Tag Archives: philosophy

BREATH

BREATHING DIAGRAM-ILLUSTRATION

Breathe.

If you feel overwhelmed, breathe. It will calm you and release the tensions.

If you are worried about something coming up, or caught up in something that already happened, breathe. It will bring you back to the present.

If you are moving too fast, breathe. It will remind you to slow down, and enjoy life more.

Breathe, and enjoy each moment of this life. They’re too fleeting and few to waste.

BY LEO BABAUTA

Tao Leadership

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“The best leaders are those the people hardly know exist,” said Lao Tzu

Indeed, a good leader is ‘nowhere to be found’.  He’s invisible!

Most leaders we know are visible. Among them are laudable leader who is adored and respected by his people, and chieftain who asserts his authority by making people aware that he is the BOSS. Sadly, they also include the bully who points a knife at your back forcing you to empty your wallet.

These leaders get you to do things they want you to do. But if you’re talking about effectiveness of leadership, theirs is in nowhere near the influence of the ‘invisible’ leaders.

The ‘invisible’ leaders lead without ‘leading’ in the conventional sense.

Like what Lao Tzu says, “They act without effort and teach without words.”

They inspire and guide, so that people do what he wants them to do without feeling being led.

We have heard of highly accomplished people talking about how someone however insignificant had led them to their success. The person can be a mother with little education who lavishes her children with wisdom and love, or a stern master who pokes his student’s bloated ego so that he can see clearly his true value in his pursuits. The person drives successes without appearing to be a leader, although he is the real leader.

The real leaders can also be someone as simple as your friend who makes you travel all the way to a remote place to try out an interesting restaurant, or take part in a program to shed your weight without telling you to do so.

Having said that, there is no doubt that a true leader can be someone in leadership position, who is both visible and invisible, depending on the situations.

So who are these leaders in your life?

There are many of them around. Since they are invisible, they are in no fixed form. In fact, this is the beauty of it. They are there for you to discover and be enthralled.

Once you have spotted any one of them, take note of how they have led you. Apply the secrets to the people you lead, and you will see the invisible leader emerging in you.

According to Lao Tzu,

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“The best leaders are those the people hardly know exist.
The next best is a leader who is loved and praised.
Next comes the one who is feared.
The worst one is the leader that is despised.

If you don’t trust the people,
they will become untrustworthy.

The best leaders value their words, and use them sparingly.
When she has accomplished her task,
the people say, “Amazing:
we did it, all by ourselves!”
(17)

Leaders with such tao leadership style are hard to come by.

In the book Chuang Tzu, there is a fable on horse training. Let’s see if this trainer is a good leader.

How do you think a horse should behave?

Horses have hooves to saunter over frost and snow and hair to protect them from wind and cold. They eat grass and drink water, and fling up their tails and gallop.

This is the real nature of horses!

One day, there came a horse trainer, Bole, who claimed he was great at handling horses.

But what did he do to the horses! He singed and clipped the horses’ hair. He pared their hooves, and branded them body. He tied them up by their necks, and shackled them by their legs, while numbering them for their stables.

As a result, two or three in every ten horses died!

He made the horses go hungry and thirsty, trotted them and galloped them, and got them to run in formations. He threatened the horses with the tasseled bridle at the front; and whip of terror behind.

More than half of the horses died.

Was Bole a good leader?

Even if he was, his success was at the expense of the horses tortured to death. You would not regard him to be the best of leaders.

The flaws of Pole’s leadership in the fable are obvious. There are however many leaders around us behaving just like him. These leaders intervene and control too much. They push and bulldoze. They look innocuous, and often work hard. But they are stifling, rather than leading their people.


The Effective Tao Leader

“I have heard my master say that nurturing life is like keeping a flock of sheep,” says Chuang Tzu in his book. “You lash the last sheep, and the rest will move.”

The leadership style is effective and effortless.

It is so different from bulldozing. It is Tao leadership.

You hold a whip in your hand, but you are kind to the flock. You lash only when it is absolutely necessary, and only on the last sheep – one that makes the whole flock move.

Instead of pushing, you work on the nature of the flock. Although the flock is totally under your control, it follows without knowing that you exist.

The challenge, of course, is on knowing where the last sheep is. To know the last sheep, you’ll need to do the following::

1. Clarity of mind

Effective dao leadership requires clarity of mind. If you are not sure about where you want to go, rather than leading, you are confusing your people.

2. Simplicity

Clarity of mind begets simplicity. As a Tao leader, you cut off the noises, make a clear decision, and the people follow.

3. Balance & Yinyang

As a good leader, you are remarkably resilient. Like water, you are able to regain your balance in no time, even during turmoil.

4. Stoop Low

Rivers and seas are more powerful than streams, but they would not have been powerful without the water from streams. To receive water from streams, however, rivers and seas stoop low. Leaders with Tao leadership are like rivers and seas. They derive their power from the people, and to do so, they are ready to stoop low.

5. Letting go

When you are sure you have done the necessary or what you can, stand back. Do not interfere. Let the people do their works; and nature takes its course.

http://tao-in-you.com/tao-leadership.html

Find Happiness By Giving Up These 15 Things

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Here is a list of 15 things which, if you give up on them, will make your life a lot easier and much, much happier. We hold on to so many things that cause us a great deal of pain, stress and suffering – and instead of letting them all go, instead of allowing ourselves to be stress free and happy – we cling on to them. Not anymore. Starting today we will give up on all those things that no longer serve us, and we will embrace change. Ready? Here we go:

1. Give up your need to always be right

There are so many of us who can’t stand the idea of being wrong – wanting to always be right – even at the risk of ending great relationships or causing a great deal of stress and pain, for us and for others. It’s just not worth it. Whenever you feel the ‘urgent’ need to jump into a fight over who is right and who is wrong, ask yourself this question:

“Would I rather be right, or would I rather be kind?”
Wayne Dyer 

What difference will that make? Is your ego really that big

2. Give up your need for control

Be willing to give up your need to always control everything that happens to you and around you – situations, events, people, etc. Whether they are loved ones, coworkers, or just strangers you meet on the street – just allow them to be. Allow everything and everyone to be just as they are and you will see how much better will that make you feel.

