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What is the link between Buddhism and Mindfulness?

What is the link between Buddhism and Mindfulness?

August 10, 2022

Mindfulness or mindfulness it is based on enhancing the brain's ability to be aware of itself and to live the present moment in total fulfillment.

Already at the dawn of psychology William James left us the reflection that our ability to regulate our focus attention is the basis of the will and good judgment. However, James already warned us that it is easier to define mindfulness than to incarnate it.

In any case, this notion of mindfulness or directed attention is much earlier in time to psychology as a science and even other tools of human thought such as philosophy.

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The origins of Mindfulness

To speak of mindfulness as a Western discovery, product of the evolution of our modern society, is to sin at least of naivety and clearly of misunderstood pride.


The mindfulness or practice of mindfulness, as we know it in the West, drink clearly from the sources of the East, especially Buddhism , and more specifically Zen Buddhism, a school integrated in what is known as Mahayana Buddhism or great vehicle.

Already in the eighth century, Master Linji, founder of a Zen school in northern China , encouraged to pay attention to the experiences as they appear, in the present. And without going any further, the Vietnamese Zen master and monk Thich Nhat Hanh, well known in the West today, already spoke of mindfulness in the 70s, he referred to mindfulness as the energy of being concentrated in the present.


That is, since the dawn of psychology the ability of the human mind to reflect on itself, to focus on its own activity and thus be able to tune into the emotional states and thoughts that flow within us has been in the center of the debate and has been the key in all models of psychotherapeutic approach and personal growth .

On the other hand, from worlds as far removed from psychological reflection as there may be many schools of oriental meditation, especially within Buddhism, both Hinayana and Mahayana, the development of this capacity for self-consciousness in the human being has been the cornerstone of its knowledge.

It seems clear, therefore, that nowadays, nobody doubts this principle anymore. And that the concept of mindfulness or full consciousness already enjoys wide-ranging prestige in all areas of psychology and health sciences .


However, this mindfulness would be lame if we forget another Buddhist key, which is at the root of the Mahayana Buddhist concept of meditation, namely compassion.

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The Buddhist perspective

In Buddhism, compassion, in the sense of the figure of the Tibetan bodhisattva (also Mahayana Buddhism) is the desire for others to be free from suffering and the causes of suffering .

It is based on valuing the feelings of others, especially when we have gone through the same difficulties. And even if we have never gone through what others are going through, we can put ourselves in their place and feel how terrible it must be. By imagining how much we would like to be free of that, we long with great force that others can also be liberated.

That's why in Vitaliza we affirm that there is nothing smarter to get out of my suffering than to welcome, collect, embrace and restore the suffering of the other . And we thank all of you who walk by our side in the retreats and meetings we have been celebrating under the heading of "Sharing in Full Consciousness" your effort and dedication to create spaces of embrace and communion, where minds rest, hearts open and the souls connect smiling in unison.

The editions of our meetings "Compatiendo en Consciencia Plena" scheduled for 2019 will take place in Artzentales (Bizkaia) on 4-9 April, 20-23 June and 29 August / 1 September. For more information you can go to the Vitaliza website, agenda section, or contact through these data.


How Mindfulness Creates Understanding (The Buddhist TV) (August 2022).


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