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Showing content with the highest reputation since 07/12/2020 in Posts

  1. 3 points
    As requested, here are 2 links to the guided meditation recordings. The files were both too large to upload here so I'm providing links to the files in my Google Drive. One is in a .mp4 (500 mB or so) file with a nice background Large This file is audio only (11 kB) Small Please let me know if there are any issues or concerns.
  2. 3 points
    Hi! I learned about Mindfulness a handful pf years ago. It wasn't easy getting started. (I have General Anxiety Disorder) but I stuck to it and it served me well. Some where along the way I stopped my Mindful practice and after a few half-hearted attempts, I am so ready to shake the stress and anxiety that plague me more often than I care to admit... I'm looking forward to getting started tomorrow! I hope everyone has a great start to their week tomorrow.
  3. 2 points
    Hi all, First, let me start off by stating that I hope that I put this in the correct location. If it's more appropriate to another location, please let me know. I've been developing some guided meditations but this is the first I feel is ready to post. I've titled it Universal Connectedness because sometimes I think when we feel alone in our thoughts and feelings we feel alone in the world, drifting aimlessly. One of my first lessons in Buddhism is that we are never truly alone. When we sit and meditate we sit with the universe. We are all connected to each other. I hope that in reading and practicing this meditation you feel that it captures the essence of universal connectedness that I've tried for. And I hope that it may off you some comfort in difficult times. Universal Connectedness For this guided meditation start off by finding yourself in a comfortable and relaxed position. You can be sitting or laying down. Whatever fits you best. Imagine yourself at the beach. Youre standing with your feet just where the sand meets the water. You look at the sand at your toes. You can see the different color sand grains, the beiges, the blacks, the whites. You can feel the warmth of the water as each little wave covers your feet. You begin to lift your gaze to just where the waves break. You can see the curls of each wave as they begin to break. You lift your gaze slightly more to where the waves are just beginning to rise from the distant ocean. As you look more distant, you can see where the horizon meets the ocean. You look towards your left and can see the ocean and beach meeting for miles into the distance. You look towards your right and can see the ocean and beach meeting for miles into the distance. It’s all very calming. As you look at your feet again you begin to sense a feeling of unconditional love being adsorbed into your body with each passing wave over your feet. The love feels very warm and inviting that you decide to sit slightly more into the water. As each wave now passes over your thighs, your entire body is totally absorbed with love. You begin to rest back on your hands and can hear the gentle sounds of sea gulls in the distance. As each moment passes the sounds get closer. As each sound enters through your ears you begin to feel the sense of utter acceptance flowing through your body. This acceptance allows you to feel as if huge burdens are being released from the deepest parts of you. As these waves of love and acceptance fill your body you feel the warmth of the sun embracing you. You bring kind attention to the suns warmth on your body and realize this is the feeling of compassion. Your heart fills with compassion. Love, acceptance, and compassion are filling your body. You now being to explore more as to where this love, acceptance, and compassion are originating from. You open your mind to being receptive to whatever the source is. You begin to see flashes of people. Some faces are familiar. Some are not. But all are smiling and peaceful. You see the images of all types of animals and lifeforms. Trees, fish, dogs, cats, elephants…some you don’t know the names of, but they all flash across your mind. You continue to be open and receptive and begin to see scenes and faces of beings you’re totally unfamiliar with. You realize they’re from some distant off world location. As you reflect deeply on what you see you begin to realize that we are all connected to one another in the universe. We are all apart the same network of consciousness, unconstrained by time and space. The love, acceptance, and compassion that you send out is also being sent from across the universe to you. Thank you.
  4. 2 points
    Thank you so much for sharing your recordings with us.
  5. 2 points
    Thanks, WBA, I was going to contribute a slightly different way of belittling myself, judging myself deficient. But, I don’t think the particular flavors matter. I do think it is good to have realistic ideas of our limitations, but that is different from letting judgments of them define and limit us. Maybe it can help us take appropriate steps to create conditions more conducive to success when we “go for it?”
