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Lions Roar : July 2007
SHAMBHALA SUN JULY 2007 39 Mindfulness/awareness was the meditation the Buddha himself practiced and taught. It was his basic prescription for human suffering. Looking at life with an open and nonjudgmental attention, we see our confusion and develop insight. This is the basis of all Buddhist practice and the key to liberation. JACK KORNFIELD Mindfulness/Awareness Doing the Buddha’s Practice PHOTOS BY ANDREA ROTH My friends, it is through the establishment of the lovely clarity of mindfulness that you can let go of grasping after past and future, overcome attachment and grief, abandon all clinging and anxiety, and awaken an un- shakable freedom of heart, here and now. —THE MIDDLE LENGTH DISCOURSES OF THE BUDDHA Establish a liberating clarity of mindfulness of the body in the body, of the feelings in the feelings, of the mind in the mind, and of the dharma in the dharma. —THE LONG DISCOURSES OF THE BUDDHA IN MYTHS FROM AROUND THE WORLD, men and women have searched for an elixir that will bring protection from suffering. Buddhism’s answer is mindfulness. How does mindfulness work? Let me illustrate with a story that became the basis for the 1988 film Gorillas in the Mist. The movie tells the account of Dian Fossey, a courageous field biologist who managed to befriend a tribe of gorillas. Fossey had gone to Africa to follow in the footsteps of her mentor George Shaller, a renowned primate biologist who had returned from the wilds with more intimate and compelling information about gorilla life than any scientist before. When his colleagues asked how he was able to learn such remark- able detail about the tribal structure, family life, and habits of gorillas, he attributed it to one simple thing. He didn’t carry a gun.