Tangerine of Mindfulness
“Looking at a tangerine, a person who practices awareness can see all the wonders of the universe…” ~ The Buddha
“What does it mean to eat a tangerine in awareness?
When you are eating the tangerine, you are aware that you are eating the tangerine.
You fully experience its lovely fragrance and sweet taste.
When you peel the tangerine, you know you are peeling the tangerine;
When you remove a slice and put it in your mouth,
You know that you are removing a slice and putting it in your mouth;
When you experience the lovely fragrance and sweet taste of the tangerine,
You are aware that you are experiencing the lovely fragrance and sweet taste of the tangerine.
That is what it means to eat a tangerine in awareness.
“Children, eating a tangerine in mindfulness means that while eating the tangerine, you are truly in touch with it.
Your mind is not chasing after thoughts of yesterday or tomorrow, but is dwelling fully in the present moment.
The tangerine is fully present.
Living in mindful awareness means to live in the present moment, your mind and body dwelling in the very here and now.
“A person who practices mindfulness can see things in the tangerine that others are unable to see.
An aware person can see the tangerine tree, the tangerine blossom in the spring, the sunlight and rain which nourished the tangerine.
Looking deeply, one can see ten thousand things which have made the tangerine possible.
Looking at a tangerine, a person who practices awareness can see all the wonders of the universe and how all things interact with one another.
“Children, our daily life is just like a tangerine.
One hour is like one section of tangerine.
Living all twenty-four hours of a day is like eating all the sections of a tangerine.
The path I have found is the path of living each hour of the day in awareness, mind and body always dwelling in the present moment.
The opposite is to live in forgetfulness. If we live in forgetfulness, we do not know that we are alive.
We do not fully experience life because our mind and body are not dwelling in the here and now.”
~ From the teachings of the Buddha. An excerpt from the magnificent book Old Path White Clouds – Walking in the Footsteps of the Buddha by Thich Nhat Hanh
*I find myself irresistibly drawn to this timeless reminder especially during this season’s busyness that seems to come upon us at year’s end. May we each find that Secret Path of allowing life to flow.
Each moment bringing with it a morsel of sweetness and delight.
May this be a season of joyously savouring tangerines!
I wish you all, my dear friends and readers a meaningful Christmas and a Magnificent New Year!
Great photographs you did dear, I loved them. Thank you, love, nia
One of the few times I’ve tried my hand at still life photography. It was absolutely delightful! 😀 Thank you so much Nia! Sharon
A very beautifully kept and woven analogy of general mindfulness with a simple real example of a tangerine.
Dear Tua, a warm welcome to the blog. Thank you for your lovely message. Indeed, what lessons we may learn from a simple tangerine! I look forward to knowing you. Warmest wishes, Sharon
Thanks so much for the warm welcome. I hope to read a lot more from you.
Wish you a very happy new year. 🙂
Beautiful photographs, Sharon, to accompany such a profound and lovely lesson…I did this exercise once, in a spirituality and mindfulness class…it truly changes and illuminates the daily round. Thank you so much for the invitation to renew my sense of presence and gratitude. Gentle peace to you.
I have never looked at the tangerine the same way again! And at the busiest time of the year, it seems it’s tangerine season 😀 We get the best tangerines and the stores are filled with mounds of these orange gems. I like to think if we all took more time to sit down and cherish our tangerines in mindfulness, we can indeed make this a season of peace. I cherish your visits Kitty. Your thoughtful words are always in season. Blessings, Sharon
this is a fine example of “being in the moment”. Beautiful pictures…yummy.
Thank you Heartafire! So lovely to hear from you. Wishing you a wonderful season of peace, joy and rest. Sharon p.s. I am unable to access your blog link here. Could you please send it to me here? Thanks.
Beautiful! …and the photos are delicious.
As was the fruit! 😀 Thank you so much for sharing with me the joy of creating this post. I wish you and your dear family a wonderful season of rest and celebration of togetherness. Hugs, Sharon
And to you, also, Sharon. Peaceful Holidays!
