Four Foundations Of Mindfulness

5 minutes
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Welcome to this first main lesson of the module two. And you'll see that in these next few lessons, we're going to cover more of the theory of meditation. And I'm going to cover both from the ancient sages, like dating back 2500 years, right up to what neuroscience cutting edge neuroscience is telling us about the nervous system and about the mind that we know to die. So, in this lesson, let's talk about a good structure and there's no better structure to teaching meditation. That In my opinion, than that was taught by the Buddha 2500 years ago. So when he first apparently got enlightened and started teaching, meditation he taught according to what we call the four foundations of mindfulness and while This is not supposed to be a sort of meditation course from any particular philosophy, it is just a really good structure to teach in.

So we're going to follow that structure. So the first of these foundations is mindfulness of body. And then the other three are mindfulness of feeling, mindfulness of thought, and then mindfulness of phenomena, each one gets more and more subtle, and can take you to a deeper and deeper level in the mind. So the first one is we've been talking about already, it's meditation on the body and meditation on the breath in the body, and meditation on the most manifest part of our existence, which is our physical manifestation. But in the second foundation of mindfulness, were taking it I guess, to the next level, which is mindfulness of feeling, which was how we feel about our body which is a more subtle level. So on the surface Biggest pains or most manifest sufferings, that have pains and issues and problems in the body.

And often in meditation, we're dealing with pain, but what's really going on, sometimes we can be in pain, but the body isn't really hurting that much. Because if we get up and shake our legs out, the pain disappears fairly quickly. So the problem is not so much the pain, but the feeling of pain. And definitely, of course, once we get into the sufferings in the mind, like our frustrations and anxieties, it's more about the feelings it puts in us, rather than any sort of physical suffering of the mind. And at the end of the day, why we meditating is of course so that we can become more calm and more happy. And so this is where it's important to take that next step of trying to be mindful of what feelings are coming up for you 24 hours a day, but in this case just inside the meditation and trying to be aware of those, and then of course doing something about it to take us from negative feelings into positive feelings, or at least calm, neutral feelings.

And the interesting thing is that if your mind is in a calm, happy place, your body will see beautifully. So I'll repeat that again. Your body will sit beautifully Still, if your mind is calm and not agitated, you'll see there's a huge interrelation between the state of your mind and your body. You'll notice that if you're starting to think agitated thoughts, you will discover that there's an itch in your knee and a pain in your hip and you'll be tied in another part of your body, the body will reflect what's going on in the mind. So that's where this level of mindfulness going down from mine from somebody to mindfulness of feelings, so from now on in the course, we're going to try to become aware of the feelings that are coming up for us. And then just starting to become aware of what are the thoughts that underlie those feelings, which as you can see will take us eventually into the next level of meditation, which is mindfulness of thought.

Because our feelings, of course, originated from the types of thoughts that we're having. So for having destructive thoughts, it'll cause negative feelings in our body, which will eventually cause pains and agitation in our body. So those are the four foundations of mindfulness. It's good to be aware of those to see the progression of your meditation practice and I'll be coming back to those foundations as we talk more and more about meditation at this new level this intermediate levels have been talking about

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