Mind & Life podcast

Fadel Zeidan – Mindfulness and Pain

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In this episode, Wendy speaks with neuroscientist and pain researcher Fadel Zeidan. Fadel is one of the leading experts on understanding how mindfulness and other contemplative practices can be used to help relieve physical pain and promote well-being. This conversation covers many topics, including:

  • his interest in self, consciousness, mindfulness and the brain;
  • bringing mindfulness to special education classrooms;
  • historical use of mindfulness for pain;
  • intensity vs. unpleasantness of pain;
  • his early work showing that mindfulness induces pain relief;
  • making mindfulness training more accessible;
  • looking into the brain during pain;
  • using "fake meditation" in research;
  • understanding our natural opiate system and its role in pain relief;
  • bringing rigor to research with placebo controls;
  • the relationship of physical pain to more complex psychological pain;
  • working with families of children who were killed by gun violence;
  • studying psychedelics for phantom limb pain;
  • role of the default mode network in pain and self;
  • compassion meditation and increasing our connection to strangers;
  • the opioid crisis in the United States;
  • and the role of contemplation in larger society.

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