Be the one who sees
Life is not a tragedy
Find Your Middle Ground
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Sing or dance while the music of life is being played. Love this video and message from Alan Watts and David Linberg. Thanks to Evolutionary Mystic for sharing 💛
Living a soulful life in the moment
Too often we blunder through life like automatic robots, waking up to our morning coffees then soldiering on to work, only to return home again to follow the same ritual in the morning once again. Are we really spending time doing things that mean something to us, being present with the people who matter, connected to the richness of life?
Philosopher and writer Alan Watts asks the perennial questions about the meaning of life, taking us on a moving and thought provoking journey that will make you think more deeply about how and who you spend your time with.
A soulful look at living a life that’s alive and full.
Published on Jul 26, 2016
A film I made last night based on my favourite quotes from Alan Watts about how the way of looking at your life as a journey can be…
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“Until you practice surrender, the spiritual dimension is something you read about, talk about, get excited about, write books about, think about, believe in — or don’t, as the case may be.
It makes no difference. Not until you surrender does it become a living reality in your life.”
~ Eckhart Tolle
This reminds me of some insightful words from Hariod at Contentedness.net
“It is perhaps something of a paradox that for her to find what she innately knows she wants, she – as seeker – must dissolve into awareness, no longer to live as a subject in search of knowledge-objects” ~ Hariod Brawn
As long as we see spirituality as something out there that we seek, we will not find it.
Spirituality is not the object, but is within us all.
It is the ultimate subject … the conscious awareness of who we are.
It is revealed only when we experience surrender.
An inquiring mind is engaged and attached to outcome. Allow the unknown intelligence that is not of the intellect to sense what is already here.
Let yourself dissolve into awareness.
“Self-compassion is a way of relating to the ever-changing landscape of who we are with kindness and acceptance—especially when we fail or feel inadequate … Self-compassion requires acknowledging that we share the human condition of imperfection.” ~ Kristen Neff
How many of us learned about this when we were young? … How many of us are teaching our children about this? …
In today’s culture, especially in America, there is so much emphasis on self confidence, competing to win and striving for what you want in life. Yet, so much of it is out of our control.
We all know that mistakes happen and we don’t all win the prize at the end of the day.
How do you cope with these natural downturns and disappointments that are a part of all life? And how can we prepare ourselves for the inevitable lows of life?
“In order to flower, self-compassion depends on honest, direct contact with our own vulnerability. Compassion fully blossoms when we actively offer care to ourselves. To help people address feelings of insecurity and unworthiness, I often introduce mindfulness and compassion through a meditation I call the RAIN of Self-Compassion. The acronym RAIN, first coined about 20 years ago by Michele McDonald, is an easy-to-remember tool for practicing mindfulness. It has four steps:
Recognize what is going on;
Allow the experience to be there, just as it is;
Investigate with kindness;
Natural awareness, which comes from not identifying with the experience.
You can take your time and explore RAIN as a stand-alone meditation or move through the steps in a more abbreviated way whenever challenging feelings arise.”
~ Tara Brach
I have spent many years helping others find self acceptance and connection to their inner being. However, one the greatest tools I use, is not in our thinking mind at all.
The simplest way to allow compassion to flow and for the heart to open, is to sit quietly and place one or both hands above your heart center.
Take a moment and try it now.
This gesture activates a soothing response that we mammals have. It replicates the feeling of comfort, safety and nourishment at our mother’s breast.
As babies we felt it. As children we received comfort from a motherly hug. Yet, we don’t need someone else to bring about the same physical and emotional response.
You can give yourself this gift at any time.
You can also place a hand on your belly and let the breathe settle into the center of your being. When we breathe using the diaphragm, we activate the relaxation response in the para sympathetic nervous system. Anxiety abates as the brain releasing comforting hormones.
Connect to your breath and allow the nurturing energy to flow.
“As the great Confucius said, ‘The one who would be in constant happiness must frequently change.’
But we keep looking back, don’t we?
We cling to things in the past and cling to things in the present…
Do you want to enjoy a symphony? Don’t hold on to a few bars of the music. Don’t hold on to a couple of notes. Let them pass, let them flow. The whole enjoyment of a symphony lies in your readiness to allow the notes to pass…”
~ Anthony de Mello
Beautiful… Let’s enjoy the symphony of life and allow the notes to pass 💛
This recomposition by Max Richter of Vivaldi’s classic The Four Seasons touches me deeply.
I hope you enjoy this updated re-blog from 3 years ago. Here’s to happy feet and being grounded in yoga and in life 🙏
Instead of trying to see what’s beyond the horizon, take a moment and look down at your feet.
