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Mind in the Balance: Meditation in Science, Buddhism, and Christianity
     

Mind in the Balance: Meditation in Science, Buddhism, and Christianity

by B. Alan Wallace
 

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By establishing a dialogue in which the meditative practices of Buddhism and Christianity speak to the theories of modern philosophy and science, B. Alan Wallace reveals the theoretical similarities underlying these disparate disciplines and their unified approach to making sense of the objective world.

Wallace begins by exploring the relationship between

Overview

By establishing a dialogue in which the meditative practices of Buddhism and Christianity speak to the theories of modern philosophy and science, B. Alan Wallace reveals the theoretical similarities underlying these disparate disciplines and their unified approach to making sense of the objective world.

Wallace begins by exploring the relationship between Christian and Buddhist meditative practices. He outlines a sequence of meditations the reader can undertake, showing that, though Buddhism and Christianity differ in their belief systems, their methods of cognitive inquiry provide similar insight into the nature and origins of consciousness.

From this convergence Wallace then connects the approaches of contemporary cognitive science, quantum mechanics, and the philosophy of the mind. He links Buddhist and Christian views to the provocative philosophical theories of Hilary Putnam, Charles Taylor, and Bas van Fraassen, and he seamlessly incorporates the work of such physicists as Anton Zeilinger, John Wheeler, and Stephen Hawking. Combining a concrete analysis of conceptions of consciousness with a guide to cultivating mindfulness and profound contemplative practice, Wallace takes the scientific and intellectual mapping of the mind in exciting new directions.

Editorial Reviews

Choice
Thought-provoking and at times insightful, this volume raises many interesting philosophical issues and presents many useful references.

Inquiring Mind - Marcia Howton
Anyone interested in understanding more about the mind and consciousness would enjoy reading this book.

Shift
Wallace is a master, guiding our inquiry into consciousness in exciting new directions.

Inquiring Mind
Anyone interesting in understanding more about the mind and consciousness would enjoy reading this book.

— Marcia Howton

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780231519700
Publisher:
Columbia University Press
Publication date:
06/05/2009
Series:
Columbia Series in Science and Religion
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
264
Sales rank:
1,092,925
File size:
394 KB

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What People are Saying About This

Robert Mayer
Mind in the Balance addresses in a lucid, extremely well informed, and often quite original way what is now widely seen as the greatest lacuna in modern understanding: the actual nature of mind or consciousness. Its consistent advocacy of logical rigor, basis in a truly magisterial knowledge of Buddhist, Christian, and other contemplative practices, deep familiarity with contemporary scientific thinking, and imaginative and creative merging of all of these strands make this book a significant contribution to the field.

Fr. Laurence Freeman
Mind, intelligence, spirit and reason—Alan Wallace, one of the very best guides on this journey that we have today, brilliantly shows us how they work together in the mystery of human consciousness.

Adam Frank
Always challenging and controversial, B. Alan Wallace's abilities as a scholar and writer give this book an accessibility and breadth rarely encountered. As a book intended for a broad readership, Mind in the Balance successfully bridges history, theory, Christianity, Buddhism, and science, making it truly unique.

Father - Laurence Freeman
Mind, intelligence, spirit and reason—Alan Wallace, one of the very best guides on this journey that we have today, brilliantly shows us how they work together in the mystery of human consciousness.

Meet the Author

B. Alan Wallace spent fourteen years as a Buddhist monk, ordained by H. H. the Dalai Lama. He then earned his undergraduate degree, summa cum laude, in physics and the philosophy of science at Amherst College, and his doctorate in religious studies from Stanford University. His Columbia University Press books are Hidden Dimensions: The Unification of Physics and Consciousness, Contemplative Science: Where Buddhism and Neuroscience Converge, and Buddhism and Science: Breaking New Ground (editor). A prolific writer who has translated numerous Tibetan Buddhist texts, he is the founder and president of the Santa Barbara Institute for Consciousness Studies (http://www.sbinstitute.com).

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