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Quiet Mind: One-Minute Retreats from a Busy World

Location : South Houston Hospice

Quiet Mind: One-Minute Retreats from a Busy World

“There is no class of person more moved by hate than a motorist.”

-C.R. Hewitt

In our attempts to be still, often our internal chatter does not stop but goes on nattering away, and we are often stymied in our efforts to thwart it. Can you really stop everything? Is it possible literally to do nothing? Probably not. That doing nothing that I’m talking about is, as author Steven Harrison says, “a surprisingly active place.” No matter how we try to empty our minds and clear out all our thoughts, something always seems to be going on there.

This is a commonly mentioned challenged to any process that would attempt to achieve a quiet mind: “I can get my body to be still, all right, but how do you stop my mind?” I can only pass on the advice learned from the experience of the wise, and that I continue to give myself:

First, don’t let this discourage you. It is a universal challenge. Focus on your breathing. Always return to your breath. This is the fundamental response for achieving a quiet mind.

Allow the chatter to come in, notice it, and allow it to continue out, thus creating a flow rather than a dam.

Try silently reciting a mantra: a meaningful and oft-repeated word, brief phrase, or prayer.

Sometimes it may help to practice several, short periods of stillness –Stillpoints- rather than longer ones. Chatter has less of a chance to intrude.

And last, to repeat, don’t let it discourage you. It is a universal challenge!!

Notice today if chatter interrupts your quiet moments and what response seems most effective for you.

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