Date of Award
MA - Master of Arts
The following presents both a rationale paper and a creative thesis on the topic of how mindfulness can meaningfully impact the next generation. Given the daunting issues faced by Generation Alpha (those born after 2010), including climate change, social justice, and mental health, understanding how the tool of mindfulness can best support children, as well as inform the caretakers most influential to them such as parents and educators, is crucial.
The following rationale paper outlines how mindfulness can make an impact in the fields of parenting and education, as well as in addressing the pertinent issues mentioned above. In surveying the diverse research in the field of mindfulness, as well drawing upon and synthesizing work in adjacent fields such as psychology and neuroscience, it explains how a skill that trains practitioners to hone nonjudgmental, present moment attention can help shift priorities, foster connections, and come to terms with uncertainty.
The creative thesis presents the introduction and first chapter of a book manuscript. As a parent, educator, and Zen practitioner, I know firsthand how profound mindfulness practice can be, and how much “an orientation characterized by curiosity, openness, and acceptance” (Bishop et al., 2004, p. 232) can aid caretakers and children alike. The introduction presents an overview of the themes an entire completed manuscript would provide, though due to page limitations only the first chapter on parenting is included within the scope of this project. Ultimately, the goal is for the reader to better understand how mindfulness can meaningfully impact the next generation, and to illustrate how that information can best be delivered in the form of a non-fiction book drawing upon personal experiences, interviews, and research.
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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.
Tzelnic, Alex, "Bringing Up Buddhas: How Mindfulness Can Impact the Next Generation" (2021). Mindfulness Studies Theses. 53.