Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

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binocular
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by binocular » Fri Nov 17, 2017 1:51 pm

chownah wrote:
Fri Nov 17, 2017 11:53 am
Mindfulness mediation is not a philosophical principle....it is not a principle of any kind that I know of. It is a techniques which has been found beneficial by a broad sampling of humans across many cultures and in many settings.
Similarly, the things kim ohara mentions are not philosophical principles either. I think you mention of philosophical principles is a strawman (a misrepresentation of someone's position which is then easily refuted which gives the impression that someone's position has been dealt with but in fact it is only a misrepresentation which has been dealt with.)
Philosophical principles are ubiquitous, different people having different ones. One such principle for secular mindfulness is that each person's life is worth living or worth improving. A stance that is far more controversial than it might seem at first glance, given that there is legal death penalty in at least some countries, widespread abortion, assisted suicide, "euthanasia", to name just a few phenomena that put into question the idea that each person's life is worth living or worth improving.
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

chownah
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by chownah » Fri Nov 17, 2017 2:55 pm

binocular wrote:
Fri Nov 17, 2017 1:51 pm
chownah wrote:
Fri Nov 17, 2017 11:53 am
Mindfulness mediation is not a philosophical principle....it is not a principle of any kind that I know of. It is a techniques which has been found beneficial by a broad sampling of humans across many cultures and in many settings.
Similarly, the things kim ohara mentions are not philosophical principles either. I think you mention of philosophical principles is a strawman (a misrepresentation of someone's position which is then easily refuted which gives the impression that someone's position has been dealt with but in fact it is only a misrepresentation which has been dealt with.)
Philosophical principles are ubiquitous, different people having different ones. One such principle for secular mindfulness is that each person's life is worth living or worth improving. A stance that is far more controversial than it might seem at first glance, given that there is legal death penalty in at least some countries, widespread abortion, assisted suicide, "euthanasia", to name just a few phenomena that put into question the idea that each person's life is worth living or worth improving.
Mindfulness mediation is not a philosophical principle. Similarly, the things kim ohara mentions are not philosophical principles either.
chownah

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L.N.
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by L.N. » Fri Nov 17, 2017 3:59 pm

binocular wrote:
Fri Nov 17, 2017 1:51 pm
One such principle for secular mindfulness is that each person's life is worth living or worth improving. A stance that is far more controversial than it might seem at first glance, given that there is legal death penalty in at least some countries, widespread abortion, assisted suicide, "euthanasia", to name just a few phenomena that put into question the idea that each person's life is worth living or worth improving.
These people's lives are worth living. Why the attempt to tie secular mindfulness to such things as the death penalty, abortion, suicide, etc? The quoted comment makes no sense, lacks factual support, and appears to have nothing to do with a serious, fact-based discussion of the secular approach to mindfulness. Why the effort here to bash every approach to mindfulness which is not identical to one's own views?
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。

binocular
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by binocular » Sat Nov 18, 2017 5:44 pm

L.N. wrote:
Fri Nov 17, 2017 3:59 pm
These people's lives are worth living. Why the attempt to tie secular mindfulness to such things as the death penalty, abortion, suicide, etc? The quoted comment makes no sense, lacks factual support, and appears to have nothing to do with a serious, fact-based discussion of the secular approach to mindfulness. Why the effort here to bash every approach to mindfulness which is not identical to one's own views?
If I go to a MBSR presentation, will the presenters there teach me that my life is worth living? My guess is, based on what they say in their books and talks, they won't.
I don't care if something helps others or "works" for others. If it doesn't help me, it's worthless to me.
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

binocular
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by binocular » Sat Nov 18, 2017 5:45 pm

chownah wrote:
Fri Nov 17, 2017 2:55 pm
Mindfulness mediation is not a philosophical principle. Similarly, the things kim ohara mentions are not philosophical principles either.
It's based on some philosophical principles, which are usually not openly stated, but which can be inferred.
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

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L.N.
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by L.N. » Sat Nov 18, 2017 6:09 pm

binocular wrote:
Sat Nov 18, 2017 5:44 pm
L.N. wrote:
Fri Nov 17, 2017 3:59 pm
These people's lives are worth living. Why the attempt to tie secular mindfulness to such things as the death penalty, abortion, suicide, etc? The quoted comment makes no sense, lacks factual support, and appears to have nothing to do with a serious, fact-based discussion of the secular approach to mindfulness. Why the effort here to bash every approach to mindfulness which is not identical to one's own views?
If I go to a MBSR presentation, will the presenters there teach me that my life is worth living? My guess is, based on what they say in their books and talks, they won't.
I don't care if something helps others or "works" for others. If it doesn't help me, it's worthless to me.
That's fine, but it doesn't answer my question. Why the effort to bash every approach to mindfulness which is not identical to one's own views?
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。

dharmacorps
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by dharmacorps » Sat Nov 18, 2017 8:40 pm

I'm confused too-- what does this have to do with one's life being worth living? Do you want to go to a meditation class where they tell you your life isn't worth living? Why is that even a subject?