  6. 2 points
    Great question! I hold the belief that I have great ideas and aspirations, but lack the character and ability to make them come into being. I have doubts I can breathe my vision to life.
  7. 2 points
    @calm just found guided yoga poses for Anxiety https://www.amayaan.com/blog/let-yoga-take-away-your-anxiety-woes
  8. 2 points
    Gillian, I thank you for your kind and soothing message. And for the reading recommendations. I’m very grateful. I have been going for long walks and visiting my favorite tree each day, which has soothed me at the edges. I’ve also been doing root based, grounding yoga practices where the flow of apana (downward flowing energy) is activated and helps to stabilize me. Sitting in daily meditations with forgiveness and acceptance at the heart. Lots of journaling and herbal tea too. As we experience life, we change. I have used previous periods of transition in my life as opportunities to explore the self and to allow for whatever change was meant to arrive through the difficulty. That is sort of where I am right now. I am looking into somatic therapy (as opposed to traditional talk therapy) as a new way to learn about patterns and the imprints from my past as well. It has been an unusual time to be in a relationship from a distance, and now for it to end at a distance is equally odd. So I’m very grateful to this community for their presence and support. Be well, everyone. Rachel
  9. 2 points
    Thank you @Gillian Sanger As for the graphic, it was a 'suggestion' offered by PowerPoint.
  10. 2 points
    This is beautiful! Thanks for sharing Vladimir. You have a very naturally soothing voice for this I'd say. Also - I really love the graphics with the video. Did you do that yourself?
  11. 2 points
    @Alli - Great share! I was also very moved by the book Eat, Pray, Love (and the movie was lovely too). I don't often read books twice, but that one I did! Have you read her book, "Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear"? I read it a long time ago but recall that I loved it. @Rachel - I love those poets that you've mentioned as well, specifically Mary Oliver. The Journey is one of my all time favourites, as is Wild Geese. Some of my own recommendations: The House of Belonging - poetry by David Whyte The Dance of Anger - by Dr. Harriet Lerner The Divine Feminine Fire: Creativity and Your Yearning to Express Yourself - book by Teri Degler Upstream: Selected Essays - by Mary Oliver The Dream of the Earth - by Thomas Berry
  12. 2 points
    Mindfulness has been instrumental in helping me to unlearn several things that are related to the same habituated pattern. By anchoring in the present moment and learning to cultivate compassion for myself, I have loosened the grips of self criticism and self judgment. Within this, there has been a softening and allowing for my experiences. Learning to accept and allow runs alongside the lessening of critical behaviors and leaves more space for love, forgiveness, and freedom. Each morning when I sit in meditation, I am reminded that I deserve my own love, affection, and care. Mindfulness has and continues to support me in this important unlearning (& learning). Wishing all of you here peace and ease. Rachel
  13. 2 points
    Yes. That, I believe, is what Gil Fronsdal means by, "this too." Everything in our experience is included. Beautifully said. That really describes in part how our experience broadens, as you said above. Your use of the term "cognitive distance" was unfamiliar to me and I figured in psychology there must be some concept of "cognitive distancing," so I looked it up in my browser. I thought this article really discussed the overall strategy well and listed many useful tactics. https://www.yvp.com.au/2017/11/14/cognitive-fusion-and-cognitive-distancing/#:~:text=Cognitive distancing is the act,by an attitude of acceptance. I guess your phrase about "being defined" by emotions would be part of the "cognitive fusion" discussed in the article. In my personal mindfulness practice, I think of it in terms of "identification" and "becoming" a person attached to the emotion, or maybe more precisely my ideas about the emotion, as opposed to being attuned to it and/or informed by it. I don't deliberate nearly so much as I rely on perspectives gained from meditation practice and, based on your prior posts, I am guessing you respond similarly. These