Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Connecting our breath to eternity....

The acclaimed buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh talks to the Ecologist about the loss of biodiversity and why human vulnerability is not something we should despair about

Do you believe humans can avoid a global ecological collapse, or are we driving ourselves towards one?

"The National Wildlife Federation tells us everyday that 100 plants and animal species are lost to deforestation. Extinction of species is taking place everyday. In one year there may be 200,000 species going into extinction. That is what is happening; that is not the problem of the future. We know that 251 million years ago there was already global warming caused by gigantic volcanic eruptions. They caused the worst mass extinction in the history of the planet. The 6C increase in global temperature was enough to wipe out 95 per cent of the species that were alive. Global warming already happened 251 million years ago because of volcanic eruptions and 95 per cent of species on earth disappeared. 

Now a second global warming is taking place. This time because of deforestation and industrialisation; man-made, maybe in 100 years there will be no more humans on the planet, in just 100 years. After the disappearance of 95 per cent of species on the earth by the mass extinction the earth took 100 million years to restore life on earth. If our civilisation disappears it will take some time like that for another civilisation to reappear. When volcanic eruptions happened the carbon dioxide built up and created the greenhouse effect. That was 251 million years ago. Now the building up of carbon dioxide is coming from our own lifestyle and our industrial activities. 

If 6C degrees take place, another 95 per cent of species will die out, including Homo sapiens. That is why we have to learn to touch eternity with our in breath and out breath. Extinction of species has happened several times. Mass extinction has already happened five times and this one is the sixth. According to the Buddhist tradition there is no birth and no death. After extinction things will reappear in other forms, so you have to breathe very deeply in order to acknowledge the fact that we humans may disappear in just 100 years on earth. 

You have to learn how to accept that hard fact. You should not be overwhelmed by despair. The solution is to learn how to touch eternity in the present moment. We have been talking about the environment as if it is something different from us, but we are the environment. The non-human elements are our environment, but we are the environment of non-human elements, so we are one with the environment. We are the environment. We are the earth and the earth has the capacity to restore balance and sometimes many species have to disappear for the balance restored. Maybe the flood, maybe the heat, maybe the air.

 

Thursday, June 25, 2015

the Way of Tea ....

The Way of Tea
A friend presented me
With tender leaves of Oolong tea,
For which I chose a kettle
Of ivory-mounted gold,
A mixing-bowl of snow-white earth.
With its clear bright froth and fragrance,
It was like the nectar of Immortals.
The first bowl washed the cobwebs from my mind -
The whole world seemed to sparkle.
A second cleansed my spirit
Like purifying showers of rain,
A third and I was one of the Immortals -
What need now for austerities
To purge our human sorrows?
Worldly people, by going in for wine,
Sadly deceive themselves.
For now I know the Way of Tea is real.
~ Chio Jen (Tang Dynasty

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

A Bigger Container

A Bigger Container
by Charlotte Joko Beck

We can talk about “oneness” until the cows come home. But how do we actually separate ourselves from others? How? The pride out of which anger is born is what separates us. And the solution is a practice in which we experience this separating emotion as a definite bodily state. When we do, A Bigger Container is created.

What is created, what grows, is the amount of life I can hold without it upsetting me, dominating me. At first this space is quite restricted, then it’s a bit bigger, and then it’s bigger still. It need never cease to grow. And the enlightened state is that enormous and compassionate space. But as long as we live we find there is a limit to our container’s size and it is at that point that we must practice. And how do we know where this cut-off point is? We are at that point when we feel any degree of upset, of anger. It’s no mystery at all. And the strength of our practice is how big that container gets.

As we do this practice we need to be charitable with ourselves. We need to recognize when we’re unwilling to do it. No one is willing all the time. And it’s not bad when we don’t do it. We always do what we’re ready to do.

The practice of making A Bigger Container is essentially spiritual because it is essentially nothing at all. A Bigger Container isn’t a thing; awareness is not a thing; the witness is not a thing or a person. There is not somebody witnessing. Nevertheless that which can witness my mind and body must be other than my mind and body. If I can observe my mind and body in an angry state, who is this “I” who observes? It shows me that I am other than my anger, bigger than my anger, and this knowledge enables me to build A Bigger Container, to grow. So what must be increased is the ability to observe. What we observe is always secondary. It isn’t important that we are upset; what is important is the ability to observe the upset.

