Irish Examiner Article: Taking time out
'Taking time out', by Oliver Moore - Friday, April 06, 2012
With international financial meltdown and personal worries about work, bills and so much more, clearing your head has never been so important.
For a growing number of people, the practice of mindful meditation helps. At its core, mindfulness is about being aware and awake to the present.
While Hollywood stars like Goldie Hawn and Meg Ryan catch the headlines as mindful meditators, mindfulness founder Thich Nhat Hanh plans to maintain a low profile when he arrives in Ireland later this month. The 85-year-old Vietnamese monk is visiting from Plum Village, a Buddhist community he established in France in 1982. From Apr 12 to 15, he and 35 monks and nuns will lead a retreat in Killarney, preceded by a talk in the Convention Centre, Dublin, on Apr 11.
"We used to have about 30 on the retreats, now there would be over 100 each time. We expect the numbers to rise after this visit, which over 600 have booked already," says Josephine Lynch, who teaches mindfulness in Dublin
There are a dozen or so mindfulness groups (Sangas) in Ireland. As a group, they welcome non-Buddhists, preferring to focus on spreading the practice of mindfulness than on Buddhism.
Josephine Lynch used to fret a lot. "I often worried about the future. Mindful meditative practice really helped me calm down and be in the present - to be with what’s here and now, rather than what might be in the future."