Listening today to Chade-Meng Tan answer a question asked by James Baraz* about how long does it take for mindfulness practice to effective, Tan fudged a bit with his answer saying that he didn’t know when, but one day simply realized he was no longer the same person. He learned it retroactively.
Being an engineer, he was able to suggest milestones with ‘real’ numbers. While he says the effects of meditation are soon evident, he estimates from his experience that it begins to “change your life” after 100 hours, with later milestones at 1,000 and 10,000 hours.
Tan’s and Baraz’ line of questioning made me wonder if I am different because of my practice. Why am I even concerned with mindfulness-by-the-numbers? Why am I interested to try and quantify this? Maybe it is Dylan’s question.
And a radio program this morning had me wondering about how is empathy (something I’m seeking with my practice) created and/or enhanced? Is it nature or nurture?
Based on Tan’s 100-hour benchmark, how do I know if I am different and, if so, how much? “We’d really like an answer – something simple.” https://www.youtube.com/v/aboZctrHfK8
As it turns out, I don’t need to know if – or even to what degree. Thankful for the received wisdom of those before me I know and trust that I will change.
And maybe our best times really are granted retroactively. http://www.gocomics.com/calvinandhobbes/2012/07/31