perspectives include greater spaciousness, acceptance, confidence, flexibility, openness, patience, and compassion. The attachment to an emotion or fixation on it does not happen as easily as in the past. When it does happen it carries all sorts of warnings, not that they always are heeded. Our emotions are trying to tell us something important. They are trying to move us toward undertaking some satisfying action. The problem of discerning what action might be most appropriate is greatly compounded by the fact that we can have emotions about our emotions and our emotions arrive with memories, some conscious and some latent, about which we also can have emotions. How to untangle such a knot! The intellect cannot do it alone, even with the assistance of such useful ideas as in the above article, because all it understands is the surface or outer appearance of the knot. I think just the impossibility of penetrating the depths of the problem often leads us to act out impulsively in troubling ways. It is so understandable, but then we get caught in the rut of having to rationalize and validate our actions while minimizing the havoc they cause. So, we get more caught up in knots. For me, blaming formed a big part of this picture, "It must be somebody's fault...probably somebody else's, but if not him or her, then it must be me." But, in the most important sense, it simply "IS," and we have to start there if we are going to make it better in the future. So, as I see it, part of mindfulness practice is creating a safe and spacious container in which we can recognize our habitual impulses, start letting them go, and begin to see what bubbles up that formed conditions for those impulses. We know when this is working because we feel more whole, more integrated, more balanced, and more contented and relaxed. It is gratifying. I think of this as a different sort of "cognitive distancing" that helps us better see the greater context of experience in our daily affairs as well. It causes shifts in both attitudinal and cognitive predispositions. I would think both types of cognitive distancing would have their uses and benefits. I am so glad you posted what you did. I think this is such an important topic and I was a little distressed that no one was talking about it. I also worried that my post might have put people off. So, thanks for your input. Have a great week.
  14. 2 points
    "Whether grief is obvious or hidden, the way forward is through. We lean into the pain and allow grief’s wisdom to present itself. Grief is an elemental thing, beyond the control of our intellect and best left to find its course like water down a mountain. If we dam it, it gains energy until it becomes a destructive flood. Best to let it find its way. Opening to our grief opens us to pain. But it also opens us joy by freeing us from the deadening armor that’s accumulated around our hearts. Life’s preciousness emerges and we see the first crocus of spring breaking through the snow. We see the baby born in the maternity ward at the same moment CPR is stopped in the ER. We feel love for the stranger in the very heart-space opened by transformed grief." How to meet broken hearts & longing - a profound dose of wisdom from Jeff Foster
  15. 2 points
    I have learned that embracing the grief allows it to turn into peace. It sounds scary, but accept the pain and it will be transformed. Do not deny or suppress and it will become something new.
  16. 1 point
    Hello ^_^ a little update: I had the courage to approach my family and tell them that I need a professional help as I am experiencing weekly episodes and cycles of intense joy (4-3 days of the week) followed by depression (not really depression but I think just laziness ) and sometimes my mind start creating silly stories about suicide. and they were very understanding and I am really grateful for their support and kindness ♥ my sister helped me finding a psychiatrist and I just had a session yesterday ! I had few expectations but they weren't met I told him about addiction,binge eating disorder and relapsing due to the cycle I mentioned before... **Bare in mind, I never met any psychiatrists before or any spiritual gurus in my entire life** my expectations wasn't met because I thought he is going to make me tell him about the entire story of my life and that my present situation is due to "mistakes" that did happen in the past.. but long story