I was reminded recently of how dramatically different it is to understand something on a thinking level than understanding the same thing on a heart centred, ‘GOT IT’ basis. I had one of those AHA moments, like turning the light bulb on.
Jon Kabat Zinn, the architect of Mindfulness, came up with a list of Attitudes. I learnt the list, heard and understood what all of them meant and began to teach the same to others.
People I presented this information to would be able to explain each attitude aptly. For example, what does it mean to be ‘curious?’……responses might be things like ‘interested, wanting to know more, looking at a little more detail’ and such like. We would then go through the exercise of ‘being curious’ about each one of the 9 Attitudes in turn. After all, none of it is rocket science.
I then came across and listened to a video by Jon Kabat Zinn talking about each attitude individually and I was transfixed. I heard things that I had not heard before. I got to connect with each one of the attitudes in a way that I had not understood them before. The information went in through the auditory channels of the brain but it landed internally on a very deep level which I continue to unfold and clarify in terms of implications to my approach to being mindful.
So what are the attitudes?:
Curiosity, Non – Judgement, Non – Striving, Gratitude, Patience, Trust, Acceptance, Beginners Mind and Self – Compassion.
These are of course, JUST words. Words that describe an action or a way of responding. They can all be found in the dictionary but as I can certainly relate to, what is obvious to someone else, may not yet obvious to ME. When I saw this cartoon, I laughed as I can connect with the concept very strongly. When we miss the fundamental point, the light bulb remains switched OFF and our logical brain looks at the obvious......there is no key on the keyboard labelled 'ANY'!
Using the starting point of understanding words is useful but it only tells part of the story and in terms of Mindfulness, sometimes a small part of the whole.
I want to explore how the Attitudes might impact our lives when we start to live them from the inside out. It is that question that I aim to explore by focusing on one attitude per blog over the next few weeks starting with ‘curiosity.’