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Sit

12 minutes

‘Space to grow’: on being young, anxious and American in a Zen Buddhist family

Shohaku Okumura was born to a worldly merchant family in Osaka, Japan, but, to their chagrin, he chose a life as a Zen Buddhist monk and abbot in Bloomington, Indiana. Shohaku gives his own two children – a daughter, Yoko, and a son, Masaki – his quiet, steady support, affording them the ‘space to grow’ that he didn’t experience in his youth. But Masaki is indifferent to the Buddhist practices shared by his family, lacks direction and ambition, and prefers playing video games to engaging with the pressing question of what to do with his life. A simmering passion for cooking offers some hope, but Masaki and Yoko agree that they really wish their parents would just set some expectations for them. Shot over several years by Yoko Okumura, Sit is a touching, personal portrait of a family trying to find its way, and a probing exploration of the tension between the best intentions of parents and the needs of their children.

Director: Yoko Okumura

Producer: Christopher Ruiz


Video/Music

What happens when rock stardom doesn’t quite work out?

10 minutes

ORIGINAL
Video/Ethics

If soldiers act with unjust aggression they are as culpable as civilian criminals

6 minutes

Video/Demography & Migration

On the US-Mexico border, loved ones on both sides can see each other but cannot touch

12 minutes

Idea/Consciousness & Altered States

Our illusory sense of agency has a deeply important social purpose

Chris Frith

ORIGINAL
Video/Cognition & Intelligence

For millennia, we’d never seen anything like film cuts. How do we process them so easily?

7 minutes

Essay/Neuroscience

Where pain lives

Fixing chronic back pain is possible only when patients understand how much it is produced by the brain, not the spine

Cathryn Jakobson Ramin

Essay/Human Evolution

Imagination is ancient

Our imaginative life today has access to the pre-linguistic, ancestral mind: rich in imagery, emotions and associations

Stephen T Asma

Idea/Psychiatry & Psychotherapy

The history of brainwashing is a red flag for techno-therapy

David Saunders

Video/Childhood & Adolescence

What to make of a Riot Grrrl? A snapshot of feminism and high school in the 1990s

18 minutes