April 29, 2020
In this inaugural episode, Wendy speaks with Buddhist scholar, author, and longtime translator for the Dalai Lama, Thupten Jinpa. Their conversation covers many topics, including:
- how he met and started working with the Dalai Lama, and insights from 35 years of translating for him;
- the relationship of language and mind;
- how to deal with self-consciousness;
- the dialogue between Buddhism and science;
- first- and third-person ways of investigating the mind that are central to the science of meditation;
- sources of valid evidence and knowledge;
- the mind as more than the brain;
- the relevance of compassion for well-being and a program he developed to cultivate it;
- the value of mental training in the time of COVID, and other topics.
Thupten Jinpa is a former Tibetan monk who holds the Geshe Lharam degree, as well as a BA in philosophy and a PhD in religious studies, both from Cambridge University. Since 1985, he has been the principal English translator to the Dalai Lama and has, in this capacity, traveled extensively with him. He has translated and edited numerous books by the Dalai Lama, including the New York Times bestsellers Ethics for the New Millennium and The Art of Happiness. Jinpa’s own publications include Self, Reality, and Reason in Tibetan Philosophy, Tsongkhapa: A Buddha in the Land of Snows, and A Fearless Heart: How the Courage to be Compassionate Can Transform Our Lives. Jinpa is the main author of Compassion Cultivation Training (CCT), an eight-week formal program developed at Stanford University, and is a noted speaker on secular adaptations mindfulness and compassion. He is the founder and president of the Compassion Institute, chair of the board at the Mind & Life Institute, founder of the Institute of Tibetan Classics, and an adjunct professor at the School of Religious Studies at McGill University.
Website: Compassion Institute
Book: A Fearless Heart: How the Courage to Be Compassionate Can Transform Our Lives
Meditation: Free daily mindfulness and compassion meditation sessions during the COVID crisis