Quite an easy task, right? Wrong!
Our minds are processing external information, internal responses and dialogue; all the while trying to balance our brain chemistry and alert levels. So becoming more conscious about letting go of This thought, then the next, and on and on requires dedication.
Start with 5 minutes several times a day. Tune into one of your senses to quickly get into the Now moment. For instance, I close my eyes and focus on my breath. Or I can close my eyes and focus on sound. If I can’t close my eyes (like while I’m driving), I can focus on color.
But don’t forget why. Why does it matter to be, quote: mindful? — To quiet the mind, to de-escalate and get to a more authentic relationship with our selves.
Through OUR eyes, the Universe perceives itself. Through our ears, the Universe can hear its harmonies. By being a witness, the Universe becomes conscious! Through our perception of Life‘s magnificence, we see the glory of all created; we experience the awesomeness of the creator. ~ Alan Watts ~ Inspiring words from a great master.
I can’t help but think that such a meditation as this, Alan Watts’s words, could cure loneliness. By broadening our perspective of what life is all about we come to know, on a very deep and real level, that everything, everyone is connected.
Instead of noticing our differences, we can choose to focus on all we have in common.
Worth Reading! From Off the web.
Attachment arises out of a single flawed assumption of the ego-mind.
The ego assumes that when a goal is attained, when something happens that we want, then we will be happy, or fulfilled, or joyful. It also assumes that if something undesirable happens, then we will be sad, or angry, or hurt.
In truth, however, our state of Being is completely independent of any events that take place in our lives.
As you sit reading this right now, can you summon a feeling of joy? Go ahead and summon up a happy memory or a joyful expectation. Allow a bubble of joy to grow in the pit of your stomach and rise up to fill your heart. Smile until the smile becomes genuine. Take a few breaths, and inhale joy. Let the energy travel outward from your heart until it fills your Being. Go ahead and close your eyes. Sit with the energy of joy for a while.
Nothing happened in your life to create this joy. You generated joy all by yourself, through simple intention. You were both the cause and the result of joy. And you could create joy at absolutely any time, just by deciding to do so.
This is true no matter what events are happening in your life.
We can summon the state of being in love without being in a relationship. We can create a state of peace, even while watching the evening news.
The ego-mind will have us believe that all of these things -abundance, love, peace – are dependent on what is happening in our lives. The ego will have us believe that love comes into our lives from someone else. The ego believes that peace is the result of having all our tasks done.
So why aren’t we all constantly in a joyful, abundant, peaceful state of Being?
Go ahead and once again summon that energy of joy for a minute or two. If you remain in that state of being for a while, you will notice your mind getting bored. That’s right, joy gets boring after a while! There are no problems to solve, nothing to get worked up over. There are no worries to entertain the mind. That’s why the mind creates attachment.
If we are to stay out of attachment, we need to give the mind something to do. Left to its own devices, the mind is reactive. The mind reacts to everything – every event, what other people say to us, etc., and so creates our state of Being.
If our reaction is negative, the mind will come up with a goal that would create a positive outcome instead. And so we begin believing the illusion that a certain monthly income will give us abundance, or a romantic relationship will bring us love.
But we can become conscious creators.
We can deliberately generate the state of being that we desire for ourselves. We can then give the mind the task of expressing that state of being creatively, through action.
The outcome simply wouldn’t matter. We are already in the state that we want to create. We are simply taking action to give the mind something to do. The mind will think and solve problems and make plans. That is its job, and we can’t change that. But we can make our minds activity about creatively expressing joy, or abundance, or love rather than about creating a specific result.
For example, the mind might suggest that we could call our partner because we want him or her to tell us how special we are – to make us feel loved.
Or we could BE in a state of love, and the creative expression of that love is making a phone call. In this action, we don’t want anything out of the phone call – it’s just our state of being, authentically expressing itself.
While the action is still making a phone call to our partner, the first goal comes from a place of attachment. We want something out of that phone call to feel loved. The other has no agenda. It is just an expression of what we already have and are. Hence, detached.
What if every action we took was only a creative expression of our state of Being? What if every conversation were simply an extension of our Being, with no agenda, no attachment to outcome?
Our state of Being is completely independent of any event, outcome, goal, or person. Nothing that happens in our lives determines whether we are happy, or loved, or fulfilled unless we allow it. This is the key to detachment. We can at any time decide to be peaceful, or in love, or joyful. This is the true gift of free will and free choice.
Edited for readability from:
The Key to Detachment | Empowered Soul
The Key to Detachment
By Andrea Hess
Embrace Your Highest Path
I know I could use a reminder of what really matters… We do our best when we remember that we are all connected… Let’s remember to look at our judgements with some detachment, and dare to ask ourselves, “Is It True?” ~ •’•~.. ~ •’• ~..~ •’• ~.. ~ •’• ~
The Vietnamese monk, Thich Nhat Hanh developed the “Fourteen Precepts of Engaged Buddhism” in the mid-1960’s at a time when the Vietnam War was escalating and the teachings of the Buddha were desperately needed to combat the hatred, violence, and divisiveness enveloping his country.
