WHAT IS MINDFULNESS
Have you ever realized how often we are distracted by thoughts, thinking about past events and the future, and rarely focused on the present moment? Do you ever catch yourself always focused on the “next thing” that requires your attention, running from one activity to the next, without a moment to relax and be present in the moment? Would you simply like to enjoy a few minutes of peace and stillness in the otherwise frantic, stressful, anxiety producing race of life?
By simply taking intentional time each day to unplug and pay attention to our thoughts and simply sit in the present moment, we can halt the race and find peace and deeper awareness of our thoughts and feelings.
Stress takes a toll on our bodies, our health, our families, our jobs, our mental and emotional health and well-being. It prevents us from seeing things as the way they truly are, including our selves. We spend so much time lost in our thoughts – often anxiety producing ones – that we fail to savor and enjoy the present moment and the peace and wholeness that is already ours.
St Mark Lutheran Church is offering an eight week introductory class on mindfulness meditation, to foster greater mindfulness in our lives throughout the week. This free class is great for anyone who has never meditated before and would like to learn more, or for experienced meditators who would like a group to practice with! All you need is an open mind (and a meditation cushion helps)!
The class runs from May 14th through July 2nd, every Sunday evening from 7:00-8:30. We will meet upstairs in the Fellowship Hall.
The classes and practice will be lead by Rev. Ian Hill from St Mark, and are based on the eight week Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program developed by the University of Massachusetts Medical Center.
WHAT TO EXPECT
No experience is necessary. In fact, a “beginners mind” is is the perfect state for meditation, even after years of practice! At the mindfulness meditation class, you will gather for 15-45 minutes of learning and discussion, and 15-45 minutes of meditation practice (always for a total of an hour). You will be encouraged to practice on your own during the week between classes.
It is advisable to wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing, including shoes that are easy to remove. A meditation cushion is a good idea for added comfort (a folded pillow works if you don’t have a fancy meditation cushion!)
Facility and restrooms are handicap accessible. However, if you have any physical condition that you think would affect your ability to practice meditation, please let Pastor Ian know so you can best be accommodated.
Register now, space is limited!