An Exploration Of Mindfulness Meditation:Buddhist Roots And Secular Branches
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Mindfulness meditation is a practice of intentional, present-centered awareness, cultivated in stillness and silence (Kabat-Zinn, 2013). The practicehas been known in the East for its holistic benefits for thousands of years, yet has recently gained increasing interest in the West (Fraser, 2013). It seems that people are looking for practical ways to relieve their stress and cope with the effects of the fast-paced nature of modern daily life, for which mindfulness meditation provides a pause that many of us long for. Although meditation is often associated with relaxation, the practice comes withits challenges, for which I havefound Buddhist philosophy to thoroughly elucidate (Thera, 1998).Much research demonstrates the many benefits of meditation, yet the term ‘mindfulness’is somewhat ambiguous (de Vibe et al., 2012).The Satipatth?na Sutta—a Buddhist scripture known as The Way of Mindfulness—provides clarifying distinctions that are invaluable for our practice of mindfulness meditation, which is a form of attentional training that can affect a transformation in our awareness and perception of the world(Deatherage, 1975; Thera, 1998). This enhanced construct for mindfulness serves to enrich our adoption of a practice that can benefit any layperson who longsfor a deeper sense of wellbeing and meaningful connectedness in life (Hanh, 2015).