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News and Events (Latest ten entries)

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10th Lecuture of Bhutanese Culture (Light Waves That Built the Nation: Some Milestones in Bhutan's Education System)

10th Lecuture of Bhutanese Culture (Light Waves That Built the Nation: Some Milestones in Bhutan's Education System)

bhtan20170112_e.jpg


The department of Bhutanese Studies at Kokoro research Center has regularly organized Lectures of Bhutanese Culture.In the 10th Lecture,the honorable guest speaker President Thakur S. Powdyel will talk about education in Bhutan.

[Date] 12 (Thurs.) January 2017
[Time] 17:00-19:30
[Place] Grand Seminar Room (3rd floor) at Kyoto University Inamori Center
      (46 Shimoadachi-cho, Yoshida Sakyo-ku, Kyoto)
MAP http://kokoro.kyoto-u.ac.jp/en/AboutUs/access.html

[Guest Speaker] Prof. Thakur S. Powdyel (President, Royal Thimphu College; Former Minister of Education of the Kingdom of Bhutan)

[Title] "Light Waves That Built the Nation: Some Milestones in Bhutan's Education System"

[Convener] Dr. Seiji Kumagai (Uehiro Associate Professor, Kokoro Research Center, Kyoto University)


*Language: in English with Japanese translation
**Attendance: limitted to 100 people
***Fee: free of charge

[Contact] Liaison Office, Kokoro Research Center, Kyoto University, 46 Yoshida Shimoadachi-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto, 606-8501 Japan.
Tel: 075-753-9681 Mail: kokoro-bh*mail2.adm.kyoto-u.ac.jp

Associate Prof. Uchida wins International Award

P1110587.JPG 0003_xlarge.jpg

Associate Prof. Yukiko Uchida has been awarded the 11th International Award by The Japanese Psychological Association for her remarkable research activity. Also our specially appointed professor, Shinsuke Shimojo has been awarded the special award for his high level achievements. The award ceremony was held in Tokyo on Nov. 5th, 2016.


The Japanese Psychological Association Website
http://www.psych.or.jp/english/index.html

Prof. Yoshikawa's new papers published in "Journal of Cognitive Psychology"

 Prof. Sakiko Yoshikawa's new papers published in "Journal of Cognitive Psychology" vol.28.


1612yoshikawa_journal.pngMasato Nunoi & Sakiko Yoshikawa (2016). Deep processing makes stimuli more prefereable over long duration. Journal of Cognitive Psychology, 28, 756-763
http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/20445911.2016.1189917


●ABSTRACT


The purpose of the current study was twofold. First, we investigated whether the type of stimulus processing (e.g. levels of processing) influenced preferences for novel objects. Second, we examined whether the influence of levels of processing on preferences was long lasting (e.g. longer than a day/week). Results showed that levels of processing affected preferences whereby more deeply processed stimuli were preferred over those that were shallowly processed. This effect was more robust for stimuli that were presented multiple times. Additionally, this levels of processing effect lasted for up to 6 weeks, suggesting stability in preferences for information that was more deeply processed. We discuss these results in terms of theories predicting the role of stimulus properties and exposure on the development of preferences.


KEYWORDS: Preference, levels of processing, delay

Assistant Prof. Ueda's new paper published in "Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics"

Assistant Prof. Ueda's new paper published in "Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics" in Nov. 2016.



1608ueda.pngYoko Higuchi, Yoshiyuki Ueda, Hirokazu Ogawa, Jun Saiki. (2016). Task-relevant information is prioritized in spatiotemporal contextual cueing. Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics.