As the ability grows first to observe, and second to experience, two factors simultaneously increase: wisdom, the ability to see life as it is (not the way I want it to be) and compassion, the natural action which comes from seeing life as it is. We can’t have compassion for anyone or anything if our encounter with them is ensnarled in pride and anger; it’s impossible. Compassion grows as we create A Bigger Container.

About the Author: Charlotte Joko Beck â€‹was an American Zen teacher and the author of the books Everyday Zen: Love and Work and Nothing Special: Living Zen.

Originally published on Awakin Weekly from Nipun Mehta

Friday, June 19, 2015

Welcome all the guests in the guesthouse of your being

Rumi said:
"This being human is a guest house
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
Some momentary awareness comes
As an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and attend to them all!
Even if they're a crowd of sorrows,
Who violently sweep your house
Empty of its furniture.
Still, treat each guest honorably,
He may be clearing you out for some new delight."

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

AMAZING wheat free nut and seed bread - worth trying!

Yes, I'm posting a recipe for one of the BEST BREADS I have ever tried.... first time ever - and when you try it you'll know why!


The Life-Changing Loaf of BreadMakes 1 loaf

Ingredients:
1 cup / 135g sunflower seeds
½ cup / 90g flax seeds
½ cup / 65g hazelnuts or almonds
1 ½ cups / 145g rolled oats
2 Tbsp. chia seeds
4 Tbsp. psyllium seed husks (3 Tbsp. if using psyllium husk powder)
1 tsp. fine grain sea salt (add ½ tsp. if using coarse salt)
1 Tbsp. maple syrup (for sugar-free diets, use a pinch of stevia)
3 Tbsp. melted coconut oil or ghee
1 ½ cups / 350ml water
Directions:
1. In a flexible, silicon loaf pan combine all dry ingredients, stirring well. Whisk maple syrup, oil and water together in a measuring cup. Add this to the dry ingredients and mix very well until everything is completely soaked and dough becomes very thick (if the dough is too thick to stir, add one or two teaspoons of water until the dough is manageable). Smooth out the top with the back of a spoon. Let sit out on the counter for at least 2 hours, or all day or overnight. To ensure the dough is ready, it should retain its shape even when you pull the sides of the loaf pan away from it it.
2. Preheat oven to 350°F / 175°C.
3. Place loaf pan in the oven on the middle rack, and bake for 20 minutes. Remove bread from loaf pan, place it upside down directly on the rack and bake for another 30-40 minutes. Bread is done when it sounds hollow when tapped. Let cool completely before slicing (difficult, but important).
4. Store bread in a tightly sealed container for up to five days. Freezes well too – slice before freezing for quick and easy toast!

Heisenberg in a song - all about you!

Sunday, June 07, 2015

The Love that Will Not Die - Are you an unwise selfish person, or a wise selfish person?

In her awesome book, "When Things Fall Apart" Pema Chodron wrote:

It is said in difficult times, it is only bodhichitta [the mind of enlightenment] that heals. When inspiration has become hidden, when we feel ready to give up, this is the time when healing can be found in the tenderness of the pain itself. This is the time to touch genuine heart of [the mind of enlightenment]. In the midst of loneliness, in the midst of fear, in the middle of feeling misunderstood and rejected is the heartbeat of all things, the genuine heart of sadness.
Just as a jewel that has been buried in the earth for a million years is not discolored or harmed, in the same way this noble heart is not affected by all our kicking and screaming. The jewel can be brought out into the light at any time, and it will glow as brilliantly as if nothing had ever happened. No matter how committed we are to unkindness, selfishness, or greed, the genuine heart of [the mind of enlightenment] cannot be lost. It is here in all that lives, never marred and completely whole.
We think that by protecting ourselves from suffering we are being kind to ourselves. The truth is, we only become more fearful, more hardened, and more alienated. We experience ourselves as being separate from the whole. This separateness becomes like a prison for us, a prison that restricts us to our personal holes and fears and to caring only for the people nearest to us. Curiously enough, if we primarily try to shield ourselves from discomfort, we suffer. Yet when we don't close off and we let our hearts break, we discover kinship with all beings. His Holiness the Dalai Lama describes two kinds of selfish people: the unwise and the wise. Unwise selfish people think only of themselves, and the result is confusion and pain. Wise selfish people know that the best thing they can do for themselves is to be there for others. As a result they experience joy.

