Contemplative studies is an emerging interdisciplinary field in universities. It explores the intersection of what we learn with how we learn, asserting that minds that are aware of their own processes, minds that take a contemplative approach toward learning, not only digest facts but also undergo transformative experiences. In most universities, contemplative study fuses brain science with techniques of Eastern meditation, often inspired by Buddhism. Our guest is Jacob Sherman, a professor of philosophy and religion and chair of the Philosophy, Cosmology and Consciousness Program at the California Institute of Integral Studies. Sherman is the author of an article titled “On the Emerging Field of Contemplative Studies and its Relationship to the Study of Spirituality” which was published in the volume The Soul of Higher Education, edited by Margaret Benefiel and Bo Karen Lee. What does Sherman like about contemplative studies, what worries him, and what’s missing?
Interview by Matthew Wickman, Founding Director, BYU Humanities Center.
Produced and Edited by Brooke Browne and Sam Jacob.