In this late, but last post on Mindfulness, I will add a few observations of my own. I first came understand Mindfulness in the 2000s. I came to utilize its techniques when realizing the extent to which personal anger was damaging my personal relationships.
A good friend recommended a work by Thich Nhat Hanh– Anger: Wisdom for Cooling the Flames. As I recall it, having read it in 2006, the Zen master points out how anger dominates moods and can color our own perceptions of the world. Of the many passages that I remember, one still sticks out in my head:
“… eating food that is prepared in anger … “—
Although many scientists would dispute its validity, I must state that it made sense to me on the following level:– (There is a space between stimulus and response between individuals.)
In a very non-analytical manner, we do sense the moods of others. While it is not easily nor precisely measured (therefore lacking scientific rigor), we can be affected by these moods. Whether we imitate the acts of others is an act of free will–or our personal choice. That is where Mindfulness can come into play. Understanding how they affect us on a personal level allows know that there is a space between the action and stimulus. Or– slowing down our responses to how others treat us.
Whether it is good, bad, or indifferent– learning to distance oneself from individuals who adversely affect us… can spell the difference between a bad day and a good day…
One last point—- February’s Mindfulness is a difficult one for me— I have tried to practice Mindfulness on a personal level for a number of years. In some ways, it is as if one were climbing a staircase of Mindfulness. The longer and higher you climb the staircase, it is more likely that it will become harder to climb. —Much like a “learning curve.”