Week 1: What Are These Teachings?

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echitty's picture

Ken,
To follow this practice, what is the best way to deal with bodily awareness that leads straight to emotion; for example, a tension in the heart centre that one recognizes as heartbreak? Should one treat this as having collapsed and move out, or "switch" to being present with the emotion?

P.S. - I tried to use the "Ask Ken a question" link and the box was inaccessible as it appeared behind the image to the podcast and neither would drag out of the way.

Ken McLeod's picture

Best to work with inclusive attention. When you become aware of the emotional sensations (i.e., the heartbreak) associated with the body sensations, then include the emotional sensations along with the body sensations. If you switch to just the emotional sensations, you will likely be swallowed by them and lose all sense of attention, mindfulness, presence, etc. When you stay connected with the body sensations and include the emotional, things can become pretty intense, but as you stay in the experience, your relationship with it gradually changes. You will find a description of one way to practice this here. Start with clip #1, of course. They were posted in reverse order.

George Draffan's picture

Elizabeth, no need to try to separate sensations, feelings, and emotions. Your attention may go back and forth, but you can continue to rest in the breathing body as sensations, feelings, and thoughts arise. If you're carried away by a thought or an emotion, returning to the breathing body is reliable way to be grounded -- but best not to "return to the breathing body" as a way to get rid of thoughts or emotions. Breathing, resting in attention, tension in chest, heart breaking, recognizing... resting in all that...  

Jesse_Oran's picture

Awesome! Your account of 11th century India really brings it to life! Thank you much for this teaching. Do you recommend the energy practice you lead us through at the end of the talk evry day throughout the week to come?

Thanks!

Ken McLeod's picture

Yes, do the practice every day. I'll be adding elements to it, each week. You can hear more about it here. This practice builds capacity. 

Capacity in attention in important. Again, you can read a bit more here.

Susan Kaiser Greenland's picture

Thanks for providing these teachings online Ken!  What a service you provide to us all.  Susan Kaiser Greenland

Monty's picture

thanks Ken! 

lilawheel's picture

On what does cyberspace depend?  Great to hear you, Ken... Kate Lila W.

jojo_rainbow's picture

Thank you for your teaching!