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The Power of Stillness

Cory Muscara



Cory Muscara



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The Power of Stillness

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Hey, welcome back to

your Daily Mindfulness.

In this session, we're going to

talk about the power of stillness.

Now I first gleaned the power of

stillness from the late Indian

meditation teacher, SN Goenka.

On retreat, he encouraged his

students to spend an hour staying

perfectly still in meditation.

Not adjusting their posture,

not wiggling their fingers,

not even moving their tongue.

He told his students to sit with the

perspective that I will remain 100%

still until the end of this hour,

even if I feel like I'm going to die.

Now, that's a little intense and

I don't encourage taking it that

far, unless you're inspired to.

There's huge value though, in

practicing just a few minutes of

this kind of meditation, but why

would we stay still like this?

Well think about all the reasons you

wouldn't stay still in meditation.

Feeling bored and wanting to check

your phone, an itch on your face that

you reflexively scratch, discomfort in

your knee that you'd like to adjust.

All of these things are some

form of pain or discomfort

that we try to move away from.

It's no different than walking away

from our partner in an intense argument,

reflexively checking emails when we're

feeling the stress of a work project

or not speaking up when it feels too

vulnerable or texting our ex when we

feel lonely, which is rarely a good idea.

These are all reactions to

discomforts that we're not able to

be with or choose not to be with.

When we commit to being still though,

we're forced by choice to be with

all, all of these little discomforts

that we typically react to or avoid.

So take the example of

the itch on your face.

You're doing your meditation,

trying to be still.

Now, have you ever tried to

not scratch an in, an itch?

Uh, it's kind of tough.

The mind throws a bit of a tantrum,

really wants to take care of it.

So this is a great way to

explore being with discomfort

in a low stake, stakes way.

So what do we do?

We notice the intensity of the itch.

And instead of turning away from

it, we bring our attention there.

And now instead of fighting,

we're practicing relaxing into it.

This will be a bit of an internal

wrestling match at first.

We'll grit our teeth when it intensifies.

We'll relax again when it eases up.

We'll feel the energy in our

hand wanting to take care of it.

And at times will feel

like, all right, screw it.

I'm going to scratch it.

But if we stay with it long enough,

one of two things will happen.

The itch will surrender and go

away or two, we will surrender

and relax into the intensity.

In each of these scenarios, we're

learning that we can be with and get

through the intensity of the experience.

The second scenario though, the

moment where we let go and find ease

and dis-ease is particularly special

because it's often an entirely

new way of relating to discomfort.

We're not stonewalling.

We're not, over-powering, we're relaxing

into it, letting down our resistance.

Does it really matter

if we scratch the itch?

No, but we are training ourselves

to be with these moments of

discomfort in our day-to-day life.

And that can be a superpower.

So we'll practice more of

this in the meditation.

But as you also go about your day, see

all the ways that you avoid discomfort and

in those moments, see if you can practice

being a little bit more still with it.

I think you'll find that it becomes your

own superpower as you navigate your life.

I'll talk to you shortly.

Take care.

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