The issue of standards
These days, mindfulness is everywhere! And as you probably know, there are many different kinds of training for professionals – from a weekend workshop up to an academic Masters degree. And in no country in the world is mindfulness being regulated by governments and it is unlikely to be in the future.
However MTI is active in the International Mindfulness Integrity Network (IMI) - part of a global network of leading teacher training organizations (including the CFM, and university centres in the UK) which are working towards international agreement on mindfulness teacher training pathways, standards and certification protocols so that the standard of MBP teaching can be fostered and maintained. As well as having a place in the international IMI, MTI belongs to the Asia Pacific chapter of this world network with colleagues who are offering MBP teacher training in Australia, Hong Kong, Taiwan and South Korea.
IMI working documents pointing to standards of teaching, supervision and training are available here.
While the IMI has articulated what it sees as important standards for training organisations to follow, its role is not to register training programs or accredit individual teachers. It is to provide a forum for leading training organisations and thought leaders to maintain a reflective space in which to explore and present ideas that can guide those who care about providing rigorous, evidence based programs.
Relationship with the Center for Mindfulness, University of Massachusetts, U.S.A
This important question often comes up for those who are wishing to train in MBSR in Australia and nearby countries.
The CFM has been the mother of the powerful transmission of it’s profound mindfulness based program (MBSR) - initiated by Jon Kabat-Zinn’s vision - for forty years. It is through the CFM’s careful stewardship that MBPs have flourished, and grown across the world. MTI teachers have strong personal and professional relationships with the CFM and have been involved in ongoing training, supervision and collaboration over the years. There are now many international training bodies - within and outside universities which train people to teach MBSR, including MTI.
The CFM does not accredit any other training programs in MBSR as part of the CFM pathway. Neither do they recognize any aspects of other trainings across the world; to be certified by the CFM, you now have to attend each level of the CFM training pathway overseas.