Pausing may just change your whole life

The more the metropolitan areas grow the harder it is for the average family to enjoy some quiet time. This is also true with the frantic pace that most occupations have to deal with in our modern world. What do we do when we seems like its impossible to get some quiet time to read, meditate or even get a good sleep… Perhaps it might be our perception and unrealistic expectations or even overdeveloped bad habits. Don’t get me wrong I like peace and quiet as much as the next guy, possibly more as I have aged. Consider this article below…

P.38,39,40 The Power of Mindfulness Ven. Nyanaponika Thera

‘Under the influence of pausing for bare attention, the average rhythm of our everyday actions, speech and thoughts will also become more quiet and peace- ful. Slowing down the hurried rhythm of life means that thoughts, feelings, and perceptions will be able to complete the entire length of their natural lifetime. Full awareness will extend up to their end phase: to their last vibrations and reverberations. Too often that end phase is cut off by an impatient grasping at new impres- sions, or by hurrying on to the next stage of a line of thought before the earlier one has been clearly compre- hended. This is one of the main reasons for the disor- derly state of the average mind, which is burdened by a vast amount of indistinct or fragmentary perceptions, stunted emotions and undigested ideas. Slowing-down will prove an effective device for recovering the fullness and clarity of consciousness. A fitting simile, and at the same time an actual example, is the procedure called for in the practice of mindfulness of breathing (ana- panasati): mindfulness has to cover the whole extent of the breath, it’s beginning, middle and end. This is what is meant by the passage in the sutta, “Experienc- ing the whole (breath-) body, I shall breathe in and out.” Similarly, the entire “breath” or rhythm of our life will become deeper and fuller if, through slowing-down, we get used to sustained attention. The habit of prematurely cutting off processes of thought, or slurring over them, has assumed serious pro- portions in the man of modern urban civilization. Rest- lessly he clamours for ever new stimuli in increasingly quicker succession just as he demands increasing speed in his means of locomotion. This rapid bombardment of impressions has gradually blunted his sensitivity, and thus he always needs new stimuli, louder, coarser, and more variegated. Such a process, if not checked, can end only in disaster. Already we see at large a decline of finer aesthetic susceptibility and a growing incapac- ity for genuine natural joy. The place of both is taken by a hectic, short-breathed excitement incapable of giv- ing any true aesthetic or emotional satisfaction. “Shal- low mental breath” is to a great extent responsible for the growing superficiality of “civilized man” and for the frightening spread of nervous disorders ‘in the West. It may well become the start of a general deterioration of human consciousness in its qualitative level, range and strength. This danger threatens all those, in the East as well as in the West, who lack adequate spirit- ual protection from the impact of technical civilization. Satipaṭṭhāna can make an important contribution to remedying this situation in the way we have briefly indicated here. Thus the method will prove beneficial from the worldly point of view as well.’

We can let the world dictate our moods, feeling and thoughts. We can also slow our breathing and consider what really is happening to us in our homes and workplaces. Where are we going at the speed or business without any reflection? Ultimately, we have the ability with practice to improve our quality of life regardless of modern business and expectations. We also have the privilege to teach our children a better way and help them breathe through difficult circumstance and people. People often talk like modern life is hopeless and out of our control. We are always in control of our inner world and we can take our own path. We are not herded animals like cows or sheep, we can make a skilful and wise choice for how to conduct ourself and live.

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