Paying Attention As A Spiritual Practice

The month has come to a close.  We will be leaving the topic of paying attention, but hopefully not the art, the practice or the process.

As I have prepared the previous blog posts for this month, I have attempted to move attention from being primarily a cognitive and visual experience, toward a heart-filled listening experience, and finally to paying attention to creativity as both spiritual response and practice.   The process of paying attention is more than all of these.

In our busy world with its complexity and many distractions, I invite you to continue to be aware of paying attention, to observe what captures your attention, and the quality of that attention.

Further, I invite you to take your attention out into the world.  What do you see?  What is attention calling you to be?  What is attention calling you to do?

This is an on-going practice and process.  It is not always an easy one.  So, let’s practice this together.  To what do you pay attention?

With much love,

Meghan

Paying Attention As A Spiritual Practice

Whew it is almost Saturday!

Saturdays are the day when I suggest a practice that you might consider doing.

This suggesting is something that I do easily, drawing from a repertoire of experimental practices.  Or, at least it is usually…

This week we have been reflecting on paying attention to creativity as a spiritual practice.  The challenge to me is that anything I might suggest is my creativity, not necessarily yours.

Hmmm…

So instead, I am creating an invitation

to you

to observe

when you are being creative

how you are being creative

and asking that you share it,using words, music, art, video, photo etc. to convey your experience by commenting below.

I will ❤️ Witnessing Your unique creativity.

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Paying Attention As A Spiritual Practice

The first week of February focused on attention as being something that is of the intellect and largely visual.  The second week focused on attention as being an inquiry to one’s heart as well as a way of listening and responding to one’s heart. Both weeks have allowed us to reflect upon attention and spirituality through practice, reflection and action.

This week we are reflecting on paying attention to creativity and the choices that may emerge from that attention.  Please note:

  1. I am interpreting the choice to create as a capacity that most human beings have.  This capacity may also include other creatures as well, but for the purpose of this blog, I am limiting it to human beings.
  2. Praise for creativity is often relegated to those who are involved in such things as fine arts, film, and writing.  However, in my opinion this is a lack of recognition of how often it appears in the ordinary daily life.
  3. Fundamentally, I understand creativity to be both a spiritual expression and practice.

What are your thoughts on this topic?  What is the relationship between attention, creativity and spirituality for you?  Please comment.

With much love,

Meghan

Paying Attention As A Spiritual Practice

I began this week with a question: when I pay attention to my heart, I choose to_________________________.  I have many thanks to those who risked commenting on this question. I loved reading each of your responses.

The question originated in a desire to move attention from what is often a visual experience toward an experience of listening.  And, not listening to just anything but to what our hearts wish to say to us.  If you are like me, this isn’t something that happens often.  My attention is often visual, often intellectual.  This has its place, but so does heart listening.

We have the privilege of listening or choosing to not listen.  We have the privilege of paying attention or choosing to not pay attention.  We have the option of listening to our heart, listening to a creative source, or shutting it out.  Which do you choose?  Why do you choose it?  How is paying attention with your heart part of your creativity, your spirituality?

I am suggesting two practices today.

In the first, I invite you to simply sit in a quiet space and listen to your heart for five to fifteen minutes.  If you find it helpful during this quiet time, place one hand or both hands on your heart. Invite your heart to speak to you.  What does it say?  What do you imagine it saying?  How does it feel to pay attention in this way?  Please use your journals to write down anything that emerges from this reflection.

In the second, I invite you to find one heart centered action that you can take today.  It may be something that responds to a favorite cause, an individual in need, or whomever your heart sends your way.  The world has always needed heart centered creative action.  What is one thing you can do?

With much love,

Meghan

Paying Attention As A Spiritual Practice

Today it is Valentine’s Day.

Happy Valentine’s Day! ❤️

Also, in the Christian liturgical calendar it is AshWednesday, the beginning of the season of Lent.

Valentine’s Day is filled with the symbol of hearts, candy, flowers and expectations. 💝

Ash Wednesday’s symbol is not the heart, rather dust, which is a reminder of our mortality. The day ushers in a season of penitence and self examination.

What, if anything, do these have in common?

I wonder if one connection between them is paying attention, paying attention not to hearts, but rather to listening to our hearts. It may mean listening to the wisdom of our individual hearts rather than of our individual intellect. It may mean a movement from a visual apprehension of what is, and instead listening to what our hearts may wish to share with us.

So today, what does your heart wish for you to pay attention?Perhaps it is love. Perhaps it is love grounded in an awareness of mortality. What do you think? Pay attention.

With much love,

Meghan

Paying Attention As A Spiritual Practice

Whew! What a week! A good one in so many ways.

Tonight I am watching the opening of the Olympic Games. I love watching all of the athletes entering the Olympic venue in South Korea. I imagine that most of them may extraordinary athletic ability and potential. This ability has been honed for them by endless hours of practice, focus, dedication and paying attention to details that only those familiar with the sport might notice.

If you, like me, are entranced with the Olympics, I encourage you to watch it. I invite you to mentally note and journal about what you see. How does watching make you feel? What does your experience of watching inform you about paying attention?

Warmly,

Meghan