We have also been exposed to a number of activities and exercises to encourage 'mindfulness'. Mindfulness is a state of active, open attention on the present. When you're mindful, you observe your thoughts and feelings from a distance, without judging them good or bad. Instead of letting your life pass you by, mindfulness means living in the moment and awakening to experience as it is happening. In practice sessions we have breathed in such a way as to pay special attention as to where that breath is going - even to the point of imagining the colour of it. We have relaxed our body one part at a time - starting at our toes and working our way up to our scalp - yes I have learned that you can contract and relax your scalp! We have conjured up in our minds scenes of great beauty, places we didn't want to leave and we have mentally immersed ourselves into cool streams and freshly mown grass. All of this has been enlightening and truly enjoyable - raising awareness of ourselves and our world. And that is how I found myself this morning sat in Central having a conversation with a raisin!
We had to study our raisin, touch our raisin, smell our raisin, taste our raisin and listen to our raisin! I tried very hard to be mindful but all I could think about are some of the conversations that I would have with my raisin and other fruits.
- Would there be a bitter argument with a lemon?
- Sour grapes?
- A crisp conversation with a Golden Delicious?
- Contemplation with a 'navel' orange?
- Talking with a plum in my mouth?
- Celebrate by going bananas?
- Say pretty please with a cherry on top?
- Be a perfect pear?
- Let it be known who is the apple of my eye?
- Get passionate with a grenadilla?
- Ask the fruit of the palm tree for a date?
- Dig up some juicey gossip?
Seriously though I shall practice being mindful every day and will be 'raisin' my 'currant' levels of mindfulness at every opportunity.