Interview with Gustavo Diex: "Mindfulness is more easy and affordable"

"Minfulness is a form of address in which there is acceptance, presence... without that judgment that delimits the things," says Gustavo G. Diex, who leads impatiendo Mindfulness courses at the Complutense University since 2009, which has already seen more than 500 people. Ruiz and Pepa Castro interview Sita. Photo Jose Ferrer.

Gustavo Diex

Mindfulness is as simple as to realize descondicionadamente (without past data), with the freshness of the moment. "When we realize ourselves, started to make assessments of what happens to us inside." Minfulness is a form of address in which there is acceptance, presence, constant opening without that judgment that delimits the things", explains Gustavo Diex.

Mindfulness is not, then, nothing rare or complex or new...
No, is not something strange that us has passed recently, but a technique that takes thousands of years in practice. It was first described by the Buddha, falls within the Buddhist tradition, and then has been developed as a way of liberating way of perceiving the world. It occurs in all types of meditation; This way of looking, with acceptance, in present and without hearings, without identifications; a very simple psychological process.

There are those who identify with stress reduction techniques, also...
As it was a movement that, in the 1960s, associated with meditation applied to people with stress, depression, anxiety in hospitals in the United States, also often described as this set of techniques that have been expanding all over the world. There is a Spanish word that can define the Mindfulness; the best definition for me is an attentional process that is aware.

What is that you have gained so much popularity in recent years?
First, because I think it is necessary. We have a way to meet quite conditioned which makes us feel empty. We are always stressed by what usually expects of us, by the results of the actions that we carry out, by the thousands of projects in which we have involved... And however is us it has overlooked something very essential that is to be, simply. People are looking for happiness in this do and not being.

Mindfulness as a protocol disrobed of culture techniques associated with the meditation of the religions and philosophies and gave them a meaning deep, clean and bathed in science. This set of techniques as simple, applied to people who were happy and were stressed or empty, gave results, and they were expanding. There have been people who removed anxiolytics or analgesics by meditating, or has been able to cope with death or illness as hard as the cancer in a much fuller way.

Would that nears Mindfulness Yoga?
Mindfulness is not different from the yoga, in the sense that it works the same: awareness, although devoid of all that culture surrounding yoga. It is a process that in the West we played live: rediscover spirituality. Because in the end and after the human being is a larger circle than any culture, religion or yoga technique; i.e., there would be no yoga if there were no human beings. Mindfulness is expanding because it's easy, affordable, and very common symbols.

Expands it because it is easier to get to the people?
In yoga as a technique, you have to put in the culture to understand it, you have to learn Sanskrit to read text; the Mindfulness technique, because it uses symbols common to all. I have given Mindfulness classes in their own areas of work to clinical psychologists, managers of companies, politicians, University professors, doctors, nurses. And the message arrives because it is made in such a way that it is acceptable, logical and presented in a manner accessible to everyone.

How you came to take the Mindfulness to the University?
For me yoga, meditation, Buddhism were a vital process, they saved my life. At one point I realized that human constructs reality. It is not that our mind is conditioned; It is the own mind conditioning. We constantly build reality, and built it between us. We are born into a culture that has very defined bases, beliefs that we assume fully and not realize quite or.

At one point I was aware that the only way for social change is that this way of rediscovering life, being aware of the own construction of reality, takes basic environments of our society, which are the education , politics, health, etc. I focused on that was me closer by my training, the University. And because it was very important that all these techniques were translated into a scientific language.

What do you mean, exactly?
To me it gives me same as a meditation experience that has changed my life (and it has been) can be shown in a Tomography brain positron emission. But the fact is that this type of images allows you to see how the brain changes before and after meditation, and that makes people look to there and let see what always has been regarding these meditation techniques: they are stories that belong to other cultures or l madness of a few.

To move it to the University environment is happening a change; now, in the kinds of Mindfulness that we are giving in the policy Faculty of the Complutense University of Madrid, are coming to teachers and students, janitors, cleaning staff. I.e. throughout an ecosystem of people of varied profile is taking classes in meditation and meditating. It makes little vi to the Concierge in his room meditating. I think that this is the way for real social change, which are not few, which is not marginalize.