Today, there are thousands worldwide who regularly recite the Fourteen Precepts of Engaged Buddhism which remain uniquely applicable to contemporary moral dilemmas. They are guidelines for anyone wishing to live mindfully.
By developing peace and serenity through ethical and conscientious living, we can help our society make the transition from one based on greed and consumerism to one in which thoughtfulness and compassionate action are of the deepest value.
The Fourteen Precepts of Engaged Buddhism
- Do not be idolatrous about or bound to any doctrine, theory, or ideology, even Buddhist ones. Buddhist systems of thought are guiding means; they are not absolute truth.
- Do not think the knowledge you presently possess is changeless, absolute truth. Avoid being narrow-minded and bound to present views. Learn and practice nonattachment from views in order to be open to receive others’ viewpoints. Truth is found in life and not merely in conceptual knowledge. Be ready to learn throughout your entire life and to observe reality in yourself and in the world at all times.
- Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education. However, through compassionate dialogue, help others renounce fanaticism and narrowness.
- Do not avoid contact with suffering or close your eyes before suffering. Do not lose awareness of the existence of suffering in the life of the world. Find ways to be with those who are suffering, including personal contact, visits, images, and sounds. By such means, awaken yourself and others to the reality of suffering in the world.
- Do not accumulate wealth while millions are hungry. Do not take as the aim of your life Fame, profit, wealth, or sensual pleasure. Live simply and share time, energy, and material resources with those who are in need.
- Do not maintain anger or hatred. Learn to penetrate and transform them when they are still seeds in your consciousness. As soon as they arise, turn your attention to your breath in order to see and understand the nature of your hatred.
- Do not lose yourself in dispersion and in your surroundings. Practice mindful breathing to come back to what is happening in the present moment. Be in touch with what is wondrous, refreshing, and healing both inside and around you. Plant seeds of joy, peace, and understanding in yourself in order to facilitate the work of transformation in the depths of your consciousness.
- Do not utter words that can create discord and cause the community to break. Make every effort to reconcile and resolve all conflicts, however small.
- Do not say untruthful things for the sake of personal interest or to impress people. Do not utter words that cause division and hatred. Do not spread news that you do not know to be certain. Do not criticize or condemn things of which you are not sure. Always speak truthfully and constructively. Have the courage to speak out about situations of injustice, even when doing so may threaten your own safety.
- Do not use the Buddhist community for personal gain or profit, or transform your community into a political party. A religious community, however, should take a clear stand against oppression and injustice and should strive to change the situation without engaging in partisan conflicts.
- Do not live with a vocation that is harmful to humans and nature. Do not invest in companies that deprive others of their chance to live. Select a vocation that helps realize your ideal of compassion.
- Do not kill. Do not let others kill. Find whatever means possible to protect life and prevent war.
- Possess nothing that should belong to others. Respect the property of others, but prevent others from profiting from human suffering or the suffering of other species on Earth.
- Do not mistreat your body. Learn to handle it with respect. Do not look on your body as only an instrument. Preserve vital energies (sexual, breath, spirit) for the realization of the Way. (For brothers and sisters who are not monks and nuns:) Sexual expression should not take place without love and commitment. In sexual relationships, be aware of future suffering that may be caused. To preserve the happiness of others, respect the rights and commitments of others. Be fully aware of the responsibility of bringing new lives into the world. Meditate on the world into which you are bringing new beings.
~ •’…^ ~ •’…~ •’…^ ~ •’…^
I love the idea of Namasté…
“The Divine in me recognizes and honors
the Divine in you”.
“There is a definition of God which has been repeated by many philosophers. God is an intelligible sphere—whose center is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere. And the center is right where you’re sitting. And the other one is right where I’m sitting. And each of us is a manifestation of that mystery. That’s a nice mythological realization that sort of gives you a sense of who and what you are.” ~ Joseph Campbell, The Power of Myth
Although not everyone views Namasté this way – as a deeply spiritual acknowledgment of the soul in one, by the soul in another – this is how I experience it.
Namasté represents a belief that:
According to one source I came across, a spiritual frequency is generated when two people greet each other with Namasté.
“When a person greets another with the feeling that “I am paying obeisance to the soul in the other”, a ring of spiritual emotion is created within him. Where there is spiritual emotion, there is Communion with God, and one is better able to access the sense of God’s presence. As a result, a ring of spiritual emotion is created around the person who is being greeted as well. This in turn attracts a flow of the Divine Principle or God’s power. Wherever there is Divine Principle, a flow of Bliss is attracted.” (Spiritual Research Foundation.org).
Well, I don’t know about that – but I can sense that it may, in fact, be true…
Being Mindful By Engaging Your Senses
Please read the following script through until you feel familiar with it, then follow the instructions on your own.
