Atlas of Emotions for the Dalai Lama
In 2014, the Dalai Lama asked his friend, scientist Dr. Paul Ekman, to design him an Atlas of Human Emotion. His Holiness was intrigued by conversations that he and Paul had been having over the years about their different views on the subject of emotion. His Holiness comes, of course, from the Buddhist tradition. Paul’s more Western view comes from over 60 years of having studied emotions all over the world, in places as far-flung as Papua New Guinea and as close to home as UCSF. The Dalai Lama has been learning about scientific understandings of emotions from Paul and his work. For example, the concept of mood is missing from the Tibetan worldview, and he’s expressed delight in this new knowledge several times.
In 2015 Paul and his daughter Dr Eve Ekman, who also studies emotion, reached out to me and asked Stamen to collaborate with them on the design and concept of this Atlas. To say that I’m delighted to be able to share this work, featured today in the New York Times, is the understatement of the year — perhaps of my professional life.
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