Mindfulness in Traditional Jewish Thought
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Undergraduate honors thesis / Opt-Out
Perhaps, the latter definition of mindfulness, referring to an ethically minded awareness is best aligned with a Jewish approach. The components of such a definition provide a framework to combine Jewish values with a psychology based understanding of mindfulness. Awareness is a prioritized value in Judaism. However, it is utilized as a means to perpetuate growth rather than retaining value on its own. An ethically minded awareness speaks to the end goal of a Jewish oriented mindful existence. A life built on clear values fosters trifold growth; interpersonally, intrapersonal and in reference to one's relationship with G-d. However, if one lives life without a state of awareness, such values cannot be truly upheld. Thus, mindfulness is at the core of living a productive and successful religious life. Secular mindfulness can be understood through a Torah lens once the core elements of mindfulness are channeled according to Jewish values. The psychological perspective of mindfulness does not inherently contradict a Jewish approach to conscious awareness. Rather, a nuance in semantics of mindfulness definitions serve as the means to relate secular mindfulness to a Torah perspective. Mindfulness must serve as a means to bettering our religious service. Living as a mindful Jew, means to approach experiences with kavana, a focused and aware state of existence for the sake of serving G-d. (from Conclusion)
Weingarten, M. (2022, April 28). Mindfulness in Traditional Jewish Thought. Undergraduate honors thesis, Yeshiva University.
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