We believe that to successfully address and solve the monumental issues facing humanity

WE MUST UNDERSTAND THE MIND.

The Center for Contemplative Research offers unprecedented long-term access to the

CONTEMPLATIVE TECHNOLOGY NECESSARY TO STUDY CONSCIOUSNESS.

Cultivating an ever deepening understanding of the mind and consciousness

SHOWS US HOW TO HEAL OURSELVES AND THE WORLD AROUND US.

Welcome to the Center for Contemplative Research.

A global network of groundbreaking research observatories that provide the ideal environments for dedicated contemplatives to explore the nature and potentials of consciousness firsthand, while fully engaging with scientists to develop rigorous measures for novel research into the nature of the mind.

Working collaboratively across the interface of religion, science, and philosophy, we seek to catalyze a revolution in the mind sciences and nurture a renaissance within the world’s great contemplative traditions, so that together we may discover the true causes of sustainable well-being, grounded in nonviolence and compassion.

Center for Contemplative Research

With the support of forward-thinking scientists, colleagues, friends, and thousands of students, Dr. Alan Wallace has founded the Center for Contemplative Research with a far-reaching goal: Fathom the nature of consciousness, its multiple dimensions, its origins, and what happens at death.

Center for Contemplative Research

Modeled after the The Shamatha Project, one of the most comprehensive scientific studies of meditation to date, the Center for Contemplative Research offers unprecedented opportunities for longitudinal studies in collaboration with contemplatives committed to years of continuous, full-time training.

Center for Contemplative Research

Together, we question the dominant paradigms of the modern world and seek to catalyze a fundamental shift in our vision of “the good life,” in our very idea of human flourishing: recognizing that the satisfaction, the fulfillment, the happiness we seek is to be cultivated from within.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Alan Wallace
I am delighted that the Center for Contemplative Research is offering opportunities for rigorous mind-training and collaborative research by practiced contemplatives and scientists. Together they seek to explore the inner sources of mental conflict and distress, the roots of genuine well-being, and the origins, nature, and potentials of the mind.”

— His Holiness The Dalai Lama

B. Alan Wallace, PhD

Founder and President of
the Center for Contemplative Research

Fathom the Mind.

Dedicated contemplatives receive ongoing instruction in ancient methods for cultivating exceptional mental balance, and practice in periods of long-term, solitary retreat, ranging from several months to years on end.

Throughout the course of their retreats, they meet periodically with their teachers, one another, and with scientists from different disciplines, reporting on their first-person discoveries and providing scientists with the opportunity to collect third-person data.

Meditator in long-term retreat at Miyo Samten Ling

Highly-trained Contemplatives

  • Engage in full-time retreat practice, training the heart and mind in tandem.
  • Gain insights into the nature of their own minds—the defining characteristics of consciousness itself.
  • Emerge from retreat to apply these insights to practical issues in such fields as mental health, education, the arts, global leadership, ethics, racial justice, and environmental activism.
  • Effect powerful transformation as individuals and in the world.
Contemplative Research Observator at The Center for Contemplative Research

Interdisciplinary Scientists

  • Conduct rigorous, novel research and publish their results.
  • Catalyze a paradigm shift in scientific approaches to what is widely regarded as a mystery: consciousness itself.
  • Expand the scope of scientific research, transcending the ideological and methodological constraints of materialist reductionism.
  • Collaborate with contemplatives to make discoveries that fundamentally transform the way we view and inhabit our world.
Students of Alan Wallace

Members of Our Global Community

  • Nurture the growth of individual contemplatives in long-term retreat.
  • Passionately work to develop revolutionary new directions in education, the arts, social work, business, medicine, government, and environmental renewal.
  • Study and practice the essential teachings of the great contemplative traditions.
  • Support the building and development of new CCR hermitages around the world.
  • Volunteer in many areas of CCR’s nonprofit organization.

Heal the World.

We see a future guided by collaborative, cross-cultural, interdisciplinary inquiry.

Where scientists and contemplatives work together in mutual respect to fathom the nature and potentials of the mind.

And seek to discover and implement the sustainable causes of personal and social well-being, thus meeting the unprecedented challenges that face humanity and our environment today.

