Paula Kuitenbrouwer keeps a lovely online portfolio and shop of “Mindful Drawings.” Most masterful artists would likely have developed a refined quality of mindfulness, but Paula’s work breathes from a deep and clearly-articulated intention to work from a place of mindfulness.
“I carefully prepare my drawing session by laying out all the tools. I think long about what I want, and I pay attention to the composition. I also do research, because I like to know what I am drawing. When I draw a bird, I study that bird in real as well as with the helps of books. When I draw a flower, I have it seen in nature or it is right before me on my table. I read about the flower, and I like to study and know its Latin name. The same counts for bugs: I do not draw any bug I haven’t seen or studied.”
Last week blogger Andrew Priceshared his story of turning to meditation to help overcome “Internet Brain,” which he described as “..jumping from one diverting link to another, and sampling little snippets of text and imagery for as long as they hold your increasingly attenuated attention… [a]ny task that requires the sustained and focused application of your brain has become impossible.”
“..[W]hat ..interested us was whether those who had been meditating would exhibit greater compassion in the face of suffering. To find out, we staged a situation designed to test the participants’ behavior before they were aware that the experiment had begun.
“Although only 16 percent of the nonmeditators gave up their seats — an admittedly disheartening fact — the proportion rose to 50 percent among those who had meditated.”
Mindfulness meditation is having a moment in the West, and with it some compelling reasons to understand and try it…”
This is the tagline for a recent article by in The Atlantic by Liz Kulze, which shares an articulate overview of the practice, personal stories and some of the behavioral and neuroscientific research being done around Mindfulness meditation.
Beautiful things can happen in our lives, we can place words on a page — one at a time, arranged as if mapped and planned in full, but trickling down, instead, they do.
Troubling turns can loosen our feet, pain and remorse can take us, but ‘the phrases we choose reflect the balance we seek.’ (1) so mind to the language of love when you speak.
May you all feel vital.
Thank you to everyone who took up a practice this month, and to those returning as well. I’m grateful for being a part of this community of encouragement.
Patrick is participating in the Real Happiness 28-day meditation program along with many other beautiful writers and meditators. You can jump in at any time and begin the program yourself, or check out other writings and musings about the program here.