The Anthropocene makes humanity great again.
Mindfulness-based interventions, in particular, mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT), have been implemented and disseminated globally, and their efficacy is supported by evidence from several recent meta-analyses. As MBSR and MBCT are being integrated into the mainstream of society, including the fields of medicine, health care, education and leadership, there is an increasing need to educate and train professionals to teach and deliver these approaches and interventions. However, as capacity needs increase, the central risk is that the quality and integrity of mindfulness-based interventions could be lost if prospective teachers are not adequately trained to deliver such interventions. To help minimise this risk, we argue that the education and training of future MBSR and MBCT teachers need to be carried out through structured and systematic training pathways that are founded in mindfulness practice and study and closely examined and attended to by senior teachers with many years of contemplative practice and teaching experience. Indeed, prominent people in the field argue that the ongoing formation of mindfulness-based teachers is critical to maintaining and protecting the quality and integrity of MBSR and MBCT. Committed to translating and integrating mindfulness into a twenty-first century context and lexicon—while honouring the universal essence and deep roots of mindfulness practice arising out of classical Buddhist meditation practices—modern scientific research has been conducted, education and professional training standards have been proposed and tools for assessment of mindfulness-based teaching competencies have been developed and applied, all in service of this implementation, dissemination and capacity building process.
We evaluate the boundary of the Anthropocene geological time interval as an epoch, since it is useful to have a consistent temporal definition for this increasingly used unit, whether the presently informal term is eventually formalized or not. Of the three main levels suggested – an ‘early Anthropocene’ level some thousands of years ago; the beginning of the Industrial Revolution at ∼1800 CE (Common Era); and the ‘Great Acceleration’ of the mid-twentieth century – current evidence suggests that the last of these has the most pronounced and globally synchronous signal. A boundary at this time need not have a Global Boundary Stratotype Section and Point (GSSP or ‘golden spike’) but can be defined by a Global Standard Stratigraphic Age (GSSA), i.e. a point in time of the human calendar. We propose an appropriate boundary level here to be the time of the world's first nuclear bomb explosion, on July 16th 1945 at Alamogordo, New Mexico; additional bombs were detonated at the average rate of one every 9.6 days until 1988 with attendant worldwide fallout easily identifiable in the chemostratigraphic record. Hence, Anthropocene deposits would be those that may include the globally distributed primary artificial radionuclide signal, while also being recognized using a wide range of other stratigraphic criteria. This suggestion for the Holocene–Anthropocene boundary may ultimately be superseded, as the Anthropocene is only in its early phases, but it should remain practical and effective for use by at least the current generation of scientists.
Since 2009, the Working Group on the ‘Anthropocene’ (or, commonly, AWG for Anthropocene Working Group), has been critically analysing the case for formalization of this proposed but still informal geological time unit. The study to date has mainly involved establishing the overall nature of the Anthropocene as a potential chronostratigraphic/geochronologic unit, and exploring the stratigraphic proxies, including several that are novel in geology, that might be applied to its characterization and definition. A preliminary summary of evidence and interim recommendations was presented by the Working Group at the 35th International Geological Congress in Cape Town, South Africa, in August 2016, together with results of voting by members of the AWG indicating the current balance of opinion on major questions surrounding the Anthropocene. The majority opinion within the AWG holds the Anthropocene to be stratigraphically real, and recommends formalization at epoch/series rank based on a mid-20th century boundary. Work is proceeding towards a formal proposal based upon selection of an appropriate Global boundary Stratotype Section and Point (GSSP), as well as auxiliary stratotypes. Among the array of proxies that might be used as a primary marker, anthropogenic radionuclides associated with nuclear arms testing are the most promising; potential secondary markers include plastic, carbon isotope patterns and industrial fly ash. All these proxies have excellent global or near-global correlation potential in a wide variety of sedimentary bodies, both marine and non-marine.
A Kid's Book of Yoga Poses with a Meditative, Mindful FrogFrog loves to practice yoga. And he will inspire kids to enjoy doing yoga, too. Follow Frog's yoga flow, from warming up to cooling down. Start with the mountain and chair poses, then work into giraffe, cat-cow, downward-facing dog, butterfly, and bridge. End with the quieting happy baby and savasana poses to help your muscles relax before going to bed or starting your day. For fans of Yoga Bunny and I Am Yoga, Yoga Frog's simple, meditative text is complemented by playful yet instructive illustrations by Mark Chambers to teach youngsters how to start their very own yoga practice--and to have fun while doing so, too.