“By letting it go it all gets done. The world is won by those who let it go. But when you try and try. The world is beyond winning.”
Lao Tzu

3. Give up on blame

Give up on your need to blame others for what you have or don’t have, for what you feel or don’t feel. Stop giving your powers away and start taking responsibility for your life.

4. Give up your self-defeating self-talk

Oh my. How many people are hurting themselves because of their negative, polluted and repetitive self-defeating mindset? Don’t believe everything that your mind is telling you – especially if it’s negative and self-defeating. You are better than that.

“The mind is a superb instrument if used rightly. Used wrongly, however, it becomes very destructive.”
Eckhart Tolle

5. Give up your limiting beliefs

about what you can or cannot do, about what is possible or impossible. From now on, you are no longer going to allow your limiting beliefs to keep you stuck in the wrong place. Spread your wings and fly!

“A belief is not an idea held by the mind, it is an idea that holds the mind.”
Elly Roselle

6. Give up complaining

Give up your constant need to complain about those many, many, maaany things – people, situations, events that make you unhappy, sad and depressed. Nobody can make you unhappy, no situation can make you sad or miserable unless you allow it to. It’s not the situation that triggers those feelings in you, but how you choose to look at it. Never underestimate the power of positive thinking.

7. Give up the luxury of criticism

Give up your need to criticize things, events or people that are different than you. We are all different, yet we are all the same. We all want to be happy, we all want to love and be loved and we all want to be understood. We all want something, and something is wished by us all.

8. Give up your need to impress others

Stop trying so hard to be something that you’re not just to make others like you. It doesn’t work this way. The moment you stop trying so hard to be something that you’re not, the moment you take off all your masks, the moment you accept and embrace the real you, you will find people will be drawn to you, effortlessly.

9. Give up your resistance to change

Change is good. Change will help you move from A to B. Change will help you make improvements in your life and also the lives of those around you. Follow your bliss, embrace change – don’t resist it.

“Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors for you where there were only walls.”
Joseph Campbell

10. Give up labels

Stop labeling those things, people or events that you don’t understand as being weird or different and try opening your mind, little by little. Minds only work when open.

“The highest form of ignorance is when you reject something you don’t know anything about.”
Wayne Dyer

11. Give up on your fears

Fear is just an illusion, it doesn’t exist – you created it. It’s all in your mind. Correct the inside and the outside will fall into place.

“The only thing we have to fear, is fear itself.”
Franklin D. Roosevelt

12. Give up your excuses

Send them packing and tell them they’re fired. You no longer need them. A lot of times we limit ourselves because of the many excuses we use. Instead of growing and working on improving ourselves and our lives, we get stuck, lying to ourselves, using all kind of excuses – excuses that 99.9% of the time are not even real.

13. Give up the past

I know, I know. It’s hard. Especially when the past looks so much better than the present and the future looks so frightening, but you have to take into consideration the fact that the present moment is all you have and all you will ever have. The past you are now longing for – the past that you are now dreaming about – was ignored by you when it was present. Stop deluding yourself. Be present in everything you do and enjoy life. After all life is a journey not a destination. Have a clear vision for the future, prepare yourself, but always be present in the now.

14. Give up attachment

This is a concept that, for most of us is so hard to grasp and I have to tell you that it was for me too, (it still is) but it’s not something impossible. You get better and better at with time and practice. The moment you detach yourself from all things, (and that doesn’t mean you give up your love for them – because love and attachment have nothing to do with one another, attachment comes from a place of fear, while love… well, real love is pure, kind, and self less, where there is love there can’t be fear, and because of that, attachment and love cannot coexist) you become so peaceful, so tolerant, so kind, and so serene. You will get to a place where you will be able to understand all things without even trying. A state beyond words.

15. Give up living your life to other people’s expectations

Way too many people are living a life that is not theirs to live. They live their lives according to what others think is best for them, they live their lives according to what their parents think is best for them, to what their friends, their enemies and their teachers, their government and the media think is best for them. They ignore their inner voice, that inner calling. They are so busy with pleasing everybody, with living up to other people’s expectations, that they lose control over their lives. They forget what makes them happy, what they want, what they need….and eventually they forget about themselves. You have one life – this one right now – you must live it, own it, and especially don’t let other people’s opinions distract you from your path.

Thich Nhat Hanh on Loosening the Knots of Anger

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Thich Nhat Hanh teaches us how to relax the bonds of anger, attachment and delusion through mindfulness and kindness toward ourselves.

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To be happy, to me, is to suffer less. If we were not capable of transforming the pain within ourselves, happiness would not be possible.

Many people look for happiness outside themselves, but true happiness must come from inside of us. Our culture tells us that happiness comes from having a lot of money, a lot of power and a high position in society. But if you observe carefully, you will see that many rich and famous people are not happy. Many of them commit suicide.

The Buddha and the monks and nuns of his time did not own anything except their three robes and one bowl. But they were very happy, because they had something extremely precious: freedom.

According to the Buddha’s teachings, the most basic condition for happiness is freedom. Here we do not mean political freedom, but freedom from the mental formations of anger, despair, jealousy and delusion. These mental formations are described by the Buddha as poisons. As long as these poisons are still in our heart, happiness can not be possible.

In order to be free from anger, we have to practice, whether we are Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu or Jewish. We cannot ask the Buddha, Jesus, God or Mohammed to take anger out of our hearts for us. There are concrete instructions on how to transform the craving, anger and confusion within us. If we follow these instructions and learn to take good care of our suffering, we can help others do the same.

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The Knots of Anger

In our consciousness there are blocks of pain, anger and frustration called internal formations. They are also called knots because they tie us up and obstruct our freedom.

