We live in two worlds: the outer world where 99% of our time and energy is directed there. The other, our inner world of thoughts and feelings, which is where we really live, drives the quality of our life.
Awareness is a tool with which you can study your inner world. With awareness the hidden, subtle, and masked motivations come to the surface. This hidden realm of behaviour control is really working on auto-mode, until awareness allows it to become transparent. When it comes to the surface you can clearly see the contents of the inner world. That is when you can give yourself choices. With clarity you see what’s going on and can choose to let go of things not serving you.
Buddhist tradition supports mindfulness practice as a means towards freedom from suffering (suffering that we impose on ourselves by reacting to the outer world), and is increasingly being employed by Western psychology to alleviate a variety of mental and physical conditions.
Sampajanna is the Buddhist term for mindfulness, described as a calm awareness of one’s body functions, feelings, sensations and perceptions arising, content of consciousness, or consciousness itself. Mindfulness is the seventh element of the Noble Eightfold Path, the practice of which results in the development of wisdom.
I have found the technique easy to use, just by observing my body movements, thoughts and feelings passing by, or watching the breath. It’s just that I keep forgetting to do it. I interpret mindfulness as ‘watching myself’. Although we continually engage with the outer world, nothing in it can bring us peace. We have to train ourselves towards peace. Only a peaceful inner world is our true protection. Think about it, if it is peace and joy we hanker, then why not use this simple way?