Daily Good: What Mindfulness is Missing

by Kira M. Newman, syndicated from Greater Good, Jul 05, 2016

image by geralt via pixabay.com 
"If one looks back on Buddhist philosophy, mindfulness without compassion can be hollow. In fact, the crux of Buddhist philosophy is the combination of these two practices, which together allow one to develop wisdom.

What happens for some people unfortunately is that it stops [with mindfulness]. For certain types of individuals—often Type-A, driven individuals—this is a wonderful technique to become more attentive and more focused. But the problem is that unless you incorporate the other techniques that Ruth taught me, that we now know are critically important, it can be detrimental and make a Type-A person a more competitive, ruthless individual.

The other thing I’ve noticed, especially here in Silicon Valley, is for the same Type-A people, it also creates a competitiveness about how mindful they are. Somebody in a conversation with me recently said, “You know, this is my third 10-day silent retreat.” [laughs]

Unfortunately, mindfulness is another way that people sometimes use to compete and compare, and of course this is the antithesis of this practice. If you go back to its origins, ultimately the goal here is to develop less ego, not to use this practice to support one’s ego."

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