In Which I Observe

In order to get the most out of meditating, one tries simply to get the mind to observe what is happening and not pass judgement. Instead of saying, “My back hurts, this is bad,” you simply notice the pain and say that it is unpleasant.

Abbot_of_Watkungtaphao_in_Phu_Soidao_Waterfall

I’ve noticed that when I apply this to other aspects of my life, it helps me to have a sense of peace. I look at the work I have to do ahead of me and observe that it needs to be done. I don’t judge that it is a waste of time or that it will stress me out. My attitude on a lot of things has completely changed and I feel much happier because of it. I feel lighter, less weighed down, in fact.

I challenge you readers to try this in your life. Instead of passing judgement on something you or someone else has done, try simply observing what is happening. “I ate a piece of cake. My stomach feels tight.” Or “That person is sitting down and I am standing up.”

Maybe if you feel the need to do more, you can categorize it as pleasant, unpleasant or neutral. The reason this works is that not everything pleasant is good and not everything unpleasant is bad. It might be unpleasant to go to class, but it is good because it helps you get a degree and get a better job. It might be pleasant to take a particular prescription medication, but it has a bad affect on your body due to side effects.

I find that this observation really simplifies life down and takes out a lot of drama that we (myself included) needlessly add into our lives. Now, there are instances where judgement can be useful, but I don’t feel the need to judge everything in my life.

At least, not anymore.