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Dhammanando
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by Dhammanando » Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:44 am

binocular wrote:
Sat Nov 18, 2017 5:44 pm
If I go to a MBSR presentation, will the presenters there teach me that my life is worth living? My guess is, based on what they say in their books and talks, they won't.
In the case of Kabat-Zinn, I've no idea if he'll teach you that your life is worth living, but to judge from his book Coming to our Senses he certainly thinks that his is.
TASTESCAPE

To give a sense of the tastescape, I thought I would eat one almond and try to describe the experience. I took it from the granola I made last week, so it was baked along with a lot of other things, including olive oil and maple syrup, lots of oats, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, some cinnamon, and a little salt. As I put the almond in my mouth, I am struck by its size. It is quite large. I can feel the skin softening up and oops, all of sudden, there are two pieces in my mouth. I can feel the wrinkled skin on the one side, and the smooth surface of the seedling that it is, now split in two, on the other. I bite into them—perceive that they are surprisingly crunchy—and start chewing, slowly. The crunchiness rapidly turns to something with the consistency of cornmeal. It is amazing how the taste floods the mouth, peaks, and then trails off. It happened much faster than I thought it would. So, to zero in on the taste again, I put another in my mouth after swallowing what was left of the first one.

Slowly, mindfully chewing, chewing, tasting, tasting. Hmmmmm. Everything that is going on in the mouth is the domain of the tastescape, but what is it like in this instant?

[...]

Last night at a local restaurant I ordered cilantro green curry halibut with jasmine rice. It was an amazing combination of textures and tastes, each mouthful a supernova of subtleties ... the chef really knew what he was doing to be able to impart such an experience to another person through food. Every mouthful of fish, cooked so as to melt in your mouth, along with some of the rice and a small aliquot of sauce invited a silent pause of, no exaggeration, dumbfounded ecstasy during which the head instinctively inclined itself at an unnatural angle to deepen the mindfulness of what was going on in the mouth. This was followed by an exclamation of delight and satisfaction, mostly contained so as to not overdo it with Myla, who had ordered something else. There was also a sensuous lingering after each mouthful with the swirling, explosive blending of refined tastes that was the source of such pleasure, mildly sweet, a touch of coconut milk aroma, and intensely peppered, but somehow not too much. Again, ultimately it is impossible for me to describe it. I guess that is why we eat delicious food, because just reading about it, even if the writer is gifted, may conjure up hunger, but it will never satisfy that hunger or give us the actual flavor itself. For that we have to take it into our mouths ourselves and taste it in order to know it. Here the tasting is the knowing.

[...]

Yet I imagine, coming back to the green curry halibut, that the chef might have something interesting and revealing to say about his creations. Tasting this dish mouthful after delicious mouthful, it was as if I were all of a sudden at a wine tasting and had been given some two-hundred-year-old Bordeaux costing hundreds of dollars. I might enjoy it, but how could I appreciate, never mind give voice to all its ineluctable virtues, or even understand them listening to someone else, without being a connoisseur of wines?

And what would that be? Just someone with experience, who has, literally, "become familiar" through paying attention to a particular field of experience (from the Latin, "cognoscere," to know). So, in attending to the tastescape by bringing mindfulness to what we are actually putting in our mouths and tasting, we are becoming connoisseurs not only of what we are eating, but of who is doing the eating in the first place.
It seems an awful long way from bhāvanā on the banks of the Nerañjarā to fusion cuisine dining in Nantucket. I'm not sure if this is quite what the Buddha had in mind when he said that "satipaṭṭhāna is helpful everywhere."

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L.N.
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by L.N. » Sun Nov 19, 2017 6:19 am

Dhammanando wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:44 am
It seems an awful long way from bhāvanā on the banks of the Nerañjarā to fusion cuisine dining in Nantucket. I'm not sure if this is quite what the Buddha had in mind when he said that "satipaṭṭhāna is helpful everywhere."
The quotes appear to be about cultivating awareness of the sensation of taste. What is the problem with it?
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。

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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by Dhammanando » Sun Nov 19, 2017 7:57 am

L.N. wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 6:19 am
The quotes appear to be about cultivating awareness of the sensation of taste. What is the problem with it?
That would depend on who the reader is. For a follower of Aristippus of Cyrene I shouldn't think there would be any problem at all with it. The whole book would serve as a splendid guide on how to maximize his enjoyment of the five cords of sense-pleasure.

