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Mindful Meditation Sit with Thomas! University of Toronto 2019-2020

February 15, 2020

Hello everyone. My name is Thomas, I’m a
Mindful Moments instructor. My sessions are Wednesdays, 12 – 1 p.m.
at New College. Thank you for tuning in to this IGTV. Today, I’ll tell you a little bit
about mindfulness and why I use it, and what it helps me achieve throughout my
life, and what it’s helped me achieve mentally. And then I’ll guide us through
a quick five to eight minute meditation sit. So when I think of meditation or mindfulness,
one thing that I try to set is an intention. An intention to sort of
leave everything at the door. Leave all of the stress, everything I have on my mind before entering the room that I’m about
to meditate in, at the door, and just setting the intention to try to
get deep into the practice and try to ground myself in order to see or become more in touch with what’s really happening in my
thoughts, in my feelings, with my attention. And it’s important to keep in
mind that it’s a practice. So you begin seeing and just noticing all of
the thoughts and feelings taking place, and then you see that you’re able to
actually practice mindfulness, and you’re able to dive deeper
and deeper into the moment and all the joy and beauty
and happiness that lies within the moment
becomes accessible to you. So for this meditation you can either sit
on the ground, if you’re sitting on the ground, you want to
have your hips higher than your knees, if you’re able to sit on a cushion or
have some sort of a pillow. You can place your hands flat on your thighs
or place them upwards, or interlace them. Whichever is comfortable
wherever you’d like your hands to be. Your shoulders back, your chin
slightly tucked in. You want to have an erect spine in order to stimulate a sense of alertness,
a wakefulness, so you don’t fall asleep. And if you’re sitting on a chair, you want
to have your feet flat on the ground. If you find that you do get tired,
you can come to the tip of the chair and sit on the tip of the chair and just starting by taking
a few deep breaths. In and out, you can exhale with a sigh. And just settling into your body,
getting comfortable. Knowing that the chair or the ground, whatever’s supporting you, completely has you and you can give yourself completely to the ground or to the chair. And reminding yourself that you have
nowhere else to be, nothing else to do right now, but to be here now. Gently lowering your
gaze or closing your eyes. And you can start by bringing your
awareness to different parts of your body. You can start with your lower body,
your feet. Noticing the sensations of your feet. Relaxing them fully. They carry us around all day, but we don’t always give them the attention they deserve. Working our way up bringing that
awareness into our knees and thighs, dropping our legs fully. You may feel a tingling where you bring
your awareness in your body. And just as a cup is filled with water,
we’re filling our body with awareness. Bringing that awareness to our tailbone, feeling ourselves sinking deeper and deeper. Bringing that awareness up our spine into our relaxed shoulders, our arms. Letting our arms hang fully. No resistance to what’s happening
in the body. Letting it be as it is. Bringing that awareness up our neck, into our head, maybe feeling the weight of our head. Relaxing our cheekbones, jaw, maybe even our tongue, our eyebrows and foreheads, a lot of tension there. Noticing the aliveness of our body
as we get settled, as we become more present
as our mind quiets, and just noticing how wonderful it is to
have a body. How amazing it is that we’re sitting here breathing and our body is functioning without our need to get involved in it, it simply knows how to be. If there’s a part of your body that
cries for your attention, you can choose to explore that part of your body or simply just get interested and curious as to what’s going on in your body. The sensations of your hands, the temperature, any breeze on your face. Relaxing our body completely in order
for our minds to become free. And slowly returning to our body fully. Begin by shaking your toes, wiggling your fingers and before opening your eyes, just remind yourself that there will be
a lot of space, colors, beautiful people perhaps are around you. Just give your sight, give yourself time
to soak that all in and thank yourself for taking
the time out to ground yourself back into your senses, into your body. This amazing thing we have
that we often take for granted. And just grounding yourself like that maybe
once a day or perhaps even shorter than that. If done everyday, I guarantee
that you’ll begin to see changes. You’ll begin to notice this presence that’s
seeping into your life more and more. You become more aware of your body, instead of being so much in our heads
and in our minds. That all that awareness that’s
in our thoughts begins to translate into the sensations
in our body, we begin to feel more, we feel loved more, we feel happiness. If someone tells a joke, even
if it’s a bad joke, the laughter is more real. So thank you for tuning in. You can keep a heads-up for future meditations
coming to U of T Student Life or you can visit me at my meditation classes on Wednesdays, 12 – 1 p.m. at New College. Thanks for tuning in. Take care.
I hope this was a wonderful meditation.

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