Opening up to Life – Orna Cooke

Amidst the busyness of daily life we can feel that we spend a lot of our time going through the motions without experiencing the fullness of our lives. We can often feel overwhelmed with the pace and demands of our lives and our work. It may feel like there is no escape, or there is no choice other than to keep running with the busyness or we may close down to protect ourselves.

Mindfulness is a practice that can teach us to stop and be with ourselves, right now, in this very moment, no matter what is going on in a gentle and accepting way; to open up to our experience.

Mindfulness is about remembering who we are; uncovering awareness. Within us all is a natural intelligence that knows; when we stop and listen to ourselves we can begin to uncover who we truly are. Stopping, listening we do not always like what we meet, a crazy busy mind, a sore aching body , sometimes huge wells of emotion, …what is it like to stop and pay attention to ourselves and listen deeply. What happens when we allow what is there to be there, with no judgement, to allow ourselves to be, with a gentle acceptance?

As we become curious and open to our experience, paying attention to our experience and noticing our body sensations, our thoughts, moods and emotions and the small changes and movements within them, we become more aware. With increased awareness we can begin to live more fully, responding to situations with choice and creativity rather than going down the path of habit and reacting automatically.

The essence of mindfulness practice is, gentle, appreciative and nurturing along with a focused energy that is attentive to what is. This can touch in to our inner strength that is accepting, compassionate and creative.

Mindfulness is a simple concept; its power lies in its practices and its application to our daily lives. It is a powerful way to get ourselves stuck, back in touch with our own vitality, wisdom and creativity.

This morning session is an invitation to practice mindfulness together and to experience the practices for ourselves. To take time and space to gently open up to life as it is.

The practices will be guided and will include mindfulness of the breath and some gentle mindful movement and a practice on compassion. It is suitable for those new to mindfulness and an opportunity for those familiar with mindfulness, to practice together. There will be some time for reflection on our experience.

For the session wear comfortable loose clothing.

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