Mindfulness Based Symptom Management

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Mindfulness Based Symptom Management Program

The Mindfulness Based Symptom Management is an 8-week/ 8 session + one day Retreat program in accessing Mindfulness in a secular and psychological context and especially as a tool for anti-oppression. 

Mindfulness Based Interventions (MBIs) have become a popular intervention over the last two decades in the field of psychology and psychotherapy (Purser, 2019). Quantitative studies around first-generation programs have proliferated in numbers, resulting in the understanding that Mindfulness is an effective modality for emotional regulation, stress management, and psychological flexibility. There is overwhelming scientific evidence to demonstrate the efficacy of Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy, a first generation MBI, to be effective as medication management for those who experience recurrent depression (Tickell et al., 2020). However, the shadow side of the practice has been the development of what is known as McMindfulnesss (Purser, 2019). This is a reactionary term used by traditional and contemporary Buddhist practitioners and psychologists who noticed that oppressive systems have taken to the use of mindfulness to fix issues of low productivity and absenteeism; and promote increased focus, productivity, and hustle culture among individuals, instead of questioning the systems in place and their ableist, patriarchal, violent structures that impose conditions of anxiety, stress, and other disabilities upon people.

To ensure that Mindfulness does not become co-opted into oppressive systems of power, second generation MBIs have been developed such as the Mindfulness Based Symptom Management (MBSM) program, created at the Ottawa Mindfulness Clinic in Canada (Monteiro et al., 2010). MBSM incorporates explicit practices of ethics within the program as well as in the development of the mindfulness trainer; distinguishing the program from other MBIs currently practiced. MBSM was developed to counter the co-option of Mindfulness into oppressive systems (Monteiro & Musten, 2017). The developers believe that incorporating an explicit ethical component into the MBI facilitates a welcome frame upon which people’s agency can rest.

MBSM is a tool for anti-oppression, we practice mindfulness by centring its psychological and subaltern, socio-political and indigenous versions of its roots. The program is designed to step away from the pathology paradigm of mental illness, that frames mindfulness as a viable way to “fix” or manage mental “illnesses” without actually challenging or addressing the systems of capitalism and White [upper caste] cis heteronormative patriarchy that are responsible for the supposed mental illness (Purser, 2019).

Mindfulness takes on a social justice based stance at Pause, that centres working with body, emotions, sensations and thoughts from a perspective of listening in to intentionally affirm ways in which our body is already navigating the world that work for us and our communities. The MBSM program thus offers tools in anti-oppression that helps us listen in, and move towards what we really want for ourselves and the world. 


Eight session MBSM plus Retreat. 

Classes starting 5th August 2023 to 30th September 2023

Where: Zoom & In Person


*MBSM dates*

Class – 1 – August 5th – Saturday – 10:30am to 1pm
Class – 2 – August 12th – Saturday – 10:30am to 1pm
Class – 3 – August 19th – Saturday – 10:30am to 1pm
Class – 4 – August 26th – Saturday – 10:30am to 1pm

*Retreat* – Sunday – September 3rd – Timings will be announced later

Class 5 – September 9th – Saturday – 10:30am to 1pm
Class 6 – September 16th – Saturday – 10:30am to 1pm
Class 7 – September 23rd – Saturday – 10:30am to 1pm
Class 8 – September 30th – Saturday – 10:30am to 1pm

How much: Rs 10,000/-  including classes, materials and our Mindfulness Journal called “My Mindful Moments” Journal ( free with this program and priced at Rs1500). Some positions are available for folks from the Margins who cannot afford the program at full cost. Please reach out to us if you would like to be considered for a scholarship. (pause.perspective@gmail.com) If you are retaking this program reach out to us for a discounted fee. 

Certificate of Participation given by Pause for Perspective

For more details/ to register: Dm or call on 

+91 81068 64001

Who can attend: Anyone interested in practicing mindfulness in their everyday life, also open for people who experience stress, mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, care giver stress, pain,etc. and those keen on anti-oppressive work and mindfulness. The program is open for anyone in the helping field-Mental health professionals, doctors, social workers, life coaches, and others in the helping field. The program is also the first step in certification for Mental Health professionals who are interested in moving on to train in  Integrative Mindfulness Based Practices Training Program at Pause for Perspective.

