There is a new tradition starting today on the Mindfulness and Psychotherapy Blog. Every Monday (or Tuesday in todays case) I’m going to cite a quote or a poem that is related to mindfulness and psychotherapy in some way and then explore it a bit and how it is relevant to our lives. For me, quotes and poetry can often sink me into a state of greater understanding.

Here is today’s quote from the blog post 10 Quotes for a Mindful Day:

It’s also helpful to realize that this very body that we have, that’s sitting right here right now… with its aches and it pleasures… is exactly what we need to be fully human, fully awake, fully alive.

Ok, maybe it’s also important to have food, clothing, and a roof over our heads for many of us to be fully human, fully awake, and fully alive. Let’s not let that small point take us away from the brilliance of this quote.

What’s so brilliant about it? For reason particularly driven by subtle messages from the media driven into our forming minds, we are a culture driven by a need for “more” in order to feel alive or happy. For other reasons we are also a culture driven to try and eradicate discomfort. Both of these messages are partly driven by business trying to make a buck and spending billions of dollars are marketing to drive this into our minds.

The price?

A constant feeling of dis-ease within us. We’re can’t be content with where we are in any particular moment because our minds are either trying to flee away from some discomfort or toward some comfort.

Pema Chodron is simply trying to remind us that aches and pleasures are part of the human experience. There may not be a catastrophe when a pain is there, it may just be part of being “fully alive.” There may not be a need to get the wheels anxiety or distress to be set in motion. Ofcourse, if you are under extreme distress or have an inkling that something is off physically, it’s important to get it checked out by a medical professional.

However, next time you’re feeling physical or emotional pain, know that this is temporary and say to yourself, “maybe this is exactly what I need to be fully human, fully awake, fully alive.” See if you can bring your attention to it with a sense of compassion and caring. Next time you are feeling pleasure, also know that this is temporary and part of being fully alive and see if you can remind yourself to be grateful for these times.

As always, please share your thoughts, stories, and questions below. Your interactions here provide a living wisdom for us all to benefit from.

 


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From Psych Central's website:
PsychCentral (September 8, 2009)

Dr. Kathleen Young (September 8, 2009)

From Psych Central's Dr. Elisha Goldstein:
Reconnect to Your Life Today! An Interview with Jack Kornfield | Mindfulness and Psychotherapy (December 18, 2009)

From Psych Central's Dr. Elisha Goldstein:
Mindfulness and Trauma: An Interview with John Briere, Ph.D. | Mindfulness and Psychotherapy (March 12, 2010)

From Psych Central's Dr. Elisha Goldstein:
4 Steps to Getting Unstuck | Mindfulness and Psychotherapy (October 22, 2010)

4 Steps to Getting Unstuck | A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook (October 22, 2010)

mindfulness e psicoterapia « Consciência Abrangente (October 20, 2011)

From Psych Central's Dr. Elisha Goldstein:
Mindfulness and Psychotherapy: An Interview with Jack Kornfield | Mindfulness and Psychotherapy (December 2, 2011)

From Psych Central's Dr. Elisha Goldstein:
From Trauma to Transformation: An Interview with Jack Kornfield | Mindfulness and Psychotherapy (December 2, 2011)






    Last reviewed: 8 Sep 2009

APA Reference
Goldstein, E. (2009). Mondays Mindful Quote: Pema Chodron on Being Fully Alive. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 25, 2014, from http://blogs.psychcentral.com/mindfulness/2009/09/mondays-mindful-quote-pema-chodron-on-being-fully-alive/

 

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Recent Comments
  • blanaid: Thank you. I think it is also worth noting, research suggests the brain produces dopamine during mindfulness...
  • Vishnu: Myth #1 definitely takes the cake! I also appreciate Dr. Goldstein’s point about the variety of reasons...
  • Capt Tom Bunn LCSW: This comment – and the other negative comments – are the work of a JetBlue captain...
  • Cathleen: I love this pocket practice quote, “Only I can destroy my own peace and I choose not to do so.”...
  • lily: I know it will help but it is so hard for me to maintain the discipline of doing it. I lack motivation to stick...
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