10/26/2014 – Mindfulness 1

This Sunday we began our series of reflections on the Seven Factors of Awakening, with two sessions to be devoted to each.  Margaret initiated the series with a focus on the first factor – Mindfulness –  anchoring it in an excerpt of  a talk by Joseph Goldstein.

Joseph’s talk explored four aspects of mindfulness

  1. It does not stray or forget what is right before the mind
  2. It stands near and guards the senses from getting caught up
  3. It calls to mind what is skillful and unskillful  (moral shame and moral dread)
  4. It sees things as they are and thus has a close connection to wisdom, utilizing bare attention, clear comprehension to discern suitability of purpose, of timing, of domain of attention, thus guarding against delusion.)

Zen Master Dogen reminds us that “To carry yourself forward and experience the myriad things is delusion.  That myriad things come forth and experience themselves is awakening.”

If we can simply be mindful, our engagement with the world will have the startling clarity embodied in the famous haiku by Basho, fresh clear, nothing added:

The old pond

A frog jumps in