The other day my husband David shared an amusing quote from comedian Emo Phillips. “I used to think the brain was the most wonderful organ in my body. Then I realized who was telling me this.” We all give our brains way too much of our attention. The following ten-minute All Senses Meditation from Richard Rohr’s recent post has helped me prioritize and empower my other other senses. Take ten minutes and see what you think…
All Senses Meditation
Our human senses of hearing, seeing, tasting, smelling, and touching are five distinct ways of knowing or experiencing the same thing, but in very different “languages.” True spirituality always brings us back to the original bodily knowing that is unitive experience. We cannot do all our thinking with our minds! During times of stress, remembering how to come back to our bodies can be tremendously beneficial. The following practice from meditation teacher Lorin Roche helps us connect with each of our senses and encounter something through each.
Set aside ten or so minutes to “play” with all your senses following Roche’s simple guide:
- Sit or stand anywhere you like and let yourself get settled for a minute. Do any settling-down movements you want. Stretch or yawn. Then notice the ebb and flow of your breathing.
- Begin to speak softly saying, “Now I am aware of seeing. . . .” Continue by saying whatever comes to mind that is visual, whether it is in the outer world or a mental image. The sentence can be said very slowly. Go on like this for a minute or so, just speaking the sentence, “Now I am aware of seeing. . . .”
- When you get to the word seeing, say whatever image your mind or eyes are on at that exact moment. As in, “I am aware of seeing the rain.”
- Switch to another sensory mode, “Now I am aware of smelling . . .” and say whatever you are smelling.
- Continue this way, starting each sentence with “Now I am aware of . . .” and then choosing another sense. Improvise off your immediate perceptions. . . .
Move through the senses in any order you wish:
Now I am aware of seeing. . . .
Now I am aware of smelling. . . .
Now I am aware of hearing. . . .
Now I am aware of tasting. . . .
Now I am aware of touching. . . .
Now I am aware of moving (fast, slow, being still, etc.). . . . 
If you found this exercise helpful and would like to receive Richard Rohr’s daily meditations click here.