○Abstract
Implicit learning of visual contexts facilitates search performance-a phenomenon known as contextual cueing; however, little is known about contextual cueing under situations in which multidimensional regularities exist simultaneously. In everyday vision, different information, such as object identity and location, appears simultaneously and interacts with each other. We tested the hypothesis that, in contextual cueing, when multiple regularities are present, the regularities that are most relevant to our behavioral goals would be prioritized. Previous studies of contextual cueing have commonly used the visual search paradigm. However, this paradigm is not suitable for directing participants' attention to a particular regularity. Therefore, we developed a new paradigm, the "spatiotemporal contextual cueing paradigm," and manipulated task-relevant and task-irrelevant regularities. In four experiments, we demonstrated that task-relevant regularities were more responsible for search facilitation than task-irrelevant regularities. This finding suggests our visual behavior is focused on regularities that are relevant to our current goal.


DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3758/s13414-016-1198-0

11th Seminar of Himalayan Religion International Workshop

Traditional Wisdom & Body-Mind Practices in the Himalayas and Their Potential Applications to Modern Society


eng_v3_11th Seminar of Himalayan Religion.jpg


For centuries, Himalayan meditation practitioners have directly experienced the beneficial effects of meditation practice in preventing and healing many forms of illness. In the last few decades, there has been a growing interest in mind-body practices, and their therapeutic use. Tibetan spiritual traditions utilize mind-body practices as a way to heal one's body, energy and mind. During this workshop, we will discuss how we could apply Himalayan traditional wisdom and body-mind practices to modern society.
[1st Day] Dr. Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche has explored the possible benefits of Tibetan yogic practices from the Bon tradition in people with cancer and their caregivers in collaboration with medical scientists. On the first day, he will talk about "Breathe as Medicine: Yogic Practices of the Bon Tradition and Their Effects on Human Health" to share his knowledge of these ancient practices, as well as how to apply them in our modern daily life.
[2nd Day] Centuries ago, Tibetan yogis developed spiritual practices that use dream and sleep as a spiritual path. The practice of dream yoga is meant to deepen our awareness during all our experience: the dreams of the night; the dream-like experience of the day; and the bardo experiences of death. The ultimate goal of Tibetan dream yoga is the recognition of the nature of mind or enlightenment itself. Dr. Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche will discuss the relationships between dream and waking, and dream and death.


[Date] 26 (Mon.) and 27 (Tues.) September 2016
[Time] 16:30-19:00
[Place] Medium Seminar Room (3rd floor) at Kyoto University Inamori Center
    (46 Shimoadachi-cho, Yoshida Sakyo-ku, Kyoto)
    MAP http://kokoro.kyoto-u.ac.jp/en/AboutUs/access.html
[Guest Speaker] Dr. (Geshe) Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche (Founder, Ligmincha International)
[Title 1] "Breathe as Medicine: Yogic Practices of the Bon Tradition and Their Effects on Human Health" (26th Sept.)
[Title 2] "Dream Yoga in the Bon Tradition" (27th Sept.)
[Discussants] Dr. Marc-Henri Deroche (Associate Professor, Graduate School of Advanced Integrated Studies in Human Survivability, Kyoto University)
       Dr. Yoshiyuki Ueda (Assistant Professor, Kokoro Research Center, Kyoto University)
       Dr. Kengo Konishi (Senior Lecturer, Kanazawa Seiryo University)
[Convener] Dr. Seiji Kumagai (Uehiro Associate Professor, Kokoro Research Center, Kyoto University)


*Language: in English with Japanese translation
**Attendance: limitted to 50 people
***Fee: free of charge


[Contact] Liaison Office, Kokoro Research Center, Kyoto University, 46 Yoshida Shimoadachi-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto, 606-8501 Japan.
     Tel: 075-753-9681
     Mail: kokoro-event-2*mail2.adm.kyoto-u.ac.jp (Please replace * with @.)          



