Stopping and looking deeply are the foundation of our practice of mindfulness. When we stop we can bring our attention to our breath, and be aware of the thinking and emotions that are present. We can get into a vicious cycle of thinking and emotions, especially when the thinking is negative, it gives rise to negative emotions, and feeling negative can trigger more negative thinking. Thinking is natural, like the clouds, but we tend to grasp onto them or push them away, thereby causing more suffering. Attention is the key to stopping this cycle as we recognize it, and see our habitual way of reacting to it. Stopping helps us to see the impermanence of all things, our thinking and emotions. Walking meditation helps us to reconnect to our solidity. Mother earth is there for us, but are we there for her? We can look deeply into the food we eat, the sensory impressions we consume to see how they feed our thoughts and emotions. In this way we can cultivate freedom from their grip. Looking deeply doesn’t require effort, but allowing the mind to settle, like allowing the pulp in the apple juice to settle down.
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