Hi Sharon, A wonderful way to remind us about awareness and presence. I agree with Heartafire, your pictures are yummy! They really add to the story and made me to stop to appreciate the wonders of tangerines and life.. Thanks, Brad
Ever since I read this teaching, I had been wanting to share it in the hopes that the simplicity of peeling a tangerine might be an art to savour. The scent of this “fragrant mist” described by the 5th century Chinese poet Liu Hsun of the tangerine evokes a soothing delight to the soul. I shared this as much to remind myself of the lingering details of beauty that generously surrounds us during this blessed season. Hope you’re having lots of tangerines where you are Brad! 😀 Sharon
No, but maybe I need to buy some to practice! Sometimes I do eat very slowly and mindfully as a practice. Thanks Sharon
Most moving and excellent piece. I find myself stopping to savor the moment more often now; I’d like to believe its a growing maturity and spiritual awareness. But, maybe its just because I have more time, now. Either way, the benefit is unquestionable.
Thanks for sharing this
I can imagine that crafting your woodwork is a very precise and mindful process requiring patience. I can only imagine how very deeply spiritual it is to create such beautiful pieces. What a wonderful place to be in life to find oneself stopping to savour the moments. Those are indeed sacred moments. Thank you for your kind presence and here’s wishing you and Ms Barney and your family a very Merry Christmas and a glorious New Year! Sharon
It is always nice to do an edible photoshoot 😀 Thank you so much for coming over Smilecalm. I found myself blessed and renewed by your blog. Sharon
I’m happy to know
one with abundant talent
enjoyed my mindful musings 🙂
A beautiful way to start the morning. Thank you, and happy holidays.
To be able to recognise our moment disorder (borrowing your very excellent description!) is to allow ourselves to return. Thank you for the deepening on mindfulness. And happy holidays to you and your family as well! Sharon
This is a wonderful passage to excerpt. I enjoyed this meditation and a reminder of mindfulness. Thank you!
It is a joy to share a passage which has touched me deeply with those who find equal meaning and light in these same words. Thank you! Sharon
Beautiful post and photos, Annie
Thank you Annie and it looks like I don’t need to wish you a very merry, snowy, white Christmas – because it’s already done! 😀 Sharon
A Perfect Tangerine article.
Thank you for coming by M.H! It’s been refreshing reading your thoughts. Keep well! Sharon
Sharon a sumptuous feast of words and visuals I enjoyed this perfect moment devouring your poetic prose and photo’s, as always you bring gifts of gratitude and thoughts on a positive way of life.
Here’s wishing you and your loved ones a wonderful Christmas filled with many tangerine moments my dear Kath! Hugs and see you again after the New Year! Sharon
So lush!! Yummo!
It’s wonderful to experience physicality with full awareness. But… who is the “i” that is mindfully experiencing this heavenly tangerine? 😉
A wonderful lesson. Too often, our minds are to occupied to appreciate the here and now.
Also, the photos make me really crave a tangerine! 🙂
Haha good to know! Hope you’ve had your tangerine craving fulfilled! Merry Christmas Pat! I cannot think of you without thinking of a cheeky squirrel face or a confident glint on a fluffy bird. I hope that is a compliment!!! 😀 Hugs and here’s to another fabulous new year! Sharon
Sharon, what a beautiful reminder to slow down and savor. This is something I aspire to do and yet I have a difficult time practicing. Thank you for your words and images today. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
I shared this post as much for myself to savour each present moment. To be awake and not scurry around like a Santa’s elf 😀
I am encouraged by this quote by Thoreau “As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.”
So, one day at a time. One moment at a time. I just want to take this time to let you know how much I have enjoyed getting to know you. You are a gracious, gentle heart and I am blessed and strengthened knowing you. Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year to you and your family!! Hugs, Sharon
– To feel the present, to feel creation/Creator and to appreciate the fruits (metaphoric) of the universe. Beautiful, mouthwatering photography to go with.
– “Your mind is not chasing after thoughts of yesterday or tomorrow, but is dwelling fully in the present moment… If we live in forgetfulness, we do not know that we are alive…”
– Use the juice of some of the tangerine to make my panna cotta. Using non-dairy milk/cream if preferred. An easy home project with Precious One, using Dixie cups. 😀 )))
– “Happiness is… a family portrait that turns out well!” 😀 I wish you and yours the happiest of the Holiday Season. You are always in my heart, Fae.
We just made a traditional Finnish Christmas tarts with prune jam yesterday with Ninja Elf 😀 I shall certainly look up your panna cotta recipe and make it with Boy. He always asks if we’re making Aunty Fae’s recipe!!!!!!!! 😀 (he has learnt that it must be yums if it is!) We’re going to Norway for Christmas. We’re usually back in Malaysia this time of the year. This is only our second time around in the North in 14 years! But I’ve been enjoying myself thoroughly with all the presents and friends and warmth of giving and receiving! You are a joy and a gift to my heart and my family dearest Fae. I will write to you again. Love, Sharon
Thank you for this post and the interesting photos, Sharon.
