On my way to the dentist, I recalled awareness and presence strategies taught in GC and decided to apply them.
We teach awareness as being actively engaged with all the beauty around us at each moment, rather than actively looking for threats. This allows our subconscious to usually identify and warn us about anything out of place, unusual or threatening. Increased internal and external sensitivity, developed over time through training, enhances these abilities. Being sensitive to and trusting our subconscious allows us to act early and swiftly to deal with any potential threat.
The far more frequent benefit of this strategy, however, is the positive effect it can have on our psyche. Our minds are increasingly occupied by work, planning, electronics, and other things that tend to take us out of the present and distract us from fundamental positives in life. Aspects of modern life are purposefully engineered (typically for commercial reasons) to occupy our minds and keep us anxious about a variety of things. Practicing GC awareness can help us break the stress spiral of modern life and refocus on the miracle of consciousness and other pure joys of being living human beings.
So Tuesday morning I applied GC awareness and some attention to breathing, even while driving, with the result that by the time I got to the dentist's office, my mind was in a far more present, pleasant, positive place than it had been an hour earlier. And this mental state persisted, even through the dental work and some potentially stressful business calls. I'm no photographer, but on the way back from the dentist I tried to capture a couple examples of appreciating the everyday beauty all around us. In a "normal" modern mental state, such scenes are typically ignored as our minds focus internally on future stressors. Tuesday morning, I'm glad I was aware enough to notice them (and many, many more).
The scenes I noticed also reminded me about the "sun meditation" John has taught. I'd forgotten about that for a while. Might need to give it a try again soon. Have a great, aware day!!!