short; he said " You are stressed." to be honest I resisted and my ego was kinda offended (doesn't he know how that I meditate every day for an hour and that I am very positive person and I read X & Y book and I watched X or Y videos about mindfulness and meditation ) this is how my mind reacted. I told him no because I think I am very calm person, I meditate a lot and I am mostly happy and my life is a total bliss and 90% is greatly wonderful but only need to understand how I can accept and change the other 10%. after speaking for a little, he talked again about stressed, and I started feeling like something is wrong and this guy doesn't understand how "Mindful" and "Awaken" I am ( I only noticed those ego related thoughts after the session ). I told him no I am not stressed in a conscious way but maybe in a unconscious way like in the background and I am not aware of it.. after a while he started talking about stress and something clicked I just became aware that truly I am experiencing stress and this is why I tend to lean into these behaviors because they help my mind relax from all the resistance I offer to urges: binge eating helps me to feel relaxed and full this is why my mind repeats this habit and to change this habit I just simply need to nurture my brain and body with the things it needs. he described me an antidepressant medicine to keep me calm ,relaxed and to try for one month and to observe how things will go and I am really excited and grateful because it will help me to commit to my life and to my goals and also my diet so I can see the results I want. and lowkey I am excited because this medicine will help me being more present, calm and to reap more benefits from meditation ! on a fundamental level I believe it's the thinking mind creating all the suffering, I even recall sadhguru saying that "if we removed half of your brain you will be completely fine and happy" so I believe that easing the stress by medicating and meditating will solve any inconvenience. the moral of the story is: be present ^_^
  17. 1 point
    Absolutely Jillian! I feel the same. I was out camping this weekend and we brought our dogs who were stirring quite a lot in the night outside of the tent. I was having difficulty sleeping after being woken up by them, but soon I remembered the breath. Just watching it helped me to let go of the stories about how 'bad' or stressful it was that I wasn't able to fall asleep swiftly and soon, I naturally sunk back into slumber.
  18. 1 point
    I apologize if my topic is not on the correct section. I was listening to a song by Sami yusuf and it was powerfully charged with a lot of emotions, but I never understood what it was saying as it was sung in turkish language. so today I found that someone added the translation on the video and wow I was truly amazed by the lyrics of the poem ! I am just amazed that such a man who lived in the 14th century was able to reach such knowledge and connection to his true essence. I won't speak a lot, just hear for yourself.
  19. 1 point
    Beautiful! Thank you so much for sharing Ali
  20. 1 point
    Hi, I am Ann-Marie, but I go by Annie. I am a student of nutrition at a naturopathic school and have just started learning about integrated healing. I grew up very close to nature and aspire to help heal ourselves and our environment through nutrition and self-care. I look forward to engaging in this community and having dialog with you. Blessings on your day.
  21. 1 point
    I think there is much wisdom in this Ali! It makes me think that rather than waiting for ourselves to be 'spiritually perfect' (i.e. without cravings, 'negative' thoughts, etc.), we might find a way to be with these cravings, thoughts, and beliefs in a new way. Through that, we might uncover a new way of being.
  22. 1 point
    Allowing myself to focus solely on my breath is empowering, to give all of my attention to myself and let go of everything else it that moment. It is also comforting knowing it is ok to take that time and nothing bad is going to happen. This impacts my state of mind by immediately generating a sense of calm and peace. It provides a pause to just be and not feel the need to deal with any outside distractions, while providing an opportunity to become centered before you do need to face a situation allowing for a more balanced response rather than a rushed, defensive, or involuntary reaction.