What's most rewarding about your experience as a teacher of Mindfulness?
I am a nine week program. In week eight, there is a change of mind in the heart. And when I see these people who are very intellect down to heart and give arguments as they become moist eyes, that keeps me going. The way to change the mind is free from cultural conditioning.

How it descondiciona and clean a mind through the Mindfulness?
Dogen, a master of the 13th century which carried back Buddhism zen to Japan, because it was in decay, summed up in a beautiful sentence what is the meditation: "knowing the Buddha is known to oneself; knowing oneself is to forget oneself; forget oneself is to be one with all things". The Mindfulness process is something like this. At the beginning there is a phase of investigating the reality; one realizes that there are many beliefs about himself and the people who coexist with it that has taken them as reality and you do not connect, do not have direct contact. And that also happens to the body. The eyes are not open when you look at the ears when you hear, but it is there as a kind of strength and conditioning. The body is tense and not in contact with the environment.

In this first phase of the Mindfulness is, as he told Dogen, investigate in reality, create new awareness, through a new, conscious attention. This to people how mean it is? We are going to be aware of a small part of reality; for example, your body. We will see what happens in your body with respect to many things, when you take anything, when you sit in a Chair, when you're just lying down. And all the constraints that were on different parts of the body in the light of a new consciousness is will be reviewing. That has been used in all the techniques of yoga and meditation of all sites in the world.

This leads to discover all the constraints that we have above all what we smell, we feel, we smell, we touch, we think. And one is going asking, natural way, as if everything is subject to constraints, what is the real thing. And gradually is bumping with the greatest of the unreality that is the feeling of being one paragraph at all.

And this is already the second phase of the Mindfulness...
To put it in some way, the first stage would be called Samatha tradition and the second stage would be the Vipassana tradition. In this, one is seeing how conditioning is in itself the image that has separated themselves entirely. One inquires about the self isolating all. Dogen said: forget oneself. Go to falling resistances and the mind of a total way is descondiciona. The last part is to be one with all things. If one reads with some attention the Yoga Sutras Patañjali, is not a very different to those of the Mindfulness path.

You're a yoga teacher trainer. There is much difference between what you explain them to them and your kinds of Mindfulness at the University?
La formación de profesores tiene un objetivo, comprender el yoga. Sí que hay una parte en la que hablo del Mindfulness y de los programas que hago de reducción de estrés u otros basados en Mindfulness, pero sobre todo lo que intento es que la gente tenga una inmersión en el yoga como tradición. Ahí se explican otras cosas muy diferentes, como prácticas que ayudan a entrar en estados aún más abiertos de consciencia.

La persona que entra en el sendero del yoga tiene que estar iniciada, tiene que haber sentido un llamado fuerte de trascendencia de su propio estado de consciencia. Entonces, es una técnica esotérica que por ahora no es viable llevarla a sitios complejos como puede ser una Universidad. Pero sí hay aspectos del yoga que podrían acceder a la Universidad. Por ejemplo, todo lo corporal, y es básico. Me parece esencial que la corporalidad (no solo del yoga, sino de otros métodos que han trabajado lo corporal incluso de manera más profunda, como Feldenkrais, Matthias Alexander o Reich con su bioenergética) entre en la psicología, en la medicina, en las matemáticas; o sea, en la educación. Pero luego hay otras técnicas como los Yogas de Naropa o el Kriya Yoga que tiene que llover bastante para que entren en la Universidad, porque esta se tendría que abrir a otro tipo de conocimientos.

Con la ciencia hemos topado…
Ciencia es conocimiento pero la mayoría de los conocimientos que tú tienes no los has adquirido en los libros. Nunca dirías que eso es ciencia, pero sí lo es: es conocimiento en primera persona. Creo que el gran paso que se ha de dar en la Universidad es reconocer ese conocimiento fenomenológico, en primera persona. Ahí entrarían el mindulness o la meditación en general, pero también esas otras técnicas que te acercan a estados de consciencia que uno puede vivir. Ver una célula en un microscopio como visualizar una llama en tu vientre son conocimientos fenomenológicos que se pueden transmitir, no son paranoias, tienen una validez.

