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A Mindful Nation: How a Simple Practice Can Help Us Reduce Stress, Improve Performance, and Recapture the American Spirit Hardcover – March 27, 2012


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A Mindful Nation: How a Simple Practice Can Help Us Reduce Stress, Improve Performance, and Recapture the American Spirit + Mindfulness for Beginners: Reclaiming the Present Moment--and Your Life + Wherever You Go, There You Are
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 203 pages
  • Publisher: Hay House (March 27, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401939295
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401939298
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 5.7 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (122 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #292,859 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

 “Tim Ryan takes a big challenge in writing A Mindful Nation. He challenges the nation to take up meditation in their daily lives and tells us ‘why/how’ it works. I know this territory and wish him and us Godspeed.”

— Phil Jackson, former Coach of the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers, winner of 11 NBA Titles, author of Sacred Hoops



A Mindful Nation has the potential to change our country—and the world—one person at a time.”

— Deepak Chopra, author, War of the Worldviews



“Inspiring! An important book. If more politicians can follow in Congressman Ryan’s lead and look to harness the power of mindfulness, then the future of this country will be bright.”

— Russell Simmons, CEO, Rush Communications



“Tim Ryan shows how the simple practice of mindfulness can make us happier, more productive, and more compassionate. An unexpected and welcome book, I highly commend it to all who are searching for a deeper life and a better society.”

— Rev. Jim Wallis, President of Sojourners, author of God’s Politics



“Congressman Ryan offers us a beautifully written, practical, and comprehensive view of the far-reaching effects of mindfulness in civil society. This book brings the entire field of exploring mindfulness forward.”

— Sharon Salzberg, author of Real Happiness



“Congressman Ryan offers a clear, compelling, and compassionate beacon of hope for America at this time of gathering darkness.”

— Margaret J. Wheatley, author of Leadership and the New Science



“It is only through a shift in consciousness that the world will be transformed. Congressman Tim Ryan has written a truly powerful book in which he shares a vision for the United States that reflects this ideal. He reminds us that the word ‘United’ in our country’s name is first and foremost a spiritual principle. That we are all connected, that loving each other and working together as one is not for fanciful daydreamers, it is a real possibility. He writes eloquently of the power of kindness in how we interact with each other and more significantly how our government can implement mindfulness in its dealings with its citizens. As we become more enlightened, great political leaders will emerge from this new consciousness to lead us to Camelot, Avalon, or a Shining City on a Hill. Tim Ryan is one of those who can get us back to the “United” in U.S.A., and we can, maybe for the first time, live our national motto, ‘e pluribus unum.’ Must reading for all.”

— Dr. Wayne W. Dyer, best-selling author of Wishes Fulfilled: Mastering the Art of Manifesting

About the Author

         Tim Ryan was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2002, at the age of 29, and is currently serving in his fifth term representing Ohio's 17th Congressional District. He maintains a strong commitment to the economic and social well-being of his constituents in northeast Ohio. He serves as a member of the House Armed Services Committee, as well as its Subcommittees on Readiness and on Emerging Threats and Capabilities. He also serves as a member of the House Budget Committee and co-chairman of the Congressional Manufacturing Caucus.

Congressman Ryan has a daily mindfulness meditation practice. He has been an outspoken advocate for promoting mindfulness practice as an aid to dealing with the variety of complex problems facing the nation. During his tenure in the House, he has helped to get mindfulness and social and emotional learning programs established in several schools in his district. He also spearheaded a conference at a medical school in his district on Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction. Before being elected to Congress, Ryan served in the Ohio State Senate, as president of the Trumbull County Young Democrats, as chairman of Earning by Learning in Warren, Ohio, and as a congressional aide.


More About the Author

Tim Ryan was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2002, at the age of 29, and is currently serving in his fifth term representing Ohio's 17th Congressional District. He maintains a strong commitment to the economic and social well-being of his constituents in northeast Ohio. He serves as a member of the House Armed Services Committee, as well as its Subcommittees on Readiness and on Emerging Threats and Capabilities. He also serves as a member of the House Budget Committee and co-chairman of the Congressional Manufacturing Caucus.

Congressman Ryan has a daily mindfulness meditation practice. He has been an outspoken advocate for promoting mindfulness practice as an aid to dealing with the variety of complex problems facing the nation. During his tenure in the House, he has helped to get mindfulness and social and emotional learning programs established in several schools in his district. He also spearheaded a conference at a medical school in his district on Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction. Before being elected to Congress, Ryan served in the Ohio State Senate, as president of the Trumbull County Young Democrats, as chairman of Earning by Learning in Warren, Ohio, and as a congressional aide.

