The Dangers of Meditation Retreats for People With Depression, Anxiety, or Psychosis

Meditation has been seen by many as one of the best ways to manage stress and various mental health issues. However, there are often darker sides to meditation that we don’t always see (the topic is overshadowed by talk of meditation’s benefits, but the negatives are increasingly being covered, such as in some illuminating articles…

View Post

Does Mindfulness Explain the Mental Health Benefits of Mandala Drawing?

Mandalas are intricate designs and symbols that are drawn in geometric forms (mandala is Sanskrit for “circle”). They originated in India, and are pervasive in Buddhist culture – particularly Tibetan Buddhism – as a way to represent the universe, deities, or certain realms. They are a form of spiritual artwork used across the world as…

View Post

Mescaline Revelations: Hume, Buddhism, and the Illusory Nature of the Self

One of the most interesting aspects of psychedelics is how the experience ties into philosophy. I am especially drawn to the notion that they can attract one to – or concretise – certain philosophical ideas, theories, and systems. For example, in The Subjective Effects of Nitrous Oxide (1882), the psychologist William James wrote how the…

View Post

When Meditation Becomes a Chore

There are many obstacles and pitfalls when it comes to engaging in a daily practice of meditation, and one that I’ve noticed being a persistent one recently is when meditation feels like a chore, one more item on the task checklist to cross off and get out the way.  But meditation shouldn’t be a chore…

View Post

Book Review: After the Ecstasy, the Laundry by Jack Kornfield

After the Ecstasy, the Laundry (2000) is a book by Jack Kornfield, a renowned Buddhist and meditation teacher. This is the second book I’ve read by Kornfield, the first being the best-selling A Path With Heart (1993), which I’d highly recommend as an introduction to Buddhism and a practical guide to Buddhist meditation, including the…

View Post