Taking this opportunity to personally wish you and your dear family a wonderful Christmas and a happy New Year Russ! I can’t wait to see more of what you have in store for us! Blessings. Sharon
Dear Sharon…thank you for this reminder..I needed this ..badly…:-).
My best wishes to you and your lovely family,…
Wishes for a beautiful year and wonderful life ahead..
Hey Sharon… i had commented from by mistake..from my daughter’s blog…didn’t see that she was signed in..:-)
Hello Sriram! No worries – that way I get to check out her blog too! 😀 Even as the year wraps up, I just want to take this time to thank you for your kind friendship and support. It has been a joy and privilege to see your magnificent work. And the treasures of our earth. Please send all my warmest greetings to your family and blessings overflow for the coming New Year! Sharon
Thank you My Dear Friend…so happy that I met you..
my love and best wishes to you and your lovely Family…:-)
This comes on a day when I decided that ‘it is all too much’ and have taken two extra days off work simply to “chill” before Christmas and (thanks to reading your blog post this morning) am savouring every moment. Thanks. 🙂
I shared this post as a reminder to myself to stop and smell the tangerines! 😀 How wonderful it is when we honour our need to rest and slow down and not push on just to keep up. I have been thinking of you and thinking about the issue of justice and forgiveness. What it means on a global scale and in our personal lives. I will come over after the New Year and share with you. I’ve recently been grappling with this myself and I’ve come to the conclusion that justice and mercy are not mutually exclusive neither contradictory. But will keep this for another day! I hope you will have a meaningful Christmas filled with so much treasures that your heart will burst from the awareness of it all!!! HUGS xxx Sharon
Thanks for your support the past year and for your great posts. I have really enjoyed them.
I am offline now for three weeks. I will ‘see’ you in the new year.
Have a great Christmas. 🙂
yes, great photos. Now I totally want a tangerine! I am fully aware of my lack of having tangerines in this house! 🙂
Think of me when you have a tangerine next 😀 I wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas, book sales off the charts and buckets of tangerines. And love as wide as the sky. Hugs, Sharon
We do have a mandarin orange tree, and they’re almost ripe. That’s pretty close, right? I’ll think of you nonetheless! Thanks for all the well-wishes! Right back at you for you and yours!
Wow, your very own tree! Well then, I’m right there with you, eh? 😀 Hugs and thank you again for your meaningful book. I’ll be getting them after the hols.
Woohoo! You are therefore my best blog supporter! Thanks a bushel full! 🙂 🙂
It was wonderful to read your post with full awareness of it’s great teaching and the beautiful photos of the tangerine. Hyvaa Joulua ia Onnellista Uutta Vuotta!
Ooo Tiny, your Finnish spelling is impeccable! I can still never quite figure out how many vowels and consonants to stretch (eek!) The stores are filled with the best quality of tangerines this time of the year. And every home has a big bowl of gleaming orange. To the beauty of this season. Hyvää Joulua ja Onnellista Uutta Vuotta sinulle myös! 😀 Sharon
Aw, lovely. Your photos are a beautiful accompaniment.
So glad you came over Viv! Thank you. Tomorrow starts our Christmas holidays and we’re off to Norway! Just want to wish you and your family happy holidays and a wonderful New Year ahead! That quilt must be a practice of patience. Love it. Sharon
Wow, your photographs really illustrated this concept well for me.
That’s wonderful to know! Thank you so much. This is my first time spending December in Finland after my son was born. It is such a busy month and I found myself thinking of tangerines quite a bit 😀 Here’s wishing you happy holidays and to a brand New Year! Sharon
All the best you and your family as well 🙂
Wonderful post accompanied by fabulous photo’s!! Well done 😀
Wonderful to hear from you Letizia and thank you! I’m enjoying Christmas season for the first time in Finland and it’s wonderful! The only thing missing is the snow! 😀 I wish you and your family a delicious, merry and memorable Christmas! Looking forward to all you have in store for us next year! Sharon p.s. thank you so much for Liking me on Facebook.
Hi Sharon, no snow in Finland??? What happened?? 😉 Well hope you and your family will have a wonderful Christmas anyway even if the snow is missing 🙂
And you too…keep up the good work in 2014!!!
