Dalai Lama

tag: mindfulness in schools

what-is-mindfulness

tag: mindfulness in schools

 

  • 2003: Goldie Hawn launches the Hawn Foundation. The Hawn Foundation goes on to create and develop the MindUP program. According to this website, “MindUP was conceived in Vancouver by Hollywood actress Goldie Hawn, while she was temporarily living in the city with her family.”

 

  • 2004: The Dalai Lama visits Vancouver, BC, Canada.

 

 

  • 2005: The Dalai Lama endorses The Dalai Lama Center for Peace and Education in Vancouver. He specifically requests that the Center “gather scientific research and develop evidence-informed programs.”

 

  • 2005: Researchers at the University of British Columbia (UBC) begin working on neuroscience research that is funded by the Hawn Foundation and the Mind and Life Institute. Note: It appears the Mind and Life Institute may have been co-founded by the Dalai Lama.

 

  • 2006: The Dalai Lama visits Vancouver, BC, Canada.

 

  • 2009: The Dalai Lama visits Vancouver, BC, Canada and speaks to 16,000 teens, at GM Place.

 

 

  • 2012: The Dalai Lama Center launches a campaign called “Educating the Heart – A Bold Strategic Vision for BC’s Children and Youth.” The PDF at their website says “The plan sets out to answer the Dalai Lama’s question: “How can we educate the hearts of children?” The PDF incorporates the same keywords used in MindUP literature i.e. “social emotional learning,” “evidence-based practice,” “emerging research,” “mindfulness,” “compassion.” Also included in the “Bold Vision for BC’s Children and Youth” is their mandate to “Educate the adults who surround children – including educators, mental health practitioners, youth workers, parents and communities – regarding the latest information, evidence-based practices and emerging research on social and emotional learning, including mindfulness and compassion.”

 

  • 2012: A quote from the Dalai Lama goes viral. He reportedly says: “If every 8-year old in the world is taught meditation, we will eliminate violence from the world within one generation.”

 

  • 2012: A PDF is published by the Scientific American Mind, and mentions the MindUP program in Vancouver, BC, Canada. It says: “the Vancouver school board sanctions it.”

 

  • 2013: The Dalai Lama Center hosts its inaugural Heart-Mind Conference, in Vancouver, BC, Canada. The theme of the conference is “How Mindfulness Helps Children Thrive.”

 

  • 2013: The Dalai Lama Center pilots the “Heart-Mind Index” in seven diverse communities within British Columbia, Canada.

 

  • 2014: Victor Chan (who co-founded the Dalai Lama Center for Peace and Education, in Vancouver) gives credit to the Dalai Lama for his part in advancing mindfulness in the classroom. Here is a few excerpts from a local News article that featured Mr. Chan: “During previous visits to Vancouver in 2004, 2006, and 2009, the Dalai Lama emphasized the importance of educating the heart. Chan said that as a result of these efforts, B.C. has become a world leader in fostering mindfulness in the classroom.” “The Dalai Lama made an effect on the community here 10 years ago,” Chan concluded. “I am hoping that he will be pleased with these really tangible achievements and continue to help us, work with us, and make sure that the education shines in B.C. and [becomes] a model for other education jurisdictions as well.”

 

  • 2014: A Vancouver News article  says: “The Dalai Lama will visit the Vancouver Convention Centre Oct. 21 [2014] for a Heart-Mind Summit, where he will urge British Columbians to balance education of both the heart and mind — with cognitive development on one hand and kindness, mindfulness and compassion on the other.”

 

  • 2014: The Dalai Lama visits Vancouver, BC, Canada, and travels to other places in Canada.

 

  • 2014: Maclean’s magazine briefly mentions that the Vancouver School District offers [free] mindfulness training to teachers through the MindUP program.

 

  • 2015: The Dalai Lama Center launches the “Heart-Mind Parenting Project” and begins delivering Heart-Mind Professional Development Workshops across Metro Vancouver.

 

  • 2015: A BCSTA article says “Implementing social and emotional programs does have a cost and the MindUP curriculum, which is trademarked by the Hawn Foundation, is costing school district 73 about $4,000 to use at the one school.”

 

  • 2016: It is widely published that 3,500 teachers in B.C. Canada, have been trained in MindUP.

 

With the Dalai Lama being a Tibetan Buddhist Monk, no one can blame him for wanting to evangelize and promote Buddhist values, Buddhist Meditation, or Buddhism in general. And, since Goldie Hawn is Buddhist, I understand her desire to spread the message of Buddha and the Dalai Lama. On the other hand, public schools cannot continue to advertise these programs as 100% secular.

 

Dalai Lama

tag: mindfulness in schools

Note: Here is one example of MindUP representatives implying that people were mistaken for suspecting the MindUP program involved Buddhist Meditation: In January 2015, the IU Bloomington Newsroom reported that a few people in Indiana objected to the implementation of the MindUP program, in their public schools. Those who objected, did so, because of the conflict it would pose to their Faith and that of their children (i.e. their children being forced to participate in meditation – even though it conflicts with their Faith and conscience). One person who spoke up against the implementation of the MindUP program said this: “It will be perceived as an introduction of Buddhism into the classroom and forced participation in a religious activity.” The U.S. director of education and training for MindUP responded to those concerns by saying “The [MindUP] curriculum is not promoting any religion and is a secular program based in neuroscience, psychology, social and emotional literacy and mindful awareness training. “People sometimes see mindfulness and think religion,” Hersey said. “It’s not affiliated with religion at all.” In that situation, the School Board President, because of MindUP’s assurance of neutrality, overrode parent concerns and implemented the program.

 

 

According to the MindUP website, nearly 1 million children in the US, Canada, UK, Serbia, Mexico, Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand, are participating in the MindUP program.

 

 

 

 

 

 


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