The Black Dot Exercise

When you look at this piece of paper, what do you see? Three years ago my meditation teacher asked me and twenty others this question and we all came back with the same obvious answer – we see a black dot on a white piece of paper. My meditation teacher then went on to tell us that the black dot represents all the bad things in our life, and the white part of the paper represents all the good things in our life.
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The first thing to note from this exercise is how immediately drawn to the black dot we all are, and the same goes for life. It’s so easy to just focus on all the bad things and forget how much good stuff there is, and it can get to the point where all we can see is the black dot.
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The second thing I took away from this was trying to then learn how to focus on the white part of the paper, aka the good stuff. If you ignore the black dot or try and pretend it’s not there, does that make it easier to see the white surrounding it? For me, I found by trying to convince myself the black dot wasn’t there meant all I could see and think of was the black dot. But when I started accepting the black dot was there and I saw it as it was, this allowed my mind to let go of the thoughts surrounding the black dot and move my focus to the white stuff surrounding it.
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The final and biggest thing thing I learnt from this exercise was accepting that the black dot will always be there. Some people’s black dot may be a lot bigger than others, and your own black dot will continuously vary in size throughout your life, years, days and even moments. But no one can avoid not having their own black dot because suffering is an inevitable part of life and it is something everyone experiences in many different shapes and forms.
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Whenever I find myself getting caught up in thinking about all the bad stuff in life, I remind myself of this exercise. It allows me to take a step back and it helps me remember that while the black dot is always there and will never go away, nor does the white stuff around it, that will always be there too 🌤🗒
(Originally posted on @mindfullyevie Instagram and Facebook)

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2 thoughts on “The Black Dot Exercise”

    1. Hi Steve,

      Glad you’ve seen this as you were the one who taught me and many others it! I can’t thank you enough.

      Metta, Evie x

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