MIND AND MINDFULNESS: As long as we all keep using our brains, it seems SBCC Continuing Education is going to keep helping us do it. The spring season of their ever-popular Mind & Supermind lecture series begins next week with a panel discussion on mindfulness and continues with two more events geared toward exploring the science, theory, and practice of negotiating our psychological and social spheres.
What, exactly, is mindfulness? To explore that question, it’ll take no fewer than five experts, each from a different walk of professional life, who will deliver Mind & Supermind’s spring opener, The Growth of Mindfulness: Implications for Personal, Interpersonal, and Societal Transformation, on Monday, April 12, at 7:30 p.m. at the Lobero Theatre (33 E. Canon Perdido St.).
Clinical psychologist and SBCC instructor Spencer Sherman, PhD, will moderate the talk. He’ll be joined by UCSB marine biology research professor Alice Alldredge, PhD, psychotherapist Radhule Weininger, MD, PhD, physician Jay Winner, MD, and experienced meditation practitioner Danielle Levi-Alvares. All, in their own ways, have taught the principles of mindfulness, meditation, and stress reduction. The panel will discuss the rise to prominence of the concept of mindfulness in our culture. We talk about mindfulness more and more, but what do we think it is? How would we do best to think of it? Are we actually becoming more mindful? If we are, what does that mean in terms of real-world results?
Then, toward the end of the month, the series presents Making a Good Brain Great, a talk from doctor, author, and Amen Clinics, Inc., CEO Daniel G. Amen, MD. Drawing on his background as a brain imaging specialist, Amen will expound on his theories about the ways we abuse our brains and the ways we can get them back up to spec. Amen has thought and written much about what strategies we might use to give our brains a tune-up, and he’ll share a few of them on Monday, April 26, at 7:30 p.m., also at the Lobero. Mind & Supermind will close its three-event season there on Monday, May 10, at 7:30 p.m. with a visit from Daniel Siegel, MD, former director of UCLA’s child psychiatry training program and pioneer in the field that’s come to be known as “interpersonal neurobiology,” an interdisciplinary effort meant to provide a clearer understanding of what’s going on between us, as well as within our own heads. Gearing up to release two books this year, Mindsight and The Mindful Therapist, Siegel will offer his own framework for the conception of a healthy mind. He’ll also describe the techniques he’s come up with to get our own minds nearer to perfect health. They’ve got to do with regulating the flow of energy and information that’s forever coming at us, which fits into a wider concept he calls “integration.”
As is the case with every Mind & Supermind speaker, these six visiting luminaries bring some distinctive and unusual ideas to the series. To gain a better understanding of their thinking or to do your homework before they come to town, visit sbcc.edu/adulted.