Intersectoral Impact on Future Change Makers
Over the course of my career, I have developed a strong commitment to teaching, mentoring, and leadership. Besides offering language courses (including modern and classical Tibetan and Sanskrit), I have taught more than a dozen different courses at both the undergraduate and graduate level at the universities of Virginia (2010-2012, 2017), Bern (2018-23), Jerusalem (2020-21), Fribourg (2021), Basel (2022), and Sydney (2024-present).
University teaching is part of a larger mission to make my experiential and scientific knowledge about meditation useful to a larger audience. I am convinced that science should make an impact in the world through direct communication with the public in a way that is both accessible and not overly simplified. Teaching and designing courses at universities enabled me to bring some basic order into the vast ocean of practices by offering a systematic overview of six main categories of meditation. After having taught and refined this course several times, something unexpected happened with one particular group of students. Although this seminar—like all the previous ones—was primarily geared towards gaining an outsider’s perspective on these various practices, my students spontaneously started to apply them to their lives. Rather than reining them in, I decided to welcome their initiative by giving our course a more practical component. After all, what better time to experiment with new ways of teaching than during a global pandemic? Overwhelmed by what was happening around us, disoriented considering contradictory information released by agencies on an almost daily basis, and deeply troubled by the increasing division in the society surrounding us, we used the various techniques to navigate the relentless waves of change hitting us. I was stunned to see what effect this course had on my all of us. We could not only better comprehend what was happening around us, but we could also find ways to connect with people with different opinions or take more confident and self-assured decisions regarding our own actions.
Encouraged by such experiences, I now experiment with new ways to use my unique expertise to positively impact the world we live in, specifically by providing simple, science-based, and life-tested exercises to future change makers. To address a larger audience, I am pursuing an Executive MBA at HEC Paris while writing a book about how meditation practices can be used in leadership development and change management. Using personal experience and scientific training to translate ancient Asian meditation techniques into a modern context, I’m on a mission to support transformational leaders—both inside and outside of the university—as they prepare for a rapidly changing world.
Dear Flavio, This was actually one of the courses I enjoyed the most in my degree. Your attitude to the subject and the discussions in our meetings were very interesting, and I really appreciate your effort on getting these super interesting and well informed guest speakers to talk to us in the last couple of classes.