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Currently Lisa is seeing clients for private sessions in her home studio or in your home.

Mindfulness

My local focused MBSR study which I’m integrating with my yoga practice and offerings is with teacher is Gus Castellanos:  http://innerinmate.com/

The following detailed information was taken directly from Gus’s email newsletter:

The Buddhist term for Mindfulness was first translated by T.W. Rhys Davids in 1881 from the Pali word sati. Since then various authors have attempted definitions of what precisely is meant by mindfulness, the translations referencing mindfulness to be like remembrance, memory, reminiscence, recollection, thinking of or upon, or calling to mind, since this was the usual everyday meaning of the then more familiar Sanskrit term smrti.
 
However, this is not what has been emphasized or brought out in the definitions that have been used in the context of the mindfulness-based interventions (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction – MBSR), which tend to define mindfulness as a nonelaborative, non-judgmental awareness of the present-moment experience
My understanding is the JKZ changed this original definition a few years ago to be, “THE AWARENESS THAT ARISES from paying attention in a particular way – on purpose, in the present moment, non-judgmentally.
 
Also, traditionally, (right) mindfulness is one ‘limbs’ of the Eight Fold Noble Path (Buddhism’s 4th Noble Truth), and its cultivation is discussed in the Satipatthana sutta (the teachings on Four Foundations of Mindfulness) as a way to achieve liberation and cease suffering. That is, classically speaking mindfulness is a part of the path towards Full Awakening (sometimes called Enlightenment). And since T.W. Rhys Davis also reflected on and compared Buddhist and Christian Spirituality, mindfulness originally was used to describe a spiritual or metaphysical phenomenon.
 
But since most people receiving this newsletter come to mindfulness thru MBIs, we generally refer to mindfulness in its secular form – that is, as a way to strengthen the cognitive capacities of concentration, awareness (of what the mind is doing and what is on the mind), and remembering (to come back to the moment) and not as a Spiritual practice. We develop these cognitive skills thru 2 broad categories of mindfulness meditation practice – focused attention (Pali: samatha) and open monitoring (Pali: vipassana). In the focused-attention practice, we focus the mind in the present moment while developing the capacity to remain vigilant to distractions. With the second one, open-monitoring meditation, we remain attentive, moment by moment, to any experience without focusing on anything specific by cultivating a non-reactive (and non-judgmental) awareness of the thoughts, emotions, and sensations arising in the present moment preventing them from spiraling out of control and/or creating mental distress.
 
In both the secular/attention-cultivating and classical mindfulness classes, there are other meditation practices that intentionally focus on the cultivation of positive and wholesome attributes. Generally called Loving-Kindness (Pali: metta), these practices are common in the MBIs, as well as being offered as a course in and of themselves (see Patricia Isis’ offering below). These practices are aimed at fostering benevolence, loving-kindness, friendliness, generosity, good will, and altruism toward self and others.
   Mindfulness then, can be a spiritually directed practice thru its Classical teachings, as well as a method to improve one’s health, well-being and quality of life thru its more recent Secular Therapeutic and Instrumental methods.
 
And thanks to the work of Contemplative Neuroscientists, including UM’s Amishi Jha, U of Wisconsin’s Richard Davidson, Harvard’s Sara Lazaar among others, the brain changes and mechanisms underlying the mindfulness practices are being elucidated. For instacne, a 2014 Scientific American Article, Mind of The Meditator” by Matthieu Ricard, Antoine Lutz & Richard J. Davidson, reports some of the current neuroscience research on meditation, 
 
 “We do not find the meaning of life by ourselves alone – we find it with another.”  ― Thomas Merton

      However, both the Spiritual and secular forms of mindfulness focus primarily on the individual, subjectively and objectively, and tend to ignore the toxic institutions, stressful work environments, and sick systems that drive people to seek mindfulness in the first place. Hence, the misuse and commodification of mindfulness (over promising for personal gain and McMindfulness). What may be missing from the individual-focused practices are the collective forms of mindfulness as demonstrated by the intersubjective/interpersonal (the ‘we space’) and inter-objective/socially transformative (social justice) orientations. This more Integrally informed mindfulness,supplements and expands existing mindfulness programs by including more perspectives and approaches. We can step outside of the current modes of practicing and critically examine them from more encompassing, transcendent perspectives, helping to bring about more inclusive relationships whereby we begin to explicitly name, call out and discuss issues such as social justice, climate change, corporate greed while fostering care, connectedness, and well-being for all.In summary then, the term mindfulness can be used to describe a spiritual (classical) phenomenon, a self-oriented (secular) phenomenon, and sometimes a social (Integral) phenomenon. Regardless of what we call it, let mindfulness contribute to the evolution of human development towards more beneficial and universal ways of being, healing, fulfillment, & relating…the alternative to which may not be so pretty!

“Love yourself. Then forget it.
Then, love the world.” 

Mary Oliver