When someone insults us or does something unkind to us, an internal formation is created in our consciousness. If you don’t know how to undo the internal knot and transform it, the knot will stay there for a long time. And the next time someone says something or does something to you of the same nature, that internal formation will grow stronger. As knots or blocks of pain in us, our internal formations have the power to push us, to dictate our behavior.

After a while, it becomes very difficult for us to transform, to undo the knots, and we cannot ease the constriction of this crystallized formation. The Sanskrit word for internal formation is samyojana. It means “to crystallize.” Every one of us has internal formations that we need to take care of. With the practice of meditation we can undo these knots and experience transformation and healing.

Not all internal formations are unpleasant. There are also pleasant internal formations, but they can still make us suffer. When you taste, hear or see something pleasant, then that pleasure can become a strong internal knot. When the object of your pleasure disappears, you miss it and you begin searching for it. You spend a lot of time and energy trying to experience it again. If you smoke marijuana or drink alcohol and begin to like it, then it becomes an internal formation in your body and in your mind. You cannot get it off your mind. You will always look for more. The strength of the internal knot is pushing you and controlling you. So internal formations deprive us of our freedom.

Falling in love is a big internal formation. Once you are in love, you only think of the other person. You are not free anymore. You cannot do anything; you cannot study, you cannot work, you cannot enjoy the sunshine or the beauty of nature around you. You can only think of the object of your love. That is why we speak about it as a kind of accident: “falling in love.” You fall down. You are not stable anymore because you have gotten into an accident. So love can also be an internal knot.

Pleasant or unpleasant, both kinds of knots take away our liberty. That is why we should guard our body and our mind very carefully, to prevent these knots from taking root in us. Drugs, alcohol and tobacco can create internal formations in our body. And anger, craving, jealousy, despair can create internal formations in our mind.

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Training in Aggression

Anger is an internal formation, and since it makes us suffer, we try our best to get rid of it. Psychologists like the expression, “getting it out of your system.” And they speak about venting anger, like ventilating a room filled with smoke. Some psychologists say that when the energy of anger arises in you, you should ventilate it by hitting a pillow, kicking something, or by going into the forest to yell and shout.

As a kid you were not supposed to say certain swear words. Your parents may not have allowed you to say these words because they are harmful, they damage relationships. So you went into the woods or to an isolated place and shouted these words very clearly, very strongly, in order to relieve the feeling of oppression. This is also venting.

People who use venting techniques like hitting a pillow or shouting are actually rehearsing anger. When someone is angry and vents their anger by hitting a pillow, they are learning a dangerous habit. They are training in aggression. Instead, our approach is to generate the energy of mindfulness and embrace anger every time it manifests.

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Treating Anger with Tenderness

Mindfulness does not fight anger or despair. Mindfulness is there in order to recognize. To be mindful of something is to recognize that something is there in the present moment. Mindfulness is the capacity of being aware of what is going on in the present moment. “Breathing in, I know that anger has manifested in me; breathing out, I smile towards my anger.” This is not an act of suppression or of fighting. It is an act of recognizing. Once we recognize our anger, we embrace it with a lot of awareness, a lot of tenderness.

When it is cold in your room, you turn on the heater, and the heater begins to send out waves of hot air. The cold air doesn’t have to leave the room for the room to become warm. The cold air is embraced by the hot air and becomes warm—there’s no fighting at all between them.

We practice taking care of our anger in the same way. Mindfulness recognizes anger, is aware of its presence, accepts and allows it to be there. Mindfulness is like a big brother who does not suppress his younger brother’s suffering. He simply says, “Dear brother, I’m here for you.” You take your younger brother in your arms and you comfort him. This is exactly our practice.

Imagine a mother getting angry with her baby and hitting him when he cries. That mother does not know that she and her baby are one. We are mothers of our anger and we have to help our baby, our anger, not fight and destroy it. Our anger is us and our compassion is also us. To meditate does not mean to fight. In Buddhism, the practice of meditation should be the practice of embracing and transforming, not of fighting.

Using Anger, Using Suffering

To grow the tree of enlightenment, we must make good use of our afflictions, our suffering. It is like growing lotus flowers; we cannot grow a lotus on marble. We cannot grow a lotus without mud.

Practitioners of meditation do not discriminate against or reject their internal formations. We do not transform ourselves into a battle field, good fighting evil. We treat our afflictions, our anger, our jealousy with a lot of tenderness. When anger comes up in us, we should begin to practice mindful breathing right away: “Breathing in, I know that anger is in me. Breathing out, I am taking good care of my anger.” We behave exactly like a mother: “Breathing in, I know that my child is crying. Breathing out, I will take good care of my child.” This is the practice of compassion.

If you don’t know how to treat yourself with compassion, how can you treat another person with compassion? When anger arises, continue to practice mindful breathing and mindful walking to generate the energy of mindfulness. Continue to embrace tenderly the energy of anger within you. Anger may continue to be there for sometime, but you are safe, because the Buddha is in you, helping you to take good care of your anger. The energy of mindfulness is the energy of the Buddha. When you practice mindful breathing and embrace your anger, you are under the protection of the Buddha. There is no doubt about it: the Buddha is embracing you and your anger with a lot of compassion.

Giving and Receiving Mindfulness Energy

When you are angry, when you feel despair, you practice mindful breathing, mindful walking, to generate the energy of mindfulness. This energy allows you to recognize and embrace your painful feelings. And if your mindfulness is not strong enough, you ask a brother or a sister in the practice to sit close to you, to breathe with you, to walk with you in order to support you with his or her mindfulness energy.

Practicing mindfulness does not mean that you have to do everything on your own. You can practice with the support of your friends. They can generate enough mindfulness energy to help you take care of your strong emotions.

We can also support others with our mindfulness when they are in difficulty. When our child is drowning in a strong emotion, we can hold his or her hand and say, “My dear one, breathe. Breathe in and out with mommy, with daddy.” We can also invite our child to do walking meditation with us, gently taking her hand and helping her calm down, with each step. When you give your child some of your mindfulness energy, she will be able to calm down very quickly and embrace her emotions.

