The Lived Experiences of Mindfulness Practitioners on the Applicability of a Mindfulness-Based Intervention in Basic Education in the Philippines

K-12, mindfulness interventions, mindfulness school program, qualitative methods, phenomenology


  • Mary Beatrice Chua (##journal.primary_contact##)
    De La Salle University – Dasmariñas, Philippines


In the Philippines, local studies in mindfulness are scarce; however, recent published works are slowly increasing. The purpose of the present study was to gain insight from the research participants’ personal and professional lives whether mindfulness is applicable for children in basic education. Through semi-structured interviews, this study explored the lived experiences of twelve mindfulness practitioners across multiple fields of work: teachers in yoga and mindfulness, Buddhist devotee and nun, clinical and school psychologist, prefect of discipline, Jesuit priest and school administrator, and guidance counselors. Four themes were extracted through interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA): (a) venue for healing, (b) journey within the self, (c) developing character, and (d) cultivating humanism and harmony. Importantly, these themes were corroborated in the research literature. The results of the study suggest that participants believed mindfulness was beneficial and advantageous to manage difficult inner experiences like emotions, thoughts, or physical sensations; take skillful action; develop calmness, calm relationships, and compassion; be open and tolerant of difficulties; grow in self-understanding, and presence with others; however, several risks and disadvantages were acknowledged. Conclusions of the study indicated that all research participants agree on the feasibility of mindfulness to be taught with school youth. Students should be guided by a well-trained mindfulness practitioner. Mindfulness practice may be more suitable for certain individuals than others and may only be effective under certain circumstances. Application of mindfulness in schools must be used appropriately, effectively weighing its limitations, disadvantages and risks. Mindfulness-based interventions have great potential in the basic education setting since it is characteristically simple yet effective that may be appropriate for today’s youth, who are faced with greater stress, pressure, and distraction.