[Time Schedule]
26th (Mon.) Sept.
16:30-16:35 Opening Remarks by Dr. Seiji Kumagai (Uehiro Associate Professor, Kokoro Research Center, Kyoto University)
16:35-18:15 "Breathe as Medicine: Yogic Practices of the Bon Tradition and Their Effects on Human Health" by Dr. (Geshe) Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche (Director, Ligmincha International) *50 minutes for presentation/ 50 minutes for interpretation into Japanese.
18:15-18:25 Break
18:25-18:40 Discussion with Researchers:
       Dr. Marc-Henri Deroche (Associate Professor, Graduate School of Advanced Integrated Studies in Human Survivability, Kyoto University)
       Dr. Yoshiyuki Ueda (Assistant Professor, Kokoro Research Center, Kyoto University)
18:40-18:55 Discussion with Audience
18:55-19:00 Closing Remarks


27th (Tues.) Sept.
16:30-16:35 Opening Remarks
16:35-18:15 "Dream Yoga in the Bon Tradition" by Dr. (Geshe) Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche (*50 minutes for presentation/ 50 minutes for interpretation into Japanese)
18:15-18:25 Break
18:25-18:40 Discussion with Researchers:
       Dr. Kengo Konishi (Senior Lecturer, Kanazawa Seiryo University)
18:40-18:55 Discussion with Audience
18:55-19:00 Closing Remarks


[Guest Speaker]
Dr. (Geshe) Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche
Founder and spiritual director of Ligmincha International, is an acclaimed author as well as a highly respected and beloved teacher to students throughout the United States, Mexico, South America, Europe and Asia.
Since his young age, he had studied philosophy, logic, vajrayana, meditation, etc., and finally got a title of Geshe (Ph.D in monastic universities in Tibet and its sorrounding regions) in Menri Monastery in India. Thereafter he has instructed both philosophy and meditation in Europe and USA. His has tried to make the ancient Tibetan teachings highly accessible and relevant to in our daily lives. Especially in the USA, he has conducted scientific research on the effect of Yoga on human body in collaboration with medical scientists.
He is the author of Awakening the Sacred Body; Tibetan Sound Healing; Awakening the Luminous Mind; The True Source of Healing; The Tibetan Yogas of Dream and Sleep; Healing with Form, Energy and Light; Wonders of the Natural Mind; Tibetan Yogas of Body, Speech and Mind; and Unbounded Wholeness (with Anne Klein). For more information about Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche's activities, please visit www.ligmincha.org.

International Workshop of Area Studies on Himalaya and Bhutan

International Workshop of Area Studies on Himalaya and Bhutan / Thurs 4 Aug. 2016


[Date] Thurs. 4 August 2016

[Time] 13:00-16:30

[Place] Medium Seminar Room (3rd floor) at Kyoto University Inamori Center
    (46 Shimoadachi-cho, Yoshida Sakyo-ku, Kyoto)
    http://kokoro.kyoto-u.ac.jp/en/AboutUs/access.html


[Co-sponsors] JSPS Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research A (The practice-oriented area study challenging to rural global), Kyoto University Research Coordination, 18th Seminar on Bhutan.


[Time Table]
13:00-13:05 Opening Remarks by Dr. Seiji Kumagai (Uehiro Associate Professor, KRC, Kyoto University)
13:05-13:10 Introduction by Dr. Kazuo Ando (Associate Professor, CSEAS, Kyoto University) *Introduction of Prof. Ando's research project.
13:10-13:50 "Household Air Pollution and Potantial Health Implication in Rural Bhutan" by Dr. Tenzin Wangchuk (Dean,Academic Affairs, Sherubtse College)
13:50-14:30 "The Living Tales of Ama Jomo, In Merak Village, Trashigang District, Bhutan" by Mr. Sumjay Tshering (Lecturer, Sherubtse College, RUB)
14:30-14:40 Break
14:40-15:20 "Water pollution in Kanglung Area, Trashigang District, Bhutan" by Ms. Pema Choden (Lecturer, Sherubtse College, RUB)
15:20-16:00 "Economic Development and Emerging Environmental Problems in Bhutan" by Mr. Ngawang Dendup (School of political science and economics, Waseda University)
16:00-16:25 Free Discussion
16:25-16:30 Concluding Remarks by Dr. Kazuo Ando