Your feet are your foundation and will keep you grounded in life.
They allow you stand tall and stay balanced.
Remember you’ll need your feet to take you in the direction you are heading in life.
You wil also need them in your senior years to be flexible enough to prevent falling and injury.
Check in with them regularly and they will bring you back to the present and to your middle ground.
(Pause for a moment of foot appreciation)
“Thank you for being there every day.
You do such a good job.
I really appreciate all that you do. Thank you!”
(They say thank you back)
Every day in class I pause to acknowledge our feet. We must take good care of them as…
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“Truth is not fancy, and does not need to be.
In fact, decorations only hide it from sight.
You can’t force people to see truth.
Arguing with them will only draw their attention away from it.”
~ Lao Tzo *
Lets keep it simple and true today.
*Braun Jr., John; Tzu, Lao; von Bargen, Julian; Warkentin, David (2012-12-02). Tao Te Ching (Kindle Locations 1064-1071). . Kindle Edition.
” Say yes to everything. Reject nothing, least of all something in yourself.”
~ Swami Prajnanpad
Say yes to yourself every day.
Acknowledge what you are feeling and what is happening in a neutral way.
“Yes, I’m nervous.”
“Yes, I am struggling.”
“Yes, there is fear.”
“Yes, I am being defensive.”
“Yes, I notice resistance. ”
“Yes, there is judgment.”
Don’t reject anything you are experiencing.
Create space for this part of you.
Your authentic self is messy and imperfect
and is yearning to be loved.
Open up to all of who you are.
Let yourself be.
To be authentic, you must acknowledge this part of your self.
Touch what is there in the moment and connect with it.
Be with it.
And you will find your inner critic starts to quieten
and light fills your heart.
Say yes to yourself every day.
“Sometimes letting go is an act of far greater power than defending or hanging on”
~ Eckhart Tolle
Letting go can be more powerful that putting our energy into defending or hanging on… yet it is often hard to do.
Sometimes we don’t realize that we are holding on to something, until we notice tension in our body or mind. Or we feel miserable and don’t know why! And even then, our resistance to surrender continues.
I like to think of letting go as a real gift to ourselves.
To let go, we give up the illusion of control, and the protective barrier we have put up.
We become vulnerable, and in doing so, we let the love in.
It is an act of compassion and acceptance.
It connects us to the present moment and to our inner being.
It allows the moving energy to flow once more.
What can you let go of today as a loving gift to yourself?
“Self-absorption in all its forms kills empathy, let alone compassion. When we focus on ourselves, our world contracts as our problems and preoccupations loom large.
But when we focus on others, our world expands.
Our own problems drift to the periphery of the mind and so seem smaller, and we increase our capacity for connection – or compassionate action.”
~ Daniel Goleman from Social Intelligence: The New Science of Human Relationships
This is big.
For our society and the world.
For every adolescent about to reach adulthood.
For every man and woman asking “What’s in it for me?”
There cannot be peace in the world as long as we remain self absorbed and competing against one another.
The answer lies within each and every one of us.
Now is the time to feed into the greater good of humanity and connect with empathy to our fellow human beings.
You can start now by focusing on understanding others and expanding your world. Be curious rather than judge those who don’t fit in to your way of thinking. Embrace a new perspective.
We are all imperfect.
We all have beliefs, values and feelings. We all have needs and want to be loved, belong and be happy.
We cannot focus on our own happiness, without being concerned about the happiness of others.
After all, everything is connected.
“When you meet the Master, he puts a spiritual cowbell around your neck so that wherever you go, both he and you know where you each are and so can laugh together. For when you hear that bell, you are immediately reminded of your inseparableness from the Master.”* ~ Mooji
I smiled when I read this today. Have you noticed others with cowbells? They are the peeps that we immediately feel attuned and connected to. We seem to be drawn to each other like magnets.
Walking along the street in Philadelphia the other day, I felt the cow bell vibration with a few people among the crowds. We made eye contact and smiled.
And then I thought back to how I was earlier in life as I walked along the street. As a young child, I wanted people to see me. I wanted to be noticed and for people to admire me. But I was told that people didn’t like show offs, and so I became someone who tried to go unnoticed in the street.
When I walked down a city street I avoided eye contact and kept my gaze to the ground. After all, I was also told that there could be mean people out there. As an adult I saw the evidence of this belief, as most people were also looking downwards….
When I started to look up, I wonder if it was the recognition of our connectedness or that I became self assured to hold my head up high and really see…
* Mooji (2015-12-03). White Fire: Spiritual insights and teachings of advaita zen master Mooji (Kindle Locations 1546-1548). Mooji Media Publications. Kindle Edition.