Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Mindfulness is gently and quietly paying attention to the moment. That moment may include what you are doing, what you are looking at, what you are listening to, what you are saying, and what you are thinking. It is being aware. Your mind is alert but relaxed; concentrating but not exerting effort. It is a natural, peaceful state full of calm, compassion, and consideration. The best analogy is the bamboo shoot—pliable but strong; able to bend but not easily broken. Mindfully wash the dishes or place them in the dishwasher. Do this with slowness, attention, and intention. Brush your teeth mindfully, use the toilet mindfully, clean the kitchen mindfully, cut the grass mindfully, and sit at your computer desk mindfully. You can do all of these activities with equanimity and joy. Joy doesn't have to be boisterous. It can be quiet. Joy is contentment. You achieve contentment by being there with whatever you are doing. Set aside your judgments, pay attention, be aware, and accept the moment as it is.