My name is: Sarah McLean.
The publication date is: February 14, 2017. Out now!
I was inspired to write it when: I have been a meditation teacher for over 20 years and I work with attention. I teach people to meditate and increase their ability to pay attention in meditation, which, of course, carries over into their lives.
As a meditator, I have always been enamored with the mysteries of life and the questions: “Who am I? Why am I here? What is all of this?” About five years ago, these questions started to awaken a new curiosity. I began to ask myself: “What is the source of my attention? From where or what does it arise? How does it connect me to you?”
In a new way, a reverence for that which is looking through my (and your) eyes was born. I embarked on the exploration of attention. It was soon obvious to me that attention is the most important aspect of one’s life. Though many people might suggest that love or God are the most important, I believe that my (and your) unconditioned attention is a beam of love. You offer your attention, like a currency, and you pay it forward to that which you love, want to enliven and to which you want to connect.
It's about: Have you ever heard the phrase, “Where your attention goes, energy flows”? It’s true. Your attention is a powerful currency; after all, you pay attention. In fact, your attention is your superpower. You have the ability to take advantage of this superpower by training yourself to pay attention on purpose. And when you do, you learn to pay attention to what truly matters to you, and this can transform your life.
I refer to attention as the “currency of love” because what you attend to you enliven, nourish and encourage to thrive. Consider this: when you offer your unconditioned, gentle attention to someone or something, you are sending a very powerful message: “I see you. I hear you. I love you.”
Every living being, from people and animals to plants and even molecules of water, respond to attention. This not only creates a deeper connection between you and everything else, your deliberate attention can also enliven your relationship to yourself, your body, your passions, your projects and ultimately, your entire life.
My hope is that readers will: recognize the value of their attention and become completely in charge of it.
Unfortunately, many of us squander our attention without even recognizing its value and power. We can become mindless, rather than mindful. That’s because attention is so subtle. It can easily be overshadowed by competing interests and distractions. If you’re not aware that you’re distracted, then your connection with the people and causes you care most deeply about will suffer.
But you can change that. You can deliberately make it a point to regain control of how and to whom you direct this powerful currency, simply by paying attention. Remember, your attention enlivens what it is directed toward. You can learn to gain control of it through the practice of meditation, specifically mindfulness meditation.
Meditation is an important ingredient for living a peaceful, powerful, purposeful life. It strengthens your attention muscle and helps you deal with distractions so you can take back control of your attention. Meditation is something everyone can do. You don’t need a special form of concentration or a particular belief system. In fact, it is your birthright to meditate.
My next book might be: Consciousness vs. Commerce.
The title of my autobiography would be: The Accidental Meditator.
If I was a character from fiction, I’d be: Nancy Drew.