Meggen Pigram

If you read my last blog post, you know I’m conducting auto-ethnographic research on Buddhist meditation practices. My initial account discussed my previous experiences with yoga/meditation, and the differences between the Buddhist forms and the mindfulness-only forms. Since this initial account I have been trying to understand the topic in relation to my own cultural framework – and how this impacts my investigation.

I acknowledge that I am conducting this investigation from a privileged position – I am white, living in Australia, with no ties to Buddhism at all. Through further research I have discovered that many people believe Western meditation is a form of cultural appropriation, because Buddhism has been “widely appropriated and pacified” by an audience which broadly fits in the context of Orientalism (Blakkarly 2014). Meditation in the West is generally quite removed from its religious background – most people practicing meditation are not learning the…

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