Start this exercise by finding a comfortable position sitting or lying down. Take a few deep breaths—relax.
Now bring your awareness to your fingers. Rub them together and notice their texture, temperature, and the sensations as they move. Can you feel the indentations of your fingerprints? Take your time noticing all of this.
Now rest your fingers where they were before. What are they touching? What does that feel like? Is it soft? hard? What are its features and textures? Really notice what you feel.
Now bring attention to your hands and arms. What do they feel like? Relaxed? Heavy? Tense? Painful? Try to observe these sensations, including uncomfortable ones, without judgment.
Notice your toes now. Wiggle them and feel whatever is around and under them. How does it feel? Can you tell what it is just by feeling?
Next, notice how your head is positioned. Is it upright? drooping? Is your neck turned in a particular direction? Simply notice this without trying to change it. Also note the sensations in your head and neck, including temperature, pain, and relaxation. Take your time noticing.
What about your face? Is your brow smooth or wrinkled up? How does it feel? … Now notice your nose. Can you breathe freely? As you breathe, notice the sensations in your nose and lungs— expansion, tickling, warmth, or coolness. Then notice how your mouth is positioned. Is it pursed? Open? Closed? Is the inside of your mouth wet or dry? Just notice. Also, notice how your skin feels. Is it dry? Itchy, tingling, hot or cool? Is there no sensation?
Now notice your chest and belly. Place one hand on your chest and one on your belly. Can you feel your body breathing? What is that like? Are you breathing fast or slow? Is your breath going more into your belly or your chest? Just notice all these sensations.
Next expand your attention to include your whole body. Where are you sitting or lying? Can you feel the back side of your body touching the chair or bed in places? Without moving, just observe your body’s position… Notice that you are being supported completely in this moment.
When you are ready, look around the room and notice your surroundings, without judgment. When you are ready, stop this exercise and continue with your day.
Why Practice Mindfulness?
Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction pioneer Jon Kabat-Zinn shares several good reasons for us to make mindfulness part of our lives and our communities.
The ultimate promise of mindfulness is much larger, much more profound, than simply cultivating our attentiveness. It helps us understand that our conventional view of ourselves and even what we mean by “self” is incomplete in some very important ways.
Mindfulness helps us recognize how and why we mistake the actuality of things for some story we create. It then makes it possible for us to chart a path toward greater sanity, wellbeing, and purpose.
“If our thinking is not balanced with awareness, we can end up deluded – Mistaking reality for some story that we created.”
Today, as we bring science together with meditation, we’re beginning to find new ways, in language we can all understand, to show the benefits of training oneself to become intimate with the workings of one’s own mind in a way that generates greater insight and clarity. The science is showing interesting and important health benefits of mind/body training and practices, and is now beginning to elucidate the various pathways though which mindfulness may be exerting its effects on the brain (emotion-regulation, working memory, cognitive control, attention, activation in specific somatic maps of the body, cortical thickening in specific regions) and the body (symptom reduction, greater physical well-being, immune function enhancement, epigenetic up and down regulation of activity in large numbers and classes of genes). It is also showing that meditation can bring a sense of meaning and purpose to life, based on understanding the non-separation of self and other. Given the condition we find ourselves in these days on this planet, understanding our interconnectedness is not a spiritual luxury; it’s a societal imperative.
Even very, very smart people—and there are plenty of them around—are starting to recognize that thinking is only one of many forms of intelligence. If we don’t recognize the multiple dimensions of intelligence, we are hampering our ability to find creative solutions and outcomes for problems that don’t admit to simple-minded fixes. It’s like having a linear view in medicine that sees health care solely as fixing people up—an auto mechanic’s model of the body that doesn’t understand healing and transformation, doesn’t understand what happens when you harmonize mind and body. The element that’s missing in that mechanical understanding is awareness.
Genuine awareness can modulate our thinking, so that we become less driven by unexamined motivations to put ourselves first, to control things to assuage our fear, to always proffer our brilliant answer. We can create an enormous amount of harm, for example, by not listening to other people who might have different views and insights. Fortunately, we have more of an opportunity these days to balance the cultivation of thinking with the cultivation of awareness. Anyone can restore some degree of balance between thinking and awareness right in this present moment, which is the only moment that any of us ever has anyway. The potential outcomes from purposefully learning to inhabit awareness and bring thought into greater balance are extremely positive and healthy for ourselves and the world at large.
Working on our mindfulness, by ourselves and along with others, hinges on appreciating the power of awareness to balance thought. There’s nothing wrong with thinking. So much that is beautiful comes out of thinking and out of our emotions. But if our thinking is not balanced with awareness, we can end up deluded, perpetually lost in thought, and out of our minds just when we need them the most.
Jon Kaba t-Zinn is the founding director of the Stress Reduction Clinic and the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. He is the author of Coming to Our Senses: Healing the World and Ourselves through Mindfulness. Article from Shambala Sun