Mindfulness Jewish Style brought to you by the rabbi at the Merrick Jewish Center.
Mindfulness is an interesting tool/philosophy/life style/practice...I try to live it. This week has been a lesson in mindfulness. One way to describe mindfulness is as awareness without judgment of what is, via direct and immediate experience. Basically not privileging experiences...or not subcategorizing things presumptively as good and bad.
My daughter has recently moved across the country and due to this, and other causes and conditions including the death of my mother in law with in this year we were going host a very small thanksgiving for my brother in law and his partner. I was not happy with this. Thanksgiving is supposed to be for large families etc. so my brain and emotions kept telling me. I then tried to rally others to come and join us and my sister and possibly my brother and his girlfriend said yes. I had been feeling the loss of late and getting melancholy about not being able to have a large family with whom I can share holidays and was letting folks know this. Not so mindful of me, but I continued to try to manufacture this Thanksgiving. Then fate kicked in. First my brother and his girlfriend cancel...then the worst part...I got the flu...I have been sick since Sunday and today is the first day I can read and write (Wed.)....thanksgiving, or at least the thanksgiving of my projections/attachments is cancelled.
But then something happened between rolling in pain, and being hot and cold with fever...I remembered mindfulness...as the hours have very slowly ticked by, too sick to do anything I am concentrating on the present moment. Not what is missing, what is lost or wanted.
And now I smile as I truly give thanks that I can read today....and that gastric and respiratory distress is lessening. I am grateful for my non toothache!
I am grateful for the wonderful man I call my husband who has taken care of me despite a high degree of whining and moaning...I am grateful for the two dogs who both stayed with me when I needed them and got lost when I needed them to.
I am grateful for so much.
I hope you find your grace despite or in-spite of what your thanksgiving holds for you!