Some years ago, I began contacting book publishers for review copies. At that time, I didn’t have any money but a great hunger for reading books on philosophy. All I offered was a review or a mention on this blog. Many publishers were kind enough to send me copies.
While reading these books, I have gradually tried (and I am still trying) to formulate and practice an affirmative philosophy. A philosophy for everyone! This us a journey that began with my PhD-studies that I finished in 2005.
A few years ago, I decided to see if mindfulness could add anything to this philosophical approach. Loosely said, all ethics requires that we “see”—that is, that we are aware or paying attention as a way of being. Yet most philosophies don’t really nurture this skill.
Therefore, as a way to get acquitted with mindfulness (I was interested in its nonreligious approach to meditation), I participated in courses and retreats, and I am now in the last stage of finishing a master’s degree in mindfulness.
Philosophy is serious, as Kierkegaard said (for which reason he elegantly added humor and irony to pass on his thoughts). During this process, I have contacted publishers for books on mindfulness as well. And that is why I am writing this post.
One of the books I received in 2016 was Malcolm Huxter’s Healing the Heart and Mind with Mindfulness. I lost the book several months ago, probably in a park somewhere in Barcelona, since I read it during the summer. Now I feel obliged to keep my word: keeping your word is important even if no one else cares about your words. That is, I have to mention the book!
As I recall the book, it was slim and an easy read, almost an introduction to mindfulness. Yet it was not one of those that are centered on the author’s own suffering; rather, it was based on research and deep knowledge about both Buddhism and psychology. It doesn’t debate whether mindfulness lacks a real Buddhist touch but unfolds the fruitful interactions among mindfulness, psychology, and Buddhism. Most of the chapters ended with meditations, and I did some of them, mainly because they seemed honest and not something that the author felt was needed.
Healing the heart and the mind can be seen as “self-care”, not self-love (an absurd term). Self-care is a healthy investment of my participation in both the present moment as well as in the future.
Mindfulness, as many probably know, is not just about paying attention; it is also about not forgetting. The mind is not the brain; rather the mind is anchoring somewhere in the body like wrinkles and scars that are signs of a lived life.
That I recall this book, on the verge of 2017, is a sign that it is worth sharing and therefore reading.