Curious beginner’s mind – the raisin exercise

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The raisin exercise originates in mindfulness training. It is also a nice first step to start meditation.
But this exercise is also excellent for training your beginner’s mind and perception. Do you still remember your first raisin? Or the first bite of a fruit you have never eaten before? When we experience something for the first time, our perception is more diverse and intense. Body and mind are adjusted to learning, our senses sharpened, we are full of open curiosity.

Today I would like to invite you to consciously activate this open curiosity – to enrich your perception and focus your mind. This finally enables you to switch off and relax more easily.

In the exercise you will consciously look at something that has become a matter of course in your everyday life and that your mind routinely takes for granted in a new way – which is with the eyes of a beginner.

Today we will use a raisin for the exercise- but it also can be pracitised with other food items (e.g. a fig) or transferred to everyday routine situations, such as opening a door.

Prepare a raisin, make sure you will not be interrupted for about 10 minutes, and then proceed as follows:

  1. Watching – Put the raisin between your fingers or place it in the palm of your hand and look at it from all sides as if it were the first raisin in your life.
    What does it look like when you hold it against the light? What do you notice? What details? What thoughts come up?
  2. Feeling – Touch the raisin and move it with your fingers in the palm of your hand. Place it between your fingers, press it a little, feel it consciously. What do you feel?
  3. Smelling -Place the rasin close to your nose, close your eyes and smell it. Focus on the aroma. What does it remind you of?
  4. Hearing – Place the the raisin close to your ear and move it between your fingers. Press it a little or put it in your closed hand and shake it. What kind of noise does it make?
  5. Taste and Feel – put the raisin on your tongue and concentrate on how it feels before you take the first bite. Move it in your mouth. What do you perceive? What do you taste?
  6. Eat and Taste – take a first bite and be aware of how the texture of the raisin changes and what taste spreads in your mouth. Chew slowly, taste, feel, swallow consciously.
  7. Reflection – What do you perceive now? Would you like another raisin or rather not? How would you describe the experience of eating a raisin like that?

A week full of open curiosity, awareness and enrichment.

Warm regards,

Birgit

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