I thought I’d share the following excerpt from Jon Kabat-Zinn’s book Mindfulness for Beginners because it has been very helpful for me lately. I’ll be sharing more quotes and excerpts in the next weeks and months. Feel free to share your favorite passages, as well.
We do not have to believe them. We do not have to even think of them as “ours.” We can recognize them simply as thoughts, as events in the field of awareness, events that arise and pass away very rapidly, that sometimes carry insights, sometimes enormous emotional charge, and that can have a huge effect for better or for worse in our lives, depending on how we are in relationship to them.
When we don’t automatically take them personally or believe the stories about “reality” that we build from them, when we simply hold them in awareness with a sense of curiosity and wonder at their amazing power given their insubstantiality, their limitations, and inaccuracies, then we have a chance right in that moment, in any moment really, to not get caught in their habitual patterning, to see thoughts for what they are, impersonal events, and instead be the knowing that awareness already is.
Then, in that moment at least, we are already free, ready to act with greater clarity and kindness within the constantly changing field of events that is nothing other than life unfolding — not always as we think it should, but definitely as it is.