Mindfulness – a Fascination of Mind over Body

Mental prowess and superiority are often praised as the pinnacle of the human experience and achievement. Mental intelligence is what often creates wealth, security, position and acknowledgement from others. The brain is often thought of as the most significant organ in the body, the director of the show, and it is to the brain that we often turn to resolve issues such as problem solving in everyday life, depression and mental health issues.

When we have stress, depression or anxiety we are offered ‘talking therapies’ that look at how the brain works and what we think about ourselves, and the world we live in.

Anyone who may be feeling generally unsatisfied with life may consider mindfulness, a technique that offers us, as the name suggests, ‘mind awareness’ and to some degree, a control or a quelling of the thoughts that disturb us.

Now there is some benefit in attempting to control the thoughts we have, for example if we keep repeating thoughts like “I am ugly,” “I am no good,” then yes, it’s fantastic if we can stop perpetuating these thoughts and say “no” when they enter. Mastering the mind makes sense, but attempting to do so while ignoring the rest of our sensitive barometer, our bodies, does not offer us the remedy that we seek.

Is it possible that mindfulness is an extension of the obsession we have with mental intelligence?

We place enormous importance on the brain and excelling in education and excelling in our chosen careers through mental recall. We place weight on the power of the brain over the rest of the body. Most mental health techniques, including mindfulness, neglect the most significant attribute that supports awareness, wellbeing and true whole body intelligence – the Whole Body.

And what is true whole body intelligence? I would say it is a wisdom, a deep knowing and understanding of life that comes from a lived, embodied quality of being… Now I state here clearly, it is awesome to be educated to grasp formulas, the details of life and the world, but not in isolation of the body and not to the detriment of the body.

When did so many of us become detached from our bodies?

A few years ago I could feel that my head ruled my life… it literally dragged my body along. My mind and body were not united. I lived in my thoughts, issues and opinions without considering or caring for my body.

If I had a mental block or indecision I would do mental athletics with all the alternative rationales and scenarios to work out what my next step would be – I would tie myself in knots in the attempt to problem solve.

Practising to include my whole body in life has brought a deeper understanding of life that is precious and my decisions now often come with ease. This is an inner wisdom that I am developing and I see no limits to its potential. I now understand that the way I put myself to bed, brush my teeth, hold my posture, walk, breathe etc., have a direct correlation to the quality of my thoughts and that the more I care for my body the more the quality of these thoughts is enriched, as is my experience and understanding of life.

When we rush, slump or put our body under stress, our thoughts directly correspond to these choices, so choosing to be whole body aware making this our starting point, allows us to connect with the present moment. In the present moment we allow ourselves the space to refine our behaviours and observe the quality of our thoughts to a depth that offers real healing and consistent foundational support in life.

Our whole body holds an inner wisdom that is available when we are ready to access it – true intelligence. And when we connect to this inner wisdom we not only access a clarity and understanding, we are also able to truly care and support ourselves.

Practically, when I honour how I feel I respond more efficiently to my body’s feelings, and in doing so maintain my function, vitality and ability to flourish… my homeostasis. Also when I am honest about feeling energy, the stuff we can’t see but all feel, I then have a deeper awareness of what feels true and not true for me.

Honouring that energy exists, that we feel energy – be it through sensation, feelings or an innate knowing from the body – is a step towards whole body intelligence. If I get cold, hungry, tired, upset, feel tension, do I push these feelings aside, attempt to ignore or deny them, or do I honour what I feel?

The body holds a natural self-awareness of homeostasis; the balance, harmony and functional efficiency is a wisdom that brings clarity and ease… a whole body intelligence is not to be underestimated.

I would suggest true whole body intelligence can only be connected with when we allow ourselves to surrender to what we feel from the body and allowing what we feel to be honoured.

Mindfulness will not offer us the answers that we search for; the mind is only a part of the beautiful whole that is our body. Body-full-ness, Whole-Body Intelligence, this is the way to true healing, wisdom and wellbeing.

By Samantha Davidson, Business Owner, Massage and Complimentary Health Practitioner, UK

Related Reading:
Mindfulness is not the Way Back to Who You Are
Whole Body Intelligence – it Lives Within Us All 
Intelligence – Is it Embodied or Embrained?

427 thoughts on “Mindfulness – a Fascination of Mind over Body

  1. “Is it possible that mindfulness is an extension of the obsession we have with mental intelligence?…” This is a great statement that make you stop and realise just how much emphasis and importance we place on the mind, and yet, illness and disease of our organs what affects the body… (and mental health too over rules the body) so perhaps we need to be placing more focus on our body than we currently are…

  2. Our body gives us simple true answers where as our mind gives us long winded untruths that we think are it. Wisdom only comes from the body, knowledge comes from the mind.

