Thursday, February 21, 2013
Mindfulness and Meditation
In order to compare sitting in Mindfulness and sitting in the awareness field beyond the mind in Meditation we might take a look at how we first begin to understand our world from birth. So much of our passive or receptive learning is acquired in the early formative months and years by simple observation. Similarly, Mindfulness is an introduction to one’s mind, to the world created within the mind. We do this practice to gain access to the window of the mind, to learn how to witness or watch our thoughts, feelings, obsessions, super ego bantering, and the rest of the players on the street of the mind. It can be torturous, fascinating, and annoying to process but it’s well worth the price to learn “everything anyone ever wanted to know” and more, about the contents of one’s mind. It also takes great patience.
By adding a little mindfulness to a meditation practice, like a little cream in one’s coffee, the person who is intending meditation can become better equipped to discern the difference between pure awareness and the mind. However, if we look at our mind continually as a complete meditation practice, it is entirely possible to completely miss the mark. One can wander indefinitely in the land mines of the mind and never reach the pure field of awareness.
This is usually what I have to do in the beginning of my meditation time. My mind travels a universe full of the stuff of the mind. It takes a little while to settle down, even though I just go up! I think about how good and hot my coffee is, what my dreams were, what I am doing after I meditate, or my favorite worry. So, I might use the technique of Mindfulness to let my mind know I’m watching it and see what it’s up to. If it is something that I need to think about, I save it for after I meditate. Then, when I remember why I’m sitting, I open the window of my mind. I lean forward into the freshness of pure space, beyond the details of my life. I feel the openness and allow this sensation to grow naturally. It is a process of allowing, of gently and gradually opening, like a flower that closes up at night and reopens in the morning. It opens directly into the light. We also open to the light of this purity, this spontaneous presence, this mutual recognition that moves one into the experience of oneness. Once this tiny opening occurs, the light can fill the entire space within the person meditating and even beyond the boundaries of the body. The heart wants to join in on this process which happens quite magically and on it’s own accord. It is a tall blessing to be received with deep gratitude, and it continues from the simple analogy of a flower opening, to an ethereal trip into the space of the divine heart, into the world beyond words, into pure love, pure divine light. It is ablaze with drops of fire, hot in becoming, but cool like liquid diamonds, when they drop blissfully into the heart. It is sublime, it is wondrous, it is the “raison d’etre” of the meditator. The invisible chain of the mind, now unbound, allows a direct connection to the source of life itself, what all life is, in it’s most natural essence.
Written by Karen Ferguson