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General Principles

As an integral department of the Italian Buddhist Union, the Research Center (RC) follows the Union’s code of conduct. In addition to the points included in that document, the following principles, which are specifically related to the activities of the RC, are included:

Secularity. The RC draws inspiration from the scientific method and critical approach that characterize modern forms of knowledge, while maintaining independence from any religious affiliation or profession.

Inter-culturalism. The RC aims to promote interaction between and mutual transformation of knowledge from diverse cultures, encouraging each party involved to question its own assumptions.

Inter-disciplinarity. The RC intends to facilitate the encounter and integration of different disciplines and approaches, with particular emphasis on the phenomenological inquiry that characterizes Buddhism. It is also committed to embracing the epistemological and methodological challenges that arise from such an enterprise, promoting the development of terminology and methods capable of facilitating dialogue between this approach and modern disciplines.

Anti-reductionism. The RC aims to emphasize the central role of the philosophical, existential, social and ethical dimensions of contemplative experiences. It adopts a critical stance toward any inadequate representation of these experiences, recognizing the potential risk of reducing or distorting their transformative impact.

Accessibility. The RC is dedicated to making classical and modern sources of Buddhism, as well as tools promoting contemplative knowledge and practice in a broader context, more accessible. This commitment involves the production, translation and publication of materials for the general public, in multiple languages and through various media. Additionally, the RC aims to promote the adoption of contemplative-inspired practices and principles into different sectors of society.

Applicability and Innovation. The RC is dedicated to addressing the scientific, philosophical, ethical, social, environmental, and professional challenges of the modern world, by seeking fruitful interactions between its fields of interest and the most innovative forms of knowledge, cutting-edge technologies, and emerging professions.

Inclusivity and Pluralism. The RC values and promotes diversity of perspectives, experiences and traditions, encouraging dialogue among individuals of different geographical, cultural, and religious backgrounds. It seeks to promote inclusiveness and pluralism, while condemning all forms of exclusion and discrimination, explicit or implicit.

Research Quality. The RC is committed to promoting rigorous and high-quality research in the fields of Buddhist and Contemplative Studies, as well as other related fields. It seeks to support innovative and in-depth scholarly inquiries that contribute to the growth and dissemination of reliable and relevant information.

Community and Collaboration. The RC aims to establish a diverse and inclusive learning community that brings together scholars, students and practitioners from around the world. It actively encourages collaboration with other educational and research institutions and organizations, fostering knowledge exchange, talent mobility and mutual growth.

Social and Environmental Responsibility. The RC recognizes the responsibilities of both individuals and organizations toward society and the environment. Therefore, it is committed to promoting practices and values that enhance individual and collective well-being, as well as ecological sustainability – principles deeply rooted in Buddhism.

Guidelines for Training

In addition to the above general principles, the education initiatives promoted by the Research Center (RC) are inspired by the following guidelines:

Experiential and Interactive Pedagogy.

Particularly in the context of Contemplative Studies, the RC promotes the integration of academic study, meditative practice and interactive activities such as debate and sharing of experience. This follows the principles of Contemplative Pedagogy, an approach based on the recognition of the experiential nature of contemplative knowledge. While scientific knowledge, philosophical understanding, and historical-religious perspectives are important for a rigorous exploration of the contemplative dimension, they alone are insufficient to fully grasp this type of knowledge without a firm and corroborated first-person experience.

Accreditation of Study Programs.

The RC seeks accreditation by university institutions for its study programs, emphasizing the importance of Contemplative Studies within modern society. By doing so, the value and contributions of its study and practice are highlighted, leading to greater recognition from and integration with modern academic institutions, rather than being considered as a marginal element.

Connection with Professional Fields.

In addition to training scholars and researchers, the RC aims to develop pathways for training new professionals who can actively contribute to the dissemination and integration of practices, lifestyles, perspectives and values associated with the contemplative dimension in diverse societal contexts, such as healthcare, education, corporate environments, sport and personal growth.

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Giangiorgio Pasqualotto parla del Master in “Contemplative Studies”

Is essi volupta turestrum aut re cones placcullorro volestium qui cum