People maintain a positive identity in at least two ways: They evaluate themselves more favorably than other people, and they judge themselves to be better now than they were in the past. Both strategies rely on autobiographical memories. The authors investigate the role of autobiographical memories of lying and emotional harm in maintaining a positive identity. For memories of lying to or emotionally harming others, participants judge their own actions as less morally wrong and less negative than those in which (...) other people lied to or emotionally harmed them. Furthermore, people judge those actions that happened further in the past to be more morally wrong than those that happened more recently. Finally, for periods of the past when they believed that they were very different people than they are now, participants judge their actions to be more morally wrong and more negative than those actions from periods of their pasts when they believed that they were very similar to who they are now. The authors discuss these findings in relation to theories about the function of autobiographical memory and moral cognition in constructing and perceiving the self over time. (shrink)
We have considered a simple word game called the word-morph. After making our participants play a stipulated number of word-morph games, we have analyzed the experimental data. We have given a detailed analysis of the learning involved in solving this word game. We propose that people are inclined to learn landmarks when they are asked to navigate from a source to a destination. We note that these landmarks are nodes that have high closeness-centrality ranking.
"The definitive work by B.K.S. Iyengar, the world's most respected yoga teacher. B.K.S. Iyengar has devoted his life to the practice and study of yoga. It was B.K.S. Iyengar's unique teaching style, bringing precision and clarity to the practice, as well as a mindset of 'yoga for all', which has made it into the worldwide phenomenon it is today. 'Light on Yoga' is widely called 'the bible of yoga' and has served as the source book for generations (...) of yoga students around the world. It is the classic text for all serious students of yoga." --Publisher description. (shrink)
This article explores the Foucauldian notions of practices of the self and care of the self, read via Deleuze, in the context of Iyengar yoga (one of the most popular forms of yoga currently). Using ethnographic and interview research data the article outlines the Iyengar yoga techniques which enable a focus upon the self to be developed, and the resources offered by the practice for the creation of ways of knowing, experiencing and forming the self. In particular, the (...) article asks whether Iyengar yoga offers possibilities for freedom and liberation, or whether it is just another practice of control and management. Assessing Iyengar yoga via a ‘critical function’, a function of ‘struggle’ and a ‘curative and therapeutic function’, the article analyses whether the practice might constitute a mode of care of the self, and what it might offer in the context of the contemporary need to live better, as well as longer. (shrink)
Iyengar Yoga Wisdom & Practice" is a practical and an inspiring anthology of Iyengar's insights into yoga, life and the path to peace and happiness. Yoga practice lies at the heart of the book, and it is illustrated with over 60 new step-by-step sequences of yoga postures specially shot in India and accompanied by Iyengar's illuminating observations on technique, their significance, and their benefits. This book not only presents Iyengar's practical advice on how to perform key (...) yoga postures, but also draws on a wide range of other material taken from interviews and world lecture tours, to the many texts Iyengar has written about yoga and about his own life's journey. (shrink)
Prof. Iyengar's biography of Sri Aurobindo, long a standard reference work, is now in its fifth edition. The author's subtitle indicates the depth and breadth of the book, as it links the life of Sri Aurobindo, who played for our age the crucial role of leader of humanity's evolving destiny , with the history of India and the world. It also provides detailed discussions of Sri Aurobindo's writings, from the early poems and plays to the politics of Bande Mataram, (...) from the philosophy and social thought of the Arya to the epic masterpiece of Savitri, as the essential keys to understanding his life and work. This book is available again after a long time. (shrink)
The microfinance business model focuses largely on lending to the woman in the household, rather than the man. The belief is that women are more trustworthy borrowers than men, and that lending to women may have increased social impact. Yet in several cases, women do not have control over the loan backed business despite being the borrower of record. Such takeover of the business by the man constitutes an ethical violation. We find that high dependency ratios in the family are (...) correlates of such ethical violations. Further, we also find that ethical violations have a significant economic cost, consistent with prior scholarship in the family-business domain. While access to microfinance increases household welfare, this beneficial impact reduces by over 50% in the presence of an ethical violation. Our results suggest that microfinance lenders need to move beyond the traditional role of just being a lender to providing advice on issues like family planning, and money management, and enforcement, thus moving closer to the solidarity economy paradigm of integrating savings and credit into broader canvases of social relationships and social structures. (shrink)
_Curriculum and Learning for Climate Action_ offers researchers, practitioners, donors, and decisionmakers insights into entry points for education systems change needed to reorient human society’s relationship with our planetary systems.
