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.
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.
par Sinjini S•
The course is extremely rich and sophisticated. I had taken it sometime back but after attending the 10 day Vipassana, I came back to take it again and it made much better sense. Prof. Wright is superlative in knowledge, neutrality of view, and of course humour. However one thing I'd recommend is that it becomes quite a challenge to follow the course after a while given (of course) the subject in hand as well as, importantly, the delivery style. I wish it had visual/ pictoral supplements or some other ideas implemented to make it penetrate better!
par Gary M•
I wanted to work through this course for interest as I have been following Buddhist philosophy for approx 10 years during which I attended the local Buddhist Centre for lessons given by a Tibetan monk, Rinpoche Tupten, for three years (3 times a week).
I also had purchased and read "Why Buddhism is True" written by Robert Wright.
I have enjoyed this course and the approaches taken and structure together with the input from practitioners.
Thank you Robert and Princeton University
par Tomek C•
This is an excellent course. It's very thought-provoking and provides insight into meditation--a subject that eludes many people. The course needs more quizzes to help students learn and remember the knowledge taught in the lectures. It also needs a better evaluation scheme--the two essay-only evaluation form does not do enough to test student knowledge. Test are needed. A better evaluation scheme would weigh testing and essays, for example, 60% testing, 40% essay.
par Nicky V•
It was pretty good for most of the time. I found the professor engaging and interesting. He was an effortless speaker who never seemed bored--you could tell he was passionate, but did not alienate students by using too much jargon or academe-speak. I sort of fell off of the course toward the end mostly because I felt much of the material began to repeat (or at least became extremely predictable). Overall, really great course.
par Nicolle M•
Very interesting and enjoyable. There is much to contemplate in this rich dense course. I think I'll do it again and extract even more now that I've been through it once. I find the material consistent with my own practice of mindfulness meditation, and with my studies in psychology.
Thank you for a wonderful and stimulating experience. I am recommending it to family and friends so we can discuss this matter in greater depth.
par Tony O•
well connection with buddhism and modern psychology. While psychology is still evolving, buddhism is also evolving. The original teaching of Buddha is also evolved to suit the needs and desires of people in different culture and country. in some way, it sustain the teaching of buddha. In another, it distort the teaching and makes it more complicated and difficult to practise as there are too many school of thought.
par Juan C P M P•
Es un buen curso desde el punto de la psicología evolucionista. Pero desconoce otros aportes muy importantes de la psicología moderna. No debería llamarse budismo y psicología moderna, sino budismo y psicología evolucionista.
No es muy profundo en cuanto al pensamiento budista. Me hubiese gustado más temática budista que desde la psicología evolucionista.
se podría pensar en un segundo curso mas profundo.
par Julián P E•
Great course! Robert Wright is a wonderful teacher that explains in a very simple and easy to understand way some difficult concepts from Buddhism and modern psychology. My only complaint is that there were a lot of Buddhist ideas that were left out, like the moral ideas of Buddhism. Also the last lecture on Enlightenment was really hard to grasp without understanding previous Buddhist precepts.
par Eesha L•
Course material is really challenging and thought provoking. It really gives you a new perspective to look at everyday things. it would have been better if the course could provide a certificate however it is rather ironic to ask for such a amendment shortly after learning about how illusions are often related with certain reinforcements. I really enjoyed the course and the reference material.
par Rytis R•
Generally well designed and presented. It gets somewhat repetitive towards the end, it would have been good to include more scientific theories and evidence, especially considering the advancements in neuropsychology. The shift towards morality at the end of the course is unsubstantiated and unnecessary. The course is on the links between Buddhism and psychology, not ethics.
Great introduction to the study of Buddhism through the lens of modern science. If you are "prove it" person this course is very helpful to get over some obstacles. Science is an wonderful tool to help us learn, even if takes centuries to "prove" what many cultures have known for millennia. Thanks to Prof. Wright and his faithful companions for taking us on this journey.
par Barbara M•
Lectures were interesting, fun, and...dare I say...enlightening? Though I was initially put off by having to write papers, I did see the value in it as I had to review the written transcripts of the video lectures and work to assemble my ideas and arguments for the essays. I would definitely take another class by Prof. Wright, Milo and Frasier.
par Peter C•
I liked it a lot. After a while, it occurred to me that modern psychology, a new and highly fad and change prone academic interest, has a lot of gall to judge a tradition that remains strong after 2500 years.
But I had to know enough about Buddhism and psychology to ask that question in the first place. And that's what I got from this course.
par Lyla B•
I thought the course was very helpful as an introduction to Buddhist philosophy and the companion material about brain studies that have been undertaken to prove/disprove some Buddhist teachings was very interesting. The Office Hours piece was a little burdensome, especially toward the end, but all in all the course was definitely worthwhile.
par Oliver S•
An interesting supplement to my Zen studies and practice. While somewhat speculative in some parts (largely due to fact that the brain's complexity makes full understanding just a little out of reach even today), the course is clearly built upon the foundations of rigorous science, thousands of years of Buddhist inquiry and common sense.
par Tharindu R•
Very Important and valuable course, contrasting both Buddhism and modern science. I feel it will be much effective if the course coordinator can edit the video adding more graphics, texts, images, examples and summarized points other than showing the speaker continuously. Anyhow thank you for all the knowledge you shared. Good Luck
par Vu H•
Interesting view of an ancient religion through the scope of modern psychology. I was born and raised in a Buddhist family but I do not really understand the details about the religion as I do now after the class. Thank you Dr. Wright for expanding my own view of Buddhism and making sense of the inner workings of the human mind.
par john l•
From this course, a book is born! Buddhism is True, in the sense that the secular practice is validated by Evolutionary Psychological scientific experiment and research. Thus, one can take step to ameliorate ones pain, suffering, and dissatisfaction of life. Nirvana can be achieved with the right view and effort.
par Ruth G•
Excellent course provoking much thought. However, did think that week 6 was a little rushed with lots to review and think about and then to write an essay. I would have liked more time to assimilate the final week with longer time to write the final assignment. However did enjoy and would recommend to others.
par Sam T•
For those interested in what Buddhism has to offer regarding the mind, but without any of the religious aspects, this is a good course both for information as well as for being thought-provoking/stimulating. The online environment enables contact with people and materials which might otherwise be beyond reach.
par Irina N•
Very nice course, very interesting. I really liked the professor's specific sence of humour in examples he makes. The course was a little boring because of a lot talking about things already talked and understood, lots of specifications for people who might argue or disagree, or might feel offended.
par ritesh m j•
very well explained.in this i learned that how buddhism and modern science is related and in this its shows that how important meditation is to see the world more clearly and how to work on your emotions in right manner. this course shows how to think and organise your thoughts in positive way.
par Carlos V H•
It is a full and long course with many interesting concepts to compare and learn. The only problem I see is the monotony of the classes, which sometimes make it difficult to follow in a suitable activacion. Maybe I should focus on streghten my concentration, but I think it could be more dynamic
par Huanglei P•
A good introduction course for buddhism and its relationship to modern psychology. Some of the illustrator's idea are really innovative. However, most of the video lessons are in lecture format and lack of summary slides for logical structure during each lesson, so I might get confused somehow.