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The Relaxation Response by Herbert Benson
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The Relaxation Response (original 1975; edition 1976)

by Herbert Benson (Author)

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493730,551 (3.67)17
Member:JFDausman
Title:The Relaxation Response
Authors:Herbert Benson (Author)
Info:HarperTorch (1976), Edition: Reissue, 240 pages
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The Relaxation Response by Herbert Benson (1975)

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» See also 17 mentions

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Learn the principles of controlled meditation without leaving home...without attending high-priced lectures...without pills, medication or drugs.This revitalizing, therapeutic technique---developed by the renowned doctor whose extensive testing in the laboratories of Harvard Medical School and Boston's Beth Israel Hospital first exploded the scientific prejudice against TM---can release your body's hidden defenses against stress and stress-triggered illnesses (including high blood pressure).A simple meditative technique that has helped millions to cope with fatigue, anxiety and stress.
  CenterPointMN | Jun 13, 2018 |
Learn the principles of controlled meditation without leaving home...without attending high-priced lectures...without pills, medication or drugs.This revitalizing, therapeutic technique---developed by the renowned doctor whose extensive testing in the laboratories of Harvard Medical School and Boston's Beth Israel Hospital first exploded the scientific prejudice against TM---can release your body's hidden defenses against stress and stress-triggered illnesses (including high blood pressure).A simple meditative technique that has helped millions to cope with fatigue, anxiety and stress.
  CenterPointMN | Jun 13, 2018 |
Reading the original team who discovered the relaxation response. This is the lost knowledge in modern city living. Kudos to the scientist who writes accessibly to the general public. ( )
  yamiyoghurt | Jan 29, 2018 |
I read the updated version of this book, the 25th anniversary edition, that was published in 2000 with a new and updated introduction by Benson.

What's depressing is reading this book 41 years after it was initially published and seeing that the healthcare system is no more closer to using the three-pronged approach to care Benson recommends than they were back then really. Benson's three-legged stool approach is that patients should be treated with a combination of self-care (this includes the Relaxation Response), medication, and procedures/surgery. Sadly, it seems that most doctors still just focus on the latter two and ignore self-care!

Benson is a cardiologist, a Harvard Medical School professor and researcher, and he is talented at simplifying scientific concepts so that readers of any background can understand. There are diagrams included to help explain some of the physiology. I definitely think that I will implement the Relaxation Response technique into my life now or at least give it a try following the 5-week calendar Benson includes at the end of the book.

My biggest qualm with this book is that it's a book I want to recommend to a lot of people, but it's hard to recommend it when it's so poorly organized and repetitive. It's extremely repetitive for a book that's under 200 pages! Also, it is one of those books where you have to read the introduction because there is lots of important information in there; however, it's mixed up with the history of this book, Benson's gratitude to the people who helped him with it, and his reaction to the books success etc. There's no organization. Benson jumps all over the place in the introduction and ends up repeating himself a lot and the whole book ends up being like this. That's why it took me forever to read this short book.

The other thing that makes me grimace about recommending it to people is some of Benson's outdated ideas about women and people of color. I just read these parts in light of the fact that this book was originally published in 1975, so I kind of let it slide. But you'd think they would have edited these parts when the book was re-published in 2000.

Overall, I still think it's an easy, accessible, and important read for everyone, and I am still going to recommend it. ( )
1 vote Tara1Reads | Mar 5, 2016 |
The first have was very bland (all this stuff about blood pressure and how high blood pressure happens...not at all the reason I'm interested in the topic), but the section about meditation practices in world religions was very interesting, as was the section on how to elicit the Relaxation Response. So, three stars rather than the two I would have given it had I stopped with the blood presure stuff. ( )
  ImperfectCJ | Dec 31, 2012 |
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Herbert Bensonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Klipper, Miriam Z.secondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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I am delighted to rededicate this book to Marilyn, my wife of thirty-eight years.
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When The Relaxation Response was first published in 1975, the Vietnam War and the cultural upheaval that accompanied it loomed large.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0380006766, Mass Market Paperback)

When you look at the popularity of mind-body medicine today, it's hard to understand what a groundbreaking book this was when it was first published in 1975. Based on studies at Boston's Beth Israel Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Dr. Herbert Benson showed that relaxation techniques such as meditation have immense physical benefits, from lowered blood pressure to a reduction in heart disease. The Relaxation Response demystifies the mantra meditation used in the transcendental meditation program, explaining how anyone can reap its advantages with or without the help of a guru. If you want to understand the beginnings of today's alternative medicine movement, or if you're simply looking to learn a simple meditation technique without a lot of metaphysical trappings, this is a good place to start. --Ben Kallen

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:52 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Relieve tension, fatigue and stress with the simple meditative technique that has helped millions.

(summary from another edition)

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