Contemplative Education

What is a contemplative liberal arts education?

It's been said that a liberal arts education teaches you to think. A contemplative liberal arts education, on the other hand, teaches you to know.

From studying the humanities, social sciences, and arts you will develop analytic and creative skills, research know-how, and the ability to express yourself eloquently in writing and in speech.

From the study of meditation and other contemplative practices, such as yoga, Aikido, Tai Chi Chuan, and others, you will learn courage, mindfulness, discipline, self-awareness, and compassion.

From Naropa, you will learn to integrate thinking and knowing into a life of doing, establishing a meaningful career from the depths of your mind, heart, and soul.

Can meditation make you smarter?

Increasingly, the answer seems to be "yes."

  • A 2005 study by a Harvard researcher showed that areas of the brain associated with attention, sensory awareness, and emotional processing were thicker in meditators.
  • Research published in a 2009 edition of The International Journal of Psychophysiology demonstrated that college students who practiced transcendental meditation for ten weeks reported less sleepiness, anxiety, and irritability than the control group, plus they scored higher on a brain functioning test.
  • Another study published in 2011 demonstrated similar findings: People trained in meditative techniques showed increased density in their brains, in regions associated with learning and memory, empathy, and compassion as compared to those in the control group.

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