Contemporary Buddhist Pyschotherapy in the West

sad state of our youth

I saw old documentaries, and mindfulness training in the Zen tradition was part of the Japanese school curriculum in the 1970s. In the contemporary world of social decomposition1 (alteration, evolution...) and -to name a few- high rates of divorce; vertical polygamy (= siring offspring with more than one mate, as in the cycles of divorce and re-marriage); single parenthood; out-of-wedlock births -nearly 40% of babies in the USA in 2007 were delivered to unwed mothers according to some sources.
“hard to find are those beings who can claim to be mentally healthy for even a moment except for those [arhats] whose mental cankers are destroyed” (Gautama Buddha, Roga Sutta).
I wish those poor young people could get at least a chance at meeting Buddhism, among the oldest and most efficient forms of psychoterapy: be your own therapist as Tibetan Buddhist nun Robina Courtin said HERE.
I recently completed a postgraduate level certificate in the HINDU scripture GITA, and Hindu thought also offers neat insight, although Buddhism -as an ongoing tradition with structure and creed- is even better.

Gregory Hamilton Schmidt's picture

Don't give up hope!

This week my teenager told me that her counselor is recommending mindfulness practices to help her manage stress and my 1st grader told me that they're doing meditation in their weekly "health and wellness" class at school.

And this is Texas - not California!

At least with the spreading of Buddhism outside its historical geographic stronghold, particularly aided my social media and the internet, there's a much greater chance that people (like me) that need the Dharma will come into contact with it.

Even I was surprised when my son told me his teacher even suggested zazen specifically (to a bunch of first graders, no less).

Both of these opportunities with my kids certainly provided a great opportunity to discuss why we believe what we do and why practice is so important.

As I read in Lesson 5 of Theravada Buddhism (ME6101) this week:
One's personal awakening > the awakening of one's family > company > village > country > the awakening of the world

It's got to start somewhere - which I guess is why we're here.