1.09 Body Scan – audio

“The beauty of being fully present”

Audio-1: Body Scan Introduction – Jon Kabat-Zinn (4 min)

Audio-2: Body Scan Practice – Jon Kabat-Zinn (42 min)

Audio-3: Body Scan Practice – Workbook (45 min)

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Mindfulness of the Body

Bringing mindfulness to the body can help you learn what your body does and doesn’t need in order to thrive. It can also reveal a great deal about your world and your life.
Through mindfulness of the body, you can begin to understand how stress and anxiety affect you, and also learn how to live better even with physical pain and illness.

We will:
* explore how to work with physical pain
* find links between emotions and physical sensations
* show how you can use physical sensations as a key to your emotional state
* help you open the door to greater mindfulness of the body using a time-honored practice: the body scan

Benefits of Body Awareness:
The body scan meditation is a deep investigation into the moment-to-moment experiences of the body.
By bringing awareness and acknowledgment to whatever you feel or sense in the body, the body scan can be very helpful in working with stress, anxiety, and physical pain.
While you may have heard about meditations that create out-of-body experiences, the object of the body scan is to have an “in-the-body” experience.
In the body scan, you methodically bring attention to the body, beginning with the left foot and ending at the top of the head.

You may notice a wide range of physical feelings:

  • pain
  • aches
  • itches
  • tingles
  • firmness
  • lightness
  • heaviness
  • warmth & cold
  • as well as neutrality

Some of these sensations may be accompanied by thoughts or emotions.

As you practice the body scan, this multitude of sensations and internal experiences can be boiled down to three basic feelings:

  • Neutral
  • Pleasant
  • Unpleasant

Since the body is a dynamic organism that’s always changing, no two body scans will ever be completely alike.
As you continue to practice, you’ll discover what Martha Graham sagely noted: “The body says what words cannot” (Hanna 2006, 33).

The body has its own wisdom, and if you listen, it can communicate where physical tension, thoughts, and emotions lie within your body. This investigation into physical sensations, thoughts, and emotions is sometimes called the triangle of awareness, since it’s a journey into the totality of our human experience.

When you practice the body scan, first simply become aware of physical sensations by exploring their felt sense.

This is distinct from thinking about your body.

IMPORTANT: There’s no need to analyze or manipulate your body in any way; just feel and acknowledge whatever sensations are present. Through this deep investigation, the body may begin to reveal a whole range of feelings. In this way, the body scan can bring you in touch with many aspects of your life.

Source- A Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Workbook Adapted by G Ross Clark

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