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yoga by Western doctors

Why More Western Doctors Are Now Prescribing Yoga Therapy

With a growing body of research proving yoga’s healing benefits, it’s no wonder more Western doctors are prescribing this ancient practice. Learn what’s behind the trend.

SUSAN ENFIELDFEB 3, 2016

https://www.yogajournal.com/lifestyle/western-doctors-prescribing-yoga-therapy

With a growing body of research proving yoga’s healing benefits, it’s no wonder more doctors—including those with traditional Western training—are prescribing this ancient practice to their patients.

Yoga therapy is now recognized as a clinically viable treatment, with established programs at major health care centers, such as The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Cleveland Clinic, and many others. In 2003, there were just five yoga-therapy training programs in the International Association of Yoga Therapists (IAYT) database. Today, there are more than 130 worldwide, including 24 rigorous multi-year programs newly accredited by IAYT, with 20 more under review. According to a 2015 survey, most IAYT members work in hospital settings, while others work in outpatient clinics or physical therapy, oncology, or rehabilitation departments (and in private practice).

Some therapists focus on physical mechanics, while others bring in Ayurvedic healing principles and factor in diet, psychological health, and spirituality to create a holistic, customized plan.

“Researchers take blood samples before and after yoga practice to see which genes have been turned on and which were deactivated,” says Khalsa. “We’re also able to see which areas of the brain are changing in structure and size due to yoga and meditation.” This kind of research is helping take yoga into the realm of “real science,” he says, by showing how the practice changes psycho-physiological function.

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more on contemplative practices in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=contemplative

China Censorship In Western Democracies

How The Chinese Government Works To Censor Debate In Western Democracies

October 3, 20184:24 PM ET https://www.npr.org/2018/10/03/636299830/how-the-chinese-government-works-to-censor-debate-in-western-democracies

Last year, the Durham University students’ union organized a debate on whether China was a threat to the West. Tom Harwood, then president of the union, said the school’s Chinese Students and Scholars Association complained about the topic and pressed him to drop one of the speakers, Anastasia Lin, a former Miss World Canada. Lin is also a human rights activist and a practitioner of Falun Gong, a spiritual meditation group banned by the Chinese government.

In March, the United Kingdom is scheduled to leave the European Union, a giant market of more than 500 million consumers. British officials are desperate to ink new free trade deals with major economies, including China. Harwood was stunned that a Chinese diplomat would suggest that the United Kingdom might pay a financial price for something as small as a college debate.

lash-forward to 2012 when then-British Prime Minister David Cameron met with the Dalai Lama in public in London. China’s economy was now more than three times the size of the United Kingdom’s. Beijing responded by canceling meetings and freezing out British officials. In 2015, Cameron refused to meet the Dalai Lama, who told The Spectator, a conservative political magazine, “Money, money, money. That’s what this is about. Where is morality?”

The Chinese government no longer just tries to punish the West for straying from the Communist Party line. In the past year, Chinese President Xi Jinping has gone further, arguing that China’s authoritarian system can serve as a model for others, an alternative to liberal democracy.

Clumsy attempts to censor people — as in the case of the Durham University debate — have backfired, but China has had success pressuring businesses, as the apologies by Marriott and Mercedes-Benz show.
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more on China in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=china

burnout among professionals

Doctors Today May Be Miserable, But Are They ‘Burnt Out’?

September 18, 201812:06 PM ET MARA GORDON

https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2018/09/18/649151654/doctors-today-may-be-miserable-but-are-they-burnt-out

It turns out, nobody really knows. The first study, a systematic review, summarizes the research to date on physician burnout. Study authors found that researchers do not use a consistent definition of burnout, and estimates of how common it is vary widely.

The second study followed doctors-in-training over six years and tracked how they felt about their work. They found that women and doctors in certain high-stress specialties were more likely to experience symptoms of burnout, like emotional exhaustion and regret about career choice.

Dr. Katherine Gold, coauthor of an editorial accompanying the JAMA studies. She says that the main questionnaire used to measure burnout wasn’t even designed for doctors. She says it’s intended for professionals like social workers and therapists, who have to cope with trauma their patients experience. My note: this is the merit of Kelsey Milne’s dissertation with SCSU EDAD program: how do we measure may be the key to the right assessment.

