Join us each week for mindfulness meditation led by our very own Marion Lyman-Mersereau!
Mindfulness is non-judgmental awareness of the present moment or simply, noticing what’s happening right now. We are often caught up in thinking; remembering the past or anticipating the future or conjuring up a fantasy world. Although thinking is an important part of being human we often miss the fullness of an experience by being stuck in our thinking, often judgmental and reactive minds. Mindfulness can help us become better able to respond rather than react to life’s many situations as we learn to calm our busy minds. For more benefits of the practice see: What are the benefits of mindfulness?
“Mindfulness isnʻt difficult, we just need to remember to do it.” – Sharon Salzberg
One morning, when I was walking the dogs at Manoa Park, I saw some litter near the stream. I handed my coffee cup to my husband saying, “I can’t stand this.” When I returned with the litter and asked for my coffee, I found he had drunk it. He replied to my complaints, “I thought you said you couldn’t stand it.” I continued my haranguing, “I was talking about the litter! You don’t even like coffee with cream!” and on and on. All of a sudden I saw a brilliant rainbow which shifted me, in that moment of presence, from reacting with anger to responding with laughter at the miscommunication that had occurred.
Some years ago I learned about mindfulness practice which was defined as non-judgmental awareness of the present moment or simply, noticing what’s happening right now. At any given moment, I discovered, I can be present or pay attention to my senses including my emotions. In that moment of noticing I am mindful.
I find I am often caught up in thinking, remembering the past or anticipating the future or I conjure up a fantasy world. I am rarely present, fully witnessing each moment with my senses or feelings. In the moment that I noticed the rainbow, fully present with its ethereal beauty, I became calmer and saner – not caught up in my petty complaints.
Although thinking is an important part of being human I find I miss the fullness of an experience by being stuck in my head. On a recent hike with a friend, after we’d caught up with our lives, we walked without talking for quite awhile. Our awareness was drawn to the surrounding beauty, birdsong, cool mauka air, and our breath.
Mindful moments like these help calm a busy mind and strengthen my ability to create, to appreciate, and more fully embrace life.
—”Moment to Moment Awareness” by Marion Lyman-Mersereau (featured in the Midweek)