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Gillian Sanger

How is mindfulness practice supporting you this week?

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This week's question asks:

How is mindfulness practice supporting you this week?

Perhaps mindfulness is helping you to remain compassionate towards others. Perhaps it is opening your eyes to seeing a situation in a new way. Perhaps it is offering you a greater sense of trust in life. Perhaps it is helping you to listen to your body. If you feel drawn to contributing here, share one or multiple ways that mindfulness is supporting you at present.

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Happy new week, everyone!

Mindfulness is giving me an assist with managing all that comes with being sheltered in place with my two kids while managing my household, my own work, and their school schedules.  There are at least several moments each day where I may feel a rising sense of frustration, anxiety, or spaciness- and yet when I can catch myself in those places (or heading toward them), I can, as Joseph Goldstein so eloquently puts it. simply begin again.  I can remember that the recognition of the mind wandering to the what ifs or the past is the practice of mindfulness in action.  In those moments, I may just set my feet on the floor, step near a window or out into my small urban backyard, take a breath, feel my body, and know that I am right where I am, here, now.  Everything else is just temporarily visiting.

Be well.

Rachel

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Beautiful reflection Rachel. Thank you for sharing!

My 20-minute morning meditations are supporting me this week by helping me to remain present in the morning. It is tempting to turn quickly towards my phone as I wonder what emails await me... but I have set an intention to not look at my personal devices until I've gotten out of bed and sat for 20 minutes. This morning's practice was so lovely that I plan to have another 20-minute sit very soon.

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Posted (edited)

Thank you for this post @Rachel, I have been hyper busy with work this past week. I appreciate the reminder keep my feet on the floor, step near a window, take a deep breath and know where I am right now.... and everything else is just temporarily visiting.

This will be my practice for today.

Many thanks!

Gene

Edited by Gene Williams
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Posted (edited)

Considering the tragedy that occurred on Monday of the police killing of George Floyd, I have relied on mindfulness to keep myself in a state of relative calm. I can barely watch the video but I feel that as a citizen I need to be informed of the horror of the incident, because I think that the US tends to whitewash the history of our cruelty to black people, indigenous people, and other minorities. It is too easy to look away from these police killings; to minimize or rationalize the violence. I belong to a movement in Minneapolis called Humanize my Hoodie.  Following is their mission from their website www.humanizemyhoodie.com

The Humanize My Hoodie Movement originated from a demand to end the killing of Black and Indigenous People across the world. As descendants of slaves, we recognize how hoodies have been used to amplify the myth of Black criminality. Our mission is to debunk that stereotype by designing revolutionary campaigns for Black and Indigenous People of Color to be HUMANIZED, not criminalized.

Part of being mindful for me is being involved in activities that feed my soul. That includes Humanize my Hoodie, and Path to Freedom, which is about teaching mindfulness and life skills to prisoners. I'm passionate about sharing the gifts I've received in life to those less fortunate. This is not about being righteous, it's about the compassion and humanity that encompass the very core of mindfulness and being present. If we are in our bodies and aware of our true nature, the desire to give and contribute is as automatic as breathing. 

 

Edited by Jo L
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Jo-  Thank you so much for sharing your compassionate post.

My kids and I have been in deep discussion of the recent (and ongoing) brutality and murder of Black people.   I am teaching them (and continuing to learn myself) to challenge assumptions, use their voice and privilege to stand with the Black community, and to increase awareness of covert white racism that is too often brushed off as casual. 

There is so much work to be done, but it starts with opening our hearts to the deep suffering of the Black community.  I am back to Tonglen meditation for now- to breathe in the heavy, thick, inhumanity, and breathe out love to all of those whose lives are directly impacted by yet another act of violence against a Black man, and those who wish for meaningful and lasting change..

In peace-

Rachel

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19 hours ago, Rachel said:

Jo-  Thank you so much for sharing your compassionate post.

My kids and I have been in deep discussion of the recent (and ongoing) brutality and murder of Black people.   I am teaching them (and continuing to learn myself) to challenge assumptions, use their voice and privilege to stand with the Black community, and to increase awareness of covert white racism that is too often brushed off as casual. 

There is so much work to be done, but it starts with opening our hearts to the deep suffering of the Black community.  I am back to Tonglen meditation for now- to breathe in the heavy, thick, inhumanity, and breathe out love to all of those whose lives are directly impacted by yet another act of violence against a Black man, and those who wish for meaningful and lasting change..

