Observe all Senses

Reference: The 12 Aspects of Mindfulness

Mindfulness provides the discipline for looking and contemplation.

You may do this exercise while sipping coffee in a café, or strolling along a river. You may even find a place where you can sit comfortably for a while without being disturbed. Then patiently observe the world go by.

We associate the idea of sense organs with eye, ear, nose, tongue, and body. We use them to observe physical objects, such as, chair, car, house, etc. However, the mind is also a sense organ, which senses ideas, thoughts, feelings, emotions, etc. These are mental objects. When being mindful, recognize both physical and mental objects for what they are.


MINDFULNESS 5: Use physical senses as well as the mental sense to observe.

  1. Observe as usual. Notice the environment and the people in it.

  2. Start applying the aspects of mindfulness that you have learned so far.

  3. Notice some physical objects in the environment, such as, table, chairs, trees, bodies, etc.

  4. Notice some visual perceptions of shape, color, etc.

  5. Notice some perception of sounds, such as, those of birds, animals, people, etc.

  6. Notice some perception of smells, such as, that of food, coffee, freshly cut grass, etc.

  7. Notice some perception of tastes in your mouth, and when eating and drinking.

  8. Notice some perception of touch, such as, that of clothes on your body, and anything that comes into contact with your hands and feet.

  9. Notice the presence of some mental objects, such as, thoughts, emotions, labels, evaluations, conclusions, etc.

  10. Notice some mental objects that you are creating right now.

  11. Notice some mental objects from your education.

  12. Notice some mental objects from your experience.

  13. Notice the mental objects that occur again and again.

  14. Notice some associations of mental objects with physical objects in your environment.

  15. Expand your span of attention and let the perceptions pour in.

  16. Let the realizations present themselves to you without you making any effort.

  17. Use your own judgment as to when to end a session.


Develop this exercise to a point where you may execute it even while interacting socially with others. Keep observing patiently the physical objects, the mental objects, and the associations among them. Many things may come up naturally to be scrutinized. Simply observe and become aware of them without effort.


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  • Mark N Roberts  On August 6, 2014 at 12:12 PM

    Thank you Vin for your work. I like exercises much more than opinions.


    • vinaire  On August 6, 2014 at 12:21 PM

      You are welcome, Mark.

      One should be able to examine the opinions of others for consistency.


  • Fish  On August 6, 2014 at 6:09 PM

    At times I make my moments.


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