Recognizing, Embracing, Relieving the Suffering of Anger

The first function of mindfulness is to recognize, not to fight. “Breathing in, I know that anger has manifested in me. Hello, my little anger.” And breathing out, “I will take good care of you.”

Once we have recognized our anger, we embrace it. This is the second function of mindfulness and it is a very pleasant practice. Instead of fighting, we are taking good care of our emotion. If you know how to embrace your anger, something will change.

It is like cooking potatoes. You cover the pot and then the water will begin to boil. You must keep the stove on for at least twenty minutes for the potatoes to cook. Your anger is a kind of potato and you cannot eat a raw potato.

Mindfulness is like the fire cooking the potatoes of anger. The first few minutes of recognizing and embracing your anger with tenderness can bring results. You get some relief. Anger is still there, but you do not suffer so much anymore, because you know how to take care of your baby. So the third function of mindfulness is soothing, relieving. Anger is there, but it is being taken care of. The situation is no longer in chaos, with the crying baby left all alone. The mother is there to take care of the baby and the situation is under control.

Keeping Mindfulness Alive

And who is this mother? The mother is the living Buddha. The capacity of being mindful, the capacity of being understanding, loving and caring is the Buddha in us. Every time we are capable of generating mindfulness, it makes the Buddha in us a reality. With the Buddha in you, you have nothing to worry about anymore. Everything will be fine if you know how to keep the Buddha within you alive.

It is important to recognize that we always have the Buddha in us. Even if we are angry, unkind or in despair, the Buddha is always within us. This means we always have the potential to be mindful, to be understanding, to be loving.

We need to practice mindful breathing or walking in order to touch the Buddha within us. When you touch the seed of mindfulness that lies in your consciousness, the Buddha will manifest in your mind consciousness and embrace your anger. You don’t have to worry; just continue to practice breathing or walking to keep the Buddha alive. Then everything will be fine. The Buddha recognizes. The Buddha embraces. The Buddha relieves, and the Buddha looks deeply into the nature of anger. The Buddha understands. And this understanding will bring about transformation.

The energy of mindfulness contains the energy of concentration, as well as the energy of insight. Concentration helps you to focus on just one thing. With concentration, the energy of looking becomes more powerful.

Because of that it can make a breakthrough that is insight. Insight always has the power of liberating you. If mindfulness is there, and you know how to keep mindfulness alive, concentration will be there too. And if you know how to keep concentration alive, insight will also come. So mindfulness recognizes, embraces and relieves. Mindfulness helps us look deeply in order to gain insight. Insight is the liberating factor. It is what frees us and allows transformation to happen. This is the Buddhist practice of taking care of anger.

Every time you give your internal formations a bath of mindfulness, the blocks of pain in you become lighter and less dangerous. So give your anger, your despair, your sorrow a bath of mindfulness every day—that is your practice. If mindfulness is not there, it is very unpleasant to have these seeds come up. But if you know how to generate the energy of mindfulness, it is very healing to invite them up every day and embrace them. And after several days or weeks of bringing them up daily and helping them go back down again, you create good circulation in your psyche, and the symptoms of mental illness will begin to disappear.

Mindfulness does the work of massaging your internal formations, your blocks of suffering. You have to allow them to circulate, and this is possible only if you are not afraid of them. If you learn not to fear your knots of suffering, you can learn how to embrace them with the energy of mindfulness, and transform them.

Reprinted from “Anger,” by Thich Nhat Hanh, with permission of Riverhead Books, a member of Penguin Putnam Inc. Copyright © 2001 by Thich Nhat Hanh.

http://www.lionsroar.com/loosening-the-knots-of-anger/

10 Things to keep in Mind When Loving a Highly Creative Person

It has been proven that highly creative people’s brains work quite differently than other brains. That special brain wiring that can create such wonderful art, music, and writing can often lead to strain in a relationship, because of those differences. If you’ve ever loved a highly creative person, you know that it can seem like they live in their own little word at times, and that thought isn’t far from the truth. Here are some things to keep in mind when you are in love with a highly creative person:

1. Their Minds Don’t Slow Down
The highly creative mind is one that is running at full speed all the time. Although it can be a source of crazy, spontaneous fun – it can also be a burden. Highly creative people rarely keep normal sleep cycles, and are often prone to bouncing from one task to another throughout the day. It can be exhausting to try to keep up.

2. They are Cyclical
The flow of creativity is a cycle, full of highs and lows. Some people may consider this “manic” behavior, but in reality, it is just how the creative process works. Keep this in mind as your partner goes through these natural ebbs and flows. The low periods aren’t permanent.

3. They Need Time Alone
Creative minds need air to breathe. Whether it is their own little work space or an escape to somewhere quiet, they need a time and place to be alone with their thoughts. Some people are inclined to think that if nothing is being said that there is something wrong, but with creative people that is not the case. They are just working within their own head.

4. They are Intensely Focused
When a creative person is on task, they are fiercely intense. The change from being scatter-brained to hyper-focused can be difficult to deal with, so just understand that it is how their brains work. Don’t get frustrated.

5. Emotions Run Deeper
Creative people feel everything on a deeper level. What doesn’t seem like a big deal to you, can be crushing to them. It’s that same passion that goes into whatever they create that drives them to love you, so understand that with the good – comes the bad.

6. They Speak in Stories
Creative people often express themselves in experiences, instead of just saying what they want to say. It is a way of sharing themselves that personifies who they are. At times, it can be difficult to figure out what a creative person is saying, so don’t be afraid to read between the lines.

7. They Battle with Themselves
Being creative can be a serious internal struggle. Motivation, enthusiasm, direction, and drive can all be issues for creative people. Some days it is hard for them just to get out of bed, and other days you can’t get them to slow down. Be patient in the lulls, because there is usually a burst of activity right around the corner.

