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Mindfulness shouldn’t be something limited to just a formal practice or when seated on our cushion or chair. Mindfulness should overflow into every aspect of our lives. The Five Mindfulness Trainings are one of the most concrete ways to practice mindfulness. They are nonsectarian and universal practices of presence, compassion, and understanding.
The Five Mindfulness Trainings are based on precepts developed during the time of the Buddha, but have been translated for modern times by the great Zen Master Thich Nhat Hahn. With mindfulness, we are aware of what is going on in our bodies, our feelings, our minds and the world, and we avoid doing harm to ourselves and others. When we are mindful, we can see that by refraining from doing one thing, we can prevent another thing from happening. We arrive at our own unique insight. Practicing the mindfulness trainings, therefore, helps us be more calm and concentrated, brings more insight and enlightenment to our lives, and leads to healing, transformation, and happiness for ourselves and for the world.