"In Buddhism, mind is king. If we can change our mental orientation then everything will follow."
-Lama Yeshe Losal Rinpoche
The foundations of samten are based on the principles of Buddhism, which believes at the core of everyone is an innate goodness and intelligence.
Gelong Thubten, Buddhist monk and co-founder of samten trained for many years, a process which involved several periods of solitary meditation, the longest of which was 4 years.
Realising his calling was to bring the benefits of meditation and mindfulness to the world, samten uses the open-eyed technique of meditation which is believed to be the most powerful version.
samten encourages you not to blank out your thoughts, but to change your relationship with your thoughts. To find the space within your thoughts and to learn to accept they are simply that - thoughts. They are not reality, they are not solid. They come and go and we all have it within our power to watch and observe the thoughts - to be mindful of them - when we acknowledge them we are able to set them, and subsequently ourselves, free.
The app teaches you the three phases of meditation and mindfulness:
- where you are focused (for example on your breathing), you are fully present
- you notice your mind has wandered - this is okay, this is the moment of mindfulness
- you acknowledge it and re-focus, once again you are present
Whilst meditation is a more focused practise, which we recommend you practise daily, building up length and consistency over time, it is the combination of mediation and mindfulness that is most powerful. Once we become mindful of our thoughts, we can apply the learnt habit of mindfulness throughout the day, using it for example in stressful moments to acknowledge thoughts, then let them go and appreciate the opportunity of a moment to simply 'be'.