Author: meggenp

(Me)ditation

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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Now & Zen

Back in May, I signed up for yoga classes at a local studio. Though I had practiced yoga before, my experience and knowledge was very limited – I come from a very small town, and the class I previously attended was run by a 70-year old woman. As you can imagine, I was the youngest person in a room full of mothers. Needless to say, I did not last long. That was about 4 years ago.


Fast forward to 2018 – a stressed UOW student looking for some physical and mental relaxation, I finally signed up at the Wollongong Yoga Centre. The classes have been great so far; I can feel my body getting stronger and the meditation aspect is super relaxing. However, I find the latter incredibly difficult – it’s near impossible for me to switch my brain off and just be present in the moment. I have the…

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A Neo Experience

This week, I had my first real experience with Japanese anime. Of course – like every other kid –  I watched Pokémon on Toasted TV every morning before school in my formative years. However, I did not know this was anime when I was watching it. I also did not know that it was actually a dubbed version of a Japanese program. As a kid, I thought everything I watched on Australian TV was either Australian or American. What an uncultured little swine 😉

akira.jpgSource

Similar to Gojira, I was surprised to find how much I could appreciate Akira, despite its huge cultural differences. It all comes down to the universal themes/tropes that make the film so globally relevant – post-war anxieties, corrupt governments, playing God, and the dangers of power. It’s not hard to see why this film had such an influence on pop culture

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