Christof Koch accompanied a team of physicists, psychologists, brain scientists and clinicians to the Drepung Monastery in the quiet town of Mundgod, Karwar, in southern India, at the invitation of the Dalai Lama. He compares the Western mode of education & life with what the Buddhist monks learn:
We prefer to be distracted by external stimuli, conversations, radio, television or newspapers. Desperate not to be left alone within our mind, to avoid having to think, we turn to our constant electronic companions to check for incoming messages.
Yet here we had His Holiness, a 77-year-old man, who sat during six days, ramrod straight for hours on end, his legs tucked under his body, attentively following our arcane scholarly arguments. I have never experienced a single man, and an entire community, who appeared so open, so content, so happy, constantly smiling, yet so humble, as these monks who, by First World standards, live a life of poverty, deprived of most of the things we believe are necessary to live a fully realized life. Their secret appears to be mind control.