It is said that mindfulness is the secret of life. A life lived mindfully is a life full with peace, tranquility, happiness and compassion.
Mindfulness is our path to a calmer life. It is what we as humans have actually been seeking for since the beginning of modern times.
The simple practice of mindfulness has been around for thousands of years; however most people dismiss it and instead look for more complex and intellectual viewpoints or methods.
Unfortunately, this external journey never ever solves itself.
There are many people and texts available that make complex statements and over analyse mindfulness. It seems that our ego is configured to complicate even the simplest options. Mindfulness is meant to be a simple, yet profound way of living.
So, exactly what is mindfulness and how do you apply it to your life?
Mindfulness is a particular type of meditation or put simply, awareness of the here and now. There are various types of meditation, nevertheless I want to specifically concentrate on mindfulness meditation, which I think is the most practical and pure meditative experiences.
Mindfulness involves directly taking part in each moment as it occurs with complete awareness of your present experience. Life only exists in the present moment when practicing mindfulness and the moment we experience is pure and unadulterated.
Mindfulness is a “living” meditation that you can practice each and every second of your precious life. There is no requirement to escape to a remote place, as you can participate in mindfulness anywhere and at anytime, no matter what is occurring around you.
Instead of providing the reader with one binding definition of mindfulness, I present to you below a few definitions drawn from the wisdom of numerous experts and practitioners of mindfulness.
Jon Kabat-Zinn, the best selling author of Wherever You Go, There You Are and the developer of Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction, explains mindfulness meditation as…
… paying attention in a specific way; on purpose, in the present moment and non-judgmentally.
Joel and Michelle Levey in their stunning book, Simple Meditation and Relaxation state that…
… mindfulness frees us from memories of the past and dreams of the future by bringing reality of the present minute clearly into focus.
Meditation instructor and author Sylvia Boorstein specifies that mindfulness is having…
… the aware, balanced acceptance of present experience. It is not more complicated than that. It is opening to or receiving the present moment, pleasant or unpleasant, just as it is, without either clinging to or rejecting it.
Even though these profound individuals use diverse expressions and terminology, what they all share in common is that mindfulness is being completely and totally present for life. It is knowing what is going on within you and around you in each minute of every day.
We simply practice awareness without judgment, accepting our ideas and emotions exactly as they are.
As you may have observed mindfulness is an easy yet, effective way to live our lives. It’s simply being right here, right now: immersing your entire being in the present minute and completely experiencing your life.
That’s it! It actually is that easy. You don’t need to over evaluate, intellectualise, or complicate what it is to be mindful.
Of course our ego wishes to distract us in any way possible, however do not permit this. Recognise the existence of your ego, say hello, and then calmly dismiss it. All there is to being conscious is to just BE.
While there are plenty more advanced explanations on this subject readily available for you to explore further; what has been described here is the easy and pure essence of mindfulness meditation.
If you are at this moment reconnecting your mindful living journey or if you are just starting out, I suggest that you dive into the ocean of NOW and familiarise yourself with the pleasure of what is directly in front of you.
Let me ask you this… Are you right here, right now? If not, centre yourself and experience the calming feeling of the eternal moment. Enjoy your journey!
Until next time, be still and enjoy the silence,
The Calm Life