The Four Facets of the Center for Contemplative Research

Contemplative Science and Contemplative Technology diagram

Contemplative
Science & Technology

Contemplative Science is a discipline of first-person, subjective inquiry into the nature of the mind and its role in the natural world, which utilizes methods for developing refined attention, mindfulness, and introspection to directly observe states of consciousness and mental functions in their relationship with the body and the physical world at large.

CCR Founder and President, B. Alan Wallace, discusses Contemplative Science and Contemplative Technology.

Alan Wallace

Research
Observatories

Contemplative Research Observatories are places where professionally trained contemplatives can make replicable discoveries in collaboration with scientists from diverse disciplines. Meditators hone the tools of contemplative technology through tens of thousands of hours of day-and-night practice in a conducive environment.

CCR Retreatant, Jodie Lea,
discusses the inner work of Research Observatories.

Jodie Leah

Contemplative
Applications

Contemplative Applications include teaching ways to cultivate exceptional mental health, resilience, creativity, and contentment. Recognizing the difference between hedonic pleasure and genuine well-being, we share the knowledge that genuine well-being is grounded in ethical conduct, following the ancient ideals of nonviolence and compassion.

CCR Resident Teacher, Doug Veenhof, discusses Contemplative
Applications.

Doug Veenhof

Contemplative
Renaissance

Contemplative Renaissance means fostering a renewal of contemplative inquiry within the world’s great religious traditions, so that we may realize the ultimate meaning of our existence. Nurturing inter-contemplative dialogue grounded in experience and realization, we transcend boundaries and gain new insight: rediscovering the depths of our own diverse traditions.

CCR Executive Director and Resident Teacher, Eva Natanya, discusses Contemplative Renaissance.

Eve Natanya CCR
AUDIO TRANSCRIPTS

PERSPECTIVES ON SCIENCE AND THE STATE OF THE WORLD IN THE 21ST CENTURY

from the CCR Scientific Advisory Board and leading scientists

A person’s mental state affects one’s physical health and general well-being.

A person’s mental state affects one’s physical health and general well-being.

“There is overwhelming evidence that a person’s mental state affects one’s physical health and general well-being. Buddhism presents a path towards inner peace and enlightenment. I applaud the study of how the teaching, meditation and reflection of Buddhism compares to Christianity, and how we can enlist science and scientific methodologies to help us more deeply understand the power and potential of the mind. In particular, how our consciousness affects our physical health and the rest of our deeply connected world.”

Steven Chu

William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Physics, 
Stanford University, 
Professor of Molecular & Cellular Physiology, 
Stanford University School of Medicine

David Presti, CCR Scientific Advisory Board

…science is at this moment poised for a true revolutionary expansion into important new territory.

“Throughout the last several centuries, and especially over the past hundred years, science has grown by stunning leaps and bounds in its investigative and explanatory powers. That said, science is at this moment poised for a true revolutionary expansion into important new territory – the undiscovered country of mind and consciousness. An essential component of this scientific revolution is developing a rigorous framework for a science of subjective experience, drawing from the rich history of contemplative traditions in the guidance of that project. This is the mission of the Center of Contemplative Research—to support education, training, and research in expanding a science of consciousness. While this addresses what is perhaps considered the greatest mystery in contemporary science, it is far more than simply an academic exercise. For how we view who we are and the nature of our relationship with what we call reality impacts everything we think and do. Deepening insight into the nature of mind, and the existence of a Center within which to effectively carry that project out, is important now more than ever before.”

David Presti

Professor of neurobiology, psychology, and cognitive science at UC Berkeley
Claire Petitmengin CCR Scientific Advisory Board

…CCR offers a unique environment for the development of a new scientific discipline…

“As a specialist in ‘micro-phenomenology,’ I consider that the CCR offers a unique environment
for the development of a new scientific discipline enabling us to explore the microdynamics of
human lived experience in a meticulous and rigorous way and to highlight its essential
structures. The lack of awareness of these structures has been in our perspective the root of huge
problems our society is currently suffering from, notably in the ecological, educational and
medical domains. Recognizing them would constitute a decisive step towards alleviating such
suffering.”

