In the practice of mindfulness, we work on becoming aware of whatever we are experiencing in the attempt to develop a more relaxed relationship towards the world (and towards ourselves). From sounds and smells to sensations and thoughts, we practice noticing whatever arises in our mind from a place of curiosity and care instead of judgement. Our typical reaction to what we perceive is to make a judgement about it... "This is good" or "This is bad"... and then we react by trying to bring that thing closer to us or push it away.

As we deepen our practice, we begin to see that the way we perceive things is always tangled up in our own mental conditions, which are influenced by the way we were raised, our placement in society, and our own lived experiences, among many other factors. But that doesn't mean our judgements are always accurate or contain the ultimate truth - it just means that how we see the world is always in part a reflection of what we have internalized.

Using the tools of mindfulness and meditation can help us wake up to the way things actually are - constantly shifting and changing, and never defined by one fixed perspective. These practices also help us to have more compassion when we encounter opinions or beliefs that differ from ours, because we understand that other people may have different mental patterns than we do. We can learn to release judgement for the sake of our own inner peace, and step into a reality with endless possibilities - including the possibility of a world with more love, understanding and mutual respect.