  3. Nothing we choose it in isolation of anything else happening on this planet. A mindfulness course for 6 weeks may offer some skills to begin to observe something, but sustainable change comes from reconnecting with our bodies and not thinking that if we do a course of any sort, but still neglect our overall health on a daily basis we will be well. Wellness comes from a Livingness, not a Thinking or a Doing.

  4. “Mindfulness will not offer us the answers that we search for; the mind is only a part of the beautiful whole that is our body. Body-full-ness, Whole-Body Intelligence, this is the way to true healing, wisdom and wellbeing.” Love this. Our body can tell us things our mind can override, hence ‘mindfulness’ is not all its cracked up to be.

  5. A lot of people have jumped on the mindfulness ‘bandwagon’ and are using it as the solution to anxiety, stress and raciness for themselves, but there are also many programs within schools to offer mindfulness for students. We have quickly endorsed this technique, but are we looking with open eyes at whether it is truly successful and beneficial for all without getting caught up in the glamor of having a ‘new technique’?

  6. Great blog Samantha and awesome read the clarity you share with mindfulness. It is fascinating how we try and compartmentalise things to one thing and think we have managed to do so when in fact it is not possible. We could ask if that is the cause of Ill-ness and Dis-ease?

  7. I know I used to get through life solely on my intellect and it did bring me success and security of sorts in my life, however no matter how smart I was and how secure, I could not shake a deep sense of unease and discontent and dissatisfaction with my life. Since studying the Gentle Breath Meditation which supports people to reconnect with their bodies, I have re-discovered another level of health and wellbeing which I did not think possible – all through the lived wisdom and experience of my body. I still use my mind to work and figure things out sometimes but nowadays it is in balance with my body.

    1. I have similar experience Andrew – it is the balance with our bodies that we sorely need and that makes all the difference.

  8. Samantha, what you are sharing here about mindfulness makes complete sense, as you say there is such a focus on our minds and yet this is only a part of our body, to ignore the rest of our body and focus on only a small part does not make sense and yet this has almost become the norm in society, I find that listening to my body and its signals and honouring these means that I make much more simple, loving choices.

  9. The world is set up for us to be living from our minds so when I was introduced by Serge Benhayon, the teachings of the ageless Wisdom that it is our inner being aspect to the human-being that is our truth, it was something that I felt and knew was true. Re-connecting to my Soul and allowing this connection to the all knowing of the Universe to come through is one that feels extremely powerful and super natural. Everything in my body ignites and I feel alive and expanded. Sometime the old way of the mind trying to dominate will pipe up but each time I can feel the impact that this has on my body.

  10. Fascination is the correct word to describe the stimulation we are seeking when we use the mind in disconnection to the body.

  11. Who hasn´t tried to discipline, influence or direct one´s thoughts when suffering the ‘windmills of our mind’, with how much success, for how long? To master the mind we need to come back to the presence of our body first, then the mind very willingly aligns and becomes an integrated part of the whole body again.

  12. “it is awesome to be educated to grasp formulas, the details of life and the world, but not in isolation of the body and not to the detriment of the body….” Not to the detriment of the body is the key point as just focusing on one (mind or body) is like trying to use a knife and fork with only one hand. Working together enables true intelligence.

    1. Ha – love this analogy Steve – and this is so true that our current form of intelligence and mindfullness are certainly a way of working with things in a selective way that leaves parts behind!

  13. To be trying to train the waywardness of our minds has to be one of mans greatest follies, without re-connecting to our bodies and bringing the mind into line first.

  14. ‘Mindfulness will not offer us the answers that we search for; the mind is only a part of the beautiful whole that is our body. Body-full-ness, Whole-Body Intelligence, this is the way to true healing, wisdom and wellbeing.’
    It is the arrogance we live for so long that thinks we can live from our mind and individuality.
    But if we look around us we easily see that that doesn’t work.
    Life is about union, togetherness, brotherhood which starts with embracing our own body and re-connect within.

  15. ‘…mindfulness is an extension of the obsession we have with mental intelligence…’ is really a very intelligent revelation coming from a place or form of intelligence that is obviously not invested in the mind needing to be the governing institution in our lives.

  16. I agree Samantha, the more I care for and nurture my body with the qualities of preciousness the more every thought reflects this preciousness. That is by deeply caring for myself I naturally care about absolutely every one and thing equally.

