- Jaime Goldstein
Seeing Meditation: Allowing your Eyes to Mindfully Receive the Beauty of the Moment
I spent the morning practicing a seeing meditation. Like other mindfulness practices, a seeing meditation is purposefully directing your full attention to the present moment, and in this case, the realm of sight. It is the practice of being aware of what visual stimuli the eyes are receiving in each moment. Mindfulness can be integrated into every aspect of your day. It is the practice of making contact with the present moment. This contact can be made through the five senses, body sensations, thoughts, and emotions.
I love to spend time outside in the mornings breathing in the crisp morning air. When I went outside this morning, I was overcome with awe noticing Venus and Jupiter dazzling in the sky. I let the moment guide me and felt inspired to spend my morning meditation practice with a seeing meditation as opposed to my typical awareness of breath mediation where my eyes are closed with all of my attention turning inward to my breath. The sky was just too beautiful to keep my eyes closed! I wanted to savor the beauty of the moment so I practiced a seeing meditation. I softly rested my eye gaze in the direction of Venus and Jupiter. They were glowing brilliantly against the velvety night sky. As I sat there breathing and holding my gaze on the sky, I noticed how my eyes adjusted to the darkness as other stars became visible within the backdrop of the sky as they playfully emerged. I played with perspective by narrowing and broadening my eye gaze. As the sun started to ascend the eastern horizon just below where Venus and Jupiter were located on the ecliptic, orange beams of light started to flood the sky. I watched Venus and Jupiter slowly fade under the beams of the sun as the sun fully emerged above the horizon in its radiance. Jupiter faded out of awareness first while Venus still softly glowed within view. I kept my eye gaze on Venus and watched as she too faded out of visible awareness as the sunlight illuminated the sky.
I was overcome with peace and gratitude from this experience. I’m so grateful I decided to sit outside as opposed to sleeping in a bit longer. Connecting to the rhythm of the sky set me on a trajectory of productivity in the morning. We so often want to get through the present moment to get to the next moment that we think will be better. When we are stuck in this mindset, we miss the beauty that is present within each moment eagerly hoping you will notice it, like the luminous stars in the night sky, the brilliant rising sun, a warm smile on someone’s face, a good belly laugh, the warm water in the shower, etc. Take a moment (or many) today to pause and notice the beauty that is present. When your mind naturally jumps to wanting to get through the present moment to be at the next perceived better moment, notice that tendency and bring your attention right back to the present moment to notice what is here with your right now. Not only will this practice bring more joy and gratitude into your life, when you get to that next perceived better moment, you will be more present with that as well as your mindfulness muscle will be more cultivated!