'Mindfulness' stress-busting technique grows in popularity with politicians, military, others | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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'Mindfulness' stress-busting technique grows in popularity with politicians, military, others

In this Sunday, May 20, 2012 photo, Congressman Tim Ryan runs in the Cleveland Marathon Sunday, May 20, 2012, in Cleveland. In what’s become a daily ritual, Ryan finds a quiet spot, closes his eyes, clears his mind and tries to tap into the eternal calm. Increasingly, people in settings beyond the serene yoga studio or contemplative nature path are engaging in the practice of mindfulness, a mental technique that dwells on breathing, periods of silence and concentration to keep one’s thoughts in the present moment. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

COLUMBUS, Ohio - The impact of a form of meditation known as "mindfulness" is growing.

It's being used by U.S. Marines, tech geeks at Google, and prison inmates. An Ohio congressman is pushing for its wider use in U.S. schools and hospitals, and in Washington.

As mindfulness practice spreads, critics wonder whether it's simply traditional Buddhist meditation repackaged and commercialized for a secular audience.

Its champions say the physical benefits are proven by a growing body of brain science. Studies show mindfulness practice reduces stress as well as the symptoms of certain diseases and conditions.

It involves dwelling on your own breathing, paying attention to areas of the body and experiencing periods of silence in order to concentrate on the present rather than the worries of yesterday and tomorrow.

News from © The Associated Press, 2012
The Associated Press

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