Cuando la comunidad científica se abra a todo esto, las universidades serán como las antiguas universidades de la India, donde había miles de personas aprendiendo no solo yoga sino también medicina. Ahora, hay mucha cerrazón… Pero no descarto que de aquí a dos años haya un máster universitario en yoga… Por lo menos en sus aspectos más externos: cuerpo, respiración, meditación.

¿Hacia dónde miras ahora?
Un proyecto inmediato es un posgrado en Mindfulness para el año que viene. Lo que tratamos en ese máster es de cómo la meditación Mindfulness ayuda a personas en muchísimas situaciones difíciles: depresión, trastornos de ansiedad, drogadicción, trastornos de la alimentación, problemas de autoestima… Hemos invitado a personas que han estado trabajando con meditación en esos ámbitos en muchas universidades: Autónoma, Complutense, Harvard, UCLA… El puntazo de este postgrado es que tiene un reconocimiento y está abierto a todo el mundo del sector sanitario, psicólogos, empresarios…

En el terreno yóguico, aparte de seguir mis estudios de budismo estoy diseñando un programa de formación antes de que las personas decidan ser profesores de yoga. Creo que aunque hayas estado haciendo yoga diez años, debes estar un periodo completo concentrado, intensivo, en una práctica de yoga de muchas horas al día para realmente decidir si eso es lo que quieres llegar a transmitir a la gente. Lo que estoy diseñando ahora es un programa que durará año medio con retiros intensivos y todo tipo de prácticas para personas que quieran vivir esa experiencia.

¿Te sientes más un yogui que un profesor o un intelectual?
Sí… un yogui en el sentido de tener un romance con el universo, aunque nunca me ha gustado fragmentarme. Me gusta lo intelectual, lo emocional, la música, la ciencia. Pero, sí, es lo que más me define porque es lo más importante para mí… Lo otro… al final me da igual saber de neurociencia o sobre textos clásicos. Lo importante es ese contacto directo con el universo; eso es lo único que, cuando lo miro en serio, no se cae.

Mucha gente quizás no sepa que la atención es tan importante.
La calidad de la atención es fundamental. No hay ninguna facultad cognitiva que no tenga su base en la atención. Si memorizas algo es porque estás atento. Incluso si quieres a alguien es porque la atención va a esa persona.

Pero la base de todo no está en las prácticas que hagas sino en cómo las inseminas; es decir, la motivación que hay en el grupo. No hace falta hacer grandes cosas ni muy complejas. Se cae mucho en eso: que si el tantrismo de Cachemira es mejor o no que la no dualidad del Vendanta advaita. Pero ¿de dónde surge la motivación para todo eso? ¿Es genuina? Las prácticas no sirven de nada si no contactas con la intención que te llevó a ellas. Si cada vez que practicas contactas con eso, poco a poco se va haciendo tan grande el fuego dentro de ti que las prácticas, aunque sean sencillas, se vuelven muy potentes.

Quizás nos hemos confundido mucho en este mundo, porque hemos caído en el paradigma de la complejidad, creyendo que lo complejo es lo mejor. Cuando lo mejor es eso, lo que te insemina.

En la vida diaria, si uno se da un tiempo al día para contactar con esa motivación, van saliendo las cosas. Para personas que tienen depresión o fibromialgia su motivación está clara: salir de ese sufrimiento. A veces, las personas con trastornos fuertes en realidad son grandes iniciados que no se han dado cuenta de ello. La enfermedad les hace ver que estaban en una forma de vida completamente equivocada.

Pero para quienes están bien, es más complejo, porque han de tener un llamado, ver claramente que hay un yo, una cáscara, que nos impide abrir las alas. Esa fuerza de querer abrir las alas es la que te va a llevar adelante, y a veces se siente tan fuerte como la sed en el desierto. Esos son los iniciados.

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By • 1 Apr, 2013 • Sección: Interview, Meditation, Mindfulness