What we're about

We will explore exercises in secular mindfulness. This is intentional present-moment awareness. How can we rest in our senses? How can we gain insight into the very process that propels us from one moment to the next through clear observation? Can we intersect this process in a way that leads to greater contentment, less impulsivity, and less stress?

Generally, mindfulness is a practice that develops intentional present moment awareness. It does not require any beliefs. In this practice, we rely on the unifying and grounding aspects of science. We avoid divisions that come from belief-systems, whenever possible.

The mindfulness practices we will explore are based on MBSR, a clinically proven method. However, this group is for a typical person who is psychologically stable and healthy. This is not a substitute for mental or physical healthcare. If you have serious physical or mental health issues please see a qualified and licensed practitioner to treat these.

It has already been scientifically proven to work in clinics and laboratories for the past thirty years through Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) programs. It has been shown to be effective in alleviating extreme cases of stress, anxiety, depression, and chronic pain. It is something you can do if you are walking, eating, driving, brushing your teeth, or doing the dishes. It makes you more efficient, more productive, and generally happier while you are doing even the most basic tasks.

The studies only show measurable differences over months of practice, so patience is essential. However, the long-term effects of being more present are profound and pervasive. It literally provides a mechanism to grow and rewire the brain. This is something that happens naturally in childhood and we can continue this process throughout our lives.

On a basic level, the exercises are intended to provide a richer more balanced experience of life by building a greater awareness of the senses, thoughts, feelings, and body sensations that we all experience in each moment. You may be able to organize and see your thoughts and emotions non-judgmentally without being swept up in them. That is, we are learning how to face life's challenges with equanimity. This is the capacity to be fully aware of and move through life's challenges calmly.

Mindfulness is not the same as concentration meditation, though that is developed as a by-product of the exercises. We are simply trying to observe the intersection of mind and body. It is this gentle act of attention that ultimately frees us.

Upcoming events (1)

Meditation - What it is . . . And what it isn't

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Meditation and Mindfulness have almost become buzz words in our current society. They are referred to and talked about as positive pursuits for "people in the know" similar to other Eastern-based practices like yoga and Tai Chi (both of which have meditative components).

Those of us with active meditation practices have a better understanding of what meditation is. But it is a useful exercise for experienced practitioners, as well as novices, to take a look at what exactly constitutes meditation, what can be expected, how to approach a practice session, and just as important, what NOT to expect or wish for.

So in this meeting I will delve into these aspects of the practice with some help from Bhante Gunaratana and his book, "Mindfulness in Plain English." I will present some of his, sometimes rather humorous but insightful, explanations about what meditation is and isn't. Then I'll lead a discussion of our thoughts, experiences and questions.

Join us and bring your thoughts and your own experiences to share, or just come to listen.

New meditators and those with regular practice are all welcome.

We'll do a short centering exercise at the beginning to settle in, then have some gentle discussion. At the end we will do a guided meditation. Our meetings go about 1 hour 15 minutes.

If you plan to attend please sign up here by Saturday, Oct. 23, and please change to "No" if you decide not to attend.
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Namaste

Past events (231)

Mindfulness and Forgiveness

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