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4 Foundations of Mindfulness | Hugger Mugger Yoga Merchandise

This entry was posted on Sep 12, 2023 by Charlotte Bell.

Women Meditating

Once I first started working towards mindfulness in earnest within the Eighties, comparatively few folks had heard of it. Over the previous 10 years or so although, consciousness of mindfulness has grown. As of at this time, Googling “mindfulness” yields a staggering 1,020,000,000 outcomes. Lately, folks follow mindfulness in locations as disparate as yoga studios, meditation facilities and company retreats. Whereas the follow seems to be easy, it’s not straightforward. As anybody who’s ever tried to follow is aware of, our minds are like a wild monkey, consistently leaping from one thought or sensation to the following. That’s why this historical expertise for awakening spells out 4 foundations of mindfulness, to assist us get a deal with on our unwieldy minds.

What Is Mindfulness?

If you happen to ask just about anybody what mindfulness is, most would say that it’s “being within the second.” That is true. We should be within the second to be aware. However there’s extra to it than merely being within the second. Mindfulness additionally consists of realizing what’s truly occurring within the second. We may be within the second however probably not concentrate on what we’re experiencing.

For instance, again within the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s, I used to be a fan of the Grateful Lifeless. I went to Lifeless reveals every time I might. It was sooooo a lot enjoyable. Once I was dancing to the Lifeless, I used to be completely absorbed within the second, however I can’t say I used to be all that conscious of what I used to be experiencing. So whereas I used to be within the second, I wasn’t truly being aware.

Mindfulness requires realizing what is going on in our expertise. Realizing is vital to growing knowledge. Mindfulness additionally requires that we’re conscious of our responses to what’s occurring. Are we clinging to nice sensations, hoping they gained’t go away? Are we responding with aversion to disagreeable experiences? Consciousness of our responses to current expertise permits us to make decisions about how we take care of the vicissitudes of our lives. This in the end results in the event of equanimity.

What Are the 4 Foundations of Mindfulness?

At any time when I train a mindfulness class, a number of college students invariably lament the truth that their minds appear much more jumbled and confused after they sit all the way down to meditate. The important thing phrase right here is “appear.” Our minds aren’t any extra uncontrolled once we follow meditation than they’re in the remainder of our lives. What’s completely different is that we’re truly observing the conventional state of our minds for the primary time. That may be each daunting and humbling.

That is the place the expertise of the 4 foundations of mindfulness may be so useful. The 4 foundations give us a framework with which to know what is going on in every second. The foundations assist us join with the standard of realizing. On this put up, I’ll introduce the foundations. In subsequent posts I’ll delve into every basis, and offer you some concepts for how one can follow with them.

The 4 Foundations of Mindfulness

  1. Mindfulness of the Physique: That is actually the inspiration of the opposite three foundations. That’s as a result of all the pieces we will concentrate on arises as a sensation within the physique. This follow consists of consciousness of no matter is coming in via our senses.
  2. MIndfulness of Feeling Tone: In mindfulness follow, feeling tone isn’t the identical as emotions or feelings. Mindfulness of feeling tone is consciousness of whether or not what we’re experiencing is nice, disagreeable or impartial. This supplies a vital hyperlink to understanding our responses to expertise.
  3. Mindfulness of Psychological States and Feelings: Our psychological states and feelings colour our notion of expertise. So it is very important perceive when they’re current. Realizing what filters could also be distorting our notion helps us see extra clearly into our expertise.
  4. Mindfulness of Dhammas: This basis is sort of huge. Joseph Goldstein’s e book, Mindfulness: A Sensible Information to Awakening, spends an entire lot of chapters explaining the numerous completely different facets of this basis. It consists of mindfulness of the circulate of experiences, in addition to unpacking common truths of our life expertise.

A Work in Progress

After 35 years of follow, I’ve come to know mindfulness as a piece in progress. It’s a follow, not a efficiency. I’ve discovered it to be useful to strategy follow with a newbie’s thoughts. In order I describe the 4 foundations of mindfulness on this and future posts, I’ll remind myself, and also you, the reader, that what I write displays solely my current understanding, which is probably going incomplete. Nonetheless, I provide this exploration into the 4 foundations of mindfulness as a jumping-off level, a approach to discover mindfulness and maybe, to present you some instruments to make sense of the follow. Pleased exploring!

About Charlotte Bell

Charlotte Bell found yoga in 1982 and started instructing in 1986. Charlotte is the creator of Aware Yoga, Aware Life: A Information for On a regular basis Observe and Yoga for Meditators, each revealed by Rodmell Press. Her third e book is titled Hip-Wholesome Asana: The Yoga Practitioner’s Information to Defending the Hips and Avoiding SI Joint Ache (Shambhala Publications). She writes a month-to-month column for CATALYST Journal and serves as editor for Yoga U On-line. Charlotte is a founding board member for GreenTREE Yoga, a non-profit that brings yoga to underserved populations. A lifelong musician, Charlotte performs oboe and English horn within the Salt Lake Symphony and people sextet Pink Rock Rondo, whose DVD gained two Emmy awards in 2010.

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