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Mindful : December 2015
Often I begin dynamic mindful yoga classes by saying, ‘First of all, let’s consider joy.’ What is this idea of long dyspeptic faces doing yoga? If it isn’t joyful, if it’s making you lose your smile, something is really wrong.” — B.K. Bose, Founder and Executive Director, Niroga Institute Meditation reduced violence and dropout rates among Chicago youth Becoming A Man, a youth dropout and violence prevention program run by Chicago organiza- tion Youth Guidance, adds to the proof that meditation has a role to play in social change. Researchers from the University of Chicago recently invited 1,473 students to get involved with BAM activities and compared them to a control group. The program, which works with at-risk male students in grades 7-12, encourages “positive anger expression” through exercises including breathing and meditation training, conflict resolution, and social and emotional recognition. The university study found that BAM participants were 44% less likely to com- mit violent crimes, and their academic perfor- mance was significantly better, compared with those who didn’t participate. The mindful guy gets the girl That’s what Australian research- ers found when they conducted a speed dating experiment to test initial romantic attraction, gaug- ing participants’ interest in the opposite sex according to the criteria of physical attractiveness and mindfulness. “ We found that if a guy was mindful, girls were more attracted to him beyond initial physical attractiveness,” says lead researcher Philip Janz. “That was really cool. If you pay attention, use active listening, and have good eye contact, you are more attractive to a girl. This has mas- sive implications for dating.” On the other hand, the team found that men were initially attracted more by a woman’s looks than by her mindfulness. “ We expected that,” says Janz. Did any lasting matches come out of the research? “ We’d like to do a longitudinal study next,” he says, “checking in a year later.” 10 mindful December 2015 what’s new PHOTOGRAPHS:COURTESYOFYOUTHGUIDANCE,©DARINGWANDERER/STOCKSYUNITED Things that spark our minds, touch our hearts, make us smile— or roll our eyes. Keep up with the latest in mindfulness. Top of Mind