Friday, April 17, 2009

Heedful & Mindful

I wanted to discuss today the concepts of being “Heedful” and “Mindful”. Being heedful and/or mindful means to bear in mind; being regardful, attentive or observant of what you are doing and thinking. In attempting to start this book and CD study guide or course if you will, on how to meditate, I was kicked in the rear today by these very concepts. Something I know I truly need in my life and I know could help me tremendously with the stress and demands I face on a daily basis. The book is called ‘Insight Meditation: A Step-by-Step Course on How to Meditate’ by Sharon Salzberg and Joseph Goldstein. So far so good! Well wham … right their in the first lesson it struck me hard to learn that according to Buddha philosophy being both heedful and mindful is a crucial step in achieving deathlessness. Those who are heedless and mindless are dead already. I tried to apply this to my own life. The idea of living mindlessly is an issue with me personally and this needs to stop! So I am going to get a little personal here so that I can illustrate what I have learned and hope that you too can walk away with something from this sermon. I am a type two diabetic and I should know better on the types of foods I should put into my body! I tend to eat things I know that can hurt me or make me condition worse. However, being human is to err, and often times I eat when I am hungry heedlessly and mindlessly and tend to make up excuses like: I am too busy, too tired, worked too long, this is just quicker and easier, etc., and the list goes on! This kind of thinking or lack thereof ultimately will catch up with me and play havoc with my health. I am mindlessly engaging in an act that according to Buddha is attributing to my death! Wow! I know this is deep stuff! This can apply to everything we do in all our lives, are we going through the motions and not paying attention to what we are doing? How many times have you driven home from work and not even remember the 25 minute or so drive home? That in of itself is pretty scary and I know we all do it? Did we pay attention to detail and take notice of the people who you passed walking by, or the birds perched on a nearby tree? Did you happen to notice the landscape around you or the changing colors in the sky? Do you take time to literally smell the roses and appreciate the things around you that has been given to us by the Devine Creator? Are you really living in the moment or are you letting the world pass you by? I know for me that sometimes eating is psychological and I am seeking to fill a void in the wrong kind of way! I will have to be more mindful of that, and remember that I am alive and this alone is a gift in which I must take better care of heedfully! What should we do to improve the quality of our own lives? Could it be something as simple as being more mindful? I for one have already learned that this could be a step in the right direction!

Blessed Be ~ Bia’ Aletheia

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