Question: Is there a buildup of awareness that happens by the practice of recognizing or looking for your own basic nature so that, over time, it dispels the fear of these emotions?
Rinpoche: Yes, awareness is developed through the discipline of meditation. Beginning with shamatha meditation, we develop lots of awareness and mindfulness on the path. Then, in Mahamudra and Dzogchen, we emphasize a different aspect of mindfulness and awareness. Mindfulness and awareness come from the discipline of meditation, which continues in our everyday life. Therefore, formal sitting practice is very important for us. For that reason, many teachers tell us to sit at least 10-15 minutes every day. That helps us to generate this continuity of awareness in our everyday life. There is no easy solution for manifesting awareness or mindfulness in our everyday life without some discipline in practice. The only problem is that when a student hears a teacher say that they must sit every day, that's the time students usually begin to change their guru!
--from Penetrating Wisdom: The Aspiration of Samantabhadra by the Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche, published by Snow Lion Publications