August 2013 - Evolving Human Newsletter
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Mindfulness Practice and Support Group
In August, I kicked off the ‘Mindfulness Practice and Support Group’ in downtown Roseville. This is a group for people interested in learning and practicing Mindfulness. There will be some basic instruction, some guided practice, and a discussion period with an emphasis on how to apply Mindfulness in daily life. There is no cost for this group, but I do accept donations to cover the cost of renting our space.
I plan to have this group on an ongoing basis - twice a month on average. Most of the groups have been on Thursday nights, for 1 hour, but I’m planning to have a longer group on weekends, depending on interest. The first 90 minute group will be on Saturday September 21st at 10am, which will give us more time for practice and discussion. Due to amount of traveling I do, I don’t have a set schedule, so sometimes the groups will be evenly spaced, and sometimes there will be gaps of several weeks, followed by 2 groups in 2 weeks.
During August, we have been primarily learning the ‘Feel Rest’ technique - exploring the sense of relaxation and stillness within the body. This is a great technique when you’re just starting Mindfulness practice.
We’ve also been discussing the core skills (concentration, sensory clarity and equanimity), and the ‘noting’ and ‘labeling’ techniques.
Noting In a Nutshell
A period of noting practice typically consists of a rhythmic sequence of acts of noting. Each act of noting typically consists of two parts:
1. You clearly acknowledge the presence of a sensory event.
2. You focus intently on that sensory event.
During the acknowledging, you have the option but not the requirement to label the event you have acknowledged. To label means to think or say a word or phrase that describes the sensory event you are noting.
The relationship between mindfulness noting and labeling is as follows:
• Labeling is designed to facilitate noting.
• Noting is designed to facilitate mindfulness.
Classes in 2014
In the new year, I’ll hope to start a series of classes to begin to explore more of the 29 methods in the Basic Mindfulness system. People often think of meditation as sitting with your eyes closed on a cushion. We refer to this as ‘practice in stillness’. But our life is not lived sitting still with our eyes closed. ‘Practice in motion’ is another way of saying ‘practice in daily life’, and fortunately there are many different techniques which we can use as we move through our day.