8 week Course in MindfulnessMindfulness
The main focus of Mindfulness training is to learn how to be present with any state of mind or body, be it tense, painful, relaxed or peaceful. Learning to be with whatever is, whatever that might be.
We often try to push away painful or disturbing thoughts thinking that we can push away the pain. However we find that the pain is still there.
In Mindfulness training, we learn to become aware of our thoughts without getting hooked in or identifying with them.
We learn to observe them and not always react to them.
Mindfulness is taught in groups. The group provides a powerful support as the learning is enhanced by the sharing of experiences and the discussions around the various obstacles to learning.
Around 560BCP, Prince Sidharta was born into a protected lifestyle of affluence and love. However on reaching adulthood and leaving the palace he realised the extent of suffering experienced by most people and he set out to find an answer to suffering. He did develop insight into the causes of suffering and although he realised that humans are entrenched insuffering he spent the rest of his life developing practices and teaching people how to relieve their suffering. He was named Buddha by his followers which means The Awakened One.
The Buddhist teachings of being in the present moment, accepting what is, and developing compassion have been taught in a Buddhist context but also in all cultures and religions across the world. Mindfulness does not require any belief system or affiliation to any religion.
Jon Kabat Zinn
In 1979 Jon Kabat Zinn was a practitioner at the University of Masachusets Medical Hospital. He first introduced Mindfulness into a clinical, non buddhist setting. He realised that there were many patients who had come to the end of their medical treatment but were still in pain and suffering. He started an 8 week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction(MBSR) course in the basement of the hospital. He taught patients how to be with their pain and not fight it, thus helping them to manage and reduce their suffering.
This course has been the basis for all the 8 week programmes which have since been developed. They all follow the same basic format and principles because the course works.
So What is Mindfulness
It is subtle, deep and hard to define.
Learning to be in the present moment, not the future or the past, but the now. If we are not in this moment it is gone forever. If we do not show up in our life now, when will we?
It is about being in the journey not just focused on the arriving.
It is about having choices not just floating along being buffeted by life.
Ready to find out?