Mindfulness Interview With Dr Sarah Shaw
Dr Sarah Shah, Faculty member, and lecturer at the University of Oxford. She has taught and published numerous works on the history and practices of Buddhism including an introduction to Buddhist Meditation and the spirit of meditation. Without further delay years the audio from my interview, with Dr. Sarah. What inspired you to write this book I something. That's always interested me. I always noticed that mindfulness gets described in different ways in different historical periods and then Chased Kim and Nicola as. Shambala actually. Asked me to do is short history of mindfulness to make it very short, which is very, very difficult at, but I enjoy doing something that's just always interested me, bitch. I read articles about mindfulness and they can be quite rigid about it's this or it's that or it's this. Anak must have hundreds of my computer on some of them are really quite dogmatic but what I liked to its way in different settings would just get his slightly differently and has a slightly different feel and application with an underlying threader voltages. Pull that keep things alive by soon changing formulations wraps looking at them in you setting so. That seems the mindful way to approach the subject. So I. Really. Enjoyed it. It's great. It's interesting how? Like you mentioned how? Many different ways there are to use the word right when somebody says, I'm trying to be more mindful. You almost have to ask what what does that mean to you because there are so many interpretations of what it means to be mindful I think the people. In what's one person needs may be different from another person so I wouldn't want to be rigid about how it should be interpreted. Well that's great and and tell me a little bit about your background with with Buddhism with mindfulness Where did you? Where did all that start your interest in this topic? I started meditation many years ago. When. I was at Manchester University and that's what I I really encountered word mindfulness in Buddhist searching. Amusingly my meditation teacher told me that he hadn't met many people who is so unmindful the tolerating needs to didn't. Have I think that's A. Problem for academics, you can get very over focused. News surroundings. So I was intrigued by then and I try to sit down I have ever since I'm not sure I've ever really found out what she chews. On still craft it enjoy trying to rouse. I love how the title of the Book you know brings up right away to things where where does it come from and what does it mean if you had to answer that short way to somebody in an elevator? How would you answer that? Where where does it come from and what does it mean? And I would say it comes from is, is any one place Lipa come from coolest A cells that cindy the only person who can be mindful and do something about which is on self. And what it means. I would say. An attentive alertness to. Worship brings health to the mind. Something like that. Yeah I like that I think it seems like sometimes at least the way at. That mindfulness has evolved in the West. there seems to be a tendency to think of mindfulness as an altered state. and. It seems to me like what you're describing as more of an altered trait. It's a way of being. I can affect everything that we do rather than thinking. Well, here's my normal ordinary life and when I mindful I'm separate from that. It's this other state that I'm in. It it would be nice to be mindful of time I think we will have lapses one consent it'd be mindful day life it helps. Hopes to be mindful in daily life and one one needs to, of course in meditation. So it's something that can be there all the time how you arouse it sounds different circumstances might be different but the quality. Certainly according to the Buddhist tradition is that when the mind is healthy and Alert. Does a Buddhist fishing called the epidemic and it says that when mindfulness is present, lots of other factors come into play too like. Confidence. In this. Huma. Balance a lot of these other qualities come in as well. Yeah. What's Nice as the moment that we are mindful of the fact that we're not mindful we've already started right? We've already. A good a good point. Yeah So, what would you say is the biggest Maybe, misconception that you've encountered about mindfulness. I'm. Really, think very much in those terms actually oddly enough because I am an academic, that's what we're trying to do a misconception. I would say that the notion that it's somehow something that is very different from daily experience and I think that's probably one and does something that. Is owned by anybody at. The. Particular A. Just, save it. Psychology knows what mindfulness is in a way to. Practice, space traditions. Up Stem tool that Everybody will have found some way of arousing alertness and the attentiveness of mindfulness under different circumstances.