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The remembrance, positivity & mindful questioning training page

This page is the first training page for the Engaged mindfulness book & project, and also a part of the ongoing integral mindfulness training pages. Enjoy the meditations you can find below!

Dear Integral Meditators,

This first training page for the Engaged mindfulness book & project focuses on three practices, or mindful positions:

  1. Mindfulness – improving your conscious remembrance of what you are doing
  2. Meditation – orienting around the positive
  3. Practical learning from life – Asking & learning from mindful questions

Reference in the Engaged mindfulness book: Page 4-6, An Introduction to the Art of Mindfulness (Download free PDF, or order hardcopy here)

Scroll down below to practice the guided meditations. There is a 20minute & two 8 minute power meditations

Remembrance, positivity, mindful questioning 20minute guided meditation:

Mindful remembrance & positive focus 8min power meditation:

Remembrance & mindful questioning 8min power meditation:

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Mindfulness – Liberation through pre-psychology

“Mindful awareness builds a robust pre-psychological base, meaning the feeling or sensibility you have about yourself before you think or conceive who you are. If we get this base right, many good things follow”

Dear Integral Meditators, 

This week’s article is on the effectiveness of minddful awareness as a pre-psychological base for navigating and thriving in our lives. If you enjoy it, feel free to join us for the Tuesday or Wednesday meditation class, where it will be a focus point of the meditation. 

In the spirit of awareness,

Toby



Mindfulness – Liberation through pre-psychology
 
In my previous article on the ‘holy trinity of mindfulness’ I outline the role of awareness, intention and attention in mindfulness practice. I describe them as pre-skills that, if you cultivate them will help you develop any other skill relatively quickly and easily.
In this article I want to focus on awareness and what I call its pre-psychological benefits. Again, in the previous article I define mindful awareness as:
“The choice to be consciously aware as we go through life, rather than unconscious, and to direct our conscious awareness skilfully.”
When you make the choice simply to be aware of consciousness in the present moment, there are several fundamental benefits. I want to outline some of these below, in the hope that you will feel inspired to start practicing. Specifically, I want to point out how mindful awareness builds a robust pre-psychological base for ourselves. By pre-psychological I mean the feeling or sensibility you have about yourself before you start to think or conceive who you areIf we get this base right, many good things follow!
 
Full, not empty – When we sit in awareness of the present moment, we start to feel a sense of fullness in that moment. We can then turn up to life with this feeling of fullness, which helps counterbalance the feeling of emptiness that many people feel when they think about themselves and their life.

Empty, not full – Sitting with awareness in the present moment enables us to empty of all the complex thinking and inner noise that our mind is overburdened or overfilled with. We access a sense of ‘empty’ pleasurable inner spaciousness.

Enough, not not -enough – The ‘I am not enough’ script is one of the most common ones that individuals suffer from psychologically. Training to be aware in the present gives us access to a feeling of enough-ness, a sensibility of sufficiency not insufficiency. We can learn to identify with this primary feeling, and meet life from this feeling of ‘enough’, which then becomes a sense of ‘I am enough’.

Strong, not weak – becoming more consciously aware and present leads to a sense of being more gathered and undistracted. Awareness itself is always in the present moment, so focusing upon it leads to less of our energy being dissipated by distraction and thoughts about the past or future. The result of this is a feeling or sensation of being strong in the moment, not weak, and of being centered, not off balance.

Free, not limited – In our mental and physical environment we experience all sorts of limitations,  some external, some internal. In the experience of awareness itself, there is absolute freedom. The choice to be aware is the one thing that no one can take away from us.
 
So, then the practice here is simply to practice being aware of awareness, in the present moment, noticing that when we do so a very basic primal set of pre-cognitive, non-verbal experiences become available to us. We have a sense of being:

  • Full, not empty
  • Empty, not full
  • Enough, not not -enough (sufficiency, not insufficiency)
  • Strong, not weak
  • Free, not limited

If we cultivate these, then we now have a range of pre-psychological, pre-thought building blocks that we can use as a secure base for our sense of self as we think and navigate the world from day to day. This sense of strength, fullness and freedom can accompany us more and more, as our capacity to be aware of awareness grows though our meditation and mindfulness practice.
 
