Does Meditation Need a Social Context?

Is the social context an essential element of meditation?

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Author: Laurence J. Kirmayer

Year: 2015

Title: Mindfulness in Cultural Context

Summary: Whilst western psychology has acknowledged the strong relationship that exists between the mindfulness movement and Buddhism. There appears to be a limited appreciation of the implications of social context in understanding either the traditional Buddhist or western approaches to mindfulness.

Perspective: Psychotherapy

Links: http://tps.sagepub.com/content/52/4/447.full.pdf+html

Mindfulness: Towards A Critical Relational Perspective

A critical perspective of mindfulness. Understanding the contemporary mindfulness movement in a wider perspective.

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Author: Steven Stanley

Year: 2013

Title: Mindfulness: Towards A Critical Relational Perspective

Summary: This research acknowledges the increasing role of mindfulness in the west; enabling people to engage with new approaches to cope with issues connected to subjective wellbeing such as stress, depression and anxiety. It also discusses the appropriation of ‘mindfulness’ by psychology and the potential for conflict between its role in traditional and modern westernised meditation movements. A social critique, exposing the failure (and thus the potential opportunity) of psychology to integrate mindfulness as a personal and social practice.

Perspective: Social psychology, discursive psychology

Links: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1751-9004.2012.00454.x/abstract

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