(*Presentation: 25 minutes, Question & Answer: 5 minutes)


*Open to Researchers and Students


**Free of charge

17th Seminar on Bhutan

17th Seminar on Bhutan "Monarchy And Democracy in Bhutan" / Thurs. 21 July 2016


[Date] Thurs. 21 July 2016

[Time] 17:00-18:30

[Place] Small Seminar Room 1 (3rd floor) at Kyoto University Inamori Center
    (46 Shimoadachi-cho, Yoshida Sakyo-ku, Kyoto)
    http://kokoro.kyoto-u.ac.jp/en/AboutUs/access.html

[Speaker] Karma Tenzin (Researh Fellow, The Center for Southeast Asian Studies, Kyoto University)

[Title] Monarchy And Democracy in Bhutan

[Abstract]
Bhutan became one of the youngest democracies in the world when it conducted its first parliamentary elections on March 24, 2008, bringing an end to 100 years of absolute monarchy. This transformation of a hermit kingdom, isolated from the rest of the world for the better part of its recent history and ruled by four generations of successive monarchs since 1907, is indeed a milestone. Surprisingly, it was the very institution of monarchy, in particular the fourth King of Bhutan who spearheaded the democratic process, which ultimately paved way for the 2008 parliamentary elections.


Eight years on, people of Bhutan seem to have embraced democracy in true spirit, despite their initial reservation/misgiving about the whole political transition from absolute monarchy to constitutional democracy. The national assembly and the national council are taking the lead in formulating policies, local government elections have empowered people at the grassroots, encouraging them to actively participate in the decision making process, and free press have created a platform for the people to closely follow - and if need be criticize the activities of the government - bringing transparency and accountability.


The institution of monarchy is still at the center of Bhutan's new found polity and its popularity has been growing by the day. What makes Bhutan's democracy unique has been argued by many scholars. Hence, I would like to talk about Bhutan's journey into parliamentary democracy and the role of the king in this new governance, the role of the king and the constitutional provisions guiding the institution of monarchy.


*Open to Researchers and Students

**Free of charge

Abe and Nakai's new paper published in "Neuroimage"

Associate Prof. Nobuhito Abe and Research fellow Ryusuke Nakai's new paper published in "Neuroimage" Vol.133 June 2016.


1607abe_nakai.pngKajimura S, Kochiyama T, Nakai R, Abe N, Nomura M (2016)
Causal relationship between effective connectivity within the default mode network and mind-wandering regulation and facilitation
Neuroimage 133: 21-30
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1053811916002056


○Abstract
Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) can modulate mind wandering, which is a shift in the contents of thought away from an ongoing task and/or from events in the external environment to self-generated thoughts and feelings. Although modulation of the mind-wandering propensity is thought to be associated with neural alterations of the lateral prefrontal cortex (LPFC) and regions in the default mode network (DMN), the precise neural mechanisms remain unknown. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), we investigated the causal relationships among tDCS (one electrode placed over the right IPL, which is a core region of the DMN, and another placed over the left LPFC), stimulation-induced directed connection alterations within the DMN, and modulation of the mind-wandering propensity. At the behavioral level, anodal tDCS on the right IPL (with cathodal tDCS on the left LPFC) reduced mind wandering compared to the reversed stimulation. At the neural level, the anodal tDCS on the right IPL decreased the afferent connections of the posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) from the right IPL and the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). Furthermore, mediation analysis revealed that the changes in the connections from the right IPL and mPFC correlated with the facilitation and inhibition of mind wandering, respectively. These effects are the result of the heterogeneous function of effective connectivity: the connection from the right IPL to the PCC inhibits mind wandering, whereas the connection from the mPFC to the PCC facilitates mind wandering. The present study is the first to demonstrate the neural mechanisms underlying tDCS modulation of mind-wandering propensity.