Burnout definition: How you define burnout is all over the map. Any time you have a diagnosis that might apply to 85 percent of the population, you wonder how useful that is. But burnout is much less stigmatized than depression. People are just more willing to say they’re burned out.People have resonated with the feeling that something isn’t right, and something is making our work really difficult. We’ve latched on to this as the word we’re going to use.

There’s talk about the solutions all being personal. The physician should be more resilient. The physician should do yoga. The physician should practice mindfulness. I think the stress that people are feeling is much more about external demands, like the electronic medical record and paperwork.

I know I feel frustrated when I get emails telling me that there’s lunchtime yoga, which of course I can’t make it to because I have too many patient charts to complete. My Note: this is part of Kelsey’s findings for educators also.

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more on meditation in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=meditation

meditative practices help the body

Harvard Study: Clearing Your Mind Affects Your Genes And Can Lower Your Blood Pressure

new study indicates that people who meditated over an eight-week period had a striking change in the expression of 172 genes that regulate inflammation, circadian rhythms and glucose metabolism. And that, in turn, was linked to a meaningful decrease in their blood pressure.

“This is a major step to overcome the innate bias that has developed in medicine over the last hundred years or so,” says Dr. Herbert Benson, who started promoting what he called “the relaxation response” more than four decades ago. “Going back to penicillin in the 1920s, we have been inexorably dependent on medication, surgery and procedures.”

His goal is to establish the relaxation response and other techniques that calm the brain — yoga, t’ai chi, breathing exercises, repetitive prayer and other meditative practices — as a “third leg” of medical treatment, along with medication and surgical procedures.

Previous studies of other diseases, such as inflammatory bowel disease and rheumatoid arthritis, have suggested improvement after meditation. But, “this is the first study where we have a nice, clean, clinical read-out,” says Towia Libermann,
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more on meditation in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=meditation
more on mindfulness in this IMS blgo
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=mindfulness

storytelling and stem

Could Storytelling Be the Secret Sauce to STEM Education?

Could Storytelling Be the Secret Sauce to STEM Education?

Using Ursula Le Guin short story “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas,”  has allowed Fruchter to make his computer science math classes entirely project-based, which in turn draws the interest of kids who might not have otherwise liked computer programming.

teaching computer programming with fiction into a curriculum called StoryCode. He classifies STEM fiction into three categories: explicit, science fiction and implicit STEM texts.

“When you can call a line of code a spell, then you are getting somewhere,” Fruchter said. After all, isn’t computer code basically modern magic?

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Ursula K. Le Guin on Art, Storytelling, and the Power of Language to Transform and Redeem

https://www.brainpickings.org/2018/01/30/ursula-k-le-guin-walking-on-the-water/
The paradox, of course, is that because our notion of history is rooted in the written record, words are both our instrument of truth and our weapon of distortion. We use them both to reveal and to conceal — a duality which Hannah Arendt so memorably dissected in her meditation on lying in politics.

Storytelling is a tool for knowing who we are and what we want, too. If we never find our experience described in poetry or stories, we assume that our experience is insignificant.

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more on storytelling and education in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=storytelling

code4lib

Code4Lib Proposed Preconference Workshops

http://2017.code4lib.org/workshops/proposed-workshops.html

Introduction to functional programming principles, including immutability, higher-order functions, and recursion using the Clojure programming language. This workshop will cover getting started with the Clojure REPL, building programs through function composition, testing, and web-development using ClojureScript.

Proposed by: Sam Popowich

This workshop will do a deep dive into approaches and recommend best practices for customizing Blacklight applications. We will discuss a range of topics, including styling and theming, customizing discovery experiences, and working with Solr.

Proposed by: Chris Beer, Jessie Keck, and Jack Reed

We all encounter failure in our professional lives: failed projects, failed systems, failed organizations. We often think of failure as a negative, but it has intrinsic value — and since it’s inevitable that we’ll eventually experience failure ourselves, it’s important to know how to accept it, how to take lessons from it, and how to grow from it professionally. Fail4Lib, now in its 5th year, is the perennial Code4Lib preconference dedicated to discussing and coming to terms with the failures that we all face in our professional lives. It is a safe space for us to explore failure, to talk about our own experiences with failure, and to encourage enlightened risk taking. The goal of Fail4Lib is for participants to be adept at failing gracefully, so that when we do fail, we do so in a way that moves us forward. This half-day preconference will consist of case studies, round-table discussions, and, for those interested in sharing, lightning talks on failures we’ve dealt with in our own work.

