In our Zen practice we tend to focus on sitting in awareness without intentional mindfulness practice. Last Sunday we had a special treat: Ayo Yetunde of the Sacred Refuge Sangha (a Theravadan group) was our guest speaker, and she spoke to us of the importance of body mindfulness to wholeness of ourselves as human beings, and of how these practices helped her find equanimity and joy. She led us through a couple of body scan exercises, and they were very well received. For my part this took me back over a decade ago to my first meditation practice, a fifteen minute mental body-scan which I approached with great fear. But when I rose to return to my day, it had so profoundly affected my consciousness that there was no turning back: meditation would thereafter be central to my life.
Soon thereafter I moved into Zen practice and left a lot of the intentional mindfulness exercises behind. Thanks to Ayo I now also realize I have left an important component of practice behind, and I have started to find ways to recover it.