On the other hand, a follower of the Buddha looking for a good guide to dhammānupassanā may find that a few things of vital importance have been omitted.
“Here bhikkhus, a bhikkhu abides contemplating dhammas as dhammas, ardent, fully aware, and mindful, having put away covetousness and grief for the world.

[...]

“Again, bhikkhus, a bhikkhu abides contemplating dhammas as dhammas in terms of the six internal and external bases. And how does a bhikkhu abide contemplating dhammas as dhammas in terms of the six internal and external bases? Here a bhikkhu understands the tongue, he understands tastes, and he understands the fetter that arises dependent on both; and he also understands how there comes to be the arising of the unarisen fetter, and how there comes to be the abandoning of the arisen fetter, and how there comes to be the future non-arising of the abandoned fetter.

[...]

“In this way he abides contemplating dhammas as dhammas internally, or he abides contemplating dhammas as dhammas externally, or he abides contemplating dhammas as dhammas both internally and externally. Or else he abides contemplating in dhammas their nature of arising, or he abides contemplating in dhammas their nature of vanishing, or he abides contemplating in dhammas their nature of both arising and vanishing. Or else mindfulness that ‘there are dhammas’ is simply established in him to the extent necessary for bare knowledge and mindfulness. And he abides independent, not clinging to anything in the world. That is how a bhikkhu abides contemplating dhammas as dhammas in terms of the sense-bases.”

SarathW
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by SarathW » Sun Nov 19, 2017 10:30 am

. What is the problem with it?
In nutshell it is not right mindfulness.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

chownah
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by chownah » Sun Nov 19, 2017 12:39 pm

Dhammanando wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 7:57 am
L.N. wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 6:19 am
The quotes appear to be about cultivating awareness of the sensation of taste. What is the problem with it?
That would depend on who the reader is. For a follower of Aristippus of Cyrene I shouldn't think there would be any problem at all with it. The whole book would serve as a splendid guide on how to maximize his enjoyment of the five cords of sense-pleasure.

On the other hand, a follower of the Buddha looking for a good guide to dhammānupassanā may find that a few things of vital importance have been omitted.
“Here bhikkhus, a bhikkhu abides contemplating dhammas as dhammas, ardent, fully aware, and mindful, having put away covetousness and grief for the world.

[...]

“Again, bhikkhus, a bhikkhu abides contemplating dhammas as dhammas in terms of the six internal and external bases. And how does a bhikkhu abide contemplating dhammas as dhammas in terms of the six internal and external bases? Here a bhikkhu understands the tongue, he understands tastes, and he understands the fetter that arises dependent on both; and he also understands how there comes to be the arising of the unarisen fetter, and how there comes to be the abandoning of the arisen fetter, and how there comes to be the future non-arising of the abandoned fetter.

[...]

“In this way he abides contemplating dhammas as dhammas internally, or he abides contemplating dhammas as dhammas externally, or he abides contemplating dhammas as dhammas both internally and externally. Or else he abides contemplating in dhammas their nature of arising, or he abides contemplating in dhammas their nature of vanishing, or he abides contemplating in dhammas their nature of both arising and vanishing. Or else mindfulness that ‘there are dhammas’ is simply established in him to the extent necessary for bare knowledge and mindfulness. And he abides independent, not clinging to anything in the world. That is how a bhikkhu abides contemplating dhammas as dhammas in terms of the sense-bases.”
I have read very little about what kabat-zinn is all about but I gather that he does not claim that his kind of mindfulness will deliver the end of suffering. He seems to be making much more modest claims about how people might be helped by it.....and it seems to me that the modesty of his claims probably means that alot of people have achieved alot of what he claims they might achieve.....I guess.....don't know for sure....

I have read quite a bit of the suttas compared to what I have read about kabat-zinn and I gather that the minfulness it suggests is an integral part (or for many it can be an integral part) of the end of suffering......and it seems to me that the grandiosity of the claim means that probably almost noone (I haven't heard of any) have been able to achieve that claim.....I guess....don't know for sure.....

So, my question for EVERYONE here is: What is wrong with your mindfulness? It doesn't seem to be delivering the goods.....I guess....don't know for sure.......

What is wrong with aspirin? It won't cure cancer.....but then again neither will the vast majority of the experimental cancer drugs that doctors play with.
chownah

binocular
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by binocular » Sun Nov 19, 2017 2:38 pm

L.N. wrote:
Sat Nov 18, 2017 6:09 pm
That's fine, but it doesn't answer my question. Why the effort to bash every approach to mindfulness which is not identical to one's own views?
Where am I bashing them??
Copy-paste.

