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Gillian Sanger

What is one favourite mindfulness practice for you right now?

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I offer this  simple effective exercise to clients / students to keep in their self-help toolbox because tough stuff has a habit of popping up in this age of uncertainty. 

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LIKE A MOUNTAIN, SITTING . . . 

Sit in a comfortable cross-legged position, or on a straight-backed chair with feet flat on the floor which is supported by Earth.

Close the eyes and gently direct the inner gaze down toward the heart.

Inhale a slow, full, deep breath ... then slowly release the breath.

Do it again. 

Now breathe normally and just be aware of the breath easily flowing in and flowing out.. 

Imagine a majestic mountain, its base deep in Earth and its peak in the passing clouds. Hold this image steadily in the mind as you’re aware of the natural ebb and flow of the breathe. 

If mind starts up a chat session or five, just return the attention to the mountain and the rhythmically flowing breathe.

If strong emotions rise up, just note them without being dragged around by them.

If tears come, let them flow (you too, guys).

If a smile comes, don't grasp at it ... just let it be and be it.

Do this for five minutes (or longer, as time permits). Give yourself entirely to this experience. 

To close this exercise, tell yourself: 

“I am like the mountain, rooted, steady, receptive and strong with an expansive view of everything around it … no matter what the circumstances.”

Repeat this a few times to remember that you are as if a mountain.

The seasons swirl around the mountain. Clouds and mountain intersect. Showers, mist, sleet, and snow continuously reshape the surface. The view is endlessly repainted with light and shadow. Creatures shit and piss on the mountain. The mountain’s rocky surface continuously expands, contracts, and vibrates with the baking sun, the chill of the night, the light of the moon, the rotations of Earth from which it rose, and the mechanics of the heavens that move Earth through space. Towns, cities, whole civilizations rise up and fall away on the mountain’s slopes. 

All the while, mountain is being mountain … rooted, steady, receptive, and strong with an expansive view of everything.

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Keep an image of a mountain on your refrigerator door and in your mobile device. In daily life, especially when muck and thorns are flying fast, recall your mountain essence.

Wherever you are, if circumstances veer toward overwhelming, step outside or into a restroom stall and do this exercise for a few minutes (it's ok to take this time to restore balance). There are times when it helps to remember our true nature.

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Edited by Jeff Miller
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Wow Jeff. This was incredibly beautiful. I find myself increasingly drawn to nature-inspired mediations. I find such peace in reflecting upon or connecting with the natural elements of this world. I also really loved the invitation to let tears flow if they come. Often in guided practices, we are instructed to just be with whatever arises, and yet this very clear invitation to embrace tears of sadness if they come up delves right into the heart. Thank you for this 🙏 Did you write it? Do you do recordings?

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Hi Gillian, thanks.
 

Yes, I wrote it. I haven’t done any recordings, I don’t have the voice for it,  but I’m going to have some practice videos made for the site I’m building using a voiceover provider. 

Edited by Jeff Miller
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14 hours ago, Jeff Miller said:

Hi Gillian, thanks.
 

Yes, I wrote it. I haven’t done any recordings, I don’t have the voice for it,  but I’m going to have some practice videos made for the site I’m building using a voiceover provider. 

That's great! Share the site with us when it's done 🙂

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