MINDFULNESS, SPIRITUALITY, AND PLANETARY HEALTH

The well-being of humans and the natural environment are intricately woven together, just as the current environmental and spiritual crises are deeply intertwined. Mindfulness, Spirituality, and Planetary Health is an international and interdisciplinary collaboration that connects human consciousness and awareness of the present moment with an appreciation of the earth’s ecosystems that we inhabit. Research indicates that time spent in nature improves both physical and emotional well-being, with active environmental engagement having more benefit than passive exposure. By focusing the mind on the natural world around us with intention, we can improve the health of socio-ecological systems.

Neuroscience research reaffirms mindfulness as a skill and lifestyle that can be developed to cultivate awareness of one’s inner and outer environment. While the inner environment refers to one's habitual tendencies, the outer environment refers to planet Earth, its climate, bio-geochemical cycles and complex ecosystems.

Spring 2024 Working Group Meeting

Registration for the Spring 2024 Meeting on April 4th 8:30am-10:30am EST.

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We strongly encourage in-person participation for those who are able to attend. The meeting will be held at UConn's Main Campus in Storrs. Our team will follow up with further details, including parking and directions.
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Steering Committee

Iyad Abumoghli, Ph.D.
Founder and Director
Faith for Earth
United Nations Environment Programme

 

Kumanga Andrahennadi, Ph.D.
Co-Founder, Mindfulness for Earth
Founder, CALM: Centre for the Advanced Learning of Mindfulness

 

Cynthia Jones, Ph.D.
Professor Emerita and Research Scientist
Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
University of Connecticut

 

Karen McComb
Director of Health Promotion and Community Impact
Student Health and Wellness
University of Connecticut

 

Patrick McKee
Interim Director
Office of Sustainability
University of Connecticut

 

Crystal Park, Ph.D. 
Professor, Psychological Sciences
University of Connecticut

 

Rana Qaimari
Program Manager
EcoPeace Middle East

 

Amit Savkar, Ph.D
Interim Associate Vice Provost
Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning
University of Connecticut

 

Sean Vasington, PLA, ASLA
Director, University Landscape Architect
University Planning, Design & Construction
University of Connecticut

 

Daniel Weiner, Ph.D. (chair)
Vice President for Global Affairs, Professor of Geography
University of Connecticut

 

 

 

 

Membership List

César E. Abadía-Barrero,Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Anthropology and Human Rights
University of Connecticut

Iyad Abumoghli, Ph.D.
Founder and Director
Faith for Earth
United Nations Environment Programme

Rana Al Qaimari
Program Manager
EcoPeace Middle East

Zahra Ali
Ph.D. Candidate
Department of Plant Science and Landscape Architecture
University of Connecticut

Kumanga Andrahennadi, Ph.D.
Co-Founder, Mindfulness for Earth
Founder, CALM: Centre for the Advanced Learning of Mindfulness

Erik Assadourian
Director
Gaian Way

Kinga Karlowska Atamer
Global Initiatives Coordinator
Global Partnerships and Outreach
University of Connecticut

Carol Atkinson-Palombo, Ph.D.
Professor of Geography
University of Connecticut

Oksan Bayulgen, Ph.D.
Department Head and Professor, Political Science
University of Connecticut

Jeanne Ciravolo
Director, Alexey von Schlippe Gallery of Art, Avery Point Campus
Assistant Professor in Residence, Department of Art and Art History
University of Connecticut

Robert Fahey, Ph.D.
George F. Cloutier Professor in Forestry
Department of Natural Resources & the Environment
University of Connecticut

Jeffrey Fisher, Ph.D.
Emeritus Board of Trustees
Distinguished Professor of Psychology
University of Connecticut

Audrey Girard
Assistant Teacher
Centre for the Advanced Learning of Mindfulness (CALM)

Phoebe Godfrey, Ph.D.
Professor in Residence of Sociology
University of Connecticut

Amy Gorin, Ph.D.
Interim Vice Provost for Health Sciences
Professor of Psychological Sciences
University of Connecticut

