We recently received an email from someone who asked whether a practice known as Meditative Forest Bathing is appropriate for a Catholic retreat. If it was just a matter of taking a stroll through the forest – yes – but Meditative Forest Bathing isn’t quite that simple.
We have been studying My Soul Thirsts for God, for the Living God, a document on prayer released by Spain’s bishops in September. Last time, we discussed the theological foundations for prayer. Now we get into the heart of the document, applying these theological foundations to popular spiritual practices, especially those originating in Buddhism.
The Commission for the Doctrine of the Faith for Spain’s Bishops Conference has issued a document warning Catholics that they risk abandoning the faith by using mindfulness and other methods of meditation that do not originate in Christianity.
AJ asks: “I have been hearing about these beads called chokti beads that you use while praying and focusing on your breathing. Is this a Christian practice? It sounds eastern to me!” Read the rest…
More than 82,000 American people have signed on to a petition demanding that public schools in the United States stop forcing Buddhist meditation practices such as mindfulness on students in violation of their religious liberty.
The rise of the modern practice of mindfulness into the field of therapy has posed a conundrum for many Catholics who want the therapy, but without the Buddhist roots. What are their options and how do they find them?
BD writes: “I have repeatedly asked my therapist to find something other than mindfulness to help me with my anxiety issues. But he insists that this therapy has no Buddhist roots (even though he admits that it is based on the MBSR) and has been secularized. Is this true?”
LB writes: “Is praying a novena to this saint okay? I’ve read different things about leaving an offering of pound cake and that some people that practice voodoo pray to this saint. So that concerns me and I don’t want to invite the wrong things into my life. I know he has a huge following in Brazil, but given that I’ve read different things about this saint, I wanted to be sure. Is he not considered a true saint because there is no historical record of an actual date of death? Please advise.”