07-18-14 Topic: Mindfulness, Healing, and Death: Conversation with Dr. Bob Stahl
This week’s guest, Bob Stahl, the founder and director of three mindfulness-based stress reduction programs at three medical centers in the San Francisco Bay area, shares with us his unique path into the healing profession, and what he has discovered. Two of his most beloved family members died during Dr. Stahl’s childhood, awakening in him confusion and an enduring interest – what is this thing called death that can wreak such havoc in one’s life? What does it mean, and what can we do about it?
This led him on a quest, beginning with a study of the physical process of death, then continuing with an exploration of its social, spiritual, and psychological factors. This, in time, led him to the committed practice of Buddhism and 8 ½ years in a monastery. Professionally, he found numerous applications for what he had learned, especially in the practice of (MBSR) – a most useful clinical tool developed by Jon Kabat Zinn.
Dr. Stahl will share with us the meaningful of mindfulness, the practice of being present, its relationship to stress reduction, and how it can help us overcome our self-narrative – the self-limited perspectives we have on ourselves. The Buddha, the “unconditioned one,” he explains, provides, offers, insights, that could be of great value to us moderns.
Dr. Stahl will share with us some of what he’s learned about how to approach death and, paradoxically, how these insights can help us approach life so that we can be victorious over the three enemies described by the Buddha – greed, hate, and ignorance. Finally, we will touch on the worldwide deficit of compassion our planet is now experiencing and some thoughts about what we might do about it.
Please join us for this most enlightening conversation with a remarkable man.