Meditation teacher Sharon Salzberg introduced me to a compassion practice where you picture yourself surrounded by kind, warm-hearted beings who are sending you generous offerings of love and goodwill.
I like to think of Mindful magazine as a version of that practice. Our Spring issue is more than just a collection of articles—it’s a collection of hearts and minds sharing stories about how they’re showing up in the world with kindness, patience, humor, and grace.
In this beautiful issue, you’ll find Ashanti Branch, whose Million Mask Movement encourages us to embrace our authenticity by sharing what we let others see and what we keep hidden. Michelle Maldonado offers a calming breath practice to soothe our overactive minds if we wake in the middle of the night. The late veteran science writer Sharon Begley, in her last column for Mindful, poignantly explores the science behind why mindfulness practice may change the way we experience the passage of time. And Mindful’s managing editor, Stephanie Domet, dives into one of her most potent life lessons about the paralyzing effects of fear and shares how she courageously opened herself up to healing.
All of these kind souls are your friends, even if you don’t know them. Even if you never meet them. They’re rooting for you. Each one of them. They know that we’re all connected. And that their work is also yours. And your work is theirs. And if they can share even a tiny slice of their experience of being a vulnerable human in this world, maybe someone out there might not feel so alone.
Freedom for Us All
And, to me, that’s an essential piece of what freedom is about—the deepest knowing that we’re connected to each other and to the world. The fearless release of the barriers and judgments that separate you from me, your pain from my pain, your joy from my joy, your struggle from my struggle, your thriving from my thriving. All of the people in the pages of this magazine are shining the light of their human hearts for you, with the hope that our collective efforts allow all of us to inch that much closer to being free.
As founding editor Barry Boyce reminds us in his feature “Caring Deeply Without Striving,” “The point is to value connection over control, to find freedom in merging ourselves with what we’re doing and who we’re with.”
May we all continue to help each other be free.