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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Buddhism and Modern Psychology by Princeton University

5,132 ratings
1,729 reviews

About the Course

The Dalai Lama has said that Buddhism and science are deeply compatible and has encouraged Western scholars to critically examine both the meditative practice and Buddhist ideas about the human mind. A number of scientists and philosophers have taken up this challenge. There have been brain scans of meditators and philosophical examinations of Buddhist doctrines. There have even been discussions of Darwin and the Buddha: Do early Buddhist descriptions of the mind, and of the human condition, make particular sense in light of evolutionary psychology? This course will examine how Buddhism is faring under this scrutiny. Are neuroscientists starting to understand how meditation “works”? Would such an understanding validate meditation—or might physical explanations of meditation undermine the spiritual significance attributed to it? And how are some of the basic Buddhist claims about the human mind holding up? We’ll pay special attention to some highly counterintuitive doctrines: that the self doesn’t exist, and that much of perceived reality is in some sense illusory. Do these claims, radical as they sound, make a certain kind of sense in light of modern psychology? And what are the implications of all this for how we should live our lives? Can meditation make us not just happier, but better people? All the features of this course are available for free. It does not offer a certificate upon completion....

Top reviews

Oct 25, 2020

I thought this was a great introduction to both modern Buddhist thought and evolutionary psychology. Professor Wright is an excellent lecturer, and his office hours are informative as well as amusing.

Mar 2, 2016

Engaging content and excellent pace. While the level is introductory (I'd have liked a bit more depth), I would expect this from a lower-division/breadth course—and even more so from a MOOC like this.

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1051 - 1075 of 1,697 Reviews for Buddhism and Modern Psychology

By Kenneth S

May 2, 2016

Very good and informative, with being too voluminous.

By Clay B

Oct 21, 2015

Overall a very engaging and thought-provoking course.


Jul 4, 2020

A great course and experience for today's generaton.

By Rita A

Mar 26, 2019

Following this course I opened my mind.

I suggest it!

By Colleen P

Feb 14, 2018

I like this course and the teacher made it very fun.


Oct 4, 2017


By Ani I

Aug 16, 2017

I liked the topic and Prof Wright's treatment of it.

By Robin D

Dec 23, 2015

Great professor, with a wide variety of vocabulary.

By Nelly M C S

Sep 29, 2020

Excelente curso. Lo recomiendo de aquí al infinito.

By christopher

Sep 26, 2020

Awesome Course, Definitely I learned something new.

By Ihor K

May 15, 2020

Great course. Thanks to Robert Wright and his team!

By JoAnne M F

Sep 16, 2019

Good, course....

Excellent, values for Buddhism😎📒✨

By Deleted A

Oct 19, 2016

Excellent insight into human mind, would recommend!

By Grace K

May 12, 2016

excellent course!! worth every second of your time.

By John D M

Jan 17, 2016

Excellent course. My first, I enjoyed it very much.

By Daniela V

Nov 13, 2015

awesome insights from a more scientific perspective

By Alejandra J B

Sep 7, 2020

Fue un curso muy interesante he aprendiendo mucho.

By Israel B Z

Feb 18, 2018

This course is great! I feel more than interested.

By Pasha T

Aug 23, 2017

Amazing class. This is a second time me taking it.

By Henrik H

May 30, 2017

Very insightful and enjoyable. Excellent lectures!

By christian

Apr 11, 2016

Insightful to the point that it becomes spiritual.

By rick m

Nov 7, 2019

Learned a lot! Very complete and well organized.

By Akhil18 V

Jun 22, 2019

awesome course,nice way to exploration..Thank you

By Thomas L

Dec 15, 2017

thought provoking and scientific at the same time

By Juan C M

Jul 23, 2017