True Mindfulness Meditation
Creating a positive vibration in your practice.
Mindfulness meditation has been greatly misrepresented in recent years. Since the 1980s there has been a strong movement towards individual betterment, the need to draw away and focus on yourself. Now we have the ‘me generation,’ an incessant need to fill the ‘unhappy gap’ in our lives, and an abundance of self-help guides and trainings all of which place the primary focus on just one person – me.
Couple this with modern western psychology where we place ourselves solitary in a room with a therapist to nut out our neuroses, once again increasing emphasis on just an individual, essentially isolating ourselves from the environment around us.
Working on yourself is of course a noble and virtuous thing to do, but it needs to be coupled with a higher purpose for doing it.
Why are we drawn to Mindfulness?
We often want to know about mindfulness meditation as a means to decrease ‘stress’ in our lives. We have been told that stress is something we all naturally have as humans and that by simply learning how to be ‘mindful’ this stress will disappear. And to a certain extent it will. There will be a small feeling of relief, but then what?
Stress has been in our DNA since cave man times when we first learned the fight or flight response to danger. We no longer have those same saber tooth tiger dangers, but still posses this same relatively unchanged DNA. Now we place this response onto pointless situations, like when someone says something negative toward us.
But what if we could begin to develop our minds beyond this cave man state?
Taking the next step…
We are not only the sum of our inner workings, but are also affected by the environment in which we live. True mindfulness doesn’t just focus on the individual, making sure that I am compassionate to myself, looking after just myself. True mindfulness recognises the vibration of the collective community and environment around us. It assesses our actions of body, speech and mind in a way that improves our social interactions and elevates all beings.
It’s time to look at your practice in a new light. The next time you walk into class take a moment to think about why you are there. What is it you are trying to achieve? You will first notice the individual goals popping up – and that’s good. Now let’s add something more profound and powerful!
I am practising for the benefit of all beings.
Feel how much more power there is when we open our minds to include everyone. This is the way to making long lasting change where we no longer feel isolated and small.
Written by Sanjay Lavoipierre – director and teacher at Phoenix Yoga Studios. He has been studying and teaching yoga and meditation since 1996.
This post was inspired by a recent podcast talk with Ron Purser on Groundless Ground. To listen to the full podcast follow the links below:
Phoenix Yoga Studios also runs mindfulness meditation training by Sanjay regularly throughout the year over three levels.Meditation Courses