Proposed by: Andreas Orphanides and Bret Davidson

Intro to programming in Ruby on Rails

Proposed by: Carolyn Cole and Laney McGlohon

Amazon Web Services currently offers 58 services ranging from the familiar compute and storage systems to game development and the internet of things. We will focus on the 20-some services that you should be aware of as you move your applications to their cloud.

The morning session will be mostly overview and the afternoon session will be more practical examples and discussion. This could be broken into two sessions.

Proposed by: Cary Gordon, t/b/d, and t/b/d

FOLIO is a library services platform — infrastructure that allows cooperating library apps to share data. This workshop is a hands-on introduction to FOLIO for developers of library apps. In this tutorial you will work with your own Vagrant image through a series of exercises designed to demonstrate how to install an app on the platform and use the data sources and design elements the platform provides.

REQUIREMENTS Laptop (4GB) with Vagrant installed.

Proposed by: Peter Murray

Have an idea for an app? Want to work with FOLIO developers and others in the community on the FOLIO platform to make it happen. Come to this half-day hack-a-thon! Ideas for new developers will be posted in the project Jira, or bring your own concepts and work with others to make them reality.

REQUIREMENTS Laptop (4GB) with Vagrant installed. Attending the FOLIO Tutorial is recommended, but not required.

Proposed by: Peter Murray

Google Apps script is a server-side implementation of JavaScript which supports API calls to Google Services. This can provide an excellent platform for developing simple library applications. The libraries at Georgetown University and the University of Dayton have successfully deployed applications built with Google App Script.

In this workshop, we will step through the various types of applications that can be built with Google Apps Script.
(1) Custom cell formulas
(2) Spreadsheet Add On Functions (menu items, time based triggers)
(3) Google Apps Script as a Web Service
(4) Google Apps Script Add-Ons that can be shared globally or by domain

In this workshop, we will build sample instances of each of these types of applications (wifi-permitting) and spend some time brainstorming additional applications that would be useful for the library community.

Sample Applications: http://georgetown-university-libraries.github.io/#google-sheets

Proposed by: Terry Brady and Craig Boman

Calls to mindfulness and self care can have mixed reception in our field. While some view this important work as navel-gazing or unnecessary, it is integral to being present and avoiding burnout. Often this skewed attention to output comes at the expense of our personal lives, our organizations, our health, our relationships, and our mental well-being. Learning to prioritize self-care is an ongoing project among those who perform emotional labor. While some view the work of mindfulness as self-indulgent, it has proven to keep many on the track of being present and avoiding burnout.*

The purpose of this preconference is to provide a short introduction to self care and mindfulness with practical work we can use regardless of setting. We’ll discuss microaggressions and allyship (microaggressions being the brief and commonplace verbal, behavioral, or environmental indignities that marginalized people of various groups experience daily and allyship referring to the powerful role that individuals from privileged groups can play in supporting marginalized individuals). We will then transition to a modified unconference setting where participants can practice scenarios and learn practical solutions. Each of the presenters has different set of skills and experiences that allow for many techniques and strategies to be explored. Preconference attendees will participate in sessions like “Mentor Speed Dating” where they get to talk to and question potential mentors/mentees. They may be coached through a guided meditation or walked through a calming breathing exercise. For those looking to a more physical space, office yoga and stretching techniques may be shared depending on the outcomes of the unconference interest.

Foundational materials and articles will be shared with the registrants prior to the meeting with the option of further discussion at the workshop. An open access guide to all the resources and readings will be available after the preconference, and people will be encouraged to share additional their tools on a website.

Suggested Hashtag #c4lselfcare

* Abenavoli, R.M., Jennings, P.A., Greenberg, M.T., Harris, A.R., & Katz, D.A. (2013). The protective effects of mindfulness against burnout among educators. Psychology of Education Review, 37(2), 57-69

Proposed by: Carmen Mitchell, Lia Friedman, and Torie Quinonez

In this preconference, participants will be introduced to Virtual Reality uses in library settings, notably, by way of the VR Reading Room. Within the VR Reading Room prototype, users can collaboratively explore digital collections (e.g. HathiTrust) by way of VR headsets. Participants of this workshop will have the opportunity to experience HTC Vive functionality. The system will be setup with a prototype e-book experiment in order to model several VR affordances. Once attendees have been introduced to the HTC Vive hardware and sample project, groups of participants will have an opportunity to further brainstorm novel uses cases.

