Bikkhu Bodhi on the errors of modern mindfulness

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Dinsdale
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Re: Bikkhu Bodhi on the errors of modern mindfulness

Post by Dinsdale » Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:06 am

Saengnapha wrote:
Wed Nov 15, 2017 5:24 am
Nibbida seems to be a turning away from all experience. Why? Because all experience is unsatisfying and is dukkha. Nibbida is a condition for dispassion which in turn is a condition for release.
So, returning to my original question, is this turning away from all experience present in the modern mindfulness movement? I don't think it is, but I might be wrong.
Buddha save me from new-agers!

paul
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Re: Bikkhu Bodhi on the errors of modern mindfulness

Post by paul » Wed Nov 15, 2017 10:24 am

Secularized mindfulness is based in psychology rather than Buddhism, and the aim of psychology is to make the person a functioning member of society, whereas the aim of Buddhism is to be liberated from conventional reality (samsara). So the application of secular mindfulness is a 'band aid' solution:

“In the Pali suttas, the discourses of the Buddha, the word dukkha is used in at least three senses. One, which is probably the original sense of the word dukkha and was used in conventional discourse during the Buddha’s time, is pain, particularly painful bodily feelings. The Buddha also uses the word dukkha for the emotional aspect of human existence. There are a number of synonyms that comprise this aspect of dukkha: soka, which means sorrow; aryadeva, which is lamentation; dolmenasa, which is sadness, grief, or displeasure; and upayasa, which is misery, even despair. The deepest, most comprehensive aspect of dukkha is signified by the term samkara (sankhara)-dukkha, which means the dukkha that is inherent in all conditioned phenomena simply by virtue of the fact that they are conditioned.
[…]
If we don’t accept that deeper dimension, then when dukkha gets adapted to the Western mentality, we wind up with what I would call a psychologicalization of the Buddha’s teaching. That is, dukkha becomes explained almost entirely as psychological or emotional suffering—distress, dissatisfaction, worry, anxiety, fear, concern, and so on. When it is explained in that way, one sees the aim of practice as overcoming those states of psychological uneasiness in order to live peacefully and happily in this present life. That seems to be the drift of what I would call the secularized mindfulness movement that has grown out from Buddhism. It presents a partial explanation of dukkha according to the Buddha’s teachings; if we take that to be a fully adequate explanation, then we are impoverishing the teaching and turning it into a kind of therapeutic discipline rather than a liberative one.”—-“Understanding Dukkha”, Lion’s Roar 14/11/17, Bikkhu Bodhi discussion contributor.
Last edited by paul on Wed Nov 15, 2017 7:43 pm, edited 3 times in total.

Saengnapha
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Re: Bikkhu Bodhi on the errors of modern mindfulness

Post by Saengnapha » Wed Nov 15, 2017 10:36 am

Spiny Norman wrote:
Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:06 am
Saengnapha wrote:
Wed Nov 15, 2017 5:24 am
Nibbida seems to be a turning away from all experience. Why? Because all experience is unsatisfying and is dukkha. Nibbida is a condition for dispassion which in turn is a condition for release.
So, returning to my original question, is this turning away from all experience present in the modern mindfulness movement? I don't think it is, but I might be wrong.
From the brief glimpses that I've read, no it is not.

I think Paul's quote is very apropos. However, the secular variety may very well lead into a more fuller investigation depending on the person. Haven't we all held wrong views even though we study Dhamma? It is all to be pointed out, eventually.

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