In Buddhist teachings, there is a critically important concept called Mindfulness. Put simply, it means that we carry a meditative state of awareness throughout our day, not simply when we are sitting (or walking) in meditation.
Thus, the whole of our day and consequently our lives becomes a meditative act. It is not simply to be confined to a holy room and then we can go back to “normality” once we are done with it, rather like holiness for the Christian is not supposed to just be engaged in on Sunday morning during the Church service!
The whole point of Enlightenment is that it is about Awakening – from the deep slumber that we know as everyday consciousness. That is why the Buddha referred to himself as Tathagata, i.e. “he who is awake”.
Consequently, as we learn to pay attention in the moment to each and every act of ours, no matter how small or insignificant, we too slowly but surely train ourselves in the process of Awakening, simply by actually being awake in the moment. This is what Mindfulness enables us to do.
It is a small everyday miracle and one that is easy to practice, but also all to easy to forget to do in the midst of the bustle of our lives and the competing web of mental entanglements that compete for out attention. However, the benefits of giving ourselves to this practice are deep and truly go beyond the power of words to express. Mindfulness lies at the very heart of spirituality because it enables us to really LIVE in the moment, the be fully present right HERE, and to awaken to what IS.
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