You are here

Contemplative Studies Unit

Call for Proposals

The Contemplative Studies Unit is seeking to fill two sessions and one co-sponsored session and strongly encourages proposals for fully developed panels, roundtable discussions, or other formats focused on a single theme, question, or recent publication(s). We also welcome individual proposals and reserve the right to group them into appropriate panels. 
Please consider the pertinent topics below, and feel free to contact committee members who are serving as point persons for specific topics. 

  • Zen, Psychotherapy, and Contemplative Studies. How has Zen’s encounter with Psychotherapy impacted the development of contemplative research in Japan and the West? Contact, Harold Roth. 

  • Juxtaposition of philosophical text with contemplative practices that are meant to internalize the ethical, ontological and/or epistemological principles enunciated in texts. Contacts, Anne Klein and Loriliai Bernacki. 

  • The role of cognition in contemplative practices, the influence of contemplative practice on cognition, and the influence of cognition on contemplative practice. Contacts, Anne Klein, Judith Simmer-Brown. 

  • The Human and Posthuman: Contemplative Dimensions, explores intersections of the contemplative human with perspectives of posthumanism and our technological society that understand human agency to be distributed in broader non-human ecological worlds. Contacts, Loriliai Bernacki and Michael Sheehy. 

  • Contemplative approaches to addressing the climate crisis. Contact, Jacob Sherman. 

  • Rethinking Contemplative Education, how contemplative studies has shaped higher education, including graduate education, identifying alternatives to the current canon, ways the paradigm for education has been, or could be, shifted through contemplative studies. Recommended for Roundtable Format. Contacts, Niki Clements, Harold Roth. 

  • Compassion Training and Compassion Science—conversations about how compassion is conceived across traditions, how it can be trained in secular contexts, how it can be measured, and recent findings. Contact, Judith Simmer-Brown. 

  • Extreme Contemplative Practices, the range of contemplative practices that intentionally induce states of arousal or exhaustion and other dramatic shifts in consciousness that transgress normative frameworks. Contact, Michael Sheehy. 

  • Exploring Microphenomenology—fresh contemplative methods that scientifically and rigorously explore first-person experience. Contacts, Anne Klein and Niki Clements. 

  • Book panels: 

  • Oxford Handbook of Buddhist Practice, edited by Paula Arai and Kevin Trainer exploring the range of contemplative practices in Buddhism. 
  • On the anniversaries of Knowledge and Liberation (1986) and Unbounded Wholeness (2006), a celebration of the contributions of Anne Klein to Contemplative Studies with papers on Dzogchen, Sutra or other epistemological perspectives on the contemplative interface between thought (kalpanā, rtog pa) direct perception (pratyaṣa, mngon sum). 

Statement of Purpose


Steering Committee Members



Review Process

Proposals are anonymous to chairs and steering committee members during review, but visible to chairs prior to final acceptance or rejection