Allen J. Hall

Materials Science & Engineering, Productivity, and Life

Happiness and Meditation (quick one for Michele)…

This is a quick post for Michele. A sort of aggregated post. I’ll have to add more in the future regarding where this comes from. Essentially, I’ve been intrigued in the past few years by the work going in conjunction with the Mind and Life institute. This institute is trying to bring about collaboration between Buddhist practitioners and Science Researchers. I myself am not Buddhist, but appreciate some of their intellectual pursuits.

Mattieu Ricard getting his EEG

In particular, I came across the work of Matthieu Ricard (who’s called the Happiest Man On Earth- what a title… must have serious responsibilities!). Videos for you after the link…

I first heard Ricard give his presentation at TED (via their online presentation system) [20 mins.] (also can be found on

A longer discussion was to be had at Google’s Tech Talks [59 mins.]:

Jon Kabat-Zinn
Eventually, this led me to Jon Kabat-Zinn, who has been credited with single-handedly bringing the practice of Meditation into modern Medicine in the US. He calls his program “Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR).” Again, Google’s Tech Talks to the rescue: First, the primary discussion about the reasons for MBSR and some research [74 mins]…

Finally, a short meditation session actually led by Jon Kabat-Zinn for the Google Employees who attended his informal session [72 mins.]:

Quite a long post if you watch all the videos. For me the last was most useful, as I always wanted to attempt simple meditation, but I was making it too much of a cerebral event. This whole post started with a recent Migraine that Michele had, and my desire to help her relax and stop her pain.

I hope to have more links to actual research papers up soon.

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A Quick Introduction...

I'm a graduate student (PhD Candidate) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

I've studied and researched in two fields of Materials Science and Engineering (Polymers and Semiconductors). My interests are as diverse as my musical tastes and I usually have my hand in some crazy project during my free time.

I'm available for consulting and have access to a world-renown materials research user-facility supported by the D.O.E. If you would like to know more, please contact me.

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