From being topics at the margins of psychology fifteen years ago, meditation and mindfulness have spectacularly entered the mainstream over recent years. In terms of research and applicability their rise has been exponential. For those of us who have had long-standing interest in spiritual practices, these developments are to be welcomed.
The question to be addressed in this conference, however, concerns the context of mindfulness practice within the spectrum from sacred to secular. To what extent is mindfulness practice as promulgated in therapeutic and social contexts true to its roots in the spiritual traditions? Have the bounds of the term ‘spiritual’ become so elastic as to be of little value? What impact is the widespread incorporation of what is at core a spiritual practice having on contemporary society? And is the popularization of meditation practice leading to a distortion of the root traditions from which it has been extracted? These are the kinds of questions that we believe to be critical as we move forwards beyond the mere acceptance of mindfulness and its health benefits towards a potential re-alignment of spiritual and transpersonal goals in contemporary society.
Papers are invited that speak to this particular theme, or to the topic of transpersonal psychology more generally. If you would like to submit a paper, presentation or workshop for this conference, please see our "Call for Papers".