Mindfulness is the energy or state of being within which concentration and insight arise. You have already tasted the fruit of mindfulness in your practice every time you maintain your attention on your breathing. As you experienced the change in your breathing and the space that opens within you with each breath, you experienced concentration, a oneness with the object of your attention. As you further deepen your practice of mindfulness, one of the insights that arises is the experience of the disintegration of your sense of isolation. You may notice this in a sense of spaciousness within you that incorporates the sounds or sights around you, even if just for an instant. Or you may be looking at or talking with someone and suddenly know inside you what it is like to be that person.This is the path to true empathy. Mindfulness enables us to experience another person with awareness and solidarity. We break through our narcissism when we practice mindfulness with a deep willingness to be present to beings other than ourselves. This is extraordinarily powerful.
Monday, May 08, 2006
Here's a wonderful description of mindfulness. It's from Beginning Mindfulness by Andrew Weiss.