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Cultivate a Better You

The Beauty of Awareness

Glenda Van Koot
davidji Certified Meditation Teacher
Founder of Pathways to Serenity with Glenda

A student asked me what it meant when I said that meditation increases our awareness.

My response was that it makes you more aware of everything around you and everything that you do. This is one of the most wonderful – and often unrecognized – benefits of meditation.

If you meditate for 30 minutes a day, it’s in the other 23 1/2 hours where the awareness and changes that meditation can bring shows up.

When you aren’t being the best version of you, you realize it sooner and are able to make a correction more quickly. You have more patience, let things go more easily, handle stress a little bit better – or a lot better – and you become aware when these are needed.

You become more aware of everything around you. You notice the beauty of a cardinal on a branch outside your window and let it stop you in your tracks. You feel gratitude for having the opportunity to see it. It can help you slow down and realize more quickly that you need to take a breath, take a pause.

You become more aware of the small moments, of the blessings that surround you. It can be as simple as looking up, seeing three dogs sleeping in front of you and feeling the love that emanates from them.

It can be looking out the window, seeing your husband holding your granddaughter, and stopping to hold your hand over your heart and say a silent ‘thank you’.

This life is a miracle. Meditation can help us realize it. Meditation can help us remember it. Especially when we don’t feel particularly miraculous.

Thich Nhat Hanh wrote,

“Around us, life bursts forth with miracles – a glass of water, a ray of sunshine, a leaf, a caterpillar, a flower, laughter, raindrops. If you live in awareness, it is easy to see miracles everywhere. Each human being is a multiplicity of miracles. Eyes that see thousands of colors, shapes, and forms; ears that hear a bee flying or a thunderclap; a brain that ponders a speck of dust as easily as the entire cosmos; a heart that beats in rhythm with the heartbeat of all beings. When we are tired and feel discouraged by life’s daily struggles, we may not notice these miracles, but they are always there.”

And that’s when meditation can help us. It can help us notice and become aware of all of these tiny miracles that we so often pass by. As you go about your day, watch for the miracles.

Meditation blessed my life and helped me find the miracles when some parts of my life had brought me to my knees. And for that, I am truly grateful.

*The quote is entry #3 from Your True Home; The Everyday Wisdom of Thich Nhat Hanh.

Glenda Van Koot is a certified davidji meditation teacher and the founder of Moonset Meditation. She lives in Bobcaygeon, Ontario, Canada. Visit her website at

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