Presented by RMIT's Social Innovation Hub. Screening followed by Q and A with fimmaker and guests.
In the midst of a growing mental illness epidemic, an investigative journalist enlists a team of scientists to put meditation to the test. But after a 30,000 kilometre journey from the bright lights of Manhattan to the dusty refugee camps of the Middle East, what begins as a year-long self-experiment transforms into a life-changing experience. A stressed-out, overburdened journalist embarks on a year-long self-experiment to find out if meditation really can revolutionise her health and happiness, or if it's just another over-sold, over-hyped, self-help fad.
In the last 20 years, the ancient practice of mindfulness has become a mainstream phenomenon. Meditation is now hyped as a wonder drug that can reduce stress, boost performance, change brains, improve relationships, and even treat chronic illnesses and depression. But can the world's problems really be cured by simply training people to contemplate the inner workings of their own mind?
From the producers of The Connection, comes MY YEAR OF LIVING MINDFULLY, a feature film which follows jounalist Shannon Harvey, as she enlists a team of scientists in order to put meditation to the test. The stressed-out mother of two young kids, who suffers from insomnia and an autoimmune disease decides to meditate every day for a year to find out if it really leads to health and happiness, or if it's just another over sold, over-hyped, self-help fad.
Throughout the year Shannon travels the globe to meet leading scientists, monks, teachers, and tribal elders who share their remarkable stories of transformation. She meets news anchor Dan Harris, who turned to meditation after having a panic attack live on air and Miriam Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann, an Aboriginal Elder, who explains the ancient practice of Dadirri - deep listening and silent awareness.
The film also chronicles the compelling stories of people who use mindfulness to face unimaginable suffering, including Vidyamala Burch whose horrific spinal injury causes incessant chronic pain and Larisa Abadi, a Syrian aid worker who is on the front line of one of the biggest humanitarian crises of our generation.
Featuring interviews with leading scientists including molecular biologist-turned Buddhist monk Matthieu Ricard, best-selling author Daniel Goleman, and the "father" of modern mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn, My Year of Living Mindfully is inspiring, compelling, and grounded in scientific evidence.
At the end of her year, Shannon's team of scientists scan her brain, test her immune function, measure her stress hormones, and analyse her DNA to determine what if anything has changed on a biological level.
As she faces her moment of truth, she's all too aware that there has never been a greater need for a simple, cheap and effective solution to help people cope with the stress of modern life. In the midst of a chronic illness epidemic, when the WHO has warned that mental ill-health will soon be the biggest burden of disease, Shannon wonders; if her year-long self-experiment fails, what other solutions are left?
- Commences Sunday, 23 Feb 2020
- Rating E
- Genre To Be Advised
- Running Time 96