Proposed by: Jim Hahn

Python[1] has become one of the dominant languages in scientific computing and is used by researchers around the world. Its popularity is due in large part to a rich set of libraries for data analysis like Pandas[2] and NumPy[3] and tools for exploring scientific code like Jupyter notebooks[4]. Join us for this half-day workshop on the basics of using Pandas within a Jupyter notebook. We will cover importing data, selecting and subsetting data, grouping data, and generating simple visualizations. All are welcome, but some familiarity with Python is recommended, e.g. the concepts covered in the Codecademy[5] or Google[6] Python courses.

[1] https://www.python.org/
[2] http://pandas.pydata.org/
[3] http://www.numpy.org/
[4] http://jupyter.org/
[5] https://www.codecademy.com/learn/python
[6] https://developers.google.com/edu/python/

Proposed by: Bret Davidson and Kevin Beswick

Learn about the features and capabilities of Sufia, a Hydra-based repository solution. Attendees will participate in a hand-on demonstration where they deposit content, edit metadata, create collections, and explore access control options. Attendees should bring laptops with Chrome, Firefox, or Safari installed. Please plan on bringing at least one image, document, or other digital content that you’re comfortable uploading and using for demo and experimentation purposes 🙂

Proposed by: Mark Bussey and Justin Coyne

The web can be a trove of openly accessible data, but it is not always readily available in a format that allows it to be downloaded for analysis and reuse. This workshop aims to introduce attendees to web scraping, a technique to automate extracting data from websites.

Part one of the workshop will use browser extensions and web tools to get started with web scraping quickly, give examples where this technique can be useful, and introduce how to use XPath queries to select elements on a page.

Part two will introduce how to write a spider in Python to follow hyperlinks and scrape several web pages using the Scrapy framework. We will conclude with an overview of the legal aspects of web scraping and an open discussion.

You don’t need to be a coder to enjoy this workshop! Anyone wishing to learn web scraping is welcome, although some familiarity with HTML will be helpful. Part two will require some experience with Python, attendees unfamiliar with this language are welcome to stay only for part one and still learn useful web scraping skills!

Proposed by: Thomas Guignard and Kim Pham

Paper prototyping is a low-cost, structured brainstorming technique that uses materials such as paper and pencils to better understand the way users interact with physical, visual, and textual information. It can help us learn how to better think through workflows, space design, and information architecture. Session attendees will learn about the ways low-fidelity prototyping and wireframing can be used to develop ideas, troubleshoot workflows, and improve learning and interaction.

In the first half of the workshop, participants will step through activities in icon design, persona development, and task development. In the second half they will develop a low fidelity prototype and step through a guerilla usability testing process with it.

Proposed by: Ekatarina (Eka) Grguric and Andreas Orphanides

physical exercise and the brain

How physical exercise makes your brain work better

Research shows different activities have quite specific mental effects – here’s how moving your body could sharpen your ideas

http://www.theguardian.com/education/2016/jun/18/how-physical-exercise-makes-your-brain-work-better

Just 10 minutes of playful coordination skills, like bouncing two balls at the same time, improved the attention of a large group of German teenagers.

oga teaches the deliberate command of movement and breathing, with the aim of turning on the body’s “relaxation response”. Science increasingly backs this claim. For example, a 2010 study put participants through eight weeks of daily yoga and meditation practice. In parallel with self-reported stress-reduction, brain scans showed shrinkage of part of their amygdala, a deep-brain structure strongly implicated in processing stress, fear and anxiety.

Walking, either on a treadmill or around Stanford’s leafy campus, bolstered divergent thinking: the free-roaming, idea-generating component of creative thought. It didn’t help convergent thinking, though.

more on mindfulness in this IMS blog:

http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=mindfulness

mindfulness in the classroom

Calming the teenage mind in the classroom

http://edition.cnn.com/2016/02/08/health/mindfulness-teenagers-schools-stress/

Lexxi Seay, a senior, was skeptical. “I actually never believed really in meditation. … I thought it was a joke,” she said during an interview.