8. Intuition is Important
Creative people, because of their intense emotional tendencies, tend to rely on intuition over logic. They go with their gut. Some people consider this to be more on the “impulsive” end of the spectrum. The creative mind doesn’t rely on logic to make a decision, it relies on experience and passion.

9. They Struggle with Confidence
When people create, especially for a living, they are always struggling with acceptance. That is art. They have to wear their hearts on their sleeves, and so they always question whether or not what they are producing is good enough. Being supportive is the key to loving a creative person.

10. Growing Up is Hard to Do
Creative people are almost always children at heart. That care-free nature can seem immature and impetuous – but it is all part of the deal. Understand that the aspects of their creative brains that you love are the same ones that make them somewhat irresponsible when it comes to being an adult.

http://theearthchild.co.za/10-things-to-keep-in-mind-when-loving-a-highly-creative-person/

25 Life Changing Lessons To Learn From Rumi

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by Luminita Saviuc

“Study me as much as you like, you will not know me, for I differ in a hundred ways from what you see me to be. Put yourself behind my eyes and see me as I see myself, for I have chosen to dwell in a place you cannot see.” ~ Rumi

Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Balkhī, also known as Rumi, was a 13th-century Persian poet, jurist, theologian, and Sufi mystic who, in my personal opinion, wrote some of the most beautiful and most profound words that were ever written. You won’t believe it how much wisdom and how so much power there is in his words. It’s incredible.

Today I would like to share with you 25 life changing lessons to learn from Rumi, lessons that have the power inspire and empower you to live a more authentic, beautiful, loving and meaningful life.

Enjoy :)

1. Stop acting so small. You are the universe in ecstatic motion.

“You were born with potential. You were born with goodness and trust. You were born with ideals and dreams. You were born with greatness. You were born with wings. You are not meant for crawling, so don’t. You have wings. Learn to use them and fly.”

“You sit here for days saying, This is strange business. You’re the strange business. You have the energy of the sun in you, but you keep knotting it up at the base of your spine. You’re some weird kind of gold that wants to stay melted in the furnace, so you won’t have to become coins.”

“Why should I stay at the bottom of a well when a strong rope is in my hand?”

“Become the sky. Take an axe to the prison wall. Escape.”

“Do you know what you are? You are a manuscript oƒ a divine letter. You are a mirror reflecting a noble face. This universe is not outside of you. Look inside yourself; everything that you want, you are already that.”

2. Your job is to live your life in a way that makes sense to you, not to “them”.

“Start a huge, foolish project, like Noah…it makes absolutely no difference what people think of you.”

3. Never give up on yourself.

“When you go through a hard period, When everything seems to oppose you, … When you feel you cannot even bear one more minute, NEVER GIVE UP! Because it is the time and place that the course will divert!”

“Sorrow prepares you for joy. It violently sweeps everything out of your house, so that new joy can find space to enter. It shakes the yellow leaves from the bough of your heart, so that fresh, green leaves can grow in their place. It pulls up the rotten roots, so that new roots hidden beneath have room to grow. Whatever sorrow shakes from your heart, far better things will take their place.”

“Dance, when you’re broken open. Dance, if you’ve torn the bandage off. Dance in the middle of the fighting. Dance in your blood. Dance when you’re perfectly free.”

4. Ignorance is God’s prison.

“Ignorance is God’s prison. Knowing is God’s palace.”

5. The treasures that can be found outside of you can’t even compare with the treasures that can be found inside of you.

“You wander from room to room Hunting for the diamond necklace That is already around your neck!”

“If you knew yourself for even one moment, if you could just glimpse your most beautiful face, maybe you wouldn’t slumber so deeply in that house of clay. Why not move into your house of joy and shine into every crevice! For you are the secret Treasure-bearer, and always have been. Didn’t you know?”

“Everything in the universe is within you. Ask all from yourself.”

“Why are you so enchanted by this world, when a mine of gold lies within you?”

“You go from village to village on your horse asking everyone, “Has anyone seen my horse?”

“Don’t knock on any random door like a beggar. Reach your long hand out to another door, beyond where you go on the street, the street where everyone says, “How are you?” and no one says How aren’t you?”

“There is a fountain inside you. Don’t walk around with an empty bucket.”

6. When you let go of who you are, you become who you might be.

“Knock, And He’ll open the door Vanish, And He’ll make you shine like the sun Fall, And He’ll raise you to the heavens Become nothing, And He’ll turn you into everything.”

“Forget safety. Live where you fear to live. Destroy your reputation. Be notorious.”

“Don’t be satisfied with stories, how things have gone with others. Unfold your own myth.”

“Set your life on fire. Seek those who fan your flames.”

“Be melting snow. Wash yourself of yourself.”

7. There is something you can do better than anyone else.

“Everyone has been made for some particular work, and the desire for that work has been put in every heart.”

“Be a lamp, or a lifeboat, or a ladder. Help someone’s soul heal. Walk out of your house like a shepherd.”

8. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.

“As you start to walk out on the way, the way appears.”

9. When you commit to something, do it with all your heart.

“Half-heartedness doesn’t reach into majesty. You set out to find God, but then you keep stopping for long periods at mean-spirited roadhouses.”

“When you do things from your soul you feel a river moving in you, a joy. When action come from another section, the feeling disappears.”

“Wherever you are, and whatever you do, be in love.”

10. Good things come to an end so that better things can fall together.

“Do not grieve. Anything you lose comes round in another form.”

11. The wound is the place where the Light enters you.

“What hurts you, blesses you. Darkness is your candle.”

“Where there is ruin, there is hope for a treasure.”

“Don’t turn away. Keep your gaze on the bandaged place. That’s where the light enters you.”

“Grief can be the garden of compassion. If you keep your heart open through everything, your pain can become your greatest ally in your life’s search for love and wisdom.”

“You have to keep breaking your heart until it opens.”

