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

5,197 ratings
1,755 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

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.

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.

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1051 - 1075 of 1,725 Reviews for Buddhism and Modern Psychology

By Michael L P

Aug 30, 2016

Really enjoying this course. Thank you for offering it.

By Brandon R

Aug 19, 2016

Really an amazing course and incredibly well organized.

By Melina C K

Mar 26, 2016

Very informative and interesting course.

I recommend it.

By Kristy H

Jan 25, 2016

Very inspirational for my future studies. Thanks a lot.

By Sandhya N

Nov 2, 2015

Loved the whole association of psychology and Buddhism!

By María d L L Z

Aug 18, 2020





By Kavitha V

Jan 26, 2020

we begin to watch ourselves after learning this course

By Binoy B

Jun 23, 2017

Excellent course. Thoroughly enjoyed and learnt a lot.

By Laura L M

Nov 3, 2015

I cant wait to keep watching the lectures this is grea

By Pat P

Feb 2, 2021

Excellent mental work out especially during lockdown.

By Alfred L P C

Aug 3, 2020

Great course for contemplation of the essence of life

By Rodrigo

Sep 5, 2016

Amazing course with lots of reflections and insights!

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!