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  • Writer's picturejon walker

Why keep going back to the breath?

Updated: Oct 1, 2021

A little inspiration from Sharon Salzburg (from a talk on the excellent 10% Happier app, lightly edited for print):

“One of the things I've loved about meditation is that these really enormous life changing skills are happening in these itty-bitty little moments. Suppose you did a meditation session and you ran into a friend and they said, “What did you do?” and you said, “I felt a few breaths, then my mind wandered, and I brought it back.” They would be like, “Really, you spent an afternoon doing that? That's nothing!” But it's not nothing. It's actually huge.

“There are so many instances in our life when we're called upon to begin again. We've made a mistake, or something's not happening the way we anticipated it happening, and we have to start over. And the tendency, of course, is to be very self-critical, and to not be able to start over that readily. Instead, we can spend endless periods of time lamenting the fact that we blew it, or things didn't go so well. Whereas the most effective, efficient way to get something done or succeed at something, is to know how to begin again. So when we practice returning to the breath as mind wanders, we're doing something tremendous right there.”

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