To varying degrees, many of us have lost awareness of our own truth in this moment. Many of us have fallen out of touch with ourselves and therefore miss out on the important signals that our bodies, minds and spirits are sending to us. For example we may forget to eat until we have a headache or not realize how exhausted we are until someone remarks that we look tired. Just like the gauges and lights on the dashboard of your car that tell you how your engine is running, your moment to moment inner world of sensations, needs, emotions and deeper purposes gives you essential information about who you are and where you should be going in your life. Mindfulness reconnects you with your true self, and as one Zen Master said, “My miracle is, I eat when I’m hungry, and I sleep when I’m tired.”
Mindfulness is the gift of being Present in your life. Much of the time we function on autopilot and as a result we often miss out on the richness of life in the present moment. For example, if you are not fully present during positive experiences you can miss out on their full enjoyment and meaning. How often do you find yourself daydreaming about the past or the thinking about the future while you’re having dinner with a loved one or even while you’re walking in a beautiful park? Take a moment and consider what are some of the common distractions that keep you from being fully present? Learning to slow down and bring your attention back to the present moment is ultimately a tremendous gift you can give yourself.
We have all had moments of transcendent beauty and presence when time stops and we are filled with a depth of experience that makes our ordinary everyday state seem dull in comparison. Perhaps it was being caught off guard by the beauty of nature, getting lost in a piece of music, or simply sharing a special moment with someone you love. These moments of beauty and presence enrich our lives, and they give us a glimpse of a deeper dimension of life than we typically experience. Mindfulness is a doorway into this deeper dimension of life moment by moment and day by day.