  23. 1 point
    Hi, here is a long response (sorry if too long) to share my perspectives and what works for me. Everyone has addictions. Attaching to anything (food, drugs, relationships, roles, things, activities) external to ourselves is an addiction. So, you are not alone. What works for me. Your beliefs are your reality. I believe who we really are is a divine aspect of the Universe, the field of consciousness, infinite, eternal and powerful. I am bigger than my problems. The small me of form is only temporary, a steward for my mind, body, and spirit. Recite this at least twice a day. The small me can easily be controlled by the ego (same as the mind, negative thoughts and emotions). Observe and don’t judge the thoughts. I am NOT my thoughts. Go into no thoughts, no-mind by catching myself thinking about the past or future. Past is only for lessons learned and future is only for planning. Catch the ego weaving incessant stories that causes regrets or shame from the past or worries and anxieties for the future. Don’t try to control by using my mind, try to participate the NOW with my heart. My mind is NOT my friend. Deep breaths are my one true friend that take me in the NOW, into mindfulness, into stillness where my essence resides and true solutions can arise. Stay in the NOW, in No Mind as much as possible. What I think feel real, but NOT true. Don’t believe in my thoughts. I am not my thoughts, my ego. Talk to myself as I am talking to a third person. Observe the thoughts. Don’t judge. Accept where I am and then proceed with kindness. I believe I am a kind person, the essence of me is kind and gentle. I naturally am kind to my mind, body, and spirit. Be kind and be enough. Food, drugs, compulsive thinking are ego’s way of filling itself with stuff to feel enough. I am Bigger than that. Whenever I feel like feeding more pain to the pain, remember to be kind to my mind, body, and spirit. I am responsible for their well being. Don’t judge suffering as bad. Most of the time, only suffering can crack my ego open and let the light (awareness, awakening, enlightenment) in. Trust that the Universe always brings what I need for my spiritual growth even though I perceive them as negative or bad. Practical ways when I am off the track: be okay with it. Deep breathing. Read spiritual teachings (I have written down many go-to quotes and teachings as great reminders for pick me ups) or watch on YouTube. Do yoga, meditate, walk in nature. Do puzzles or anything that I enjoy and immerse me in the NOW. Watch the trees. Talk with my friends who are on the spiritual path. Have a few spiritual accountability friends who can be in touch regularly to help each other on track. Stick with intermittent fasting - fast for 16 hours and eat for 8 hours. Stick with a vegan diet for animals, health and mother earth. Be aware that my negative thoughts and feelings are in me, not in the world. Only I can observe them and choose not to believe them. When I judge myself, other people and events, I know that’s from my ego, not from my essence. All are not true. What’s true is we are all in this together, all at different phases of our evolution, all doing the best we can. Have kindness, compassion, understanding and commitment to nurture our mind, body, and spirit for self and others. Be mindful and treat everything and action Sacred - watching hands, brushing teeth, etc. Only loving and kindness for self, everyone and everything can true joy be found. Whatever happened and will happen, whatever I did and will do, does NOT affect the real I one bit. It’s just a dream, an illusion, a stage for us to express ourselves like actors and actresses. Don’t take thoughts and life too seriously. Remember the real I. More important, giving is the fastest way of receiving. If I need attention, give someone attention. Calling people who are in need of a friend periodically to make their day. That fills me up more than any material things in the world. Namaste, Leah
  24. 1 point
    Hi Priyanka! Great recommendation. I love this breathing technique.
  25. 1 point
    This is so sweet! Thank you for sharing. I love the simple movements in the beginning, and how that hugging movement ties in with the koala meditation. Perfect length for young kids I think, and the instructions seem very age-appropriate as well. Really well done!
  26. 1 point
    Hi @Ali Zien, I realized that I forgot to mention a book I'm reading, which could be of interest to you. It's Russell Brand's 'Recovery' and highlights his understanding and approach to the 12 steps. I've found it very insightful so far!
  27. 1 point
    Hi Assil, Great question! 100 days is a long challenge, and there will definitely be days where we feel pressed for time or not interested in practicing. I'd say that it's entirely up to you how you approach this, but one thing that I often do when I am partaking in some kind of challenge or working towards a goal is this: Let's say I am aiming to meditate 20 minutes a day for 30 days. I will set up some kind of stipulation for myself that allows for human life to intervene. So for instance, I will set a 'rule' that if I miss a day, I will meditate for double - 40 minutes - the next day (either all at once or split into two). This helps me to stay on track and remain committed while also honouring the ebb and flow of life. Maybe something like this could be incorporated into your 100 day challenge. But ultimately, it is all completely up to you! Enjoy
  28. 1 point
    Thank you Rachel and Joan! @Rachel - I love the idea of exploring the energies and qualities of each chakra. Pairing them with colours and locations in the body would make this really tangible for children. And great idea pairing animals with the Yamas and Niyamas! I think there are really so many creative possibilities for exploring these teachings with young ones still so open to the world, its sights, its sounds, it colours, and its creatures @Joan S. - I can completely see the struggle with online classes and how this would create difficulty paying attention. I've taken a few yoga classes myself online and I was not nearly as present as when I am in a class with others or practicing on my own. Where you are, does it seem like you will be able to work face-to-face anytime soon? Also, great idea about visualizing one's safe place. Perfect foundation!
