The book Wherever You Go, There You Are by Jon Kabat Zinn is an excellent ‘non-Buddhist’ guide to the art of mindfulness meditation. Dr Kabat-Zinn has been using mindfulness meditation for stress reduction and pain relief for many years at The Center for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. In spite of Kabat-Zinn’s professional background he has not written a medically oriented text book but rather a simple and straightforward guide to meditation.
The book is divided into three parts consisting of short self contained chapters.
- The Bloom of the Present Moment
Which answers the question ‘Why would I want to meditate in this way?’. Chapter headings include ‘What is mindfulness’ and ‘Keeping it simple’.
- The Heart of Practice
This part explores the nuts and bolts of a formal meditation practice, answering the what, when, how and where questions. It includes ‘How long to practice’ and ‘No right way’
- The Spirit of Mindfulness
Expands beyond the formal practice into incorporating mindfulness practice into everyday life. This includes ‘Wherever you go, there you are’ and ‘Cat-food lessons’.
The book is beautifully written in an easy style that tells you all you need to know to get started on a meditation program. So if you would like to try meditating, but don’t want to get involved with bald people in saffron robes, this is a great way to start.