Darwin Escapes

The Health Cocktail: A History

Welcome Darwinites, to another Health Cocktail! A (very brief) History of Mindfulness

So here we will cover the history of mindfulness, where did this insightful thinking come from? How did it become mainstream? What is it used it for today? This is a very brief history, it has been around for thousands of years in Buddhist teachings, so obviously I can’t cover thousands of years worth of history (well I could, but I don’t think you’d read it all…)

So read on loyal readers and see what you learn…

So as I said Mindfulness isn’t a new concept, its practices have been around for thousands of years in Buddhist teachings. Recently in the Western healthcare system we have used it in many forms of therapies, from reducing stress, anxiety and depression to a wide range of physical conditions (ME and MS) and chronic pain problems too. Just over 30 years ago Molecular Biologist Jon Kabot-Zinn gave up his scientific career and started a stress reduction clinic in Massachusetts University Hospital. He has studied Korean Zen and yoga, and is an avid practitioner of meditation. He is often referred to as the father of Western Mindfulness, as it was he who brought it, and its benefits, to the attention of the public. A 1990’s, 40 minute TV programme brought Mindfulness to the masses, and people wanted to learn more about all this ‘mindfulness stuff’ and how to feel better. A decade later and psychotherapists began to understand the effect it could have in reducing and improving psychological disorders, it is now often interwoven with cognitive therapy to treat anxiety, stress, burnout, trauma and depression, among many other things.

If you would like to learn more, like learning how to put in practice or learn how to slow down, click the links and follow your pathway to Mindfulness (caution: side-effects may include a robe and some chanting…I’m joking, maybe)

Any comments or suggestions on what you use to help you are always welcome! So you lovely Darwinites, I hope this has given you something to think about while on your dinner. Looking forward to the next cocktail?

Remember, take a breath, keeping moving forward and always be kind to yourself!

Photo Credits: Heidi Forbes Oste, Jhoc, Hape Gera, Hartwig HKD