For the past several months I’ve been enjoying weekly Zoom discussions with members of the Spiritual Naturalist Society, an eclectic secular organization promoting happiness through compassion, reason and practice. One of the regular participants, Rick Heller, has produced this interesting article on mortality mindfulness meditation:
This meditation is to be done in a darkened room. It will require a few physical artifacts:
A mirror, positioned so you can see your face.
A photograph of a person you loved or admired who is no longer living.
Start with a few minutes of breath meditation in order to settle your mind.
Now, light the candle and turn off the lights in the room.
Pay attention to the dim reflection of your own face in the mirror.
From time to time, glance at the photo of your departed loved one. Then look back at your own dim, ghostly reflection.
Consider that this person who you loved or admired was once alive, but is not. Consider that you are alive at present but someday in the future will not be.
What emotions arise? Do any physical sensations arise in your body?
End with a bow or acknowledgement toward your loved one, and be mindful of what a gift it is to be alive right now.