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Listening Through Science

Season 1, Ep. 2

Continuing our series on listening and the importance of listening for constructive dialogue, episode two focuses on what neuroscience and mystical practices teach us about listening. Dr. Lia Howard talks with Dr. Andrew Newberg, Director of Research at the Marcus Institute of Integrative Health and physician at Jefferson University Hospital, and Dr. Justin McDaniel, Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Endowed Professor of the Humanities and Undergraduate Studies Chair in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Pennsylvania about their research. Neurotheology is the field of scholarship that seeks to understand the relationship between religion and spirituality on one hand and our brain on the other. Dr. Andrew Newberg has been studying the impact of religious practices such as meditation and prayer on the functioning of the brain since the early 90's. Dr. McDaniel, a former buddhist monk and researcher of languages teaches courses at Penn that require students to take on some of the same disciplines monks practice to quiet the mind and focus their attention. In this interview, we hear about Dr. Newberg's and Dr. McDaniel's research and studies learn practical tips for reducing distraction and improving deep listening.

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