Associate Prof. Kumagai held academic panel in 14th IATS's Conference at the University of Bergen

Associate Prof. Seiji Kumagai held an academic panel: "Buddhism, Culture and Society in Bhutan" on Wednesday 22 June during the 14th IATS's Conference at the University of Bergen.


1606kumagai1.png 1606kumagai2.png


Panel7 - Buddhism, culture and society in Bhutan
Wed 22 June (Auditorium Q)
Convener: Seji Kumagai


9.00-9.15: Opening of panel.
9.15-9.45: Seiji Kumagai: A study through biographies and chronicles on Tsangpa Gyare (1161-1211), the founder of the Drukpa Kagyu School.
9.45-10.15: Felicity Shaw: The National Library and Archives of Bhutan: from literary repository to guardian of collective memory.
10.15-10.45: Brian Shaw: Becoming a modern Bhutanese: the continuing development of civil society and social media in a time of change 1972-2015.
10.45-11.15: Tea and coffee break.
11.15-11.45: Johanna Prien: Ritual paraphernalia used by pawo and neyjorma spirit mediums in rural Western Bhutan.

11.45-12.15: Per Sørensen and Hou Haoran: Transnational kinship network: history of the ruling rGya family at the Ra-lung seat between the 15th and 16th centuries.

12.15-12.45: Dagmar Schwerk: Tracing the life and intellectual agenda of a 20th century Bhutanese scholar and yogin, the Sixty-Ninth rJe mKhan-po dGe-'dun-rin-chen (1926-1997).

12.45-13.45: LUNCH

13.45-14.15: Lungtaen Gyatso: Holistic education: redefining the purpose of education in the Royal University of Bhutan.

14.15-14.45: Tashi Tshering: The Tashigomang: portable shrines of Bhutan.

14.45-15.15: Françoise Pommaret: The Bumthang web: migrations, alliances, economy and religion.

15.15-15.45: Tea and Coffee break.

15.45-16.15: Akiko Ueda: Symbolic, monetary and nutritional values of rice: "food security" re-examined in Bhutan's rural context.

16.15-16.45: Akinori Yasuda: Some remarks on the lTa ba klong yangs discovered by Dorje Lingpa.


http://www.iats.info/

10th Seminar of Himalayan Religion

10th Seminar of Himalayan Religion
"Traditional Tibetan Buddhist Scholars on Dharma, Law and Politics: philosophical discussions in Boudhanath (Nepal)"


[Date] Fri. 15 July 2016


[Time] 14:00-15:30


[Place] Seminar Room No. 225 (2nd floor) at Kyoto University Inamori Center
    (46 Shimoadachi-cho, Yoshida Sakyo-ku, Kyoto)
    http://kokoro.kyoto-u.ac.jp/en/AboutUs/access.html


[Speaker] Dr. Miguel Alvarez ORTEGA (University of Seville, Department of Philosophy of Law)


[Title] Traditional Tibetan Buddhist Scholars on Dharma, Law and Politics: philosophical discussions in Boudhanath (Nepal)


[Abstract] The legal and political study of Buddhism has predominantly taken the shape of text exegesis or analysis of head figures such as H.H. the Dalai Lama, widely neglecting the question of how normative issues are addressed by the intellectual middle class within the tradition. Exploring the possibilities of such an approach, I carried out a series of in-depth interviews with traditional Tibetan Buddhist scholars in the exile community of Boudhanath (Nepal) covering: the canonical treatment of law and politics; a comparison with the 'Western' paradigm; law and politics in Buddhist countries and social activism and ethics.

A primary analysis of the data points to a heterogeneous picture that challenges common assumptions regarding both the intellectual activities taking place in traditional contexts as well as scholarly interests and philosophical stands on legal and socio-political matters.


*Open to Researchers and Students


**Free of Charge