Skills for Modern Life - MNDFL 7 - Essential Qualities of MindfulnessMar 10, 2022
The MNDFL 7 are qualities of the mindfulness we need today. Modern mindfulness must be rooted in the realities of our time - including the ways it anchors us to presence as well as the ways mindfulness invites us into engagement with the world around us. These qualities are anchors, used to reflect within yourself. Your mindfulness practice isn’t outside of you. The MNDFL 7 are the ways you carry yourself, which is how you lead a mindful life.
Curiosity - how do you talk to yourself when you notice your mind wanders or when things don’t go the way you anticipated or planned? Can you be curious and bring a mind of friendliness to your meditation and life? In meditation, when we return again and again to our anchor or focus, we do so with openness and curiosity rather than opinions and self blame or criticism.
Awareness - Our mind possesses the innate qualities of paying attention. We can simultaneously focus the mind one one thing, while being panoramically aware of our surroundings. With mindfulness we can attend to the minute details and profound reverence in the very same breath. Awareness is spaciousness, within which, life and living unfolds, and it creates the opportunityE for you to meet all of what is.
Presence - Presence isn’t something we activate, rather a naturally arising state of being. Your presence is your fullness. When you offer presence, you offer your whole self - embodied and authentic. There is no greater gift to offer the world and those in it, than your presence. Even in difficult or painful circumstances, our ability to be present with them arises a genuine, authentic sense of self and trust.
Ethics - you must have a strong ethical composition to navigate this world where nothing is neutral. Mindfulness allows us to consider all the factors from personal to interpersonal to societal when we care for ourselves and others. Mindfulness is asking questions about the multiplicity of connections for each human being.
Compassion - Compassion can be understood as empathy plus action or the desire to respond. Without mindfulness, compassion can give way to saviorism. Mindfulness is essential in our ability to feel and offer compassion, without losing our sense of self and center.
Acceptance - not to be confused with apathy, acceptance is your way of allowing what is, to simply be true. It is your ability to soften resistance to that which cannot be resisted so that your efforts may be directed to where you truly have influence. Like the movement of flowing water, mindfulness strengthens your innate ability to navigate your surroundings gracefully and powerfully.
Engagement - In practice with the other 7 qualities, engagement is how you move and interact with the world. Most mindfulness practitioners today are of the world and must therefore engage with it. Where we are not in control of other people or circumstances, with mindfulness we learn to wield the control we do have over how we choose to engage with them.
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