We had a nice little workshop on the Art of Attention at Art&Now, an art studio in Model Colony Pune on the 14th of April. All the participants – Priyanka, Sonal and Pooja (R to L) enjoyed the session and had great fun with the self-experiments.
Why You Must Learn the Art of Attention
If you observe your own mind, you will notice that your attention is wandering all over the place. It is constantly jumping from one thought to another, from one thing to another. This is the normal state of affairs for most of us. Usually we are not worried by this but when we wish to concentrate our attention on a specific task or activity, we realize how difficult it is. Not only external sounds and sights distract us but our thoughts are constantly moving and shifting randomly from one thing to another, preventing us from focusing on the work. This is why the mind is called the monkey mind because like a monkey it is never still and keeps jumping from branch to branch, in a state of restless activity.
Most people would think meditation is the solution to calming this mental activity. And it is true that many people actively practice meditation with the intention of calming their mind. But much of meditation practiced from the intention of calming the mind becomes an exercise in forceful controlling of the mind, which is not only difficult but impossible. Meditation becomes an even bigger struggle than focusing on an activity.
I believe that an understanding of the way our mind works is the starting point of all meditation. Even if we keep meditation aside, it is our duty and responsibility to know how our own mind works. If we are not aware of our thoughts then we will not be aware of our actions, which are a direct result of our thoughts.