Mindrolling – Raghu Markus & David Silver – Ep. 95 – McMindfulness

McMindfulness

Mindfulness doesn’t heal everything? Seems that way. We’re talking about the proper limits of meditation and the fusion with good therapy. Old wounds die hard and sometimes we need to talk about just that with a pro listener. All this plus genetic phobias and to finish with – how to deal with madness on the planet…isn’t that enough for one podcast?

Recommendations 

Bringing Home the Dharma: Awakening Right Where You Are by Jack Kornfield

Referenced Articles:

The Telegraph: Phobias may be memories passed down in genes from ancestors

Truth-Out.org: The McMindfulness Craze: The Shadow Side of the Mindfulness Revolution

Commentary on the Eight Verses of Thought Transformation by His Holiness the Dalai Lama

 Episode Outline:

  • Phobias Formed (Blame our ancestors) – Science points to direct experiences in forming phobias that can be found further down the genetic line. Raghu rattles off some of the more interesting fears in the modern age – does ignorance play a role in many of these irrational fears?
  • Mindfulness vs. Therapy (Head to Head) – Spiritual circles sometimes frown upon psychoanalysis, citing its potential to perpetuate thought patterns. We have to keep in mind that meditation alone can’t always provide the healing one might need. Some of the deeper wounds and unconscious fears can linger beyond meditations reach. Raghu agrees, and offers some of his own personal experience with therapy, advising to find someone who isn’t attached to any one school of thought.
  • Wounds (Deep Cuts) – Dave highlights the unique brand of modern neuroses, which may require a multifaceted approach. Can meditation and therapy adapt to the ever-evolving market of suffering?
  • Embrace, Explore and Understand – Working with your shadow is a difficult task, regardless of how you approach it. It requires a deep commitment to be honest and loving with yourself
  • Prolonging Mourning Meditation – At times, your practice may be preventing you from fully addressing your suffering. Try to avoid the spiritual bypass of pushing these issues away
  • Emancipatory Meditation (Choiceless Awareness?) – “Involves intimacy with oneself as an extraordinary and vital activity in which one attends to whatever one is experiencing without any preconceived conclusions, and without trying to get rid if it” – Don’t encourage, but be aware, without judgment
  • Ogre as Guru – Dave comments on one of the ‘Eight Verses of Thought Transformation’ by Kadampa Geshe Langri Tangpa. Through practice we learn to transform what we detest – The teachings are everywhere and everyone. But, how do we actually apply this to real life horror, and when is it appropriate to act? Dave points to the current terror of ISIS, and draws on the teachings of the Dalai Lama in sorting this mess out.
  • Taking Up Arms (With Brothers in Arms) – How can we remain mindful when using force, and play out our roles without attachment?

 

Photo via Biggest Loser