Present moment mindfulness means living and experiencing in the NOW. It
means living in this present moment, rather than in the past or future. When we are present to the moment at hand, we are not thinking about circumstances, our environment, or problems. We are simply experiencing 'what is', absent judgment, analysis or commentary.
When attention is focused upon the moment at hand, there is a sense of being at one with the totality of existence. There is a sublime quality to experience when the entirety of focus is centered upon the here and now, rather than drifting off into imaginings of past memories, or fantasies about the future. It is only in the wandering away from this present moment that mind is able to grasp hold of the idea that there is a problem. The present moment, alone, contains only the perfection of what is, and is absent thoughts or personal judgments about what is happening.
It's important to first get a sense of what being in the present moment actually feels like. Plain and simply, there is a sense of ease, a sense of sublime peace,it could even be said, joy, in being right here, right now.
All that's required to practice present moment awareness, is a sincere desire to turn attention towards the moment at hand, towards any immediate sensations, towards breath and being, and away from thoughts that might otherwise carry attention off and away.
Focus upon breath can serve as a powerful anchor, as it is near impossible to pay close attention to each breath and get swept away in thought. Attuning attention to bodily other bodily sensations can also have the effect of grounding focus to the present moment.
Take some time to simply notice what you are experiencing in this precise moment. What do you smell? Hear? See? Are you warm or cold? Do you notice random thoughts arising in mind? Are you relaxed or do you feel tense?Are you thinking about what is arising, what is happening, or is your entire attention focused upon what is, in this present moment?
Present moment mindfulness requires stilling and quieting of mind's natural tendency to follow thought, thus, there is indeed a certain amount of discipline involved when first coming to practice being present, but this falls away when being present becomes habitual.
I see being present as a form of meditation that can be practiced regardless of the activity one may be engaged in. In fact, the practice of being present, changes the quality of experience regardless of the activity being engaged in. Present moment mindfulness is not necessarily difficult, but it does take practice due to the fact that the untrained mind has a natural propensity to follow thought. Once that tendency has been tamed, mindfulness to the present moment, can become the norm. When this happens, freedom ensues.
Through being present to the moment, we have the opportunity to observe ourselves in our environment in a completely new way. The absence of judgment and commentary in general, frees us up to simply Be.
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