12. Do what you love and do it with love.

“Let the beauty we love be what we do.”

“Let yourself be silently drawn by the stronger pull of what you really love.”

“Be occupied, then, with what you really value and let the thief take something else.”

13. Think less. Feel more.

“Reason is powerless in the expression of Love.”

“Put your thoughts to sleep, do not let them cast a shadow over the moon of your heart. Let go of thinking.”

“Only from the heart can you touch the sky.”

“There is a candle in your heart, ready to be kindled. There is a void in your soul, ready to be filled. You feel it, don’t you?”

“Be empty of worrying. Think of who created thought! Why do you stay in prison When the door is so wide open?”

14. Love is worth it all.

“Gamble everything for love, if you’re a true human being. If not, leave this gathering.”

“Let the lover be disgraceful, crazy, absentminded. Someone sober will worry about events going badly. Let the lover be.”

15. Appreciate both the good and the bad in your life.

“Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.”

“If you are irritated by every rub, how will you be polished?”

“When someone beats a rug, the blows are not against the rug, but against the dust in it.”

16. You change your world by changing yourself.

“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.”

17. We are made of Love and made to Love.

“We are born of love; Love is our mother. “

“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”

“Through Love all that is bitter will be sweet, Through Love all that is copper will be gold, Through Love all dregs will become wine, through Love all pain will turn to medicine.”

“I have no companion but Love, no beginning, no end, no dawn. The Soul calls from within me: ‘You, ignorant of the way of Love, set Me free.’ “

“That which is false troubles the heart, but truth brings joyous tranquillity.”

18. Your Soul is not of this world, your body is.

“All day I think about it, then at night I say it. Where did I come from, and what am I supposed to be doing? I have no idea. My soul is from elsewhere, I’m sure of that, and I intend to end up there.”

“When I die, I shall soar with angels, and when I die to the angels, what I shall become you cannot imagine.”

19. At the Soul level, we are all ONE.

“All religions, all this singing, one song. The differences are just illusion and vanity. The sun’s light looks a little different on this wall than it does on that wall, and a lot different on this other one, but it’s still one light.”

“What shall I say, O Muslims, I know not myself, I am neither a Christian, nor a Jew, nor a Zoroastrian, nor a Muslim.”

“I am neither of the East nor of the West, no boundaries exist within my breast.”

20. Your Soul is more precious than anything.

“You know the value of every article of merchandise, but if you don’t know the value of your own soul, it’s all foolishness.”

21. Choose your life partner wisely.

“Take someone who doesn’t keep score, who’s not looking to be richer, or afraid of losing, who has not the slightest interest even in his own personality: he’s free.”

22. Real love transcends the material plane and no matter if your bodies are apart, your souls will forever be connected.

“Goodbyes are only for those who love with their eyes. Because for those who love with heart and soul there is no such thing as separation.”

23. Raise your words, not your voice.

“Raise your words, not voice. It is rain that grows flowers, not thunder.”

24. Silence is the language of God.

“Silence is the language of God, all else is poor translation.”

“Words are a pretext. It is the inner bond that draws one person to another, not words.”

“In Silence there is eloquence. Stop weaving and see how the pattern improves.”

25. Just to be alive is not enough.

“You think you are alive because you breathe air? Shame on you, that you are alive in such a limited way. Don’t be without Love, so you won’t feel dead. Die in Love and stay alive forever.

8 Life Changing Lessons Everyone Can Learn From Lao Tzu

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Lao Tzu is one of the most famous Chinese philosophers and is the mind behind many important lessons our souls have to learn. He’s the author of the Tao Te Ching and the founder of Taosim. He’s been a central figure in China for centuries, and you’re about to find out why.

1. You already hold the answer to life’s questions.

“At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.”

“Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power.”

“When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.”

2. You’re freed when you let go.

“By letting it go it all gets done. The world is won by those who let it go. But when you try and try. The world is beyond the winning.”

“Therefore the Master acts without doing anything and teaches without saying anything. Things arise and she lets them come; things disappear and she lets them go. She has but doesn’t possess, acts but doesn’t expect. When her work is done, she forgets it. That is why it lasts forever.”

“If you want to become whole, let yourself be partial. If you want to become straight, let yourself be crooked. If you want to become full, let yourself be empty. If you want to be reborn, let yourself die. If you want to be given everything, give everything up.”

“Do you have the patience to wait till your mud settles and the water is clear? Can you remain unmoving till the right action arises by itself?”

3. Your ego will never give you true pleasure.

“He who defines himself can’t know who he really is.”

“He who has power over others can’t empower himself.”

“He who tries to shine dims his own light.”

4. Evil dies when ignored.

“Give evil nothing to oppose and it will disappear by itself.”

5. Kindness always wins. Evil always loses.

“Treat those who are good with goodness, and also treat those who are not good with goodness. Thus goodness is attained. Be honest to those who are honest, and be also honest to those who are not honest. Thus honesty is attained.”

“Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love.”

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”

6. Be yourself.

“Care about people’s approval and you will be their prisoner.”

“When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you.”

7. Be humble and you shall be wise.

“The wise man is one who, knows, what he does not know.”

“All streams flow to the sea because it is lower than they are. Humility gives it its power.”

8. Change is inevitable, so embrace it.

“If you realize that all things change, there is nothing you will try to hold on to. If you are not afraid of dying, there is nothing you cannot achieve.”

“New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings.”

http://higherperspectives.com/lao-tzu/

DAEHYUN KIM BEAUTIFUL ZEN ART

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Beam

DAEHYUN KIM

I was born in Seoul in 1980, now live and work in Seoul. I studied oriental painting which is a study on the traditional East Asian painting. I’ve been drawing Moonassi series since university. The series is my life-time project. There is no specific background story or a theory about the drawing. Each drawing is created based on my daily thoughts and feelings. I draw to meditate on myself and others, and to be able to see the whole story of the series in the end.

 CRAZY STOP MOTION!!!!!


