Mindfulness Activity #43
April Rain Mindfulness
Today where I am sitting and writing, it is a rainy day in April. I was wishing for a sunny day. How often do you wish that something was different- or that everything was different? Zen teaches us that much of our own angst comes from putting our energy and attention into wishing things were different. When we accept a situation, we can put our energy into changing it or finding parts of it that are tolerable or even enjoyable.
Begin by thinking about anything you wish was different in your life today. Then, shift from wishing it were different to just noticing the situation. For instance, instead of “I wish I was not quarantined, ”or “today would be better if things were different,” what if you accepted the parameters of your day today and put your energy into just being present and noticing? What can do today while isolating? What is available to you?
For today’s practice we will read a poem. Settle yourself, breathe deeply and read April Rain Song by Langston Hughes, it is a poem about noticing rain. When you notice without judgement, the experience is different…Begin by listening (if you are in a group) or reading silently if you are alone.
April Rain Song
Let the rain kiss you.
Let the rain beat upon your head with silver liquid drops.
Let the rain sing you a lullaby.
The rain makes still pools on the sidewalk.
The rain makes running pools in the gutter.
The rain plays a little sleep-song on our roof at night—
And I love the rain.
Today, just try to notice your day without judging, describing it like Hughes describes the rain. Have a part of yourself observing moment by moment. As you go about whatever you have to do today. If you are unhappy about something, rather than say, “this is terrible,” say to yourself, I notice that I am unhappy about this. This way, you stay connected to your experience and to both emotional and logical parts of yourself. Then, if you notice that don’t like your day, think about what’s available and how you could make it just a little bit better.
Enjoy the rain today.