When the tech and the monk met...
In 2025 it is estimated that mental health will be the world's biggest killer. At samten, we want to prevent this from being reality.
In 2016 a tech man and a monk met at a monastery in Scotland. Although on paper they were very different men, the men equally shared a vision and desire to create a world filled with more compassion, more happiness and ultimately less suffering.
Equally, both men had lived to the extremes in life and travelled roads that had ultimately led them to seek a new form of inner peace and happiness.
Combining smart tech to appeal to the masses, with the age-old belief of the Buddhist philosophy that it is in our inherent make-up to be happy, the idea of samten was born.
As Gelong Thubten explains in his book, "A Monk's Guide to Happiness," we now survive on a rollercoaster of dopamine highs caused by living in a fast paced world where social media, computer games, mobile phones and tablets have created a culture of instant gratification. But, it is a short term fix, and as quickly as we receive the instant hit of happiness, so we become more unhappy as we lurch from one quick hit to another. We are no longer content to just sit and be.
"There is always an 'if', 'when', or 'because' to our happiness."
What both men had learnt through their life experiences was that, as humans, we have the ability to change the 'if'. We can choose happiness. We can choose to manage the 60-80,000 thoughts that invade our minds every day. In finding compassion for ourselves and others, we can live a more positive and rewarding life.
Following a meditation and mindfulness programme, we learn to change our relationship with our thoughts and emotions. We are able to build new habits and thoughts that are less negative.
The journey to bring samten to the world has been faced with challenges and obstacles along the way; an influx of apps and mindfulness teachers have arisen, the initial app proved less user friendly than hoped, many rounds of funding have taken place, employees have come and gone; but through it all, the core team have remained committed to the cause, knowing that they were on the brink of bringing something life-changing to the world.
Now, the company is about to launch version 2 of the app in Q1 of 2021 and customer feedback has reinforced that samten will, and already is changing people's lives.
Blessed by Lama Yeshe in 2018, the new app will retain its free 7 day trial, free Samten Junior section and free SOS function. It will continue to stand by its aim to give 50% of all profits back to charities and will eventually add additional elements to the company such as retreats and music to support the mind.
Gratitude and thanks are extended to everyone who has been involved in the journey so far, for demonstrating their commitment and belief in the vision.
"You're like a house.
Leave the front and back door open,
Allow your thoughts to come and go.
Just don't serve them tea."
- Shunryu Suzuki, Zen Master