  29. 1 point
    Dear Rachel, My heart goes out to you! I can only imagine the mix of emotions that you are experiencing at the moment. What a challenging time this must be. I am glad to hear at least that these emotions are all welcome at your table (which reminds me of a poem I shared elsewhere in the forum recently - The Guest House by Rumi). And yet still jarring of course, especially when it was completely unexpected. I find it difficult to know what to say in these times as words cannot heal heartache, and I've not read (to my memory) any books specifically related to this experience. However, one book that I know many have received great support from is: When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times - by Pema Chödrön This next suggestion is not related to heartache, but for some reason, it crept into my consciousness just now (and might be nourishing for you!). I read this a few years ago: The Dance by Oriah Mountain Dreamer RAIN meditations could be extra nourishing at this time, which you might already be practicing. Have you found anything else since you made this post that is of support for you? Sending you plenty of tender love and care!
  30. 1 point
    I am a marriage family therapist and a large percentage of my practice are teenagers. Due to COVID-19 all sessions are now on video and not face to face. Needless to say, this has challenges as far as making that physical connection which is especially important for teens to feel safe and comfortable. The environment with distractions are also a challenge. I have found that when I was physically in my office with teens they were more open to experiencing a meditation. Online their attention span seems to be compromised especially because they are looking at a screen and usually either sitting in a chair or walking around at times. I would like a suggestion for a short calming/relaxing meditation to start each session with for them to be able to visualize their safe place.
  31. 1 point
    @lovingkindness To add on to Gillian's post- I would strongly suggest reading Trauma Sensitive Mindfulness, as the experience you are describing is discussed in detail in the book (by David Treleaven). I have not experienced that strong a reaction to meditation, though my experiences tend to be more of a dissociative nature than felt in my physical body. Be well. We are listening and here to support!
  32. 1 point
    Good morning- With young kids, say, ages 4-8, incorporating gentle movement into mindfulness is key. Linking movement with familiar things such as colors, animals, or the weather helps young children with visualization and uses multiple sensory modalities to stay present. I was fortunate to create 2 series of podcast meditations for this age bracket- one was called The Rainbow Inside Us, and each short meditation focused on a chakra and the color and energies associated with it. The other was called Adventurous Animals, which used the Yamas and Niyamas as the basis for the mindfulness work. Each animal (and corresponding movement) personified one of these yogic principles. They were quite well received. With older kids, I think it is best to emphasize the most concrete ways to connect with ourselves. Breathing exercises and journaling and getting out into nature seem the most logical ways to engage otherwise often contrary adolescents. Keeping it real gives teenagers a chance to experience the benefits directly instead of hypothetically, scientifically, or philosophically. Hope you all remain safe and well. Rachel
  33. 1 point
    Hi Everyone, I am a Self-Taught Practitioner living in McKinney, TX & a Transplant from Boston, MA. I Look forward to connecting, Engaging, & Learning from others; a lot of passion is derived from Daniel Goleman & Dr. Richie Davidson; I actually listened to an interview between him & the Dalai Llama, that was very inspiring! I have lots to share and be opened-minded for Pearls of Wisdom to be got here!
  34. 1 point
    I'm re-sharing an event that @Rachel brought to our attention in another thread - a free online 10 day trauma skills summit. For more information or to register, click here: https://product.soundstrue.com/trauma-skills-summit/register/
  35. 1 point
    Hi, I am Andreas. Been into Mindfulness Meditation for 3 years now. It has been a massive game changer for me. Initially used it to overcome a mental health condition, but found it to be an amazing way of life, so different to anything I 've experienced so far. I am happy to join a forum with like-minded people. I am dedicated to deepen the mindful experience and hope this forum will offer ideas and tools. Love and respect to all you nice people.