In peace-

Rachel

Thank you Rachel. Tonglen is an excellent idea. I love that practice, and use it whenever I'm feeling alone or overwhelmed. I am going to use Tonglen for this situation as well. I appreciate you teaching your children these important messages. Bless you.

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I'm reading the book 'Trauma Sensitive Mindfulness', which I'm going to recommend, which offers insight into ways mindfulness teachers can be sensitive to practitioners who may have dealt with a traumatic experience.  A traumatic experience is defined as how the victim integrates the experience, not necessarily the types of experience itself. 

One of the areas mentioned is racial profiling and policing which has been brought back to the forefront again. While I may never experience these types of traumatic events becasue of who I am this book does point out ques and visual signs that I can pay mindful attention to when helping others in their practice.  

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On 5/26/2020 at 2:09 PM, Rachel said:

Happy new week, everyone!

Mindfulness is giving me an assist with managing all that comes with being sheltered in place with my two kids while managing my household, my own work, and their school schedules.  There are at least several moments each day where I may feel a rising sense of frustration, anxiety, or spaciness- and yet when I can catch myself in those places (or heading toward them), I can, as Joseph Goldstein so eloquently puts it. simply begin again.  I can remember that the recognition of the mind wandering to the what ifs or the past is the practice of mindfulness in action.  In those moments, I may just set my feet on the floor, step near a window or out into my small urban backyard, take a breath, feel my body, and know that I am right where I am, here, now.  Everything else is just temporarily visiting.

Be well.

Rachel

Thank you Rachel. I don't have children, but I have a 2 year old nephew and I can just imagine having two kids and trying to juggle work and maintaining a household! I love the idea of just beginning again. I'm going to use that when I'm overwhelmed with tasks. 

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10 minutes ago, VBZivkovic said:

I'm reading the book 'Trauma Sensitive Mindfulness', which I'm going to recommend, which offers insight into ways mindfulness teachers can be sensitive to practitioners who may have dealt with a traumatic experience.  A traumatic experience is defined as how the victim integrates the experience, not necessarily the types of experience itself. 

One of the areas mentioned is racial profiling and policing which has been brought back to the forefront again. While I may never experience these types of traumatic events becasue of who I am this book does point out ques and visual signs that I can pay mindful attention to when helping others in their practice.  

 

10 minutes ago, VBZivkovic said:

I'm reading the book 'Trauma Sensitive Mindfulness', which I'm going to recommend, which offers insight into ways mindfulness teachers can be sensitive to practitioners who may have dealt with a traumatic experience.  A traumatic experience is defined as how the victim integrates the experience, not necessarily the types of experience itself. 

One of the areas mentioned is racial profiling and policing which has been brought back to the forefront again. While I may never experience these types of traumatic events becasue of who I am this book does point out ques and visual signs that I can pay mindful attention to when helping others in their practice.  

Thanks for the heads up on a book I might check out VBZivkobic. I appreciate your willingness to look for signs of racial profiling willingness to help others be aware. We all have to play a part if change is going to happen.

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Posted (edited)

Good morning, everyone.  Thank you, Jo and VBZivkobic.

I am about to start Trauma Sensitive Mindfulness as well.  Because I am an urban educator, I have largely taught in spaces where my students and I do not look the same nor have similar experiences.  Through my work, I have been the fortunate recipient of extensive training around Trauma Informed Schools and Healing Centered Learning.  This has opened my heart and expanded my understanding of not just the daily obstacles that marginalized communities, families, and children face, but the lasting impact of those obstacles.  

Every child (person) has the same fundamental human needs- to be seen, loved, cared for, and accepted.  This framework has taught me to so much about how to make that a reality for kids as soon as I see them each morning.  The messaging of relationships, even on the most micro of levels, speaks volumes.

I have a friend who leads yoga and meditation  with those that are incarcerated at Rikers' Island.  She shared that the basic understanding of the lasting effects of trauma apply in that setting as well.

Part of my mindfulness practice is being courageous (as Jack Kornfield puts it) and sitting with the discomfort, the sadness, and the frustration of injustice and inhumanity...so I can then go out and act in the world to change it.