Related readingAwareness, attention, intention – The holy trinity of integral mindfulness
The freedom of awareness

© Toby Ouvry 2024, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com


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The mindfulness holy trinity, & the engaged mindfulness book & training

“The skill of mindful awareness is actually a pre-skill, meaning that if you are good at it, you can use it to develop any other skill or capacity relatively easily.”

Dear Integral Meditators, 

This week’s article is on the foundational components of effective mindfulness. If you enjoy it, feel free to join us for the Tuesday or Wednesday meditation class, where it will be a focus point. 

It will also be a focus point of the Engaged mindfulness online class this Saturday 13th July @ 5pm Singapore time. 

I have now expanded my first book Engaged Mindfulness to an ‘Engaged Mindfulness Project’. On this page, you can:

  • Download the PDF copy
  • Buy a hard copy of Engaged Mindfulness
  • Follow the links to the training pages with guided meditations based upon the book, & the online live meditation classes.

Do visit the page, & stay tuned for more details!

In the spirit of engaged mindfulness,

Toby



Awareness, attention, intention – The holy trinity of integral mindfulness
 
This article is designed to encourage people to understand some primary elements of integral mindfulness practice, and to get practicing!
 
Component one – Awareness
Mindfulness is essentially awareness training. Awareness is what is called in objectivist philosophy is called an ‘irreducible primary’. “An irreducible primary is a fact which cannot be analysed (i.e., broken into components) or derived from antecedent facts”. The quality of awareness or consciousness is something that we experience directly, and that cannot be broken down into smaller parts, hence primary. To be alive is to be aware, our only choice is whether we are consciously aware, or unconsciously aware. Thus the first task of mindfulness is to make the choice to be consciously aware, and to sustain that conscious awareness. Put another way:
“Mindfulness is the choice to be consciously aware as we go through life, rather than unconscious, and to direct our awareness consciously and skilfully.”
The skill of mindful awareness is actually a pre-skill, meaning that if you are good at mindful awareness, then you can use that awareness to develop any other skill or capacity relatively easily. Lacking the skill of awareness impairs the development of all other capabilities and skills in life. The capacity for mindful awareness sets you up for success in any given area of life. Lack of awareness impairs that potential.
 
Component two – Attention
The second foundation is conscious attention. The aim with mindfulness practice is to develop the capacity to direct your awareness where you want it to go, using your attention. “What am I trying to focus upon? And where do I need to focus my attention?” Are two fundamental mindfulness questions. Exactly where you need to focus your attention optimally is going to vary from task to task, but good quality mindful attention generally consists of a balanced combination of focus and relaxation. This combination is what I call the mindful-flow state, where we practice the skill of holding our attention on our chosen objects/activities with high quality, relaxed, focused attention.
 
Component three – Intention
Component three is intention. Like awareness and attention, we have an intention present within our mind almost all the time. This intention can be conscious or unconscious. The idea with integral mindfulness is that we become as mindful of our intentions as possible, and are generating them purposefully. ‘Why am I doing this?’ is a fundamental question, mindfully speaking!!
There are an infinite number of specific intentions, but a good place to start is cultivating three general levels of conscious intention with regard to self, other and the world. Underlying all of our other intentions, we hold the intention to:

  • Be of benefit to ourself
  • Be of benefit to our community
  • Be of benefit to the world

These three benevolent intentions can be the guiding light for most of our actions during the day.
 
So, putting these three together then gives us a kind of ‘holy trinity’ of integral mindfulness. All integral mindfulness trainings are designed to improve your awareness, attention and intention. These in turn are fundamental pre-skills that enable you to develop any other skills, and meet your life challenges more effectively.
 
As a practice to get started, simply take as your object of conscious awareness your breathing as you find it. Focus upon it with focused relaxed-attention (mindful flow), with the intention to:

  • Benefit yourself by calming and centering
  • By calming and centering, be of more positive influence to your community
  • By influencing your community in this way, being of benefit to the world

And there you go; you are practicing the holy trinity of integral mindfulness.
 
