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Coming to our Senses: healing ourselves and the world through mindfulness
“(The) journey toward health and sanity is nothing less than an invitation to wake up to the fullness of our lives as if they actually mattered… ”
—Jon Kabat-Zinn, from the Introduction
Ten years ago, Jon Kabat-Zinn changed the way we thought about awareness in everyday life with his now-classic introduction to mindfulness, Wherever You Go, There You Are. Now, with Coming to Our Senses, he provides the definitive book for our time on the connection between mindfulness and our physical and spiritual wellbeing. With scientific rigor, poetic deftness, and compelling personal stories, Jon Kabat-Zinn examines the mysteries and marvels of our minds and bodies, describing simple, intuitive ways in which we can come to a deeper understanding, through our senses, of our beauty, our genius, and our life path in a complicated, fear-driven, and rapidly changing world.
In each of the book’s eight parts, Jon Kabat-Zinn explores another facet of the great adventure of healing ourselves — and our world — through mindful awareness, with a focus on the “sensescapes” of our lives and how a more intentional awareness of the senses, including the human mind itself, allows us to live more fully and more authentically. By “coming to our senses” — both literally and metaphorically by opening to our innate connectedness with the world around us and within us — we can become more compassionate, more embodied, more aware human beings, and in the process, contribute to the healing of the body politic as well as our own lives in ways both little and big.
"A loving, profound, whimsical, wise, genuine, intimate, surprising, scholarly, liberating, brilliant, and practical look at how we can become who we fully are and be trusted with the future of the world."
—Rachel Naomi Remen, M.D.
“A wealth of information about the miracles that mindfulness can work in our everyday lives. The chapter on the author's experience when his father had Alzheimer's disease is particularly powerful. Dr. Kabat-Zinn's work has already helped large numbers of people use mindfulness to prevent a next heart attack. Now he is back to show how mindfulness can help us to prevent a next terrorist attack. I hope that many world leaders will give his recommendations serious consideration."
—Thich Nhat Hanh
"Coming to Our Senses invites us to sanity, offering a practical, life-altering way to cut through the clutter of our minds and fine what truly matters. Jon Kabat-Zinn shines as a wise, down-to-earth, and just plain fun guide to our own basic goodness. His is a sensible – and sensational – wake-up call, one we all should heed."
—Daniel Goleman, author of Emotional Intelligence
“A deeply optimistic book, grounded in good science and filled with practical recommendations for moving in the right direction.”
—Andrew Weil, M.D.
"Jon Kabat-Zinn once again inspires, delights, and awakens us. His scientific knowledge, poetic vision, and depth of meditative understanding illuminate so much about our human condition and our spiritual potential. A brilliant work, both timely and timeless."
—Joseph Goldstein, author of One Dharma: The Emerging Western Buddhism
"Once again, Jon Kabat-Zinn is on the cutting edge. Coming to Our Senses is thoughtful and provocative, ranging from deeply personal to broadly political. Its relevance is unquestionable. It leaves us inspired and optimistic that true healing really is possible."
—Sharon Salzberg, author of Faith: Trusting Your Own Deepest Experience
"This is a remarkable book, in its vast scope and for its great depth, a modern classic, bringing together for the reader the riches of modern science and the great traditional wisdom of the east. A powerful and compassionate vision."
—Joan Halifax, Abbot, Upaya Zen Center
"Jon Kabat-Zinn is one of the finest teachers of mindfulness you will ever encounter. This book invites you to discover the ease, joy, and freedom that mindfulness brings."
—Jack Kornfield, Ph.D., author of A Path With Heart