Gorgeous photos Sharon! And oh the power of mindfulness… I’ve been on a mindfulness course this autumn and it is all very familiar to me. 🙂 May you and your family have a lovely Christmas and a wonderful New Year! Warmest greetings from Espoo! 🙂
Moi Espoolainen :D! I love your new Gravatar pix. Today is the last day of school and the hols start tomorrow! We’re off to Norway to spend Christmas. Here’s wishing you a wonderful season of joy and to a super year ahead! Warmest greetings from Helsinki! Sharon
Moi ja kiitos Sharon! 🙂 Norway sounds great! Have a wonderful holiday!
The awareness of those moments shine in your images Sharon-this is a wonderful post-thank you! Best wishes for a wonderful Christmas and a most abundant 2014!
Your photos certainly add to the experience of the tangerine! I would not have been surprised at all if Thich Nhat Hanh’s clear and compassionate words had been your own, they seem to arrive from a very similar source.
Have a wonderful holiday season Sharon.
With deep gratitude dear Chris for your great support and friendship this past year. Your quiet presence is light. Wishing you and your family a wonderful season of togetherness and joy! Sharon
Tis is such a beautiful reminder. Tomorrow, my life is a tangerine. Each beautiful and pregnant moment will be a slice of the tangerine, I will smell, taste and dance with each perfect slice.
What a gift you have. Such a beautifully written post.
Thank you for sharing. 🙂
How beautiful. I loved every moment of the tangerine experience. And I am remembering the old stories of the time when an orange was a precious gift in a Christmas stocking. Christmas blessings to you and your family.
Oh I absolutely love the old tradition of dropping an orange into a Christmas stocking! The cherished appreciation of a simple, wholesome treat. Did you ever get an orange in your stocking? 😀 Thank you for the lovely season’s greetings and a very wonderful Christmas to you and yours especially to your mother! Hugs, Sharon
Thank you Sharon for your good wishes. No, we didn’t get an orange but I must ask my mother if she did. Oranges would have been more precious when she was young.
Thanks for the reminder of the gift of staying present. If only I could remember this all the time I would not miss so much. It seems I spend a lot of time pulling myself back into present time. Love and hugs to you, Sharon.
Wishing you a light-filled winter solstice and contemplative holiday season, Sharon!
Your photos are absolutely breathtaking and so beautifully compliment this meditation! Your conversation about the orange in the Christmas stocking brings to mind a memory of my grandmother. Her parents were poor potato farmers and their eight children were as often hungry as not. Her sister Isabelle wanted to become a nurse but their parents couldn’t afford nursing school. Isabelle was a great beauty, favored by an aunt named Maude. Maude had married a man of means and, with his consent, she invited Isabelle to live with her while she finished high school and then went to nursing school. Isabelle wanted to go but refused to leave my grandmother, her favorite sibling. So Maude offered that my grandmother would come too. Years later my grandmother would confide to me in a whisper that she really didn’t want to leave her family but she did, for Isabelle. She would describe passively the luxury of her Aunt Maude’s home and how different it was from growing up on the farm.
“Aunt Maude always had a bowl of oranges in a bowl in the hallway,” she said, “I tasted one once but didn’t care for it. I liked the foods I grew up with.”
It always made me sad that my grandmother didn’t enjoy the orange. But at the same time, it endeared her to me that she remained as humble as her beginnings throughout her entire life.
Many blessings to you and your dear ones for the holidays and for 2014! Love, Vivian
Oh I loved reading your story about your Grandmother, Vivian! How very precious to know her and her thoughts. And how wonderful it must be to have shared in whispered confidences between a grandmother her grand-daughter. It is amazing that this post reminded you of your grandmother because this post was written in remembrance of my grandmother who passed away exactly this time one year ago. For she was the essence of mindfulness. And it was she who first showed me what it meant to peel an orange in mindfulness.
Thank you so much for sharing with me this legacy of your Grandmother. I somehow feel she left you with a lasting legacy, just as my own Grandmother left for me. To our beautiful Grandmothers and how the hearts of women across continents are entwined by the love of our grandmas.
A blessed Christmas to you, my strong heart. And to all at home. I’ll see you back here after the holidays. Happy, happy New Year!!!! HUGS and so much love, Sharon
Thank you for the beautiful message, and reminder, so wonderfully illustrated!
Thank you for your visit and the wonderful note you left behind! We’re off for our Christmas hols and I’ll be back on the blog after the New Year. Just want to take this time to wish you and your loved ones a Happy New Year and to all the places you shall go! Hugs, Sharon
Hi, Sharon! Hope all is well with you! Glad to see you on the blog again. Love your tangerine photos. I could smell them from your photos. 🙂
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Many blessings to you and your family! Thank you for sharing these wonderfully inspiring words and photos!
