Tenzin’s work explores the association between cognitive and physical resilience and healthy aging. Across several collaborative studies, he traces the intersection of biological and cultural factors through the lens of Tibetan Buddhist and Tibetan medical paradigms. At the Center, he is particularly interested in studying long-term Tibetan Buddhist meditators via interdisciplinary approaches to assess the comprehensive mechanism of meditation and its contribution to well-being.
As a medical anthropologist and Tibetan medical doctor, Tenzin is also interested in health and well-being that is informed by a biopsychosociospiritual approach. His earlier research examines how Tibetan medical doctors, Buddhist practitioners, and lay people translate their perspectives about death and dying into their care for dying individuals and their own dying process. Specifically, he ethnographically explores the Tibetan Buddhist contemplative practice called thugs dam (pronounced tukdam)—a meditation in which an adept practitioner enters after clinical death—and shows how it informs and shapes both the sociomoral fabric of life and the sense of well-being at the time of dying in Tibetan refugee communities in southern India, where he conducted his doctoral research.
Tenzin is a TRACT TL1 Clinical and Translational Science Institute Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Minnesota. His current research looks at the underlying factors associated with cognitive and physical resilience and its impact on Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias among Tibetan monastics.
Romano, M.R., Díaz-Almeyda, E., Namdul, T. (In press). Dialogue-based learning: A framework for inclusive science education and applied ethics. Frontiers. https://doi.org/10.3389/fcomm.2021.731839
Cameron, M.E. and Namdul, T. (In press). Systems of Care: Tibetan Medicine. In Complementary and Alternative Therapies in Nursing, 9th Edition.
Namdul, T. (2021). Re-Examining Death: Doors to Resilience and Wellbeing in Tibetan Buddhist Practice. Religions 12, no.7:522. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12070522
Cameron, M. and Namdul, T. (2020). Tibetan Medicine and You: A Path to Wellbeing, Better Health, and Joy. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield
PhD, Medical Anthropology, Emory University
TMD, Men-Tsee-Khang Tibetan Medical College
MA, Anthropology, Emory University
BA, Anthropology, University of Minnesota
We’re studying an ancient meditation practiced by present-day expert Tibetan Buddhists and how such a practice might offer insight into the death process.