The Mindful Vegan book is giving me the happy opportunity to present, teach, and talk about mindfulness meditation to a lot of people.
During these presentations, when there is time – after the introduction to mindfulness training, the presentations about the positive research surrounding mindfulness meditation, and practical instruction in mindfulness meditation – I like to show this short video from 60 Minutes, within which Anderson Cooper describes his introduction to mindfulness meditation.
I particularly like to conclude my mindfulness meditation presentations – right before Q and A begins – with this segment because it brings the scientific and the experiential together in a way that is easily recognizable. Who doesn’t know who Anderson Cooper is?
In an interview conducted since the release of this 60 Minutes Report on mindfulness meditation, Cooper reported that he has continued to meditate regularly. He says that he is fascinated with the idea that mindfulness meditation practice is a way to separate ourselves from our thoughts and our “stories” more at will. Cooper cites Jon Kabat-Zinn’s analogy of the thought process being like waves in the ocean and meditation being akin to diving under the waves, for a moment, to experience the calm that exists under the surface.
According to Cooper, moments of being present without the judgments and stresses of the mental narrative are moments of true living. By focusing his mental process on his breath during mediation (as a practice, returning to his breath stuck with him), he has gained the ability to simply reflect on his existence and experience time that is free of agitation.
During an interview with 60 Minutes Overtime, Cooper said, “One of the things that Jon Kabat-Zinn talks about is that everyone wants to figure out how to live longer, but this actually is a very easy way for you to live longer. Maybe you’re not extending your life, but you are present and living more of the moments of your life.”
A full transcript of the above video presentation on 60 Minutes about Mindfulness Meditation is available.