Live the actual moment. Only this actual moment is life.
– Thich Nhat Hanh
Defined by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) graduate Dr Jon Kabat-Zinn as “the awareness that arises from paying attention, on purpose, in the present moment and non-judgmentally,” mindfulness has long been regarded as the source of wellbeing. Extensive research has explored the various positive mental health aspects of the practice. These include positive effects on:
Michal in his own words . . .
Mindfulness is the art of deep listening, of leaning into patience, of being present. I define it as an orientation of the self toward non-judgemental, present-moment awareness, in service of wisdom and compassion. In this way mindfulness and contemplative psychology can be understood as two sides of the same coin.
To this end my work as a teacher lies in offering a space for those drawn to the practices of cultivating mindfulness, and to assist them in experiencing and expressing their individual consciousness within the general or more universal consciousness of other group members and beyond. To begin this process is to learn how to listen. To really listen. To drop below the chatter and honour that which lies beneath the surface: the threads which connect us to our unique cultural traditions, and the ways in which we express our experience—whether through spoken language or the language of gesture and nuance. These are the ways which connect us in the present through our embodied togetherness in the silent illumination of the now.