The Practice of Presence

In his book, Wake Up Now, Stephan Bodian offers the following perspective on meditation:

"As an alternative to paying mindful attention to your breathing and other particulars of your sensate experience, I recommend a different approach, both in sitting meditation and in everyday life: the practice of presence. Instead of focusing the light of your awareness like a a laser on a particular object or activity, you open it like the sky, welcoming the experiences that arise just as the sky welcomes the clouds, neither ignoring nor indulging them. Instead of concentrating, you relax and let go, allowing everything to be just as it, without any attempt to control on your part. You're alert but at ease, totally present but not fixated in any way."

Elsewhere he adds these quotes on the practice of presence:
  • "Cultivate the mind that dwells nowhere." (Diamond Sutra)
  • "Settle the self on the self with imperturbability." (Dainin Katagirl)
  • "No thought, no analysis, no reflection, no intention, no cultivation. Let it settle itself." (Tilopa)
  • "All you have to do is find out your sources and take up your headquarters there." (Nisargaradetta Maharaj)
  • "In true meditation, the emphasis is on being awareness - not on being aware of objects, but on resting as primordial awareness itself." (Adyashanti)


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