The practice of mindfulness is traditionally seen as a sacred spiritual practices and still does particularly in Bhutan, Tibet, India and most Buddhist countries. The techniques to learn and develop such skills undoubtedly would have been really hard without a qualified teacher before. It would have taken a typical person several years to find the teacher who possessed years of experience along with an expansive knowledge and all the right qualities of a teacher to provide instructions and guidance through their practices.
Now with the easy accessibility of internet today, we are able to access materials and resources required to practice with very little hardships compared to our ancestors. You can now download it on a smartphone, watch it on a PCs, Laptops, DVDs and so on as the market demand for such services have exploded exponentially particularly over the last few years. There are so many courses both free and paid to gain recognizable qualifications to teach, to start new business ventures, to provide therapy services, to become a teacher or a coach etc.
The outlet for such centers are sprouting everywhere and has become a big business opportunities for many. There seem to be voracious demand for it as it is being sold as stress busting, bringing general calmness and overall health benefit. We are easily, on the whole, sold by the idea of these stereotypical myth busting jargon about it’s general health and well being benefits.
Furthermore there seem to be a huge interest in Buddhism lately particularly in meditation practices where mindfulness is the primary technique applied. This seem to have spread widely in the west over the last decades in particular and people are interested in stereotypical Buddhist monks in their robes meditating quietly or the ninja warrior aspect of mindfulness skills to cultivate good health and power. As this popular culture of stereotypical believe is being sold as the paradigm of Buddhism. It may not be for the right reason but nevertheless they are drawn to it.
What we are in the end failing to understand is the fundamental philosophy and the efficacy of mindfulness practice. We are too quick to look for the solution to solve our stress and to calm our mind by paying someone to do it for us or buy an accessories to do it for us. The irony of this is that no one can do it for us and the only person who can is yourself. It is like breathing, we cannot pay someone to do it for us and likewise mindfulness practice can only be done by yourself.
Finally I just want to say, these are my personal view and one that may not be agreed by everyone. I truly believe if we all persevere and practice mindfulness regularly it will become a second nature and if we achieve this then our world would be a better and peaceful place to live. We don’t need any revolution to become a mindful society, we need everyone to become mindful to live harmoniously together in our society. All the best with your mindfulness practice.