Samantha Gove
Undergraduate Student
University of Connecticut

Ian Granit
Graduate Student,
International Development and Management
Lunds universitet

John Grim, Ph.D.
Co-Founder, Yale Forum on Religion and Ecology
Senior Lecturer and Senior Research Scholar,
School of the Environment, Divinity School, and
Religious Studies Department
Yale University

Alexandra Harden
Ph.D. Candidate
Department of Geography
University of Connecticut

Alexandra Hussey
Intern, UN Faith for Earth
United Nations Environment Programme

Nashaw Jafari
Project Administrator
Sadhguru Center for a Conscious Planet
Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Harvard Medical School

Cynthia Jones, Ph.D.
Professor Emerita and Research Scientist
Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
University of Connecticut

Samuel King
Research Associate
Yale Forum on Religion and Ecology

Yehezkel Landau, D.Min.
Consultant
Landau Interfaith

Jessica Larkin-Wells
Farm Manager
UConn Spring Valley Student Farm

Maria LaRusso, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Human Development and Family Sciences
University of Connecticut

Karen McComb
Director of Health Promotion and Community Impact
Student Health and Wellness
University of Connecticut

Patrick McKee
Senior Sustainability Program Manager
Office of Sustainability
University of Connecticut

Kathryn Moore, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Art and Art History
University of Connecticut

Athulya Narayanan
Undergraduate Student
University of Connecticut

Eleanor Ouimet, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Anthropology
University of Connecticut

David Ouimette
Executive Director, First Year Programs
Institute for Student Success
University of Connecticut

Emily Pagano, MS, CPH
Assistant Director,
Health Promotion and Community Impact
Student Health and Wellness
University of Connecticut

Crystal Park, Ph.D.
Professor, Psychological Sciences
University of Connecticut

Sohyun Park, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Plant Science and
Landscape Architecture
University of Connecticut

Luciano Quagliaroli
Undergraduate Student
University of Connecticut

Akila Rayapuraju
Clinical Research Coordinator
Sadhguru Center for a Conscious Planet
Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Harvard Medical School

Zareen Reza
Undergraduate Student
University of Connecticut

Christopher Sancomb
Assistant Professor of Industrial Design
Department of Art and Art History
University of Connecticut

Sydney Seldon
Undergraduate Student
University of Connecticut

Anji Seth, Ph.D.
Professor and Interim Department Head
Department of Geography
University of Connecticut

Natalie Shook, Ph.D.
Professor and Director, Behavioral Research Lab
School of Nursing
University of Connecticut

Julia Smachylo, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Plant Science and
Landscape Architecture
University of Connecticut

Jamie Smith
Ph.D. Student, Clinical Social Worker, and Adjunct Instructor
School of Social Work
University of Connecticut

Kristina Stevens, LCSW
Director of Mental Health
Student Health and Wellness
University of Connecticut

Ngozi Taffe, Ph.D.
Associate Vice President for Global Affairs
University of Connecticut

Mary Evelyn Tucker, Ph.D.
Co-Founder, Yale Forum on Religion and Ecology
Senior Lecturer and Senior Research Scholar,
School of the Environment, Divinity School, and
Religious Studies Department
Yale University

Sean Vasington, PLA, ASLA
Director and University Landscape Architect
University Planning, Design, and Construction
University of Connecticut

Daniel Weiner, Ph.D.
Vice President for Global Affairs,
Professor of Geography
University of Connecticut

Dimitris Xygalatas, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Anthropology
University of Connecticut

Juan Pablo Yepes
Undergraduate Student
University of Connecticut

October 2022 Workshop Proceedings

March 2023 Plenary Meeting Minutes

Upcoming Events

Past Events

April 4, 2024
Working Group Meeting

Location: Storrs, CT and Virtual

 

December 2, 2023
COP28

Location: Dubai, UAE

 

March 6, 2023
Mindfulness for Earth: Charting a Path for Higher Education Plenary

Location: Virtual.
By invitation only.

October 19-21, 2022
Mindfulness for Earth: Charting a Path for Higher Education

Location: Old Saybrook, CT.
By invitation only.