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The Value of Suffering

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I want to be like I wasn’t there

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Please take care of this

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Sinking of you

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Face the whole

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Bright darkness

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The moon I see

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Inear

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More or less

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On you

The 5 Budha Families

imagesThe Buddha families as presented by Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche are a description of five qualities of energy.

They describe qualities we all have. They are not meant to solidify one’s ego through identifying them the way some people identify with their astrological signs. They are instead a fluid working basis for recognizing our current sanity or neurosis.

Practitioners of the buddhadharma are not expected to be uniformly cool or warm, smart or spacious. Especially since these families come from the vajrayana tradition, they permit a great openness for us to work on ourselves in order to bring out our intrinsic wisdom. The main demand is to be honest and to be willing to see how we are manifesting—sanely or neurotically.

Each Buddha family has an emotion associated with it, which can be transmuted into wisdom, as well as a color, element, landscape, direction, season, and even a time of day. Since we change both physically and mentally, our styles, modes of being, likes and dislikes change over the years. Thus the predominant Buddha family of a person may change, influenced often by age or circumstances. This is because we all embody and have access to all the five Buddha energies.

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The central Buddha family is Buddha, which has the quality of space and accommodation. If a friend asks you, “Would you like to see ‘Avatar’ or ‘Oceans’?” you might say, “Oh, either one,” if you were in a Buddha frame of mind. It’s not that you don’t care. It’s that you have no sharp edges, no strong likes and dislikes. Your mode of being is even and does not tend to react to excitement, yet you are open if not enterprising.

But the neurosis of the Buddha family is dullness, a kind of bubble-gum or molasses mind. Buddha neurosis ignores the vividness of life because it does not want to see. Think of someone in a Lazy-Boy chair in front of a blaring TV who cannot find the remote and who doesn’t want to bother to get up to change the channel. Although the stupor is thick, if there is a flicker of wakefulness, it can transform the sloth into the Wisdom of All-Encompassing Space. That flicker of wakefulness can encourage him to be tired of nesting in indifference and inertia, and can provoke him to get out of the Lazy-Boy, turn off the TV, and clean up the living room, creating space.

This is the wisdom, which makes it possible for the other Buddha families to function. It is like wakeful oxygen, the air of life. The Buddha energy is usually portrayed as blue, like the sky or cool space. Its symbol is the eight-spoked wheel of dharma.

The Vajra family is known for precision and intellectual exactness. It is associated with the East and the lightening sky of dawn. Its symbol is the diamond-like or adamantine thunderbolt called a vajra. If it were a Vajra person who asked the Buddha friend which film he would prefer, the attitude of “either one” would be puzzling and require investigation. At times a Vajra person may seem cold or sharply cutting like an icicle, because there is a tendency to analyze or at least question, “How can you have no preference?”

The Vajra personality works with white-hot anger. Vajra neurosis tends to have a short fuse, super ready to criticize or at least to analyze what is wrong with an idea or situation. But if a Vajra person can just feel and stay with the emotion of anger, rather than either self-righteously expressing rage and getting off on it—or suppressing it tightly inside—the clarity of anger turns naturally into Mirror-like Wisdom and he can begin to express intelligently and without blame his concerns and insights.

Usually when we’re angry we want to get it off our chest, or, out of fear, suppress it. In both cases we are trying to get rid of the anger rather than acknowledging and staying with it. But by registering the emotion, we can touch the clarity within the emotion and find a skillful way to express ourselves, without polluting and emoting all over the place, and without bottling it up for another day.

The Ratna personality tends to be proud and loves to collect and draw in richness. Ratna literally means jewel or precious gem. A Ratna lady’s home may be like a comfortable fortress full of various rich collections. Perhaps she has a great library or collection of paintings. In the kitchen where she loves to cook, she has every imaginable utensil, herb, and spice. Her garden may be a rich jumble of vegetables and colorful flowers, surrounded by vine-covered walls and planters overflowing with velvet petunias. She probably has a multitude of scarves, or silk ties if a man, and enjoys wearing a great deal of gold jewelry or “bling”. Such a person is gregarious and enjoys being surrounded by companions.

The sanity of Ratna expresses itself in the Wisdom of Equanimity. There is balance, and earthy stability. She is aware of self-existing richness in herself and her world and doesn’t have to always go “over the top”, replaying certain opera arias or dressing in brocade!

Recognizing the tendency to be prideful is the beginning of loosening up into the Wisdom of Equanimity. As the tendency to defend herself and to maintain ego’s way of doing things elaborately relaxes, she feels inspired instead to be generous and hospitable to everyone in her world.

Ratna is connected with the South, to the fertility and abundance of autumn. It is like sunshine mid-morning on a luscious, ripe and juicy peach!

The Padma family is provocative and magnetizing. Padma literally means lotus. This family is connected with fire and the burning red of the setting sun in the West, and with springtime, the time when winter softens into tender growth and brightens with the brilliant color of wild flowers. Many artists are of the Padma family. Padma people tend to be attractive and warm, with an instinct toward union.

But Padma neurosis is prone to fascination and seduction, followed by disinterest because the desire is to attract more than to have. This neurotic form of passion can be transformed with self-discipline into Discriminating Awareness, which knows what to attract, what to reject, in the first place. Then respect and communication can occur along with the warmth of genuine compassion, instead of the cycle of entrapment-rejection.

The final Buddha family is that of Karma, symbolized by a sword. This is the most efficient and active family. Karma literally means action or activity. It is like the energy of a good wind, which blows away any leaves still clinging from winter’s stasis, or like a summer breeze in the Northern Highlands of Cape Breton, whipping through the tall, sword-like grasses, for it is summer when all living things are most active and growing. The color of the Karma family is green but the mood is that of dusk, post-sunset, like an early summer night teeming with the activity of everything from insects to partying humans!

