The intersection of mindfulness, neuroscience

Apr 29, 2013
In a scene from the film "When the Iron Bird Flies," Anam Thubten meets with a student at Dhyana Hall in Point Richmond, Calif.

Belfast — "When the Iron Bird Flies," a documentary about the meeting of neuroscience and Tibetan Buddhism with Anam Thubten, the Dalai Lama, Sharon Salzberg and many others, will be screened Saturday, May 4, at 6:30 p.m. in the Abbott Room of Belfast Free Library, 106 High St.

Dr. Richard Davidson has studied the effects of meditation on the brains of Tibetan Buddhist practitioners for years. When he first began his studies, the idea that the brain can change in response to experience was not generally recognized by the scientific community. That has all changed, and now the concept of neuroplasticity is meeting the Buddhist concept of transformation through the practice of mindfulness. This film explores in depth how scientific and Buddhist thought can work together to help us create a saner, more compassionate 21st-century world.

Discussion will follow. There is a suggested donation of $5 to 10 to pay for the costs of screening, but no one will be turned away. For more information, contact: Katia Ancona at or 323-5393. The screening will serve to introduce Thubten, who will give a public talk Monday, May 20, at 7 p.m. at Belfast’s Unitarian Universalist Church.

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115 or

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