Humans have so many thoughts inundating their minds and apparently if thoughts are not canalized correctly. They can cause suffering. Because those thought are usually keeping us either in the past or in the future but rarely in the present.
It is impressive how humans even if being in the present their thoughts can take them to other places, like when we are “listening to” the person in front of us, but our minds are somewhere else.
According to Pickert, resisting to keep in touch with the external world is not easy because after all our devices allow us to do many things, be in different places and multitask.
Purser says that the mindfulness programs, that are being sold out there, are nothing more than basic concentration training. They are missing the teachings on ethics and the ability to enact compassion for all other beings. I think Purser means that the meditation products being sold nowadays are just a tool of self-discipline. Moreover, I fully agree with him on the fact that “Reducing stress is a noble aim but teachers of mindfulness need to acknowledge that personal stress also has societal causes, by failing to address collectively suffering they are reducing meditation to a banal technique that keeps people focused only on themselves.
It is interesting how “reductions in stress and increases in personal happiness and wellbeing is much easier to sell than serious questions about injustice, inequity and environmental devastation, etc.” (Purser 2019).
Perhaps mindful is overrated as mentioned by author Purser, after all anything that has in the title the word “mindful” seems to sell faster automatically.
Author Ratnayake points out that the version of meditation offered in apps is like a watered version of meditation and that we err in presenting mindfulness as the cure for the modern ills.
Ratnayake and Purser seems to concur on the opinion that meditation does not allow one to take responsibility for one’s feelings promoting then a self-centered well-being disregarding everything else happening around. For this or other reasons Ratnayake says that she practices mindfulness occasionally rather than a regular practice.