  36. 1 point
    As happens is in most places. I lived in Boston for 46 years and even within the city each small town was different from others. It is easier if you have someone to move with. I have heard Sweden is a lovely place to live for people. Are you learning to speak Swedish?
  37. 1 point
    Ah, that explains it although my daughter goes to be around 4AM but she is 33 and a night person. Depending on where in Canada you were used to the weather anyway. Now I will have to figure out the time difference there. I have online friends in the UK and India and the India one and I are always at very different times of day. Of course there are no limits but when I first started doing some fo the guided ones they would say do this every day and I was switching around. I just laughed a bit after a while because I could ot fit all the every day ones in which I know. I do one or two and for 2 whole days I have done the Andrew Weil one-it's' not his I know. I should do ti right now while i am thinking of it.
  38. 1 point
    Thank you Sean for the e-book “Finding the Missing Peace” by Ajahn Amaro. This book has given me much valuable insight into the practices of mindfulness and meditation, and I feel more equipped in working towards my goal of an ongoing "state of calm". I love his straight talking style of writing and his quirky sense of humour!
  39. 1 point
  40. 1 point
    Being up early in the end means I get to sit outside and listen to the peace and the owls. I love sitting in the darkness.
  41. 1 point
    Great list of resources! Thanks Priyanka.
  42. 1 point
    I am trying to remember where she said, if she did, but can not. Your husband has a strong stomach I guess. I was reading something about the importance of trees to the vendors because they are in the heat so much. I sent it to Shanta even though she lives there. I did not want to presume to send her something about her own country but she found it interesting. I would not do well in the heat there but the street food sounds like fun. I am not sure what my stomach would have to say about it though. McDonald's has invaded so many countries and it is sad and angering at the same time. They make money by selling unhealthy food to people because who doesn't want to be like an American? Please read that with sarcasm. Modi got in through underhanded means according to what she has told me. That sounds like a fun wedding. I think I remember hearing that white is for funerals in India or it could be that I did not really hear that. At least you had some semblance of an Indian ceremony. The weddings sound like so much fun. Alas you will have to wait a long time for the real India one. What would happen to your kitty if you moved there? I had one daughter and my maternal instincts went out the window I think. She has none and that is fine with me. It is not a great world and there are too many people already. That could be fun to do. I have been part of online meetings with mindfulness and with the Center for Biological Diversity but never just too chat. I confess my insecurities are rearing their ugly heads. It's not like I do not see people and chat but that is in person. Still I should get over it and do it. You are in Vancouver or Ottawa? one of those?
  43. 1 point
    That is quite the story and I had to try to keep up with you was moving where. I did have to laugh. I am going to have to read it again to check who is where now. Your husband wants to move to India I take it? That is a great story with all the different cultures. My daughter's cousin married someone from India but she grew up here so they are staying. They had a big wedding in India and she was very disappointed that she was not invited as were most people from here not invited also. Did you have an American wedding or did it lean more towards Indian?
  44. 1 point
    I am a college professor so 18-22 is my target age. I find this group just wants someone to listen without judgment. They want an adult to see them and respect who they are becoming. I am wanting to start bringing mindfulness to this group as we move back into a school year (covid be damned!) and I look forward to this group as I move into this challenge!
  45. 1 point
    Most feel slowed in the winter, but I am the opposite. The heat of the American South slows me down and I am most alert and content in the Fall and Winter. My mind is aware that the longer days should make me happier, focused or energetic, so sometimes I find myself at odds with the seasons. When that push and pull is strongest, I usually take the dogs for a hike and communicate with my surroundings...literally talking to the woods around me. I often come home feeling a bit better!
  46. 1 point
    Girl, Woman, Other - By Bernadine Evaristo **Best book I've read in years!
