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June 12, 2020 - Acknowledge it, don't indulge it

Watch your hunger closely. See, how, like the ocean, it has a rhythm with tides that come in and out, and waves that break. Acknowledge the hunger's weight, autonomy, and reality. Don't run from your hunger. Don't call it names, curse it, regret it, or shame yourself with it, but don't indulge it either. Rather, care for your hunger. Pay attention. Watch it grow and fade. Become acquainted with and sensitive to it.

Adam Miller, as quoted in" The Power of Stillness", Deseret Book, 2019

I have been trying to apply mindfulness into my life. In other words, I'm trying to become more self aware. Self aware of my presence as it relates to space and time, to existence. I'm trying to pay more attention to realities that exist within my own self. I'm paying more attention to urges that come across my mind and, therefore, my physiology. Urges to eat, sleep, scratch an itch, and, of course, the temptations with their urges and deceiving charms.

Practice a little mindfulness now, if you will, for a few minutes. Close your eyes and focus on your breath. Pay attention to it going in, feel it pass through your nostrils, down the back of your throat and into your lungs. Feel your diaphragm expand. Pay attention to it as it leaves your lungs and out your mouth. If you get distracted and think of something else, no worries, just return your focus back to your breaths. If you get distracted again, return your focus back to your breaths. Overtime, you will experience less distraction and more focus, more mindfulness. It takes practice. It calms the mind, the soul.

Isn't that how our lives are? What the gospel is for? When we get distracted, just revert our focus back to Christ. When we become distracted again, revert our focus back to Christ again. Overtime, we will become less distracted and more focused on Christ. More mindful.

I read in that book that we will always breathe in new air. Air that we have never breathed before. So, it is with Christ. As we get distracted, return our focus (repent), no matter how many times we lose focus, we will always breathe in new air with Christ. He will give us another chance again and again.

In the scriptures, we are told to "watch". King Benjamin said to watch your words, thoughts, and deeds. I used to think that word had a negative connotation. Like beware or else. After reading this book, that word has taken on a whole new meaning for me in the scriptures. It means to "pay attention to" . Pay attention to your words, thoughts, and deeds. Be mindful of them. You may have bad thoughts cross your mind. Acknowledge them. Don't curse them. But don't indulge them either. With mindfulness practice, those thoughts will simply come and go as we revert our focus back. We will be still.

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