Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Buddhist Geeks 329: A Neuroscience of Enlightenment

Vince Horn speaks with neuroscientist David Vago in part one of this two-part Buddhist Geeks Podcast. Good stuff.

BG 329: A Neuroscience of Enlightenment

by David Vago

Podcast: Download

Episode Description:

David Vago is a contemplative neuroscientist and Jake Davis is a philosopher and Buddhist practitioner. Together they have authored an article proposing the question of whether Enlightenment can be traced to specific neural, cognitive, or behavioral correlates–and if so what those might be.

In this episode David and Jake join host Vincent Horn to discuss the article titled “Can enlightenment be traced to specific neural correlates, cognition, or behavior? No, and (a qualified) Yes”. Jake and David describe the genesis of the article, the conflict and opportunity provided by using the word “enlightenment” in the title, and the important role first person subjective experience plays in scientific inquiry.

This is part one of a two part series.

Episode Links:

Speaker Biography

David Vago is an instructor of psychology in the Functional Neuroimaging Laboratory (FNL), Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School. He has completed a post-doctoral fellowship in the department of Psychiatry at BWH, the Utah Center for Mind-Body Interactions within the University of Utah Medical School, and is currently auditing the Stuart T. Hauser Research Training Program in Biological and Social Psychiatry. David has held the position of Senior Research Coordinator for the Mind & Life Institute, a non-for-profit organization dedicated to fostering dialogue and research at the highest possible level between modern science and the great living contemplative traditions. He received his Bachelors Degree in Brain and Cognitive Sciences in 1997 from the University of Rochester. In 2005, David received his Ph.D. in Cognitive and Neural Sciences with a specialization in learning and memory from the department of Psychology, University of Utah.


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