Richard’s Story – The Beginning of Humanist Meditation
Richard became interested in all matters of the mind back in high school with a keen interest in biofeedback as well as the science of how the mind works and what can be done outside of our usual mundane experiences. Among the many books that caught Richard’s attention was a book entitled “The Relaxation Response”, by Herbert Benson. This book, published in 1975, just after Richard graduated from high school, introduced concepts very similar to the current mindfulness meditation techniques known around the world for its effect on the stresses of everyday life. Reading this book began Richard’s journey to meditation and incorporating a new way of looking at the mind and how to use it to improve many aspects of life.
As time progressed, Richard learned more about the brain, keeping up as much as possible with the scientific understanding of the time, and experimenting with basic meditation techniques to help grapple with personal issues and create a sense of calm that was otherwise lacking. This continued with attending seminars, reading books, learning techniques from a prominent psychologist, reading online papers, and sharing concepts and techniques with anyone involved in meditation practices of any kind. All of this introduced Richard to new approaches to meditation that helped him reach deeper depths and more insight into his sense of self and to obtain a much better perspective on life. These experiences also taught Richard that meditation can be more than just a mental exercise, as many people perceive it to be, but can also be fun and instructive. Richard went on to experiment with different meditation techniques, develop some of his own, and learn to view meditation with a passion.
Richard spent 35 years in electronics engineering during which he developed another passion, teaching and mentoring. Combining these passions is what drives Richard to teach meditation techniques to anyone who is interested. He also found a home with the Humanist Society of Greater Phoenix where he served as President for five years. Being an ardent Humanist himself, it is only natural that his teaching of meditation brings a philosophy of Humanism with it.
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