Happy Earth Day 2020! What is our relationship with Mother Earth? What could we be more conscious of, in protecting this very planet that keeps us alive?
Even as we stay home, it is possible to stay connected with the Earth, by way of our body. If we look closely inside ourselves, we will know that our body is not separate from the Earth, and instead is a part of it. In a way, we are this Earth, and this Earth is us.
Please join me in a short and simple practice of grounding to the Earth. It is best to do this barefoot.
1. Adopt a stable standing posture, with your feet hip-distance apart. Keep your posture upright and wakeful, and allow the shoulders to relax.
2. Become aware of the space around the body, and get a sense of the entire body breathing in and out.
3. Rest your attention at the top of the head, then bring your attention down gently through the length of the body, and all the way down to the bottoms of the feet.
4. Notice the soles of the feet in contact with the floor. Pay attention to the toes; the ball, arch and heel of each foot; the texture and temperature of the floor; the weight of the body resting on the feet, and the feet resting on the ground.
5. After a few moments, take a deep breath in, and exhale.
If you're staying home a lot now and thinking about meditating more consistently, here are three things that have worked for me:
Find the most conducive spot at home for meditating in, set it up, and stick with it. Overtime you'll gradually settle into that space, and before long you'll find yourself looking forward to returning to "your spot".
It takes time to figure out a posture that works for you, so don't fret if you feel fidgety or keep falling asleep at the start. Keep your posture as upright and wakeful as you can without straining the body. Don't worry about twisting your legs into a full or half lotus - your posture just needs to be stable.
Consistency is more important than duration for a start. Aim to establish a daily routine. We're trying to get the mind and body used to resting in stillness, and practicing once in a while isn't going to change that. Begin with a shorter duration, say 10 min a day, and gradually build it up to 15, 20, 30 min.
By the way, you may not need special meditation cushions. I gather whatever cushions I have at home and arrange them in a way that works for my body.
If you already have a regular practice, what has worked for you? Share your wisdom!
About The Author
MiMo founder Erin Lee is a Mindfulness Coach and MBSR Teacher at Mindful Moments, and advocate of mindfulness as the way of life. She conducts the classic 8-Week MBSR Program, as well as the 8-Week MBSR Workplace Program.
Are you a mindfulness practitioner and have meaningful experiences or thoughts about mindfulness that you'd like to share? You can contribute an article on the MiMo blog! Please contact Erin to find out more.