A mindfulness meditation can be a great way to bring the practice and experience of mindfulness from our formal meditation practice and out in to the world in our everyday lives.
A mindfulness meditation practice seems very simple, but can have very profound effects – and it is not always easy to deal with the thoughts and emotions, which emerge in our minds.
A mindfulness meditation could be exactly what you need this time of year. When everything around us is so busy and bustling, this meditation brings us back to ourselves and lets us know where we’re at in this moment, so we’re able to feel peace within ourselves – not getting caught up in thoughts and ‘mind-stuff’ – which in turn allows us to be more present and free to completely and presently experience this Christmas with our friends and families!
To begin, sit in a comfortable position. Sit however you need to sit so that you can have a nice long spine and feel comfortable.
With the eyes closed or your gaze lowered, take a few deep breaths in and out through the nose, bringing your full attention to taking long, even breaths.
When we sit with ourselves, without any distractions (which may be completely unfamiliar to a lot of people) it can be difficult to deal with actually being with ourselves, and what lies in our minds.
Observe whatever comes up in your mind, whether it be ‘good’ or ‘bad’, and let it be there. Often we try to push away unpleasant thoughts (known as ‘dvesa’ or refusal) and we become attached to pleasant thoughts (known as ‘raga’ or attachment). In this meditation, just let the thoughts be there, observe them just for what they are and then let them go again.
Stay here with your breath, observing, for as long as you have time for, and then when you’re ready to finish, begin to take deeper inhales and bring your awareness back to your surroundings. Open your eyes slowly.
How do you feel? Did anything unexpected come up?
Practice this meditation regularly and you will realise that thoughts and emotions of all kinds are always coming and going, they are not permanent and they don’t have to control you.
This too shall pass.
The only real, pure, permanent thing is your true Self.
Mindful Monday quote of the week: