- Hardcover: 513 pages
- Publisher: Constable (26 Mar. 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 184529713X
- ISBN-13: 978-1845297138
- Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 4.5 x 23.4 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (143 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 323,825 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Compassionate Mind Hardcover – 26 Mar 2009
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As somebody who suffers from severe depression, I know the depressive's harshest critic is themselves. It is never helpful to be told to pull ourselves together by others but saying it to ourselves leads us in only one direction - into a spiralling descent into despair. This wise and perceptive book teaches us self-compassion and the consolations of kindness. I recommend it all the time. (Sally Brampton)
The increasing drive to find a competitive edge in all aspects of our lives may create efficiencies but it is cold, heartless and unpleasant to live with. Gilbert shows how and why this occurs, and why a capacity for compassion is the antidote. Trust Gilbert - he knows the difference between wisdom and knowledge. (Oliver James, author of They F*** You Up and Affluenza)
Anyone who struggles with their inner critic should make sure to read this book. Professor Gilbert writes in a masterly fashion about compassionate mind training - an innovative approach which is likely to grow in importance over the next decade as the evidence for its benefit continues to build. (David VealePresident British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies 2006-8)
Paul Gilbert is one of the most brilliant scientists studying compassion today. In this wonderful book, he makes his theories very accessible and down-to-earth. You feel like you're having a chat in his living-room with a warm cup of tea. I also love his easy-to-follow exercises, which offer concrete ways to help you develop greater compassion in daily life. (Kristin Neff Associate Professor of Human Development, University of Texas at Austin)
Like so frequently in the past, Paul Gilbert has come forth again with a book about the mind, its unused potential, and how to harness that potential to one's and others' benefit. The Compassionate Mind is a roadmap to compassion for the self and towards others. It is a book for those curious enough to explore their hidden potential to attain a special kind of humanness and happiness. A 10 on a scale of 1 to 10. (Michael McGuire, author Darwinian Psychiatry)
A useful addition to any nursing library and ... of interest to anyone with a concern for mental health issues. (Learning Disability Practice)
Deeply empowering (Kindred Spirit magazine)
Important and enjoyable. (The Psychologist)
A landmark new book from the author of the bestselling Overcoming Depression.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
In many ways, the book has two audiences, which Gilbert has condensed into one : those who are particularly interested in neurobiology, and an examination of society, spirituality and altruism from an evolutionary angle, and those who might be looking at a practical approach involving an enhanced fusion of CBT and compassionate mindful meditation in order to deal with anxiety, depression and anger. And I can quite clearly see that the magnificent laying out of the first half of the book, where Gilbert explains the evolution of the classic fight, flight, and seeking/reward activities of the the sympathetic nervous system, and the ameliorating/consolidating activities of the parasympathetic nervous system is going to be extremely helpful to those who are reading the book in order to engage with the practical and self help exercises.
However, it made for a very long (and very repetitious) read for someone interested in the former, who already uses aspects of the latter. On one level I was tempted to stop reading at the end of Part 1, - except that I realised that there was more interesting Part 1 type material buried within Part 2.
And I completely understand the value of the Part 2 material being endlessly repetitive about bringing the image of your compassionate person/self to mind, sitting with the smile, journalling etc etc. Except that this wasn't the book I wanted to read.Read more ›
The book is built around "compassionate mind training" and the idea, now with some scientific evidence, is that we have the wiring in our brain for compassion, and that we have evolved to thrive on caring behaviour, on kindness and compassion. The problem is that too often our "old brain" reptilian instincts of the four F's (feeding, fighting, fleeing and ...reproduction) take control of our lives. The very good news for humanity is that our propensity for compassion not only reflects the genes we are born with, but also to some extent is a result of the effect of early upbringing, and very significantly can be developed with the right exercises and practices - "physiotherapy for the brain."
Part One, in 6 chapters over c. 250 pages shares the science - how our minds and brains work and why compassion is a powerful healing process. This understanding, he stresses, is important for us in being able to most effectively develop that compassionate mind. He explains ten life challenges that we will meet along the way, such as competitive business efficiency that threatens our need for interconnectedness, (business efficiency he says is "crippling our hearts"), and the tragedies of life that can send us to despair and depression rather than compassion. He also writes of the three basic emotion regulation systems that evolution has given us: threat and self- protection, incentive and resource seeking, and our soothing and contentment system.Read more ›
Donald Robertson, author of,
...Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Was recommended by my best friend. Confirms all that we were talking about. COMPASSION....that's what it's all about not the moneyPublished 9 days ago by lisa #66
This book was bought as an used copy - it's in perfect condition and doesn't look used - I'm very happy with my purchase!Published 1 month ago by Mandy
Such a fantastic book! This along with The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook has gotten me through a really tough time. Read morePublished 1 month ago by D. Shell
I don't normally review books but I must say that this particular book is possibly one of the most turgid reads of all time. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
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