Get in touch with us

Aarathi Selvan


Dr. Swetha Turlapati

Pharm D. Doctor of Pharmacy 

MA  Counseling Psychology 

Trained and certified in mindfulness informed practices.

I believe that collaboration and presence are at the core of a therapeutic relationship. I consider it to be an essential part of the healing journey. When stories about culture and systemic oppression become present in my sessions, I lean toward sensitivity and curiosity.

Mindfulness and embodied practices has given more language to my work and has helped me stay intentional and intact with my approach towards people both professional and personal. It also allows me to notice emotions in the body with a here and now stance which inturn helps actions informed from the present.

I wake up to “The world “within” us is our compass; we might want to bring awareness to it as we continue navigating.”

Listen to our Mindfulness Meditations

Frequently Asked Questions

This is an experiential workshop in Mindfulness. A variety of mindfulness practices for everyday life will be taught in the context of Mindfulness as a way of viewing the world.

Often complex reactions seem to arise from innocent events or comments. We wonder how  and  why  seemingly ordinary, everyday things can derail us so easily.

Recognizing when we are on auto-­‐pilot, we learn skillful ways to detect the early signals that are found in our Body, Emotions, Sensations, and Thinking.

Mindfulness is a way of taking a more engaged stance in our relationship with our loved ones, our environment and ourselves. It promotes awareness of the changes arising in us, giving us the time to assess, accept, and encourage healthy ways of being. It is not a formula for happiness, however, through the Breath, it is a way of directing our

  • Body
  • Emotions
  • Sensations and
  • Thinking

onto a path that fosters calm and ease in the face of our challenges.

  • Session 1 : Autopilot and cruising
  • Session 2 : Dealing with obstacles
  • Session 3 : Body awareness
  • Session 4 : Emotion awareness
  • Session 5 : Sensation signals
  • Session 6 : Thoughts & stress triggers
  • Session 7 : Taking care of myself
  • Session 8 : Weaving the threads

The MBSM 8-week program is developed by the Ottawa Mindfulness Clinic. Aarathi Selvan is a trained MBSM teacher.

The Mindfulness programs created at the OMC, Canada are designed for individuals experiencing stress related to life events (relationships, work, family, depression, anxiety, loss, etc.). It is an 8-week Mindfulness  program (2 hours each class) with an all-day session after the fourth class. The MBSM is curriculum-based program in cultivating mindfulness skills through themes of body awareness; understanding how our perceptions of ourselves, others and the world feed into our pleasant and unpleasant experiences; cultivating tolerance of distress and examining stress and stressors; transforming reactivity into respons-ability; and, cultivating self-compassion. For more information on the program go to OMC’s website   The Mindfulness program is delivered in India at Pause for Perspective.

While there are several articles that speak to mindfulness and embodied social justice here are two by Pause for Perspective on the subject:

Creating a Culture of Embodied Activism for Mental Health Professionals

Tracing the Indian Roots of Modern Mindfulness


Yes, If you do not want to wait for the next 8 week program that is held in a group setting or would like to do the program individually with one of our trained MBSM teachers please contact us.

Yes! you can be trained in becoming a trained MBSM teacher. Check out our long term training program here

Some positions are reserved for full scholarships which are available for Scheduled Castes (SC), Scheduled Tribes (ST), Other Backward Castes (OBC), Nomadic Tribes (NT), Denotified Tribes (DNT), Indigenous and Disabled participants and those from low income families. If you would like to be considered for the scholarship, please email us at pause.perspective@gmail.com during the application process.


Monteiro, L., Nuttall, S., & Musten, R. F. (2010). Five skillful habits: An ethics-based mindfulness intervention. Counselling and Spirituality, 29(1), 91-103.

Purser, R. (2019). McMindfulness how mindfulness became the new capitalist spirituality. Repeater.

Tickell, A., Ball, S., Bernard, P., Kuyken, W., Marx, R., Pack, S., Strauss, C., Sweeney, T., & Crane, C. (2020). The effectiveness of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) in real-world healthcare services. Mindfulness11, 279-290. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12671-018-1087-9