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Mindfulness

Mark Tully meditates on the art of being still, and the benefits of quiet contemplation, as medical science borrows from the practices of religious traditions.

Mark Tully meditates on the art of being still, and the benefits of quiet contemplation, as medical science borrows from the practices of religious traditions.

He talks to Mark Williams, Professor of Clinical Psychology at the University of Oxford who teaches 'Mindfulness' techniques and whose research has shown that daily meditation can reduce the occurrence of severe depression at least as much as anti-depressants do.

Featuring music by Edward Elgar, Arvo Part and Jules Massenet, and words by Rainer Maria Rilke and Octavio Paz, this programme looks at how else regular contemplative sessions can enrich our lives in an increasingly busy world. For some it is a way of experiencing God, for others a means of coming to terms with their own failures, and for many it can produce profound changes in their lives.

As Mark Tully perceives, through the practice of Mindfulness people can drink from the well of religious insight whether they have a religious faith or not. He even accepts in the end that he should, perhaps, overcome his own reluctance to make the commitment that meditation requires, and curb the distractions that can make our minds rampage, 'like an untrained elephant'.

The readers are Emily Raymond and David Holt.

Producer: Adam Fowler
A Unique production for BBC Radio 4.

30 minutes

Music Played

Add music you love and enjoy it with My Tracks
  • Edward Elgar

    Psalm 1

    Performer: St Paul’s Cathedral Choir/John Scott

    • Psalms From St Pauls.
    • Hyperion Records Limited.
    • CDP110011.
  • Lasse Thoresen

    Forfrisk og gled min

    Performer: Nordic Voices

    • Himmelkvad.
    • 2L.
    • W 278358.
  • Morton Feldman

    Rothko Chapel

    Performer: University of California Berkeley Chamber Chorus

    • Rothko Chapel, Why Patterns?.
    • New Albion.
    • na039cd.
  • Arvo Pärt

    Spiegel im Spiegel

    Performer: Tamsin Little, Martin Roscoe, Bournemouth Sinfoniette, Richard Studt

    • Arvo Part: Fratres, Etc.
    • EMI.
    • 7243 5 73117 2 4.
  • Octavio Paz

    Water Night

    Performer: Eric Whitacre

    • Cloudburst and Other Choral Works/Whitacre.
    • Hyperion.
    • CDA67543.
  • Stephen Paulus

    Hymn to the Eternal Flame from the Oratorio

    Performer: The Choir of Trinity College, Cambridge

    • Beyond All Mortal Dreams: American A Cappella/Layton.
    • Hyperion.
    • CDA67832.
  • Jules Massenet

    Meditation From Thais

    Performer: London Symphony Orchestra conducted by Vilem Tausky

    • Music You Have Loved.
    • Radiant Mastery.
    • PCD 839.

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