12 Quotes about Mindfulness from Jon Kabat Zinn
Inspired by Kay McGrath OAM’s keynote at the Bond University Women’s Network event for International Women’s Day and her timely mindfulness quote from Jon Kabat-Zimm, I reflected on my own mindfulness journey and resources that support greater inner calm, particularly during external chaos. As a passionate wellness advocate and the course developer of the nationally recognised 10299NAT Diploma of Wellness Leadership Program, I have a plethora of books in my library for wellness in life, leadership and workplaces. One of the books in my collection is Jon Kabat-Zinn’s “Wherever You Go, There You Are: Mindfulness Meditation In Everyday Life.” It’s simple, yet profound.
Jon Kabat-Zinn is one of the most influential lay Buddhists leaders in America. As a Professor of Medicine Emeritus in the University of Massachusetts Medical School, he is considered a thought-leader in the American mindfulness movement.
Born as a Jew, Jon is now a Buddhist who advocates the science of mindfulness. He discovered the wisdom of mindfulness from Vietnamese Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh and Korean Zen Master Seung Sahn. These mindfulness teachings inspire him to integrate the science of the brain with the art of mindfulness to help people cope with stress, anxiety, pain, and illness.
Here are 12 of Jon’s quotes about mindfulness:
“Mindfulness means paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally.” ― Jon Kabat-Zinn
“Mindfulness wakes you up to the fact that our lives unfold only in moments. If we are not fully present for many of those moments, we may not only miss what is most valuable in our lives but also fail to realize the richness and the depth of our possibilities for growth and transformation.” ― Jon Kabat-Zinn
“Practice sharing the fullness of your being, your best self, your enthusiasm, your vitality, your spirit, your trust, your openness, above all, your presence. Share it with yourself, with your family, with the world.” ― Jon Kabat-Zinn
“You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.” ― Jon Kabat-Zinn
“You might be tempted to avoid the messiness of daily living for the tranquillity of stillness and peacefulness. This of course would be an attachment to stillness, and like any strong attachment, it leads to delusion. It arrests development and short-circuits the cultivation of wisdom.” ― Jon Kabat-Zinn
“Perhaps the most “spiritual” thing any of us can do is simply to look through our own eyes, see with eyes of wholeness, and act with integrity and kindness.” ― Jon Kabat-Zinn
“Mindfulness practice means that we commit fully in each moment to be present; inviting ourselves to interface with this moment in full awareness, with the intention to embody as best we can an orientation of calmness, mindfulness, and equanimity right here and right now.” ― Jon Kabat-Zinn
“From the perspective of meditation, every state is a special state, every moment a special moment.” ― Jon Kabat-Zinn
“When we commit ourselves to paying attention in an open way, without falling prey to our own likes and dislikes, opinions and prejudices, projections and expectations, new possibilities open up and we have a chance to free ourselves from the straitjacket of unconsciousness.” ― Jon Kabat-Zinn
“When we can be centered in ourselves, even for brief periods of time in the face of the pull of the outer world, not having to look elsewhere for something to fill us up or make us happy, we can be at home wherever we find ourselves, at peace with things as they are, moment by moment.” ― Jon Kabat-Zinn
“Your mindfulness will only be as robust as the capacity of your mind to be calm and stable. Without calmness, the mirror of mindfulness will have an agitated and choppy surface and will not be able to reflect things with any accuracy.” ― Jon Kabat-Zinn
“I don’t know of any magical solutions and, frankly, I’m not looking for one. A full life is painted with broad brush strokes. Many paths can lead to understanding and wisdom. Each of us has different needs to address and things worth pursuing over the course of a lifetime. Each of us has to chart our own course, and it has to fit what we are ready for.”