He started meditating in 1966 at age 22, and founded the Stress Reduction Clinic at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center 35 years ago. Jon Kabat-Zinn, author of the new book “Mindfulness for Beginners,” is also an MIT-trained molecular biologist. He recently talked to Time Magazine about meditation, its benefits and more.
“Mindfulness is often spoken of as the heart of Buddhist meditation,” Kabat-Zinn said in the article. “It’s not about Buddhism, but about paying attention. That’s what all meditation is, no matter what tradition or particular technique is used.”
He spoke about Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and bringing the technique to medical patients in the form of an eight-week course.
“Recent studies from Massachusetts General Hospital have shown that eight weeks of MBSR can actually produce thickening in particular regions of the brain important for learning, memory, executive decision-making and perspective-taking: all important functions to have at optimal levels when you are under stress or experiencing pain,” Kabat-Zinn said in the article. “Also, certain regions get thinner like the amygdala, which involves threat and fear circuitry. If the amygdala is getting thinner after you’ve been practicing mindfulness for only eight weeks, I find that pretty amazing.”
For the full interview, visit Time Magazine.