Mind & Life Europe is a non-profit association, based in Switzerland, that bridges contemplative practices with modern research to understand the mind and cultivate the heart. Established in 2008, it operates in geographical Europe.

Mind & Life Europe and the Mind & Life Institute have a shared mission to alleviate suffering and promote human flourishing worldwide as part of the vision of founders His Holiness the Dalai Lama, neuroscientist Francisco Varela, and businessman Adam Engle.
Together with the world’s leading scientists, contemplative scholars, and practitioners, Mind & Life Europe creates open and interdisciplinary dialogues between cutting-edge research and wisdom traditions enabling unique collaborations to advance contemplative science and applied practices.

Mind & Life Europe convenes and catalyses diverse platforms and activities for developing approaches to pioneering research in the contemplative sciences and applied areas reaching from education to nutrition, philosophy, neurophenomenology and neuroscience. Activities include, among others, an annual Summer Institute, Contemplative Science Symposia, and initiatives in applied fields, such as education.


 What is the nature of our relationship?

The Mind & Life Institute (MLI) and Mind & Life Europe (MLE) have a shared history and values. Both organizations however are independent and autonomous from legal, financial, programmatic, and administrative perspectives. We operate in different territories (see below) yet work together to promote each other’s respective programs.

 What are the similarities and differences between the organizations?

Both organizations fund rigorous research grants across a range of disciplines related to contemplative sciences. MLI has three grants programs: Varela Grants, PEACE Grants, and Contemplative Changemaking Grants. MLE grants the European Varela Awards.

The differences relate to where we conduct our events and actively fundraise (see below), and our research emphases. MLI focuses on understanding the role of the human mind in creating and solving problems of disconnection and othering, through insights from science and contemplative wisdom. MLE integrates scientific research and wisdom traditions for the development of contemplative studies in various initiatives such as education, nutrition, philosophy, and neuroscience.

 Where do the organizations operate?

We both host events and actively fundraise in our defined geographic territories. Mind & Life Europe operates in geographical Europe, including the European Union, Scandinavia, the Balkans, Turkey, Russia, Switzerland, the Ukraine and the United Kingdom. The Mind & Life Institute operates worldwide excluding the Mind & Life Europe territories.

 How do the organizations collaborate?

We communicate regularly and coordinate with regard to programs and the direction of each organization. We ensure our programmatic calendars do not significantly overlap and we share insights and learnings that might benefit the other.