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Mindful : August 2015
recognition. We each use all four, although often not consciously. Most of us rely on one or two, and may disparage the others. But they are all potent in revealing different aspects of the ter- rain we need to be aware of when acting wisely. Reductive Analysis Reductive analysis splits a situation into its parts and looks closely at each, using tools ranging from pro and con analyses to spreadsheet projections and detailed project plans. It’s what we usually mean by “analyzing.” Systems-Oriented Analysis Systems-oriented analyses show the more holistic view of how things connect to larger and often sur- prising patterns. We need to be aware of the wide variety of influences, some not immediately obvious, on our object of inquiry. Among other things, this kind of investigation clarifies the root causes of a problem as opposed to the symptoms, and can reveal unsuspected places where a small action can have a large effect on what we’re trying to achieve. Body Intuition On the intuitive side, we can get useful informa- tion through methodical attention to the feelings in our body, which includes “gut instinct”—“ there’s something off here,” or “I feel that person would be a good ally.” This is a deep listening skill which we can cultivate. Pattern Recognition Finally we have the whole area of pattern recog- nition, or what we can call somewhat romanti- cally “reading the signs.” This is a tricky area that includes synchronicity—“I almost got into two acci- dents on the way to having the meeting”—meaning- ful dreams, and more developed or finely tuned intu- ition. These can easily slide into wishful thinking, but watching and listening in ways we wouldn’t usually is a skill that can bring new and valuable information. At the office, you interview everyone, review the group’s performance, talk to the main players, begin to get some ideas, and analyze them from a number of different angles, but the situation still feels murky. You sit with this feeling and for no obvious reason begin to feel curious about Carmen, who works in a tech support role with John and had been quiet in the brief interview you had. She doesn’t seem central to the issues at play here, but you casually ask her to drop in again. Sure enough she provides the key. → August 2015 mindful 75 insight practices DharmaCraf ts THE CATALOG OF MEDITATION SUPPLIES THE CATALOG OF MEDITATION SUPPLIES THE CATALOG OF MEDITATION SUPPLIES Meditation Cushions Yoga Mats Inspirational Jewelry Meditation CDs DharmaKids Collection since 1979 dharmacrafts.com 866.339.4198 Keycode MFA Request a Catalog Call for Volume Discounts on Cushions Sign Up for Teaching Emails