This probably the most popular way to start thinking mindfully.
It is an exercise in which you may learn things you never knew before. The humble raisin, a favorite snack in little boxes for little kids. Gets a bad press for being so sweet, but at least it’s natural and sugar is removed when brushing teeth.
This is best done in a group of beginners who are just starting out on their journey.
They are relieved when they only have to deal with a shriveled piece of fruit.
So, everyone has their own raisin. This exercise may be done with chocolate. YUM, but there may be allergies among your pupils who may be uncomfortable speaking in the new environment. I never heard of anyone with a raisin allergy. Usually, we can go full steam ahead.
If I were the facilitator, I begin by saying:
Everyone, have a good close look at your raisin. Forget all your preconceived stereotypes about raisins and pretend that you have never seen one before.
Feel it, smell it, sense its qualities that make it a raisin. Hear it? Just play around with it and notice it as if you had never seen one before. Take your time. Think of words to explain it to someone else.
Next, pop it in your mouth and do the same things you did with your hands, this time with your tongue. This time you have the additional sense of taste. Can you describe the flavors, does the flavoring change when you finally bite into it and masticate while keeping in mind especially anything new you learn about the raisin.
If you are in a group, talk about what the experience felt like. always respecting the interpretation of others.
You have just completed your first Mindfulness exercise. Painless, and possibly quite enlightening. Mindfulness wants you to be curious and surprised by studying objects in the moment.
You can do this with anything though leave out the tasting if it isn’t appropriate, OK? Babies try to taste everything before Mindfulness begins to recede as they grow. As adults, we should keep this practice alive and learn from little ones.