"Buddhism and Brain Research - How Meditation Works?"

Symposium in the year of the European Capital of Culture "RUHR 2010" at Ruhr University in Bochum.

Prof. Dr. Andreas K. Engel and Lama Ole Nydahl discuss about consciousness and the connection between brain and mind. Nowadays, by means of modern technology, mental activity can be measured very precisely by observing brain activity from outside. Buddhist meditation, on the other hand, provides a detailed observation of mental activity from the inside.  These two perspectives meet in a panel discussion. Professor Engel is the head of the Institute of Neurophysiology  at the university hospital in Hamburg and is well-known for his work in brain research; Lama Ole Nydahl is among the most renowned Buddhist teachers in the Western world. Both experts discuss about consciousness and the connection between brain and mind.

The second part of the evening will demonstrate how meditation affects the brain.  The latest neuroscientific studies indicate that with regular meditation, the brain structure and activity change permanently. A few of the most exciting results will be presented and discussed by the experts, including the study which was carried out in the laboratory of Professor Engel, examining Lama Ole Nydahl himself.

Afterwards, Professor Engel and Lama Ole will also be there for questions and answers.

Introduction:     Dr. Peter Malinowski
Moderation:      Guido Czeija, MA
Lecture hall (Audimax) of the Ruhr University Bochum
7.30 pm     Panel discussion

The participants:

Lama Ole Nydahl - one of the most renowned Buddhist teachers in the West who has been travelling around the world for 35 years now to start and visit Buddhist centres, students and people interested in Buddhism.

"The basic nature of our mind is like space: limitless and indestructible. When we work with mind and realize this, our inner qualities awake: We become fearless and get more surplus in order to help others."

LINK Lama Ole Nydahls Homepage


Prof. Dr. Andreas K. Engel - Director of the Institute of Neurophysiology and Pathophysiology at the university hospital in Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE)

"How does the world develop in our head? Why are we able to simultaneously see a glass of water, smell the scent of a rose, stroke a cat and listen to a song by Elton John when the view into the brain shows the activity of the neurons in totally different regions? How do hundreds of billions of neurons communicate? The neuroscientists made great progress in the search for the language of the brain. ?Now we know how single words produced by the brain form sentences. Thus, we know the grammar."

LINK Professor Engels Homepage