I am, however, disappointed, because MBSR is presented as a cure that can help many, supposedly including me, but it doesn't help me, and it is this disappointment that I am expressing. In fact, I'm angry too, and a whole row of other feelings.

dharmacorps wrote:
Sat Nov 18, 2017 8:40 pm
I'm confused too-- what does this have to do with one's life being worth living? Do you want to go to a meditation class where they tell you your life isn't worth living? Why is that even a subject?
Because on the most basic level, one has to believe that one's life is worth living if one is to expend effort (and money) on improving or just furthering this life.

Once a person has reached the point where they wonder whether their own life is worth living, or whether they should end it -- to say it with Camus' words:
“There is but one truly serious philosophical problem and that is suicide. Judging whether life is or is not worth living amounts to answering the fundamental question of philosophy. All the rest — whether or not the world has three dimensions, whether the mind has nine or twelve categories — comes afterwards. These are games; one must first answer.”
The Myth of Sisyphus
Such a person will need more than MBSR and other feel-good psychologies can offer. And MBSR etc. should rightfully be criticized for their limitations.
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

binocular
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by binocular » Sun Nov 19, 2017 3:26 pm

chownah wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 12:39 pm
So, my question for EVERYONE here is: What is wrong with your mindfulness? It doesn't seem to be delivering the goods.....I guess....don't know for sure.......

What is wrong with aspirin? It won't cure cancer.....but then again neither will the vast majority of the experimental cancer drugs that doctors play with.
You have a point.
I could be described as an unwilling Buddhist: someone who tries to stay in the world, pursuing worldly ways, despite having had almost nothing but dissatisfaction with them; the kind of person who resorts to Buddhism because everything else is too hard. This makes for a grumpy, grudgy, unwilling follower.

- - -
Dhammanando wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:44 am
In the case of Kabat-Zinn, I've no idea if he'll teach you that your life is worth living, but to judge from his book Coming to our Senses he certainly thinks that his is.
Well, I'm a plebeian, JKZ won't stoop to my level to talk to me.
:woohoo:
TASTESCAPELast night at a local restaurant I ordered cilantro green curry halibut with jasmine rice.
And somehow, managed to ignore that that halibut probably died a painful death from suffocation and the jasmine rice contained traces of rat or mice excrement. And of course ignored the poor hungry Africans, the fishermen who risked their lives to catch halibut in the stormy northern waters, and so on.

It's telling how this kind of mindfulness is so sharply regulated (ever so judgmentally!), ignoring so much, and focusing only on some very specific pleasures.
I wonder if someone following JKZ's method could get a root canal and be non-judgmentally mindful of it, or have a broken leg adjusted without anaesthesia, mindfully. Or be mindful while being told he lost his job.
It seems an awful long way from bhāvanā on the banks of the Nerañjarā to fusion cuisine dining in Nantucket. I'm not sure if this is quite what the Buddha had in mind when he said that "satipaṭṭhāna is helpful everywhere."
Maybe this follower of the Buddha should, you know, follow the Buddha ...
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

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L.N.
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Re: Master of mindfulness, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Post by L.N. » Sun Nov 19, 2017 4:05 pm

Dhammanando wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 7:57 am
L.N. wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 6:19 am
The quotes appear to be about cultivating awareness of the sensation of taste. What is the problem with it?
That would depend on who the reader is. For a follower of Aristippus of Cyrene I shouldn't think there would be any problem at all with it. The whole book would serve as a splendid guide on how to maximize his enjoyment of the five cords of sense-pleasure.

On the other hand, a follower of the Buddha looking for a good guide to dhammānupassanā may find that a few things of vital importance have been omitted.
Bhante,

Where do you discern a teaching of covetousness in the snippet which you provided by Kabat-Zinn?

Your concern appears to be that the snippet you provided omits a few things of vital importance. There are at least two reasons for this, as follows: (1) you have selected a snippet which omits those things; and (2) Kabat-Zinn's approach constitutes a "Modern Interpretation," which I believe is why this Topic is located here. Following is an additional snippet which may shed some light: http://www.inquiringmind.com/Articles/JonKabat.html.

We may not agree with everything he says, but my understanding is that his approach and MBSR are clinically shown to have a beneficial effect. Please clarify: Do you assert that anyone who does not have a problem with Kabat-Zinn's approach is not "a follower of the Buddha," as you put it? Please clarify the significance of one's opinion regarding Kabat-Zinn with regard to a determination of whether or not one is a follower of the Buddha.

With respect.
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。

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