I’ve been following Rohan Gunatillake’s work for a few years now, since he launched the first version of the Buddhify mobile app, and I’ve always admired his effort to de-mythify meditation, and more broadly mindfulness, proposing a way to practice that’s compatible with our current way of living.
In essence, this book focuses on “the deliberate and active use of our mind to improve our mind” rather than the ways of an ancient approach that, while still valid, is not practical for many, many people.
Interestingly enough, at the core of this book is the avoidance of digital dualism (or people having a “digital or virtual life” and a “real life”), considering the presence of digital technology as an active component of our modern lifestyle rather than a special thing in itself or something that we have to detoxify from.
This is Happening is a great resource to either complement an existing traditional mindfulness practice (like in my case, where I’ve been practicing meditation - mostly Zen - for a few years) or to start practicing mindfulness from scratch in an easy, approachable way that doesn’t rely on the ancient rituals of traditional practice (usually seated meditation).
What I found most valuable in the book is that it features the use of clear, everyday language, and an updated series of core mindfulness principles derived from thousands of years of [traditional] practice plus smaller practical ways to bring them into our everyday life, even if it’s just a few moments at a time.
As Gunatillake mentions early in the book, “Mindfulness is a flexible tradition and it has a long history of reimagining itself every time it meets a new culture. The ways in which mindfulness is changing today are therefore just a natural next chapter as it adapts in response to things it has only recently met, such as neuroscience, psychology and digital technology”. So This is Happening is in a way the manifestation of Mindfulness’ evolution, and it’s done through a series of personal stories of everyday applications from both the author and a selection of “regular” people.
This book will help you to improve focus your focus, direct your attention to what’s happening right now (“being in the present moment”), calm yourself, cope with difficult moments and emotions, and connect better with the people and the world around you. It also suggests ways in which to deepen your practice, embracing “the traditional way” of doing meditation.
- Paperback: 270 pages
- Publisher: Bluebird (9 February 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9781509803125
- ISBN-13: 978-1509803125
- ASIN: 1509803122
- Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 2.1 x 23.4 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 358 g
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