Mindfulness has the ability to notice something dispassionately and to maintain a state of coolness, of dispassion, by referring to and working with the mind’s responses; this is a highly focused but not fixated state. For example, on hearing a sound we can notice what that sound does to us. When we hear a powerful sound, like a chainsaw or some machine screeching away, we can feel the mind tensing up. But then if we’re mindful, keeping a sense of coolness about that, the mind actually relaxes; we hear the sound simply as a sound, and we don’t get this build-up of stress. So in some ways, although it’s rather undramatic, this is a very valuable practice. Now we’re not saying, “The way to meditate is to go and listen to a chainsaw” or, “Go and sit in front of a spin drier all day long”, but it’s a way of dismantling the compulsiveness – the ways that we get caught with things – not by antagonism, but by just staying objective and dispassionate. With an unpleasant experience, the mind habitually tenses up and to tries to push the feeling away, but with a pleasant sound or taste the mind tends to go towards it and tries to hold on to it and linger in it, or gobble it up. But then, through simply noticing that, we begin to find a sense of calm composure in ourselves so that, no matter what comes into consciousness, we are able to register it for what it is and to maintain the emotional mood of dispassion, of objectivity. We see that whatever we experience comes, and then goes. It has the nature to arise, and then cease.