Monday, October 09, 2006


I've been reading Buddhism for Mothers. It's very good. Right now it is talking about the importance of meditation & how moms haven't got time for that. So she likes the concept of 'mindful meditation' that many Zen monestaries teach. It's totally focusing on what you are doing. Putting your mind completely in the NOW of folding laundry or washing dishes or whatever. Not thinking about what you need to do next or what you might cook for dinner or whether the car's registration is due yet. Just "Folding the sleeve in, now folding the oher sleeve, smoothing it down, the fabric feels smooth & cool, folding up the bottom half" etc. It is supposed to be very calming & soothing. It also makes things take a bit longer but the tradeoff is mental peace & the laundry is folded. So I decided to take a mindful shower. That was probably the most decadently sensuous experience I have had in ages. 10 minutes of just thinking about how the water felt, how my scalp felt when I washed my hair, the slipperiness of soap on my arms. I also dried off & put on lotion mindfully. I was so incredibly relaxed when I was done & really it only added about 5 minutes to my usual shower time.

Tomorrow I am going to try cooking mindfully... or as mindfully as possible with toddlers. But she said that is the important part - do what is possible, when it is possible & don't worry about how much or how little you are doing it, just take the opportunities as they come & try to be as much in the NOW as possible, being as mindful of things as you can & after awhile you will be able to summonthe relaxed calm feeling when you need it without needing the meditation. But you should still keep meditating even then. The more you do it, the more opportunities you find.

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