Fazel Abed and BRAC's extraordinary accomplishments

By Matthieu Ricard on February 20, 2013

I first met Fazel Abed in Vancouver during a Nobel Laureate Peace Conference with His Holiness the Dalai Lama that I was attending. I had no idea who he was. When he asked me what I did, I answered that I had founded a humanitarian organization that had built around 30 schools and 15 clinics. Without the least affectation, he replied ‟I have ...

Words of Alexandre Jollien — 3

By Matthieu Ricard on February 14, 2013

On violence in the media: ‟It is a trivialization of evil which suggests that what is sensational is to takeover the other. However, what is truly sensational is ordinary day to day heroism — a smile given every day to the old lady who is our neighbor, giving a hand to someone. We must rehabilitate gratuitous acts.” On the exploitatio...

Words of Alexandre Jollien - 2

By Matthieu Ricard on February 10, 2013

Can one change: ‟Real change has to be led by example. Nowadays, society makes the success a purely individualistic matter.” On the crystallization of the self: ‟This is a phenomenon of protection. While believing that one is protecting oneself, we create a prison that ends up feeling very stuffy.” On cooperation: ‟We must show th...

Words of Alexandre Jollien - 1

By Matthieu Ricard on February 05, 2013

A few days ago, I had the joy of meeting again Alexandre Jollien — a much loved Swiss philosopher who is handicapped from birth — in the quiet of a village in the snow. I asked him questions on a number of topics. Here are some of his answers: Individualism: ‟Individualism is to cut off oneself from others and position oneself as sepa...

Mind and Life XXVI, Mind, Brain and Matter

By Matthieu Ricard on January 28, 2013

In January, twenty of the world's foremost scientists and philosophers, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and other senior Tibetan scholars gathered for a week in South India to discuss Quantum physics, neurosciences, the nature of consciousness, and the applications of contemplative practices in clinical and educational settings. The meeting...

Celebrating the Twenty-Fifth Anniversary of the Mind and Life Institute

By Matthieu Ricard on January 18, 2013

The Mind and Life Institute held its 25th meeting last November in New York City. The meeting also corresponded to its 25 years of activities since Chilean-born neuroscientist and thinker Francisco Varela and American lawyer Adam Engle founded it. Over the years, the Mind and Life Institute has organized remarkable meetings between His Holine...

From Competition to Cooperation - 2

By Matthieu Ricard on January 06, 2013

I am more and more convinced that altruism is not a luxury. It is not merely a noble sentiment that we apply only when things go well. It has become a necessity. Greater consideration for others is how we will be able to solve the challenges of today in the short-term for the economy, subsequently applied to living standards, and in the long ...

From Competition to Cooperation - 1

By Matthieu Ricard on January 02, 2013

The business world is a world of competition that often is very intense. Unhealthy competition is driven by greed, hostility, and unscrupulous selfishness. However, competition can also used as a source of inspiration to improve what we do. Nothing could be better than a society centered on cooperation rather than on competition. Competi...