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Lions Roar : November 2014
some relief. Having some compassion for yourself instead of judgment. it’s really useful to be able to tap into that kind of counsel. Dan Harris: mindfulness is starting to take off in many parts of society, espe- cially in corporate settings. is this a good thing? Epstein: over the past thirty or forty years, i’ve watched mindfulness medita- tion take root in the West, first in mental hospitals and the psychiatric profession and now in the corporate world. i think it’s basically a great thing. Whatever helps anybody is wonderful, and it’s bringing all kinds of people into themselves in a good way. obviously, there’s danger in diluting the profundity of the teachings and i think it’s a shame that mindfulness without progressing to insight is the only exposure that many people are going to get. But so be it. Dan Harris: What do you mean by “mindfulness without progressing to insight”? Epstein: mindfulness is like a technology that you apply to the mind so that you begin to generate insight into yourself and your place in the world. that brings about compassion. insights into the nature, or non-nature, of the self are very important in Buddhist thought. Joseph Goldstein: i don’t have a problem with it at all. as mark said, if it helps people, then it’s a good thing. i trust that those people who want to take it further will find a path to go deeper. and those many people who might not have that desire? they’ve gotten something. For me, the main concern is that the opportunity to practice the teachings in depth continues to be available for those who want it. But aside from that, the more people who practice any level of mindfulness the better. viDeoCaPtuReSByeDWaRDBoyCe What allowed a skeptic like me to embrace meditation is that it’s a skill you can develop. I find that really exciting.” Dan Harris “ The most important moment is after you’ve been distracted. That’s when you have the chance to be truly different.” Sharon Salzberg “ When we are mindful, we see that thought is empty and fleeting. It’s little more than nothing!” Joseph Goldstein “ Mindfulness is like a technology you apply to the mind so you generate insight into yourself and your place in the world.” Mark Epstein “ SHAMBHALA SUN NoveMBer 2014 37