Related reading: Page 4 of Engaged Mindfulness that you can download as a free PDF of purchase as a hard copy

© Toby Ouvry 2024, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com


Upcoming meditation sessions & workshops with Toby 


Ongoing – Weekly Tuesday, Wednesday Online class schedule

Starts Tues /Weds 25th & 26th June, 7.30-8.30pm – The Wisdom of Awakening Series:  Meditations for cultivating your inner guidance & guru

Saturday 13th July 5-6pm Singapore time – Engaged mindfulness & meditation online class : An introduction to the art of engaged mindfulness

Saturday 27th July, 5-6pm – Mantra yoga meditation classThis month – Healing meditation with the Medicine Buddha


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Mindful speech, inner chatter, inner power

“If it isn’t true, useful or funny, don’t say it! You can create your own guidelines for your mindful speech practice, but this one is a fun one to get started”

Dear Integral Meditators, 

This week’s article is on the relationship between your inner power & mindful speech. If you enjoy it, feel free to join us for the Tuesday or Wednesday meditation class, where it will be the subject of the session. 

The workshop I am offering for July is the Psychic & Psychological Self-defense half-day WS, if you are interested in it, let me know and we can look for a time that works for all who want to attend. 

New events this month include the Engaged mindfulness class, and the mantra yoga meditation. both are online, click the links for full details.

In the spirit of mindful speech,

Toby



Mindful speech, inner chatter, inner power
 
Speech and your inner power
At a wedding a few years ago, I met a nun who had been one of my teachers back in the 90’s when I was a Buddhist monk. Asking here about her current practice, she said that she was really enjoying her mantra meditation practice, finding new insights and growth through it. She followed this up by saying that she thought that particularly these days, people dissipated the power of their speech by talking too much, and talking meaninglessly. I think this is worth reflecting upon. When you talk, it is essentially your mental, emotional, and physical energy combining to create the sound vibration. If you are talking too much, and without much meaning then essentially you are diluting your energy, your life-force and its power. Too much of this obviously isn’t great.
Of course, you can also speak meaningfully and powerfully in a way that grows your inner power, creates meaningful connection, and expresses authenticity. So, it’s not about simply speaking less, but speaking consciously and with meaning. Of course that meaning can also be playful, light, fun as well as serious, but not just mindless, impulsive babble!
 
Not just physically silent
The reason we often speak to much and without direction is because it reflects our mind. Our mind is busy talking all the time, full of inner chatter. If we simply don’t say things out loud, that doesn’t solve our energy dissipation problem, because we are still dissipating it through over-thinking! So, like our physical speech, a principle around our mind-chatter should also be something like ‘Think less, think better’.
 
Listening and watching
A good mindfulness practice for reducing your inner and outer chatter is simply to listen more. When you are with others, really try and listen to and make space for what they are saying, and what lies behind it. When you are with yourself, spend time mindfully observing your inner chatter, listening to it, rather than ‘being’ it. Let your energy gather into your inner-listener, rather than being dissipated by your inner chatter-box!
 
Noticing silence
If you practice mindful listening in this way, then amidst the noise, you’ll also start to notice the inner and outer silence. Amongst other things this silence is a place where you can gather your inner power and energy, centering it in the moment, rather than weakening it. Centering around silence means that when you do speak, you speak from your center, with power and purpose.
 
Other people’s chatter
All of the above are helped by editing the quality and amount of distraction you expose yourself to during your day. If you’re filling your mind with information from your phone, the internet, and social media, then it’s almost impossible to talk, listen or be silent mindfully. So, patches of non-doing in your day really help.
 
Below is a short anecdote from Anthony Del Mello’s ‘One minute wisdom’. If it isn’t true, useful or funny, don’t say it! You can create your own guidelines around mindful speech, but this one is a fun one to get started.
 
 
SPEECH
The disciple couldn’t wait to tell the Master the rumour he had heard in the
marketplace.
“Wait a minute,” said the Master, “What you plan to-tell us is it true?”
“I don’t think it is.”
“Is it useful?”
“No. it isn’t.”
“Is it funny?”
“No.”
“Then why should we be hearing it?”
 
Related reading: The way to silence

© Toby Ouvry 2024, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com


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Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Books * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology