Mindfulness, photography &
The self help bookshelf in stores grows each year, complete with the promise of an answer. Anxiety, depression is fast rising, alongside chronic illness. The truth is that most people live in some sort of state of emotional discomfort, ranging from mild worries to more severe depressions. Worries such as body image, not feeling good enough or secure enough in life.
So why do humans suffer when the rest of nature is in balance?
It is because we listen to our thoughts. The mind loves to relive the past. It also loves to tell us scary stories of what might happen in the future. Even when our lives are actually pretty wonderful right here, right now, painful memories and future fears keeps us from doing the things we want to today. Even when you are home, safe in your warm bed, in your own house with your family around, you can wake up sweating with fear and anxiety from thinking about what might happen.
"The fear is in your mind - and therefore so is the antidote"
Buddha, many years ago discovered the secret to freedom from the pain of the world. The answer - "Be here, now"
The practices that arose from this are the basis of mindfulness. Living in the present brings freedom from these fears and memories simply because suffering cannot be created without referring to the past or future.
Think about the last time you simply stopped and looked around and appreciated the sky, the view out of your window, the fact that you have a window to look out of, how lovely your children are, how caring your partner is. Mindfulness is a state of open awareness and attention, a gratitude for today and the good things in life. We can go for weeks, months in our busy, preoccupied lives without pausing for a breath. I recall Sahara Rose once saying " If you don't have 5 mins for yourself , then you don't have a life"
So take a moment to pause, be grateful and quieten the mind. Without obsessing about the future or reliving the past, we an enjoy the amazing experiences that life brings us.
I will be writing a little more on the way in which photography can help with putting mindfulness into practice shortly, so stay tuned!
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