MindfulBiology™ enhances familiarity with our own human bodies. It combines guided mindfulness with concise and—when possible—visually compelling explanations of life science, so that inner sensations can be mapped to the body’s processes and structures. Where feasible, MindfulBiology also incorporates movement practices that deepen our felt experience as living beings.
The project has several goals:
- To inform mindfulness practice through anatomy and physiology. MindfulBiology augments the time-honored ‘body scan’ with clear descriptions of the inner workings that are being scanned. The result is a felt appreciation of the body’s organic processes.
- To promote friendlier attitudes toward the human body. Aggressive medical interventions and our culture’s obsession with youth cause us to treat the soma harshly, like an object to be repaired and resurfaced rather than a living organism to be tended and loved. MindfulBiology encourages gentle stewardship of the human organism.
- To remind us of our biological nature and all that implies. As animals we inherit vulnerability, a capacity to heal, sensitivity, interdependence within a vast family of living beings, etc. We can feel reassured by life’s imperative to find solutions, repair injury, and learn from experience.
- To highlight the wonder of the human body. Much like strolling through a virgin forest or along a wave swept shore, exploring our inner landscape in an informed way reveals the peace and beauty of nature resonating within.
- To help those who suffered childhood trauma reconnect with their bodies. Abuse, bereavement, and neglect inflict intense emotional and physical pain during critical periods of development. Children have few coping tools, but they readily learn to dissociate from anguish. Although crucial to survival early on, chronic detachment diminishes an adult’s capacity to enjoy life and relationships. MindfulBiology teaches us to reconnect, using a combination of scientific objectivity, nonjudgmental awareness, and tenderness. Sorrow, fear, and pain can be investigated as ever-changing sensations that affect us but don’t define us. As we find more spaciousness inside, this lovely living body becomes a safe haven, and we return home.
- To encourage feelings of faith, devotion, and awe. MindfulBiology views organic systems as fundamentally alive rather than simply mechanical, which means we can develop relationships with them. Just as we bond with pets, or feel healed by spending time in a garden, we can nourish feelings of love, gratitude, and respect for our bodies and the mystery of Life.