human race is at the point where it needs to take up mindfulness, period, because that is the way of an enlightened civilization... This is not the book that will convince anyone of that.
3.5 stars This book examines the role of mindfulness in politics, engaging with people you disagree with, and the constant negative news stream. Some of the quotes are beautiful, and the rhetorical questions invite readers to further explore their thoughts/feelings on certain topics. I appreciated the reminder to stop personalizing every negative event and instead remember what's right in the world.
It would have been helpful to include exercises or examples to guide readers on how to incorporate mindfulness in these scenarios. Action steps would allow readers to integrate the concepts and make it work in their own lives.
I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
"...No news of the affairs of men, Only the occasional song of the woodcutter..." pg 26.
Each time I picked up this book in 2020 it had something relevant to current events. 2020 and even now in 2021 we are experiencing an exceptional time - this book is right for now. I especially liked the chapter "Different Ways of Knowing Make Us Wiser" pg. 103. And from the final paragraph "...mindfulness as a love affair with the present moment,..." pg. 134.
Jon Kabat-Zinn is guiding a discussion on this book February 6th 2021.
Thought-provoking. 3 1/2 stars. JKZ expands the way we might normally think of mindfulness and consciousness as a way to break free of habitual patterns to a much more expansive way of viewing unlimited potential. This fourth book in the series on “Coming to Our Senses” continues the exploration beyond healing the mind-heart-body to healing interpersonal, societal, and the body politic, which I found to be challenging given the current political climate. I felt his reflections on our origins and evolution from the Big Bang to sentience and potential were most provocative.
This last volume of the series features Kabat-Zinn's more philosophical musings on humanity, civilization, politics, and our relationship to these things, both inner and outer. Almost more of an extended set of essays on the status of the human condition, the underlying premise is that our current state of otherness and mindlessness can be healed through compassion, mindful awareness, and awakeness.
I love this book because of the fact that it takes mindfulness from an individual- and small-group orientation to the broader world. Mindfulness presents a range of opportunities to help all of us help each other and the planet. The book does have more of a political bent than I would prefer, even if that wasn't the intention.
Been half way through this book. Ellaborating ideas in a boring way ,besides the writer always trying to refer to another book in the middle of explaining his philosophical thought. I felt he is trying to sell me a book in every page i have read . Not recommended.
i thought this book will be about mindfulness and how to live in the moment and that stuff and I liked the cover I thought it would be a self help book but he talks about news? politics? galaxies and so many things that I’m not interested in and not what I had in mind when I bought this book….
Questo libro in sintesi: un elenco enciclopedico di tutti i mali del mondo e delle storture dell’umanità e del fatto che la Mindfulness è la soluzione universale. Il tutto in chiave dogmatica, perché Kabat-Zinn da ovviamente per scontato tutto ciò che è la Mindfulness e come funziona, ma ci dice che crea saggezza, gentilezza e tante cose positive e quindi può guarire qualsiasi male del mondo: dalla guerra, alle malattie, all’avidità dei politici e via dicendo con un elenco infinito di argomenti già visti.
Personalmente l’ho trovato notevolmente noioso; interessante solo in pochi punti qua e là. Mi è piaciuto il suo ricordo della vita da sessantottino al MIT, un pezzo di storia.
I listened to Mindfullness for all but, I don't remember anything from it. I tried to understand it but, I suppose it was not interesting to me. Or not my type of book. Or maybe I need to listen to it one more time. Anyway it did not have any impact on me.