Karma people like things to work, to be functional, and timely. They are pragmatic, with a tendency toward competition. The neurosis of Karma is speed, restlessness, and jealousy. Karma neurosis feels that if something isn’t functional all the time or doesn’t fit a predetermined scheme, it should be destroyed!

But again, recognizing this tendency toward speed, competition, and jealousy is the first step in having the neurosis loosen its hold. As one slows down, action becomes appropriate. Then one can be less self-conscious, competitive, and jealous. And one can learn to delegate. This is the beginning of All-Accomplishing Action.

These families represent five different approaches and styles, which are equally valid. A practitioner may relate predominantly to any one of them, or partially with several of them.

There is no fixed type-casting. Each family has the potential to be a different expression of sanity. In that way our various styles do not need to be considered as hang-ups but as the display of a variety of valuable energies.

~ Linda V. Lewis

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7 Steps To Wholeness

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Everything living dreams of individuation, for everything strives towards its own wholeness

~ C.G. Jung (1875-1961), Swiss depth psychologist, from The Wisdom of Carl Jung,

It seems that it is the purpose of evolution now to replace an image of perfection with the concept of completeness or wholeness. Perfection suggests something all pure, with no blemishes, dark spots or questionable areas. Wholeness includes the darkness but combines it with the light elements into a totality more real and whole than any ideal. This is an awesome task, and the question before us is whether mankind is capable of this effort and growth. Ready or not, we are in that process. ~ Robert A. Johnson (1921-present), American Jungian Analyst, from He

The work of healing and returning to our wholeness is indeed “…an awesome task,” and I believe we are absolutely capable of progress and growth. The first step in embarking in this sacred journey is our willingness to make it a priority. Are you willing to grow and expand?

The truth is you are already whole.

The work of healing is simply undoing the false conditioning, limiting beliefs, and dysfunctional patterns you’ve picked up along the way (as a result of living on planet earth and likely around people who were unconscious.) The work of healing is remembering. Remembering who you truly are.

You are whole. You are beautiful. You are magnificent. You are a spiritual being. You are a human being. You are powerful. You are perfect and imperfect. You have potential for great good as well as destructiveness. You have a dark side and light side. All of this is you and it is all acceptable and wonderful.

“So why do I continue to struggle and suffer?” you ask.

The short answer is that you have forgotten how powerful you are. You have bought in to many lies you’ve been told by others who did not know who they were. Being born in to this “spiritually hostile environment” we call home you’ve developed certain coping mechanisms that allowed you to survive.

However those same mechanisms that have allowed you to survive have become obstacles. As an adult (often still a child in an adult body) you have felt lost, and confused. You have attempted to find yourself in all the wrong places. All in things outside of yourself.

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Finding your way HOME is the “awesome task”…This is the work….

I believe in a holistic approach to healing. It is critically important to combine conventional treatment with complementary and alternative healing modalities. Medication and therapy alone are not going to “fix” you. I believe there are 7 steps to creating effective and lasting treatment of mental illness and addiction.

These are the steps I take my clients through as I support them in their journey of healing and returning to their wholeness.

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Step 1

Learning Self Acceptance, Self Love, Positive Coping Skills while Processing Past Unresolved Trauma and effects (Shame, Anger, Guilt)

If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you. ~ Jesus in the Gospel of Thomas, translated by Elaine Pagels, scholar, from Beyond Belief

Real liberation comes not from glossing over or repressing painful states of feeling, but only from experiencing them to the full. ~ C.G. Jung (1875-1961), Swiss depth psychologist, inCollected Works, Vol. 9, edited by Edward Hoffman, Ph.D.

Accepting the whole range of one’s feelings, expressing them and gaining self-possession are the signposts along the road one travels on the voyage of self-discovery. ~ Alexander Lowen, M.D. (1910-2002???), American founder of Bioenergetic Therapy, from Joy

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Self acceptance and self love as well as processing past unresolved trauma are the cornerstones of the work of healing. As far as I’m concerned trauma is the only real diagnosis. Everything else is an after effect. Trauma is also the one thing that is not addressed within families, society, and in psychiatry today.

Ignoring people’s past, the traumas they’ve suffered, and the impact of those traumas is revictimization. It is simply ignorant and unethical. For those who carry the burden of past unresolved trauma, nothing is as toxic and draining as carrying the effects of trauma – chronic shame, anger, guilt, self loathing, self hatred, and a host of other destructive emotions and behaviours.

In my work with clients addressing past trauma is always the first order of business. I do this through very simple and natural techniques called “focusing” as taught by Eugene T Gendlin, PhD and “Somatic Trauma Resolution” as taught by Peter A. Levine Ph.D.

Processing past trauma is always done at the pace of the client. You get to set the pace at which you want to work on your healing. At the same time we will build your positive coping skills and on learning to accept and love yourself. This is the first step.

When you face your past and release those energies you’ve been carrying for years you are going to feel so much better. It will be like having a huge burden lifted from your shoulders. You’ll then have more energy to start tackling the more pressing matters in your present reality.

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Step 2

What are subconscious limiting beliefs?

I’m going to let the brilliant Bruce Lipton explain this one to you. I believe it is critically important to work on identifying and replacing your negative subconscious beliefs as these beliefs/tapes are what run your life and what create your reality.

Working with the conscious mind alone (as is in the case of the many of the therapy modalities in psychiatry today – ie: CBT, MI, Solution Focused therapy etc.) is simply not enough nor effective. Our subconscious mind is far more powerful than our conscious mind.

The ability to work with the subconscious mind is critically important in allowing you to change and replace your limiting beliefs about yourself. This is what will unleash your true potential. This is what is going to allow you to truly achieve your highest potential as human being.

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I could not emphasize further the importance of this step.

Tapping in to the power of your subconscious mind is essential to your healing. It is also closely related to the first step in that along the way you have picked up many dysfunctional and unhealthy beliefs about yourself and the way the world works.

http://www.neseret.com/7-steps-to-wholeness-holistic-approach-in-treatment-of-mental-illness-and-addiction/