  17. Body-full-ness is the way to go, as mind-full-ness really only gets us into trouble! At least that has been my experience so far! And to add to that, when we are used to a mind-full-ness approach, it can be challenging to switch over to a body-full-ness approach as patterns can be very ingrained. When aware of the body, it becomes about focus on the quality that we can allow through (body full ness), and for this experience the mind is too limiting to work from. What a blessing to have discovered this, and something I am still learning to master!

  18. “Is it possible that mindfulness is an extension of the obsession we have with mental intelligence?” – this is a great question and point to make… we have made our current intelligence about recall and our capacity to memorise things, rather than making it about the quality that we can operate in. As a result mindfullness can only be practiced when we make it about recall, and hence it is governed by the same energy as mental intelligence.

  19. The mind disconnected from the body can be like a runaway train, going everywhere and getting no where. Coming back to the body can bring us on track.

  20. We need to understand that the mind alone never has the true answers to what we are seeking and that it is, as you describe, our everyday way how we are with ourself and care for ourself, in every moment, that brings the quality to life that we then live from.

  21. “Mindfulness will not offer us the answers that we search for; the mind is only a part of the beautiful whole that is our body. Body-full-ness, Whole-Body Intelligence, this is the way to true healing, wisdom and wellbeing.” Love this! We are not just a mind. Leaving our bodies out of the equation has brought us to where we are in the world today – not a great place when we look around.

  22. The more I connect to the expansiveness of the awareness and intelligence that can only be accessed through our whole body, the more I realise that the narrow vision of our mind is a self-created prison.

  23. When I am feeling open and expansive in my body it is like my cells are singing and vibrating to the tune of the universe . My mind is the receiver of this whole body experience, as it still is if I am feeling closed and shut down. It is how I am in my body and being that then brings the quality of thoughts to the mind.

  24. For as long as I can remember the mind has been touted as the holder of our intelligence and our children’s education from day one is based on developing this form of intelligence. But if it is the superior intelligence that we are told that it is why is the world in the mess it is in and why is the health of humanity in such a dire state? I too have come to understand that our true intelligence comes from our body and it is living from and with this intelligence that our health will begin to improve as will the health of our world.

    1. Yes, the reality of the state of humanity is very telling, we cannot explain ourselves out of the fact that on the whole we are in a miserable condition.

  25. Wasn’t it Plato who said something like you cannot treat the part without consideration of the whole. So using the mind without including the informing nature of the whole body is automatically an ill that leads us into those troubles we find ourselves in health-wise and ‘everyother-wise’ in society today.

  26. “We place weight on the power of the brain over the rest of the body” – If the brain is made up of cells in the same way our hair, hands, heart and blood are, then what makes it so special or more intelligent than every single other part of our body?

    1. I love this Susie. It is checkmate. Out thinking mind can not argue with such logic. For to do so you would have to admit there is more, which is something it has been refusing to do.

  27. Simply put, we are a complete unit encompassing our whole body, Yet I have tried and attempted to live my life from my head only. How could an intelligent person not see and feel that as a whole we are only a complete unit when we are fully connected with the whole of one’s being, including our body and mind as one and with the body, not the head, leading the way!

  28. Our bodies are constantly working to get back to a sense of harmony and homeostasis, so our every choice either undermines this work, or supports it. When we support ourselves by deeply taking care of our bodies, somehow there is less stress and more space.

  29. Mindfulness to me seems like a step backwards from actually being connected to the body. It would be like having Wristfulness or Shinfulness…. Like what do we get out of focussing on one bit and blocking out the others?

  30. The way our body is has a huge impact on the way that we think; how we move and care for ourself really does make a big different to the kind of thoughts we have in my experience. Serge Benhayon has helped me to understand just how important being aware of and honouring our whole body is.

  31. ‘Most mental health techniques, including mindfulness, neglect the most significant attribute that supports awareness, wellbeing and true whole body intelligence – the Whole Body.’ This is so true Samantha, taking the body out of the equation does not make sense.

  32. Using your mind to control or change your mind simply does not work. If I ever want to change something in my life, I know that it has to come from my body and how it feels. For instance, giving up certain foods is easy when my body tells me it doesn’t like it. Whereas will power just creates more struggle (and often failure!)

  33. When your mind is full there is obviously no space or awareness left for the rest of the body, but then the body may stumble or bump into something and suddenly the mind gets shaken a bit to remember it is carried by a body. Tcha, that’s how it works to awaken the mind.

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