Peace and ease to you-

Rachel

Edited by Rachel
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Thank you @Rachel, @Jo L, and @VBZivkovic for your contributions to this thread. I have been watching what is happening throughout the states over the past week and have felt such a mix of emotions. This morning I watched a video of the mayor of Atlanta speaking and felt a strong wave of grief wash through me. I will look into Humanize My Hoodie, Jo. Thank you for bringing this movement to the community's attention.

Tonglen meditation sounds like it would be very grounding - metta meditation too. I will practice one of those today. Yesterday I listened to a live kirtan session, which was equally grounding and uplifting.

@VBZivkovic -  I have heard so much about that book but have yet to read it. I wonder if we should get a thread going on trauma-senstive mindfulness? I think that would be a wonderful topic to explore together.

 

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I have read Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness and think it is excellent. Jo’s comments are so spot on. Without trying to diminish the plight of Afro Americans or indigenous people, I just want to add that crony-capitalism is killing the US and poisoning the globe. You cannot have a system that funnels wealth at alarming rates to a very few without suffering serious harm to the welfare of others and to society itself. The absolute lunacy of current events here in the US triggers me on a daily basis. But for my practice I would have given up some time ago. It’s not just loutish Trump, but something at the very core of US cultural beliefs in extreme exceptionalism and entitlement. In Buddhist terms it is rooted in greed, hatred, and delusion. One great thing about this forum is that it reveals a counter-current, no matter how small and weak. Thank you all for that.

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11 hours ago, Gillian Sanger said:

Thank you @Rachel, @Jo L, and @VBZivkovic for your contributions to this thread. I have been watching what is happening throughout the states over the past week and have felt such a mix of emotions. This morning I watched a video of the mayor of Atlanta speaking and felt a strong wave of grief wash through me. I will look into Humanize My Hoodie, Jo. Thank you for bringing this movement to the community's attention.

Tonglen meditation sounds like it would be very grounding - metta meditation too. I will practice one of those today. Yesterday I listened to a live kirtan session, which was equally grounding and uplifting.

@VBZivkovic -  I have heard so much about that book but have yet to read it. I wonder if we should get a thread going on trauma-senstive mindfulness? I think that would be a wonderful topic to explore together.

 

 

11 hours ago, Gillian Sanger said:

Thank you @Rachel, @Jo L, and @VBZivkovic for your contributions to this thread. I have been watching what is happening throughout the states over the past week and have felt such a mix of emotions. This morning I watched a video of the mayor of Atlanta speaking and felt a strong wave of grief wash through me. I will look into Humanize My Hoodie, Jo. Thank you for bringing this movement to the community's attention.

Tonglen meditation sounds like it would be very grounding - metta meditation too. I will practice one of those today. Yesterday I listened to a live kirtan session, which was equally grounding and uplifting.

@VBZivkovic -  I have heard so much about that book but have yet to read it. I wonder if we should get a thread going on trauma-senstive mindfulness? I think that would be a wonderful topic to explore together.

 

Thank you Gillian, I appreciate your comments, and mentioning metta meditation. I, too, have been experiencing such a range of emotions. 

Gillian, I was wondering, do you ever listen or do Kirtan with Krishna Das?

I would love to get a thread going about trauma-sensitive mindfulness and trauma-sensitive yoga, if anyone is interested? 

 

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5 hours ago, David Weiskopf said:

I have read Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness and think it is excellent. Jo’s comments are so spot on. Without trying to diminish the plight of Afro Americans or indigenous people, I just want to add that crony-capitalism is killing the US and poisoning the globe. You cannot have a system that funnels wealth at alarming rates to a very few without suffering serious harm to the welfare of others and to society itself. The absolute lunacy of current events here in the US triggers me on a daily basis. But for my practice I would have given up some time ago. It’s not just loutish Trump, but something at the very core of US cultural beliefs in extreme exceptionalism and entitlement. In Buddhist terms it is rooted in greed, hatred, and delusion. One great thing about this forum is that it reveals a counter-current, no matter how small and weak. Thank you all for that.

Thanks David. Yes, equality for all, economic justice, prison and police reform (abolition?), radical acceptance and love are just some of the keys to peace in our society. I think each of us has a role to play in moving our society in that direction- it's absolutely overwhelming to consider as a whole, but if I can greet a homeless person on the street today and make her laugh, or donate to an organization that provides books for inmates, then I am sending positive ripples into the universe that affect all of us.  

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