In this article, we first review the development of clinical ethics in pediatrics in the United States. We report that, over the last 40 years, most children’s hospitals have ethics committees but that those committees are rarely consulted. We speculate that the reasons for the paucity of ethics consults might be because ethical dilemmas are aired in other venues. The role of the ethics consultant, then, might be to shape the institutional climate and create safe spaces for the discussion of (...) difficult and sometimes contentious issues. Finally, we report how pediatric clinical ethics has evolved differently in a number of other countries around the world. (shrink)
Earlier evidence suggests that besides humans, some species of mammals and birds demonstrate visual self-recognition, assessed by the controversial “mark” test. Whereas, there are high levels of inter-individual differences amongst a single species, some species such as macaques and pigeons which do not spontaneously demonstrate mirror self-recognition can be trained to do so. We were surprised to discover that despite being widely used as a model system for avian research, the performance of zebra finches on the mark test had not (...) been studied earlier. Additionally, we studied the behavioral responses of another species of passerine songbirds to a mirror and the MSR mark test. Although a small number of adult male zebra finches appeared to display heightened responses toward the mark while observing their reflections, we could not rule out the possibility that these were a part of general grooming rather than specific to the mark. Furthermore, none of the house crows demonstrated mark-directed behavior or increased self-exploratory behaviors when facing mirrors. Our study suggests that self-directed behaviors need to be tested more rigorously in adult male zebra finches while facing their reflections and these findings need to be replicated in a larger population, given the high degree of variability in mirror-directed behaviors. (shrink)
Yoga is a unique form of expert movement that promotes an increasingly subtle interpenetration of thought and movement. The mindful nature of its practice, even at expert levels, challenges the idea that thought and mind are inevitably disruptive to absorbed coping. Building on parallel phenomenological and ethnographic studies of skilful performance and embodied apprenticeship, we argue for the importance in yoga of mental access to embodied movement during skill execution by way of a case study of instruction and practice in (...) two related traditions, Iyengar and Anusara. Sharing a pose repertoire, they are based on distinctive philosophical systems with different teaching styles and metaphoric structures. To address relations between pedagogy and practice in embodied expertise, and to investigate the reciprocal influences of embodiment and thought, we explore in detail the linguistically mediated learning context where practitioners work with yoga teachers. Here, the mind/body problem comes to practical life. We demonstrate the effects of words on bodies, as knowledge is literally incorporated. We show why interpersonal influence on our movement capacities is sometimes needed to enhance expertise. We theorize and identify ?signature patterns of tension? among practitioners. These patterns have four sources: ghost gestures, innate differences in bodily form, functional fusing, and signature patterns of affective experience, modulation and expression. These patterns of tension produce ?silent zones?, cognitively impenetrable actions, functional fusing of a skilful, compensatory form, and signature patterns of pain and damage. We show how instruction can disrupt these silent zones, enhancing mental and physical flexibility. (shrink)
Yoga is a unique form of expert movement that promotes an increasingly subtle interpenetration of thought and movement. The mindful nature of its practice, even at expert levels, challenges the idea that thought and mind are inevitably disruptive to absorbed coping. Building on parallel phenomenological and ethnographic studies of skilful performance and embodied apprenticeship, we argue for the importance in yoga of mental access to embodied movement during skill execution by way of a case study of instruction and practice in (...) two related traditions, Iyengar and Anusara. Sharing a pose repertoire, they are based on distinctive philosophical systems with different teaching styles and metaphoric structures. To address relations between pedagogy and practice in