Awareness and insight Inner vision Meditation techniques One Minute Mindfulness Presence and being present

Dropping Your Conceptual Leaves

Hi Everyone,

This week’s article focuses on the value of adopting a periodically more minimal mental approach to our life’s challenges.

Yours in the spirit of the journey,


Dropping Your Conceptual Leaves

Seasonally the beginning of November in the northern hemisphere sees the change from autumn to winter, the leaves having started to turn brown and whither in September and October now begin to drop from the trees in earnest, leaving behind the naked skeletons of the trees across the landscape. Life in nature, although still present becomes much more minimal and quiet with the onset of the winter months.

Over the last couple of weeks I have been using the image of a tree in late autumn and winter as an image in meditation. I become the tree and imagine my leaves dropping away. As I do so I also feel all my excessive conceptuality and mental baggage dropping away. I let go of ideas and preconceptions and just allow myself to rest in this state of minimal awareness, like the stillness of a bare tree in winter, its life quiet and hidden but nevertheless fully present deep inside its structure.

Dropping your conceptual ‘leaves’ like this on a regular basis is a very healthy thing to do. So many of our ‘problems’ are actually just labels that our overly conceptual mind has placed upon things that disturb us, rather than being vitally important life problems in themselves. Quietening our mind and sitting in silence allows us to see which of our problems are really worth solving, and which can be solved simply by dropping our mental label of them as problems.

As you can see I like to meditate with the energy of the seasons, so the coming months are a period where I deliberately set aside a little more time for very simple silent sitting meditation, as a reflection of our movement into the latter part of the year. You might like to consider this too!

Practical suggestion.

Take the tree dropping its leaves image described above as your object of meditation. Become the tree. As you drop your leaves feel your conceptual thoughts falling away also. Sit and relax deeply into silence. Once your mind is quiet you can drop the image of the tree if you like, and just focus on the inner silence.

© Toby Ouvry 2011, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website

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