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Welcome to the October 2016 edition of Parvati Magazine.
The meditation practice known as witnessing provides powerful insights into the ways in which we are attached to our perceptions. Witnessing has provided lasting shifts in the way I think and perceive. It has helped me move from being attached to painful thoughts, to living with greater freedom and joy.
Witnessing is an essential part of any sincere meditator’s practice. It is at the heart of yoga and spiritual development. Witnessing is not the same as observing. Because witnessing is rooted in non-attachment, it flowers from the understanding that our senses are limited and do not contain the full picture of reality. Our perceptions are temporary, as they change with circumstance and are subject to our moods and whims. What and how we perceive is coloured by the ups and downs of our ego’s dramas.
Through witnessing practice, we meet the moment as it is, without any overlay of how we want it to be. This occurs when we move beyond our attachments to our perceptions, which happens only once we understand that they are not the whole truth. There is a substratum, a deeper unchanging truth, that runs beyond our senses.
In this month’s issue, on the theme of “Witnessing”, enjoy articles that help you engage with the moment as it is.
It is easy to confuse witnessing with being numbed out, indifferent or disconnected. When we are in a state of witnessing, we are fully present and rest in a deeper substratum beyond our perceptions. When this happens, life turns from monochrome to technicolour. We feel more connected, more alive, more engaged with life, because we are no longer bound by our limited perceptions, that are coloured by our ego. Even situations that once were painful for us become light and effervescent. Through witnessing comes tremendous spacious vitality. Witnessing feels rooted, vital and expansive. Like a new consciousness muscle, the more we practice witnessing, the more freedom we experience.
Start your witnessing practice today. Take a few minutes each morning and evening to come to a neutral place, where you can allow yourself just to be. This alone can take practice when you are habituated to doing and wanting life to go your way. But that habit creates tremendous strain, tension and unhappiness. Freedom and joy are found when you rest into the whole and flow in harmony with the rhythm of life.
Love our world.
We are one Earth family.