The current thesis hypothesizes that the mindfulness component of meditation potentially enables it to be an important, effective, and unique psychotherapeutic intervention, beyond its relaxation effect. Mindfulness is being aware of the full range of experiences that exist in the here and now; it is bringing one's complete attention to the present experience on a moment-to-moment basis. It emphasizes acceptance and a non judgmental stance. The current thesis will review the theoretical literature regarding the benefits of mindfulness in psychotherapy. This will entail a review of interventions that involve mindfulness and a sample of empirical literature that demonstrates its effectiveness with clinical populations. A review of proposed theoretical interventions that involve mindfulness will also be included. Finally, the therapeutic mechanisms involved in mindfulness will be analyzed from cognitive-behavioral and more dynamic viewpoints, including original Buddhist psychology viewpoints.
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