bringing your mind back to the present moment

Whether standing, walking, or sitting in meditation, you can use your in-breath and out-breath to help yourself to stop. You stop totally in the present moment. And when you stop, you are master of your body and your mind. You will not allow your habit energy to carry you away in compulsively thinking of something in the past or the future, of this or that project. You train yourself to stop, to relax and be at peace. Sitting meditation is not for fighting. You let go of everything. When a thought comes, you say hello, and then you say good-bye right away. When other thoughts come, just say hello and say good-bye again. Don’t fight. Don’t say, “Oh, I’m so bad, I think of so many things!” You don’t need to think like that. You just say hi and bye, relax and let go. You bring your mind to the present moment and rest in awareness of your body.

mung bean sprouts

 It’s like soaking mung beans in water. You don’t need to force the water to enter the mung bean. You let the mung bean be in the water, and slowly, slowly it goes in. Gradually the mung bean gets saturated, swollen and tender. The same is true for you. Letting go, the tension will be released slowly, slowly, slowly. And you will become more relaxed and more peaceful. The training is to just keep bringing your mind back to the present moment with your body.

– Fear: Essential Wisdom for Getting Through the Storm by Thich Nhat Hanh








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