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Buddhist Mindfulness and Care Summer in Amsterdam Program Summer 2024 Early July 2-Week - Amsterdam

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Buddhist Mindfulness and Care

Buddhist Mindfulness and Care Course Overview


CEA CAPA Partner Institution: Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Primary Subject Area: Religious Studies
Instruction in: English
Transcript Source: Partner Institution
Course Details: Level 300
Recommended Semester Credits: 4
Contact Hours: 60


The increasing interest in Buddhist spiritual caregiving and mindfulness is partly due to a disproportionate increase in mental distress and decrease in wellbeing, and the promise and potential of Buddhist approaches to these topics.

The current popularity of mindfulness is at a peak and quite encouraging. However, there is often a lack of authentic input from the ancient Buddhist wisdom traditions. This lack has become an obstacle to deepened, embodied experiences, and has made mindfulness techniques often mechanistic and have diminished their true value and effectivity.

The Buddhism team at the VU aims to cater for the need and the demand for rooted mindfulness by enabling students to explore the holistic and authentic Buddhist tradition that base mindfulness in its natural home.

This course will introduce Buddhist mindfulness in theory and practice with special focus on Spiritual Care.

For this purpose, the course is structured along the lines of the Mitta Sutta (SN5 Magga) in the Pali Canon which discusses seven qualities of a noble/good friend:
1. Giving what's difficult to give
2. Doing what's difficult to do
3. Bearing up what?s difficult to bear
4. Keeping others' secrets
5. Revealing one's own secrets
6. Doesn't abandon one in misfortune
7. Doesn't despise one in misfortune

These seven characteristics of a good friend are matched with real-life and work requirements such as assessing spiritual needs of a person, assessing religious needs of a care-receiver, practicing ethically, confidentiality, communication skills, team working and maintaining one's own practice respectively.

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
- Have knowledge and understanding* of Buddhist mindfulness and the principles and applications of Buddhist Spiritual Care
- Have experience* with meditation
- Have experience* with reflective practice

Each module/day of the course is structured into four sessions:

Session one: meditation
Session two: Theoretical/textual learning
Session three: reflective practice
Session four: case study

The Programme will also be adapted to the needs of the participants.

The two-week learning structure is as follows:
Day 1: Introduction
Day 2-3: Buddhist Mindfulness in theory and practice
Day 4-9: The seven principles of Buddhist Spiritual Care
Day 10: Review, Reflection, Application, Conclusion

Contact hours listed under a course description may vary due to the combination of lecture-based and independent work required for each course. CEA's recommended credits are based on the contact hours assigned by Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU Amsterdam): 15 contact hours equals 1 U.S. credit

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