Journal of Contemplative Inquiry


This essay reflects on how the prevailing neoliberal logic in academia induces faculty to live in a self-imposed prison of perfection that is detrimental to their holistic wellbeing. Drawing on the Buddhist concept of nonattachment, I use the term transformative nonattachment to advocate for a contemplative political intervention to unravel this prison of perfection in the neoliberal academy. This intervention adopts a two-pronged approach, working both from the inside out (i.e., working on our bodyminds to effect change in the external world) and from the outside in (i.e., working on the external world to generate effects on everyone’s bodyminds).