I learn a lot from this. Thank you for sharing. Happy holidays and blessings and love to you ♥
stunning photos and a beautiful post. thank you sharon – all the best for a wonderful new year! aleya
Sharon, your photos are gorgeous and your words sublime. Happy New Year to you. We have so enjoyed getting to know you this year and look forward to more of your wonderful posts. 🙂 ~ Terri & James
I love the concept of hours being like the segments of the tangerine – have never thought of it like that before! A good reminder to taste, savour, and enjoy each tasty segment of our days.
Wonderful pictures and words. I’m doing the same with the chocolate I’m eating;-) lots of good vibes from me
Hi Sharon. All the best of the new year to you and your family. 🙂
Your photos have a zen like quality to them. I was in a bit of a trance for a few moments there. 🙂
Happy New Year Sharon! After 20+ years of meditation and mindfulness practice, it’s still amazing to me how mindfulness can go into hiding from time to time as I get caught up in the busyness of life. Your lovely guidance on how to mindfully eat a tangerine and those beautiful photos of yours invite us all into an exceptional experience of slowing down and being in the present moment. This is a fabulous post, an excellent teaching and I’m grateful for the reminder. Namaste.
What a joy to hear from you at the start of the New Year! Thank you for taking the time to leave this heartwarming and thoughtful note. It stayed on my mind for a very long time. Blessings and to the splendours of our magnificent world that you bring to us through your work every time. With deep admiration and gratitude, Sharon p.s. To another awesome year ahead!!
Woooww!!! Wonderful!! Beautiful!! 😀
Hi, Sharon! I’m cleaning out my email and saw the comment I saved from you expressing an interest in autographed copies of 101 Tips for a Happier Marriage. Just following up to see if you’re still interested. Happy New Year! 🙂 ~Betsy
Simply stunning images, each and every one of them. Your writing is so thought provoking and makes perfect sense – a very timely reminder to me at the moment. Thinking of you and hope all is well. P
What a gorgeous post, and I’ll certainly be reminded of the lesson when I eat tangerines and oranges from now on! I keep a glass bowl on my kitchen table filled with oranges and other fruit to brighten up the dark winter days (I live in Ohio, USA, not as cold and dark as Finland, but it still helps to add some winter cheer). When eating them I’ll be sure to enjoy the moment! Thanks for sharing this delightful blog, and best wishes for a fabulous year. 🙂
Hello, dear Sharon. Such rich and colorful tangerines. They made me very hungry. Sorry I have been so negligent this year about visiting sites. I’ll try to do better.
Reblogged this on Kate Is Rising and commented:
I love this post, and so I wanted to share it. 🙂
What a beautiful representation. Loved the pictures and the write up. I am glad to be following you now.
Hello, my dear friend!! What a gorgeous post reminding all of us readers that the things that seem so simple and that we often take for granted are really resplendent with juiciness and sunshine, if we only pause to appreciate them. I also want to thank you so very much for the root of the root of your soul photo. It is placed in a place of great honor in my home. I sent you a package also a few months ago– I do hope that you received it. I wish you much love and inspiration. Let’s keep in touch, dear one. Angela
My dearest Angela!!! Oh how very good to hear from you! I apologise for this late reply. We’ve been travelling abroad this summer and just got back recently. I wrote to you immediately when I received your gorgeous gift and sent you an email at your Yahoo address. I have been waiting for a reply from you but now I realised that you probably didn’t get my email after all… You have been in my mind all this time my dear friend. What you made for me touched not only me but my family and my young son especially who wanted me to share this special blanket with him! 😀 I wrote you a funny story about what happened when I first got the gift. So much more to tell – this is my email address email@example.com Please drop me a line in case you have changed your email address. I would love to hear from you and catch up! With many blessings from my heart, Shaz x
What a beautiful post! One of my favorites in a long time!
I love this, I was just talking to my friend this morning about meditation and mindfulness. So this is great to read right now. I once watched a movie about some monks who did this mindful walking thing, it was so inspiring only I cannot remember what it was called. I am terrible at meditating, but mindfulness is something I find easier to grasp. Especially when it is explained in such a simple way as you have done with this tangerine. Love it.
Thanks Jodie! You’re a sweetheart. I’m practising too. To eating tangerines mindfully. Hugs, Sharon