Moving Toward Global Compassion
We all feel compassion towards our offspring, but what about the stranger on the street? What about the person who has a different skin color or a different religion?
Paul Ekman is the Manager of the Paul Ekman Group, LLC (PEG), a small company that produces training devices relevant to emotional skills, and is initiating new research relevant to national security and law enforcement.
His research on facial expression and body movement began in 1954, as the subject of his Master’s thesis in 1955 and his first publication in 1957. In his early work, his approach to nonverbal behavior showed his training in personality. Over the next decade, a social psychological and cross-cultural emphasis characterized his work, with a growing interest in an evolutionary and semiotic frame of reference. In addition to his basic research on emotion and its expression, he has, for the last thirty years, also been studying deceit.
In 1971, he received a Research Scientist Award from the National Institute of Mental Health; that Award has been renewed in 1976, 1981, 1987, 1991, and 1997. His research was supported by fellowships, grants and awards from the National Institute of Mental Health for over forty years.
Articles reporting on Dr. Ekman’s work have appeared in Time Magazine, Smithsonian Magazine, Psychology Today, The New Yorker and others, both American and foreign. Numerous articles about his work have also appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post and other national newspapers.
He has appeared on 48 Hours, Dateline, Good Morning America, 20/20, Larry King, Oprah, Johnny Carson and many other TV programs. He has also been featured on various public television programs such as News Hour with Jim Lehrer, and Bill Moyers’ The Truth About Lying.
Ekman is co-author of Emotion in the Human Face (1971), Unmasking the Face (1975), Facial Action Coding System (1978), editor of Darwin and Facial Expression (1973), co-editor of Handbook of Methods in Nonverbal Behavior Research (1982), Approaches to Emotion (1984), The Nature of Emotion (1994), What the Face Reveals (1997), and author of Face of Man (1980), Telling Lies (1985, paperback, 1986, second edition, 1992, third edition, 2001, 4th edition 2008), Why Kids Lie (1989, paperback 1991), Emotions Revealed, (2003), New Edition (2009) Telling Lies, Dalai Lama-Emotional Awareness (2008) and New Edition Emotions Revealed (2007) . He is the editor of the third edition (1998) and the fourth edition (2009) of Charles Darwin’s The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals (1998). He has published more than 100 articles.
I've had the good fortune, and luck, to get to know the Dalai Lama and to have the opportunity to spend almost 50 hours in one-on-one discussions. And we've influenced each other. One of the influences he's had on me is to get me interested in the issue of compassion.
We all feel compassion towards our offspring, particularly when they're helpless and young. And then again when they get helpless in old age, or if they get to the point where they can't really take care of themselves. But how about the stranger, the stranger on the street, the stranger in another country? The person who has a different skin color or a different religion? Do we feel compassion for them? Do we wish to reduce their suffering?
Well, that's the Dalai Lama's goal. And I call that global compassion. And the title of our book is Moving Towards Global Compassion. How can we make that a more common rather than the exceptional phenomenon, something that everyone feels a commitment to?
I had the good luck that I could discuss the ideas in the book with the Dalai Lama. So the last eight or nine pages of the book are his reactions to the ideas I presented. And if it's not giving away too much, he likes them and he comes up with some new suggestions of a very practical nature but that I'll leave for the reader of the book. It's in the last five pages.
In Their Own Words is recorded in Big Think's studio.
Image courtesy of Shutterstock
Both schizophrenics and people with a common personality type share similar brain patterns.
- A new study shows that people with a common personality type share brain activity with patients diagnosed with schizophrenia.
- The study gives insight into how the brain activity associated with mental illnesses relates to brain activity in healthy individuals.
- This finding not only improves our understanding of how the brain works but may one day be applied to treatments.
It's a development that could one day lead to much better treatments for osteoporosis, joint damage, and bone fractures.
- Scientists have isolated skeletal stem cells in adult and fetal bones for the first time.
- These cells could one day help treat damaged bone and cartilage.
- The team was able to grow skeletal stem cells from cells found within liposuctioned fat.
Gut bacteria play an important role in how you feel and think and how well your body fights off disease. New research shows that exercise can give your gut bacteria a boost.
- Two studies from the University of Illinois show that gut bacteria can be changed by exercise alone.
- Our understanding of how gut bacteria impacts our overall health is an emerging field, and this research sheds light on the many different ways exercise affects your body.
- Exercising to improve your gut bacteria will prevent diseases and encourage brain health.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.