by Karen Maezen Miller
Q: I am confused when you say, “Mindfulness without meditation is just a word.” Do you mean that in addition to practicing mindfulness whenever we can throughout the day, we also need to spend time in quiet mindfulness meditation?
A: I understand the confusion. The current mindfulness movement originated as a way to share the benefits of meditation in a medical or therapeutic setting. Although the practice of meditation was retained, the word “meditation” was not, perhaps because of its association with Eastern traditions. As a result, today there is some confusion that mindfulness and meditation are not related. Mindfulness is attention, true, but meditation is the cultivation of one’s attention. We cannot be mindful without practicing paying attention. If we are only thinking, “I am mindful,” it doesn’t get us very far. The old masters didn’t worry about words, but having practiced seated meditation, they took their concentrated mind with them throughout the day in all activities.
If one happens to only read books about mindfulness, the practice aspect may be overlooked.
Another analogy might be telling ourselves that we are full, when in fact we have failed to eat.
This post is republished from Cheerio Road with permission from Karen Maezen Miller
Upcoming Programs at Copper Beech Institute
Overnight Retreat with Chris Grosso and Brandon Nappi
September 13-15, 2019
Join us as we focus on courage and strengthening our willingness to face fear fearlessly through various meditations, creative exercises, and compassion practices.
Course with Brandon Nappi
Wednesdays, September 18, 2019 - October 23, 2019, 10am-12pm
Examine commonality and differences in sacred teachings as we explore the timeless search for wisdom, transcendence, and sacred belonging.
Event with Miranda Chapman and Vamsi Koneru, Ph.D.
Wednesday, September 18, 2019, 7:00-8:30 pm.
For our third Courageous Candlelight Conversation of 2019, we will hold space for shares and reflections on the topic of trauma-informed mindfulness.