embodied expertise, and to investigate the reciprocal influences of embodiment and thought, we explore in detail the linguistically mediated learning context where practitioners work with yoga teachers. Here, the mind/body problem comes to practical life. We demonstrate the effects of words on bodies, as knowledge is literally incorporated. We show why interpersonal influence on our movement capacities is sometimes needed to enhance expertise. We theorize and identify ‘signature patterns of tension’ among practitioners. These patterns have four sources: ghost gestures, innate differences in bodily form, functional fusing, and signature patterns of affective experience, modulation and expression. These patterns of tension produce ‘silent zones’, cognitively impenetrable actions, functional fusing of a skilful, compensatory form, and signature patterns of pain and damage. We show how instruction can disrupt these silent zones, enhancing mental and physical flexibility. (shrink)
Jewish by birth, though from a secular family, Alan Morinis took a deep journey into Hinduism and Buddhism as a young man. He received a doctorate for his study of Hindu pilgrimage, learned yoga in India with B. K. S. Iyengar, and attended his first Buddhist meditation course in the Himalayas in 1974. But in 1997, when his film career went off track and he reached for some spiritual oxygen, he felt inspired to explore his Jewish heritage. In his (...) reading he happened upon a Jewish tradition of spiritual practice called Mussar. Gradually he realized he had stumbled on an insightful discipline for self-development, complete with meditative, contemplative, and other well-developed transformative practices designed to penetrate the deepest roots of the inner life. Eventually reaching the limits of what he could learn on his own, he decided to seek out a Mussar teacher. That was not easily achieved, since almost the entire world of the Mussar tradition had been wiped out in the Holocaust. In time, he did find an accomplished master who stood in an unbroken line of transmission of the Mussar tradition, and who lived at the center of a community of Orthodox Jews on Long Island. This book tells the story of Morinis’s journey to meet his teacher and what he learned from him, and reveals the central teachings and practices that are the spiritual treasury and legacy of Mussar. Alan Morinis has written this book because the wisdom and practices that helped him so much have not penetrated the world beyond the confines of Orthodox Judaism, and may not be fully appreciated even there at this time. His hope is that Jews and non-Jews alike will find in Mussar a time-tested path of spiritual practice that will help them discover the hidden radiance within. (shrink)
* Hatha yoga is commonly thought to be a pure, ancient Indian spiritual discipline that transcends cultural, temporal and spatial boundaries or a spiritual discipline corrupted by Indians (for export) or Westerners (for import) to accommodate Westerners. Calling these beliefs into question, Max Popov's Radiant Bodies shows how hatha yoga was transformed from sacred practice into a health and fitness regime for middle-class Indians in India in the early and mid-20th century. Popov tells the story of this transformation through the (...) lives and accomplishments of eleven key figures: six Indian yogis (Shri Yogendra, Swami Kuvalayananda, S. Sundaram, T. Krishnamacharya, Swami Sivananda and B. K. S. Iyengar), an Indian bodybuilder (K. V. Iyer), a rajah (Bhavanarao Shrinivasrao), an Indian diplomat (Apa Pant), an American-born English journalist (Louise Morgan), and a Russian-born yogi trained in India (Indra Devi).Their accomplishments are placed within the context of such Western trends as the physical culture movement, the commodification of exercise, militant nationalism, post-World War I anxiety, the mystique of science, jazz age popular entertainment, and the quest for youth and beauty. Through a series of biographical narratives placed in a rich cultural context, Popov not only brings to life the formation of modern hatha yoga as an exercise system in the early 20th century but also its transformation over the course of the 20th century into an embodied spiritual practice. Popov draws on extensive research from rare primary sources to present a cutting edge interpretation of the history of modern hatha yoga. Radiant Bodies is a thoughtful book for the educated general reader that would also be of special interest for religion scholars and yoga professionals and practitioners. (shrink)