Consider the mission statement of CCare:
[T]he Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education, is an innovative initiative of the Stanford School of Medicine within the Stanford Institute for Neuro-Innovation and Translational Neurosciences that will employ the highest standards of scientific inquiry to investigate compassion and altruism.
The Center will draw on many disciplines (including psychology, neuroscience, economics and contemplative traditions, including Buddhism) in order to
To explore ways in which compassion and altruism can be cultivated within an individual as well as within the society on the basis of testable cognitive and affective training exercises.
The center will be run by James Doty, a physician who is also a professor of neuroscience at Stanford. According to a recent article in Science (April 24, 2009, p. 458), the Dalai Lama provided $150,000 of the start-up funding. Unknown to many, the Dalai Lama has long has a keen interest in cognitive science. According to the article in Science, the aim of the Center seems to be finding that part of at least one religious tradition that actually works to make people compassionate:
[t]o take a centuries-old religious practice and extract from it a set of mental exercises with no religious overtones that can be scientifically proven to change the way people treat each other.