The Five-Minute Buddhist Books

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The Eightfold Path Step 7: Right Mindfulness

The Eightfold Path Step 7: Right Mindfulness

Right mindfulness, also translated as “Right Memory,” together with concentration, is concerned broadly with the practice of meditation. Roughly speaking, “mindfulness” refers to the practice of keeping the mind alert to phenomena, both internal and external as they are affecting the body and mind. It concerns seeing yourself and the universe as it really is.

Right mindfulness requires clear perception and it penetrates impressions, both correct and incorrect. Right mindfulness enables us to be aware of the process of how our own minds work in such a way that with practice, we can actively observe and control the way our thoughts go. Buddha accounted for this as the four foundations of mindfulness:

1. The contemplation of the body
2. The contemplation of feeling (repulsive, attractive, or neutral)
3. The contemplation of the state of mind
4. The contemplation of the phenomena.

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