Thursday, June 04, 2015

Friday, May 15, 2015

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Gigapixels of Andromeda [4K]

WE are all of it.

The book, "The Great Work: Our Way Into the Future" outlines our current situation in such lucid terms, that there’s many quotes I’d love to share.

That said,  this one on spirit highlights the depth of how we are spirit and the cosmos and human all at the same time, and the importance of fully embracing who we are to heal the human relationship with the biosphere.

“To succeed in this task of shaping the future, the will of the more comprehensive self must be functioning. The individual will can function in this capacity only through an acknowledged union with the deeper structures of reality. Even beyond union with the human community must be union with the Earth, with the universe itself in the full wonder of it’s being. Only the Earth can adequately will the Earth. If we will the future effectively it will be because the guidance and the powers of the Earth have been communicated to us, not because we have determined the future of the Earth simply with some rational faculty.

Central to this process is our contact with the sacred and the vast range of Earth’s psychic dynamism. While our sense of the sacred can never be recovered precisely as it existed in former centuries, it  can be recovered in the mystique of the Earth, in the epic of evolution. Spiritual disciplines are once again being renewed throughout the world. For some the ultimate mystery of things is experienced in the depth of the inner self, for others in the human community as well as the total spiritual heritage of the universe. Within this context the religious antagonisms of the past can be overcome, the particular traditions can be vitalized, and the feeling of presence to a sacred universe can appear once more to dynamize and sustain human affairs.

We must feel that we are supported by that same power that brought the Earth into being, that power that spun the galaxies into space, that lit the sun and brought the moon into its orbit. That is the power by which loving forms grew up out of the Earth and came to a special mode of reflexive consciousness in the human. This is the force that brought us through more than a million years of wandering as hunters and gatherers; this is that same vitality that led to the establishment of our cities and inspired the thinkers, artists and poets of all the ages. Those same forces are still present; indeed, we might feel their impact at this time and understand that we are not isolated in the chill of space with the burden of the future upon us and without the aid of any other power.


We are a pervasive presence. By definition we are that reality in whom the entire Earth comes to a special mode of reflexive consciousness. We are ourselves a mystical quality of the Earth, a unifying principle, an integration of the various polarities of the material and the spiritual, the physical and the psychic, the natural and the artistic, the intuitive and the scientific. We are the unity in which all these inhere and achieve a special mode of functioning. In this way the human acts as a pervading logos. If the human is microcosmos, the cosmos is macroanthropos. We are each the cosmic person, the Mahapurusha, the Great Person of the Hindu India, expressed in the universe itself….”

Friday, December 26, 2014

"The Internet is my Religion" - "Together we are the Creator"

"Today we are the creators. We each have our own unique skills and talents to contribute creating the kingdom of God. We serve God best when we do what we love for the greatest cause we can imagine. What the people in this room do, is spiritual, it is profound. We are the leaders of this new religion. We have faith that people connected can create a new world. Each one of us is a creator, but together we are the Creator."


Saturday, December 13, 2014

Rethinking time and the physics of life

"If the theory of syntropy is correct, three levels of time must exist. The sequential time to which we are accustomed to, in which energy is divergent and entropy prevails, would be typical of expanding systems, such as our universe. On the contrary, in a converging system the flow of time would be reversed as it happens in black holes. There are also systems in which diverging and converging forces are balanced, such as atoms. At this level time is unitary and past, present and future coexist.”
read more in the article "Luigi Fantappié and the physics of life"



Wednesday, December 03, 2014

From where does consciousness rise in the brain?

A great article on the new understandings of the nature of consciousness in the brain which may revolutionize our assumptions.

