COMPASSION IMPLIES A SOCIAL RELATION BETWEEN THOSE WHO SUFFER VULNERABILITY, LOSS, OR HARM AND THOSE WHO CAN DO SOMETHING TO HELP.
From its roots in religion and spirituality to philosophy, psychology, and more recently, as a topic of interest in both cognitive science and social justice organizing, compassion presents us with interesting and challenging questions.
If it is true that human suffering is universal, is compassion also wired into our nature as humans, or is it a choice and a capacity that must be cultivated and developed?
The College of Social & Behavioral Sciences (SBS) has pioneered the study of compassion as a multi-layered human phenomenon in all its dimensions. Dozens of researchers and practitioners in SBS illuminate through their work the role of compassion as one of the most promising and simultaneously challenging themes of our times. Their research topics have included: poverty; diversity and inclusion; crime and justice; climate change and migration; language and cross-cultural understanding.
COMPASSION IS NOT A LUXURY: Practices of Care in Community
Oct. 6 | Leslie Langbert
In this talk, Leslie Langbert, executive director of the Center for Compassion Studies, explores the power of compassion done in community, drawing on current theory and research as well as the roots of compassion practices from the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. She will argue that compassion – used for self-care and reciprocal-care – is essential for our survival.
ARE OUR BRAINS WIRED FOR COMPASSION? The Science Behind Caring for Others
Oct. 13 | Jay Lacoste Sanguinetti
In this talk, Jay Lacoste Sanguinetti, associate director of the Center for Consciousness Studies, will explore the fascinating new science of compassion and how intentional cultivation of this important ability may have wide-ranging impacts on our individual and societal health.
COMPASSION FOR WHOM? Shifting U.S. Conversations About Palestinians and Israelis
Oct. 20 | Maha Nassar
In this talk, Maha Nassar, associate professor in the School of Middle Eastern and North African Studies, will discuss recent shifts in U.S. public discourse about Palestinians and Israelis, focusing on the rise in Black-Palestinian solidarity. In doing so, she examines the relationship between structural inequalities and social justice and addresses the question: for whom do we have compassion?
COMPASSION AS A TOOL FOR LIBERATION AND RACIAL JUSTICE
Oct. 27 | Lama Rod Owens
In this talk, Lama Rod Owens reaches into his deep knowledge of Buddhist teachings and a lifetime of commitment to racial justice movements to help us think about compassion as a practice more intentional than simple gestures of benevolence or charity. By “sitting with our discomforts” about the state of things in the world, our families, and our communities, we can confront the traumas that harm us and speak the truths to one another that lead to healing and liberation.
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