In this latest episode, Raghu and Ramesh look at mindfulness and approach it from as many practical vantage points as possible.
What does mindfulness really mean? What kind of perspective can you have about it that can change your life? Ramesh and Raghu explore a variety of practices and perspectives that help to cultivate a less discursive mind.
What Is Mindfulness? (Opening) – What does “Mindfulness” even mean? It’s the premise or vantage point where one realizes that there’s something beyond the senses. To be mindful is to be aware and fully present in the moment.
Ramesh shares his perspective on Mindfulness is: a way of exploring one’s core identity, to the core of your own human existence. Mindfulness is a way to quiet down and figure out who you are. Through our own internal exploration, we begin to realize that awareness is something that we as humans, all share and it connects us all.
Cultivating Consciousness (10:49) – What do you do to get more conscious? How do you settle your mind down? Most humans deal with a mind that is prone to distraction. Ramesh and Raghu discuss Vipassana as one of the most effective methods in cultivating the space within your conscious. The stress and discomfort that one experiences in daily life is enough of a motivation to pursue some sort of contemplative practice.
Raghu and Ramesh discuss their Initial experiences with Vipassana in India in the early 70s. Meditation courses were 10 day long silent retreats consisting of 10 hour days of meditation. Anapana breathing is a practice, where one places their focus on their breath. One has to calm down their system enough in order to get real benefit out of meditation.
Methods of Mindfulness (24:00) – There a myriad of approaches people can use to cultivate mindfulness, besides sitting down to meditate. To calm the discursive mind, body work like Qigong, walking, or yoga can facilitate mindfulness. The intention behind most physical yoga practices is to settle the body down, so that one’s consciousness can come to one point. From there it’s easier to calm to the surface of the mind so you can truly submerge into your deepest self.
Raghu and Ramesh look at Ram Dass’ take on mindfulness which is the cultivation of a place in oneself where one can see one’s motivations. By utilizing the Witness, it helps you come into a mindful place. You can see yourself from a vantage point that includes the heart and not just the critical mind.
Justi Be (37:00) – The guys discuss the topic of being. Just be and you can come into the moment, where you are quiet, loving and insightful. Back home in the heart.
Regardless of the busyness of the mind during meditation, Ramesh and Raghu remind us of Sharon Salzberg’s classic teaching that one can always begin again. Pay attention, become aware, become one-pointed, less discursive, less judgemental, less emotionally reactive. The breath is the linchpin of mindfulness.
Growing into Mindfulness (52:00) – Mindfulness is used to improve your life, but once you begin practicing it brings you deep inside, and its essence carries you.
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Image via Bruce Rolff