I met Rick Hanson through an annual conference at UCLA which I have been honored to present at for the last several years, but was already a big fan of his work —most notably his fantastic book Buddha’s Brain which I teach in my Awakened Heart, Embodied Mind yoga teacher training as a required text.
Having briefly shared the stage with him at one of his workshops, and had a chance to chat a little over lunch, I was delighted that he agreed to fit me into his schedule for this incredible conversation.
I was already aware of how warm, compassionate and lucid Rick can be as a presenter, but I could not have been prepared for him really turning on the intellectual engines in his mind and delivering this truly extraordinary overview of his perspective. Such a fun ride!
We touch on evolutionary psychology, Buddhist teaching, neuroscience, mindful cultivation of beneficial states, and philosophical inquiry into consciousness and phenomenology.
Though his intellectual capacity and depth of specialization is deeply impressive, the most remarkable thing to me about Rick is how he always finds a way to bring things back around to practical applications that reduce suffering and amplify well-being in the here-and-now moment of interpersonal dialog.