The way the Buddha described and instructed in mindfulness is different from how it is understood and practiced in contemporary psychology. This talk highlights how the Buddhist approach to mindfulness has three levels: mechanistic, informed and holistic. The Buddhist approach sees mindfulness as equally important in a context of factors that include compassionate intention and ethical behaviours
The first generation third wave therapies have mostly defined mindfulness in a way that is consistent with the mechanistic level, where ethics and compassionate motivation are implied but not overtly included within their theoretical frameworks. The mindful-compassion approaches however, have compassionate motivation and therefore ethics clearly within their theoretical frameworks and are more aligned with the ancient Buddhist pathways to psychological freedom.