Contemplative Activism: Contributions of Contemplative Practices to Prosocial and Proenvironmental Behavior
20th EUROTAS Conference. Paris, September 25-29, 2019
Abstract: Today, the results and benefits of contemplative practices are usually contextualized in the frameworks of modern medicine and health care and with a focus on the individual and its functioning. Yet, traditional forms of such practices were often much more deeply embedded in a wider understand of the human being in the context of society, nature and the cosmos. Based on an overview of recent research finds, this talk will address the question whether various forms of contemporary contemplative practice – ones that induce radical shifts in our experience of self and the world – may in fact lead to prosocial behavior (i.e., behavior that benefits other people or society as a whole) and provenvironmental behavior (i.e., behavior that consciously seeks to minimize the negative impact on the natural world), thus contributing to the much needed activist action in today’s world of social and ecological crises.