Mindfulness - The Full Catastrophe

Research output: Contribution to conferenceUnpublished paperpeer-review


Many of the current criticisms of secular mindfulness discuss an
apparent lack of compassionate or spiritual heritage or content in secular approaches and interventions. The ‘instrumentalisation’ of mindfulness has provoked criticism from a range of spiritual or religious commentators and figures about the misuse of mindfulness out with its various putative religious birth traditions. The use of the term ‘secular’ in this context has been described as a prophylactic that, while making mindfulness palatable to the western mind-set, has also rendered it infertile. In this paper Dr Graeme Nixon will argue that much of this criticism relies on false binaries around terms such as spiritual and secular, and that mindfulness whilst perhaps being ubiquitous to religious traditions (to varying degrees) is also present in western philosophy and the scientific temper. Graeme will argue for the recognition that, with a better grasp of secularity (as opposed to secularism), a more inclusive, accessible and, at the same time, pluralistic understanding can emerge.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 12 Jul 2018
EventInternational Conference Mindfulness - University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: 10 Jul 201812 Jul 2018
Conference number: 2


ConferenceInternational Conference Mindfulness
Internet address


  • Mindfulness
  • Secularity
  • Criticisms


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