Meditation teachers often ask their students, “and what is your relationship to that?” If there is a painful sensation in meditation, we look not only at the physical sensations of pressure, burning and sharpness, but also how the mind relates to it. Is the way of knowing pain affected by aversion?

If there is a moment of quiet, we notice not only the quietness, but also our relationship to it. Are we relating to quietness in a way that produces boredom, restless thinking, fantasy, appreciation, or calmness?

Whatever you might encounter in your day, consider also how you are relating to it. What views to you bring to it? What demands do you make upon it? What do you expect from it? What judgements do you impose?

A mindful life considers our relationship to changing experiences, bringing the mind into a harmonious relationship with the way things actually are.