Customer Reviews

An excellent book and an easy read.
Just Asking
In this book, Ryan challenges the nation to take up the meditation practice of mindfulness in our daily lives and tells us `why/how it works.'
Charlene Rubush
While I did see the merit to some of the book, it's a bit too new age-meditation for me.
Lauri Crumley Coates

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

56 of 58 people found the following review helpful By Marsha Lucas on March 27, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Congressman Tim Ryan has written a well-reasoned, scientifically-grounded book that I hope will get attention beyond those who are already interested in mindfulness.

If you want to create change (and I think most of us would agree that the current polarization and gridlock isn't working for any of us), start with the first step of Ryan's plan: Practice mindfulness to improve your own physical and mental health (tons of solid evidence supports this). A few minutes a day reduces stress (and all of the downstream ill health that comes from that), improves immunity, and reduces the number of medications (with all of their costs and potential side effects).

Ryan moves on from there to address the various ways that a more mindful nation can bring about better education (even if only because kids aren't wired and torqued by counterproductive levels of stress), allowing attention and memory - learning - to improve dramatically, as shown by several large-scale applications of mindfulness training for students.

Lest you think Ryan's book is too "soft," enhancing the performance of the military is another benefit of mindfulness that Ryan describes and encourages.

And creativity and innovation - two of America's greatest strengths - are greatly enhanced when the brain is better integrated, allowing all of our abilities to be more online and active. Ryan visited the neuroimaging labs of leading universities to see for himself the excellent evidence for mindfulness meditations positive effects on areas and pathways that support better brain function (creativity, curiosity, collaboration, and more), including healthy, balanced empathy, which is necessary if we're not going to remain in stubborn, fear-and-anger-based gridlock.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Anthony Pantaleno on April 11, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Any day that a western political figure of the stature of Congreeman Tim Ryan endorses and sings the praises of the single most relevant FREE health practice of our time is a very good day! I never thought I would live to see it, but see it and read it I have in A Mindful Nation! For so many of us who have lost our faith in the two-party political rhetoric of our time, Tim Ryan has restored the faith that there are politicians who "get it" and who will lead the way for our nation back to the simple life, peace and common sense, a belief in ourselves to take care of our earth and each other, and to reclaim our place in making for a better world for all.

Anthony Pantaleno, Ph.D.
New York State Licensed Psychologist
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Tara Healey on April 24, 2012
Format: Hardcover
A Mindful Nation is a great read, and I can recommend it to anyone who is already familiar with mindfulness but interested in how it is being brought to a local level, as well as anyone who is interested in finding out more about mindfulness from a layman's perspective. Congressman Ryan speaks convincingly about the impact mindfulness practice has had on him and others, using a prose style that is refreshingly plainspoken but that never over-simplifies the complex ideas he's dealing with. As such, he's a great tour-guide through this world. He describes in detail his encounters with the many dedicated professionals across the country who are introducing mindfulness in hospitals, schools, corporations and the military. Citing the work of neuroscientists like Richard Davidson and Sara Lazar he illustrates the way the brain changes in response to mindfulness training, using accessible language so the non-scientist can easily glean the significance of the research. Ryan is able to keep the book brisk and engaging by relying on his talent as a storyteller, and by relating the stories of individuals who are using mindfulness in different ways across society he inspires the reader to want to live a more awake, aware and connected life, and really appreciate each moment. A politician doesn't seem like the typical advocate for a practice as ancient and simple as mindfulness, but for this reason the work Congressman Ryan performs in this book comes across as that much more powerful. His credibility as a leader makes me hopeful that mindfulness can become more than just a niche practice, and instead something that everyone can have access to and benefit from.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Jim TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 6, 2012
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I read A Mindful Nation over the course of two evenings, and I found it to be a great, inspiring read and I highly recommend it. Prospective buyers of A Mindful Nation should know that although A Mindful Nation includes an afterword by Dr. Susan Bauer-Wu that consists of basic, easy to follow guided instructions for actual mindfulness practices, A Mindful Nation is not a "how to practice mindfulness meditation" type of book. If you are in the market for such a book my first recommendation is Mindfulness in Plain English.

Congressman Tim Ryan's A Mindful Nation is partly autobiographical and inspirational, it is informational, and it is in a sense a manifesto about how "integrating mindfulness into health care, education, and society at large" might benefit society and the entire nation. An example of the informational aspect of Mindful Nation is that it includes a 20 page chapter titled "What Scientists Say Mindfulness Can Do For You" wherein Ryan touches on the question of neuroplasticity (essentially that the brain is incredibly adaptive) and the idea that mindfulness practice "can change the way our brain functions."

Though I'd heard of Ryan before reading A Mindful Nation, I barely knew anything about him other than that he was a young Democratic congressman, and after reading A Mindful nation I know nothing about his positions on controversial social and political issues, and I consider that a good thing given that the subject of the book is non-partisan in nature. So while I can imagine someone who dislikes Democrats expressing disinterest in the book for that reason ("Written by a Democrat? No way!
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