"The success of Homo sapiens as a species is built on our inability to tell the difference between a fiction and a reality."
~ Yuval Noah Harari
The real magic happens when we become intimately familiar with the moment-by-moment experience of being alive. Instead of trying to force complete experiences to happen. I focus on setting the stage for them to happen by exercising my attention.
When remembering to notice that we're alive becomes a habit, we begin to erode the internal friction that obscures our view of the richness we're swimming in every day.
“What led me to mindfulness was my own relationship to anxiety. So for this particular film, I felt it was important for the viewer to be able to experience the transformation a mindful meditation practice can have on an individual’s state of mind.”
~ Julie Bayer
"I do know enough as a psychologist about learning and memory. And I know that we learn. How much of this I need to do in order to change, I cannot say. But I can say that there is a point at which this brain is not just elastic in moving to what is being suggested, but that it may be plastic in that it can be reset into a new mold."
~ Mahzarin Banaji
When you begin a walking or running program, there are several details you can track as evidence of improvement. Your step count. The length of your stride. Your pace. The amount of time it takes your heart to return to its recover its baseline resting rate.
But how will you know when you’re getting better at noticing perceptions?
Any perception you can observe directly in real time can be used to train a variety of attention-related skills.
I like to make a game out of turning ordinary activities into opportunities for practice.
There are a number of exercises I use when watching a film — whether it’s one I enjoy, dislike, or have seen before.
"I think attentional skills are fundamentally under siege today. Never before in human history have there been so many seductive distractors in a person’s day, in a given hour, or in ten minutes. There are pingings and pop-ups and all kinds of sensory impingements on our attention that want to pull us away from what we’re trying to focus on."
~ Daniel Goleman
"Performance becomes life itself. People don't understand that the hardest thing is to actually do something which is close to nothing."
~ Maria Abramovic
Shinzen Young created this breath awareness exercise to develop concentration, sensory clarity, and equanimity. It is also designed to foster the cultivation of an ongoing mindfulness practice by providing both short-term and long-term benefits.