All posts tagged awareness

Mindfulness or mood making?

I went to a lecture with one of the foremost spokesmen for mindfulness in the West, Jon Kabat-Zinn, in Oslo last week. There are many interesting parallels with Acem’s approach to meditation, and some interesting differences.

Malleable genes
Like Acem, he points out that meditation can build on basic traits of the human mind that are not culture-specific: “Buddha wasn’t a Buddhist.” And: “Anything ‘ancient’ in this lies in our DNA.

He is also concerned with recent research on neuroplasticity and knows, of course, that meditation may change both the size of the brain’s cortex and the way the brain functions. He is interested in epigenetics, the science of how even our gene pool is directly affected by our environment and experiences. For instance, he points out how stress degrades the telemores (the end parts of our chromosomes) and thereby makes us age before time, while meditation may do the opposite. In other words, many of the things we used to think were set from birth have been shown to be much more flexible and adaptable, and meditation seems to have a positive influence.

embrace

Embrace your thoughts!

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Centre and periphery: Awareness in Acem Meditation

by Tor Hersoug

Our field of vision normally has a focal area in which visual awareness is concentrated. Around this lies a border area, the periphery, in which we register certain objects but do not see them as clearly as what is in focus. So it is, too, with inner awareness. Some things are in the centre of awareness while others are peripheral. In this article we consider how various inner situations in meditation can be understood in these terms.

Before we discuss the principles of correct meditation, we shall first observe that thoughts arise in meditation, and that they may arise in either the centre or the border area of our awareness. Correspondingly, the meditation sound can be repeated in the centre or the periphery.

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