Students “are just craving for ways to handle and cope with their stress” in healthy and nondestructive ways, said Gueritault. “It becomes sort of like instinctive and intuitive for them to just search for alternative ways to cope with their stress that have nothing to do with drugs or alcohol or whatever destructive behavior.”

More on mindfulness in education in this IMS blog:

http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims/?s=mindfulness&submit=Search

technology and activism

How the Rich and Powerful Use Tech to Silence Activists

Culture Date of Publication: 03.25.16.

http://www.wired.com/2016/03/truth-and-power/

Truth and Power, the final episode of which airs tonight on Pivot. Directed by Brian Knappenberger.

Knappenberger, who directed the feature-length documentary The Internet’s Own Boy, about the late Reddit co-founder Aaron Swartz.

Social Media Has Helped Activists Reclaim the Narrative

it’s not just activists who are benefiting from new technologies. Knappenberger spends nearly half the series carefully explaining the myriad ways governments and corporations use digital tools to surveil social movements. From examining the cell-phone tracking technologies used by law enforcement to uncovering how repressive regimes work with American tech companies to thwart social movements, the series offers up a smart meditation on the threat of digital surveillance on political dissent

It’s a problem Knappenberger illustrates in the “Activists or Terrorists” episode, where he unpacks how “Ag-gag” laws were passed under pressure from corporate lobbying and have made it illegal to film or photograph inside any animal farm without consent of the facility’s owner.

Prisoners for Sale,” the seventh episode, explores the story of two inmates-turned-journalists who started an independent publication to document systemic failures of the prison industrial complex.

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More on technology and civil disobedience in this IMS blog

http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims/?s=civil&submit=Search

engagement and contemplative practices

The On Course National Conference

http://oncourseworkshop.com/national-conference-overview/

has several sessions of interest:

Padlet Possibilities – Using Their Phones to Keep Their Attention in Class
Presenters: Kathy Magee and Paul Phillips, Faculty, Occupational Health and Safety, Northern Alberta Institute of Technology
Summary: Tired of fighting your students’ phones for their attention? Maybe it’s because the phone is more interesting than the lesson (or worse, than you). Why not use those phones to encourage participation in the day’s classroom activities and keep the on the learning and lessons you have planned. This session will have participants using their Ipads, tablets, and phones to access Padlet in order to identify, discuss, and adapt ways that this free software can be used in multi-disciplines.

Using PBL, and Active and Collaborative Techniques in Science Teaching
Presenter: Stamatis Muratidis, Faculty, Chemistry, Palo Alto College, TX
Summary: Participants interested in tips for successfully involving students by developing Active and Collaborative Learning (ACL) techniques will be engaged by use of a variety of topics, models and tools. Most of the workshop will take place in a collaborative group format and best practices for forming, molding and nurturing collaborative groups will be emphasized. Along the way the presenter will be promoting data-driven best practices, while identifying and mitigating some of the common pitfalls of implementing PBL and ACL activities.

Relax, Reflect, Relate: 3 R’s of Contemplative Practice
Presenter: William H. Johnson, Jr., Student Success Coordinator/Personal Development Coach, University of North Carolina, Greensboro, NC
Summary: Is life moving too fast? Are you busy beyond belief? Well, slow down! Would you attend a session that allows you to take the time to relax and be still, reflect on your life, and relate your thoughts and feelings to others? If you answered “yes” to at least one of these questions, then this workshop is for you. Research has shown that people applying some type of contemplative practice in their lives are likely to be more engaged, and are healthier and happier in life. Attendees in this session will participate in two forms of contemplative practice – meditation and reflective writing – that enhance personal growth. By the end of the session, you will learn strategies to quiet the mind, engage the spirit, and connect with others!

Study Smarter, Not Just Harder!
Presenter: Amy Munson, Director of Instructional Design, United States Air Force Academy
Summary: The United States Air Force Academy Science of Teaching and Learning program is conducting a study on how students learn about their own learning. The research team hypothesizes that students learn more from peers than from “outsiders” such as faculty members and has set out to develop a peer training and messaging program alongside a faculty training and messaging program using the same three highly successful learning/self-management strategies. On Course structures and strategies were implemented for the training components as researchers shared the benefits of practice testing, spaced practice and successive relearning as defined in Dunlosky and Rawson’s meta-analysis of learning strategies. This workshop will give participants an opportunity to learn more about those three strategies while also learning about how to implement a student “train the trainer” program.

 

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