Mindfulness is mindlessness, and yoga is Buddhism’s means of making converts.
“That’s absurd!” shout the detractors.
I reply, “Have you not researched the source and promoters of the CAM Therapy movement in Europe and the Americas, or have you not read that Buddhists believe one’s performing the actions of yoga is to practice Buddhism and to become Buddhist?”
Yoga has enjoyed growing popularity, even among naive Christians, for decades now. Mindfulness is a more recent implementation into elementary schools and corporate health policies. Again, it gains a foothold through a sector of “medicine,”
classified as CAM Therapy. Be awake. Be thinking! As one Doctor of Religion at Indiana University Candy Brown writes,
“I started asking, ‘Who is involved with this? Why is it becoming mainstream?'” she said. “I was surprised by how little scientific evidence supports claims that CAM is safe and effective. For many of the most popular CAM therapies, there is an absence of rigorous scientific research showing that CAM is more effective than conventional medicine, non-religious exercise and relaxation, a healthy diet, Christian prayer practices, or a simple placebo. And there is evidence that CAM can be dangerous.”
One explanation for CAM’s acceptance, she said, is that some practitioners have been less than transparent, or even deceptive, in their marketing. They have played down the religious meanings of practices and exaggerated the scientific evidence of benefits.
Due to the scientific exaggeration of the benefits of yoga and Mindfulness (“meditation”), Buddhism has found open inroads into public and state schools, as well as business practices. Here are the people and foundations behind their “success.”
- Judge makes a ruling on yoga classes at Encinitas Union School District via ABC News
- The Goldie Hawn Foundation (Goldie Hawn is a self-announced Buddhist) and its “scientific” meditation in schools
- Chunyun (Claudia) Wang, PhD, CHES | Monroe County Community School Corp., Bloomington, IN (2012)… Principal investigator. Incorporating Health Qigong and meditation into elementary school classrooms. in connection with The Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center
- Nationalized Standards for “Complementary and Alternative Medicine” and Standard Psychology Practice:
- The Surprising Story of How Religion-based Alternative Medicine Gained Mainstream Acceptance via Indiana University News Room, Candy Brown
- The Healing Gods: Complementary and Alternative Medicine in Christian America via Oxford University Press
- Popular and Corporate Practice, a.k.a “self-help” or “yoga:” (a “demystified” form of “meditation” does not render it irreligious)
- Yoga – Relaxation or Occult? via Rapidnet and also Shalach.org
- Does Meditation Really Work? Excerpt from Dan Harris’s Self-Help Book via Reporter-Times
The Montreal Centre for Integrative Medicine: CAM Therapies