  47. 1 point
    Hi David, I appreciate your questions and your seeking. And Gillian, your summary of how you teach and of Tara Brach's compassionate teachings offers excellent examples. I'd like to share something I learned about self-compassion from a talk given by Kristen Neff recently. I don't know if it's relevant here, but I think it might be helpful. She noted that from her studies she's identified three important elements of self compassion. The first is mindfulness; being aware of your struggle in a balanced and accepting way. The second is a connection to humanity (not being ego-centric or feeling alone.) The third is kindness, the desire to alleviate suffering, the motivation to get help, to grow, heal and change. It struck me, in thinking of my own past struggles and those of some family members, that addiction robs you of all three of these elements. An addict is not likely to have a mindful view of their struggle, and is by nature (while using) ego-centric and narcissistic, and has a very difficult time with motivation and seeking help. Just a reflection. The other thing I found interesting is her notion of a yin/yang balance necessary for self-compassion. She noted that one needs the yin- a soft accepting of imperfection, an ability to hold one's brokenness and child self, as well as the yang- the fierce "mamma bear" part that has a "tough love" approach, can set boundaries and say no, has motivation and can meet one's needs. David, I see your point about the lack of "onward-leading" wisdom in mindfulness programs. For me, studying Buddhism fulfills that lack. I find that I get a lot of depth from studying Buddhism, and reading books by Pema Chodron, Thich Nhat Hanh, and other Buddhists. I also get that need fulfilled from participating in other activist trainings. For example, learning about teaching mindfulness and conflict resolution to prisoners through the Path to Freedom program, directed by Fleet Maull. The more teachers I learn from the more depth I get in my own foundation of knowledge. I've also studied Sufism and gotten a lot out of that faith. As a psychologist, I always recommend that people go to therapy to learn more about themselves. In yoga, one of the niyamas or rules for living is svadhyaya (self-study) which therapy certainly encompasses. I have been in therapy for much of my life, and consider it an ongoing path of enlightenment, not something that you do for a short while. Obviously I'm biased but I believe it helps eliminate delusions, lift veils of denial, and can reveal and shift programming from childhood and society that can subconsciously affect our thoughts and behaviors.
  48. 1 point
    @DavidYes, I use this a lot. Even when I need to relax through a painful procedure at the dentist. But yes sleeping this is very helpful. I still like the sound of rain water, dripping and down pouring.
  49. 1 point
    OOOOO my most favorite subject of all. Sitting in my backyard where all the wild animals are. We have many different birds, cardinals, bluebirds, orioles, robins and finches, etc. I fill the birdfeeder and thy all fight over the food. Then the neighbor cat gets involved and sneaks over to sit underneath the feeder. While the squirrels try to climb and eat all the food and what is on the ground. Butterflies everywhere. Then a few dragon flies. We live near a creek in the middle of Omaha, crazy I know. A large park is beside us also. Then I open my backdoor and let the wild dog outside. LOL. Teddy loves to chase them all. She has gotten the tail of a squirrel once. The cat just sits there and chases my dog in circles. I have video of this all from last year. I plan to do more video this summer. I get to smile and laugh at the mindfulness going on at that time and time stands still. Such a feel good moment. Nature is so welcoming, free, nonjudgmental.
  50. 1 point
    I am sorry for your loss. I lost my dad a few years ago. First close family member besides my brother. I didn't see my brother for 10 years. But it hit me very hard. My dad, I was right there with mom helping her get through things. I remind myself of how awesome death really is. I try to be the observer and caretaker when around the losses. I experience and acknowledge the loss when the time is appropriate. Only 10 years ago I could not deal with loss at all. I would shake and totally melt down. Understanding that we do not die. The body dies, helps me with my emotional control. I truly believe this because I witness this when I help a couple people to cross over. (My dad and my father-in-law) I mean I visited with them until they were comfortable enough to go from their form. My dad was talking to his buddy soldiers from 60 years previous. Greeting them, being half here and half there. It was an amazing thing to witness. Both these people were older and ready to go. It is much different in different situations. I still never hold back and remain in the deep breathing and controlled mode until appropriate. Blessings everyone.


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