Attention and Mindfulness


To pay attention is to direct the mind to observe with care. A person should be able to direct his attention freely.

If the attention keeps on getting drawn to something then that attention is fixed. If the attention is difficult to focus then that attention is dispersed. In either case the attention is not free.

Underlying that fixed or dispersed attention; there is influence that the person is not aware of. As the persons looks with mindfulness and becomes aware of the influence, the attention frees up.

For example, the attention gets drawn to commotion in an area that is generally quiet, or to a lull in an area that is generally bustling. As soon as we become aware of the unusual factor that got introduced, our attention returns to normal. Similarly, when one encounters strangeness in something usually familiar, the attention gets dispersed and becomes hard to focus until it dawns on one that something that should be there is missing.

Whenever you find the attention to be non-optimum, isolate the area that seems to be involved directly. Use mindfulness to look at it more closely. Experience it without resisting. Let the mind unstack itself. Very soon you shall become aware of what is actually there and the attention will free up.

The following steps may help you look at an area more closely.

  1. Look broadly at the area.
  2. Consider its purpose and ideal scene.
  3. Isolate parts that do not seem to be consistent.
  4. View closely and experience those parts fully.

When an area is simply too complicated, such as, finances or certain relationships, then carefully apply each aspect of mindfulness. Use Mindful Subject Clearing to sort it all out. At the first instance of discomfort, take a step back and put attention on the physical environment. This will help you get regrounded in the present moment. Then continue with the procedure as before until the attention frees up.

In summary, attention becomes non-optimum to the degree it is fixed or dispersed. Underlying non-optimum attention there is data waiting to be viewed and experienced. Pursue non-optimum attention as an indicator to determine where to look, and then apply mindfulness to look closely.

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  • 2ndxmr  On December 19, 2013 at 11:05 PM

    Good, workable method.

  • vinaire  On December 20, 2013 at 7:55 AM

    Viewpoint = Perception point + Filter

    Filter = genetic code + considerations + experience + education + judgment


  • MarkNR  On December 20, 2013 at 8:24 AM

    Is there a limit to the quantity of attention available to an individual? As a general rule, I don’t like the idea of limits.

    • vinaire  On December 20, 2013 at 9:07 AM

      I believe that limits come from considerations only. [corrected]


      • MarkNR  On December 20, 2013 at 10:01 AM


      • Chris Thompson  On December 20, 2013 at 10:42 PM

        Come again?

      • drsx1955  On January 24, 2014 at 10:17 AM

        Absolutely true. The thought is the reason why for the barrier. There are so many layers to the mind, that is difficult to know the truth at times.

    • Chris Thompson  On December 20, 2013 at 10:41 PM

      Good question. My opinion is that there not only are limits, but those limits on attention available are not very great at all.

  • Rafael  On December 20, 2013 at 3:18 PM

    Have a great time!
    My best wishes for you and your family.:-)

    • vinaire  On December 20, 2013 at 11:32 PM

      Thank you Rafael. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your family.

      Sent from my iPhone


  • Rafael  On December 20, 2013 at 3:40 PM

    Is that your grandson?

    • vinaire  On December 20, 2013 at 11:39 PM

      That’s a beautiful picture isn’t it! I found it on the Internet. I thought it was appropriate for the essay.

      Sent from my iPhone


  • Nic  On December 21, 2013 at 8:47 AM

    Hello, Merry Christmas and a good new year to all.
    Nic ARC infinity

  • Chris Thompson  On December 21, 2013 at 9:22 PM

    Great! Start a vacation thread! This comment is off-topic in violation of the blogging rules!

    • vinaire  On December 21, 2013 at 9:34 PM

      I’d rather delete the objectionable comment(s), especially when it is my own. I am not really interested in starting a vacation thread.

      • Chris Thompson  On December 22, 2013 at 5:19 AM

        Haha don’t! You have all good wishes! These never violate anything!

  • Chris Thompson  On December 22, 2013 at 5:17 AM

    Haha it’s a joke! I hope you are seeing and doing fascinating things!

  • vinaire  On December 24, 2013 at 8:42 PM

    Merry Christmas! to everyone, and Happy Holidays!

    • Chris Thompson  On December 24, 2013 at 10:42 PM

      Merry Christmas Vinay! You have warm thoughts and wishes coming to you from Phoenix tonight! It is summer in New Zealand, is it not? Tell us something about your expedition!

  • vinaire  On December 24, 2013 at 11:07 PM

    Yes, I am getting the warmth and happiness coming from Phoenix.

    Today, we are in Rotorua. This morning we visited mighty geysers, boiling mud pools. Then we went to Agrodome Sheep Show, where we learned about different kind of sheep, watched a sheep sheared of its woolen coat, and saw the sheep dogs in action. My daughter Vibha got hands on experience with milking a cow. Later we went to Rainbow Springs, where we got to see a live Kiwi bird.

    Tomorrow we fly to Queenstown.

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