Claire Petitmengin

Professor Emerita at Institut Mines-Téléco and Member of the Archives Husserl, École Normale Supérieure, Paris
Piet Hut CCR Scientific Advisory Board

A global sharing of methodologies.

“An opportunity for science and contemplation to learn from each other, in terms of establishing communities of peers, working in openness to new ideas and openness to critique, and a global sharing of methodologies.”

Piet Hut

Professor of Astrophysics and Interdisciplinary Studies, Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton University
Michel Bitbol CCR Scientific Advisory Board

May play a decisive role in a revolution of the science of mind.

“The Center for Contemplative Research, as projected by Alan Wallace, may play a decisive role in a revolution of the science of mind. … Full conversion of our approach of the ‘hard problem’ of consciousness is therefore conditional on a radical change of attitude and even maybe of civilizational orientation. … But such a momentous change in attitude can occur only if a non-conventional method of inquiry of mind and consciousness, by acquaintance rather than distantiation, is systematically cultivated. … This is why I fully endorse the establishment of this center, and will be pleased to participate in its activities.”

Michel Bitbol

Director of Research at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique

…taking us beyond tolerance towards a more harmonious coexistence through lived compassion.

“Science is limited to the technology available at a given historical moment. On the other hand, the ability to explore our internal experiences is limited to the time we can devote to them, the guidance of experienced teachers, distractions and our motivation to know the nature of our mind. And with a better understanding of the nature of our mind and how it works, perhaps we can understand others from a global perspective, taking us beyond tolerance towards a more harmonious coexistence through lived compassion. Being able to use the technology available, especially in Neuroscience and Data Science, with the experience of long-term meditators is my motivation to join the Scientific Advisory Board of the Center for Contemplative Research.”

Elisa H. Kozasa

Professor and Neuroscientist, Brain Institute of Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein, Brazil

Quantum theory is a tool specifically customized to the human condition.

“… the technical development of QBism bears out that with each quantum measurement, something indelibly first-personal is added to reality. But what precisely? Tell us with the same technical rigor as quantum mechanics itself! And does it in fact enhance the universe’s total value? What would that mean? What attracts me most to the Center for Contemplative Research is that through its proposed techniques, there may be a way forward for answering these questions. … One of the signature themes of QBism is that quantum theory is a tool specifically customized to the human condition—decision-making agents trying their best to survive and thrive in this amazing world. But this means that as much of the structure of quantum theory may arise from details within as without. Only by peering within, with this problematic as the sharp focus of inquiry, may one start to understand the deepest significance of what it is that quantum measurement adds to the world.”

Christopher Fuchs

2010 International Quantum Communication Award winner, Professor of Physics, University of Massachusetts, Boston

Consciousness remains one of the central mysteries of modern science.

“The nature of human consciousness remains one of the central mysteries of modern science. Although much progress has been made towards elucidating some of the more operational aspects of consciousness, we remain far from understanding how and whether the brain engenders our sense of self. It is clear that we must keep an open mind, probing different ways of knowing as potential paths towards expanding our knowledge. The Center for Contemplative Research is anchored on a firm epistemic approach, inspired and guided by centuries of deep meditative experience. I am positive that it will open new and unexpected doors to a new understanding of our true human essence.” Photo credit: Eli Burakian

Marcelo Gleiser

Theoretical Physicist, and Director of the Institute for Cross-Disciplinary Engagement at Dartmouth College

…clearly positioned to enrich the clinical and cognitive sciences with the wisdom of the world’s contemplative traditions.

“The Center for Contemplative Research is clearly positioned to enrich the clinical and cognitive
sciences with the wisdom of the world’s contemplative traditions — traditions that emphasize
both mindfulness and compassion as essential elements of healing and genuine well-being. My
hope is that the center will help create a new generation of scientist-practitioners who will study
the mind using not only the third-person methods of science but also the first-person methods of
contemplative inquiry. It is particularly encouraging that the CCR’s operating model can readily
be scaled to yield an international network of such centers, each of which can collaborate with
the scientists and contemplative traditions of its immediate environment. I fully endorse the
launch of this initial center in Colorado and will be happy to see it flourish.”

Shauna L. Shapiro

Professor of Psychology, Santa Clara University

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