Free-floating awareness meditation

tips of skis in snow - free-floating awareness meditation
Free-Floating Awareness Meditation

The next mode of awareness is “free-floating.” Returning to the camera analogy, in this type of focus, point the camera at the first thing that draws your attention. You see a beautiful flower. Focus on it, taking your time to thoroughly see it before clicking the shutter. Even then, linger, letting the full image burn into your retinas. Only when you have finished do you move the camera to the next thing you see. Do this for the entire meditation session, slowly moving from thing to thing as you practice.

The hazard here is scattered attention. If you haven’t trained your mind to focus, this session could turn into a series of distractions and not be effective. Be sure to stay with each object for at least a few seconds. Respect it. Sense it fully. Give it its due. Only then should you move on.

Once you have developed enough concentration to use thought as your object of meditation, you can choose which type of thought on which to place your awareness. With strong focus, you can do free-floating awareness. As thoughts bubble up in your consciousness, move your attention to whichever thought is most prominent, regardless of which type of thought it may be. Especially with thought, beware of the tendency to space out, even if the thoughts come rapidly.


Begin your movement practice. Place your attention inside the breath, and remove any tendency to push or pull on it. Let it go in and out. Sense if it is shallow or deep. Notice if it increases in frequency or becomes less frequent. Feel the body parts involved in the breath and how they react to the in  breath and the out breath. Do this for whatever interval you like.


Begin your movement practice. Allow your attention to be drawn to whatever body sensation first arises in your consciousness. A sensation might yammer for your attention. Turn to that. Drop your attention deeply into it. Stay with it. Then, when it feels finished, move on to the next sensation you notice. Do this for whatever interval you like.

I have included more than twenty “Your Turn” exercises in the book Make Every Move a Meditation.

This excerpt is from Make Every Move a Meditation by Nita Sweeney which is available now through Amazon and Mango Media.