"A review and update of a controversial 20-year-old theory of consciousness published in Physics of Life Reviews claims that consciousness derives from deeper level, finer scale activities inside brain neurons. The recent discovery of quantum vibrations in "microtubules" inside brain neurons corroborates this theory, according to review authors Stuart Hameroff and Sir Roger Penrose. They suggest that EEG rhythms (brain waves) also derive from deeper level microtubule vibrations, and that from a practical standpoint, treating brain microtubule vibrations could benefit a host of mental, neurological, and cognitive conditions."
"The theory, called "orchestrated objective reduction" ('Orch OR'), was first put forward in the mid-1990s by eminent mathematical physicist Sir Roger Penrose, FRS, Mathematical Institute and Wadham College, University of Oxford, and prominent anesthesiologist Stuart Hameroff, MD, Anesthesiology, Psychology and Center for Consciousness Studies, The University of Arizona, Tucson. They suggested that quantum vibrational computations in microtubules were "orchestrated" ("Orch") by synaptic inputs and memory stored in microtubules, and terminated by Penrose "objective reduction" ('OR'), hence "Orch OR." Microtubules are major components of the cell structural skeleton."

"Orch OR was harshly criticized from its inception, as the brain was considered too "warm, wet, and noisy" for seemingly delicate quantum processes.. However, evidence has now shown warm quantum coherence in plant photosynthesis, bird brain navigation, our sense of smell, and brain microtubules. The recent discovery of warm temperature quantum vibrations in microtubules inside brain neurons by the research group led by Anirban Bandyopadhyay, PhD, at the National Institute of Material Sciences in Tsukuba, Japan (and now at MIT), corroborates the pair's theory and suggests that EEG rhythms also derive from deeper level microtubule vibrations. In addition, work from the laboratory of Roderick G. Eckenhoff, MD, at the University of Pennsylvania, suggests that anesthesia, which selectively erases consciousness while sparing non-conscious brain activities, acts via microtubules in brain neurons."

"The origin of consciousness reflects our place in the universe, the nature of our existence. Did consciousness evolve from complex computations among brain neurons, as most scientists assert? Or has consciousness, in some sense, been here all along, as spiritual approaches maintain?" ask Hameroff and Penrose in the current review. "This opens a potential Pandora's Box, but our theory accommodates both these views, suggesting consciousness derives from quantum vibrations in microtubules, protein polymers inside brain neurons, which both govern neuronal and synaptic function, and connect brain processes to self-organizing processes in the fine scale, 'proto-conscious' quantum structure of reality." 
"After 20 years of skeptical criticism, "the evidence now clearly supports Orch OR," continue Hameroff and Penrose. "Our new paper updates the evidence, clarifies Orch OR quantum bits, or "qubits," as helical pathways in microtubule lattices, rebuts critics, and reviews 20 testable predictions of Orch OR published in 1998 -- of these, six are confirmed and none refuted." 
"An important new facet of the theory is introduced. Microtubule quantum vibrations (e.g. in megahertz) appear to interfere and produce much slower EEG "beat frequencies." Despite a century of clinical use, the underlying origins of EEG rhythms have remained a mystery. Clinical trials of brief brain stimulation aimed at microtubule resonances with megahertz mechanical vibrations using transcranial ultrasound have shown reported improvements in mood, and may prove useful against Alzheimer's disease and brain injury in the future.
"Lead author Stuart Hameroff concludes, "Orch OR is the most rigorous, comprehensive and successfully-tested theory of consciousness ever put forth. From a practical standpoint, treating brain microtubule vibrations could benefit a host of mental, neurological, and cognitive conditions."
The review is accompanied by eight commentaries from outside authorities, including an Australian group of Orch OR arch-skeptics. To all, Hameroff and Penrose respond robustly." 
"Penrose, Hameroff and Bandyopadhyay will explore their theories during a session on "Microtubules and the Big Consciousness Debate" at the Brainstorm Sessions, a public three-day event at the Brakke Grond in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, January 16-18, 2014. They will engage skeptics in a debate on the nature of consciousness, and Bandyopadhyay and his team will couple microtubule vibrations from active neurons to play Indian musical instruments. "Consciousness depends on anharmonic vibrations of microtubules inside neurons, similar to certain kinds of Indian music, but unlike Western music which is harmonic," Hameroff explains."

Monday, December 01, 2014

On Psychic Problems.....

The preeminent scholar and philosopher Manly P. Hall who founded the Philosophical Research Society in Los Angeles. He's the author of "Secret Teachings of All Ages" which he wrote in his twenties in 1928.

He wrote many books, among them "Solving Psychic Problems and Submerged Personalities" from which this definitive quote emerged:

"We advise those who come with psychic problems to relax the tensions caused by fear and uncertainty and take a matter-of-fact attitude. Nine times out of ten this ends the phenomenon, which which is only hysteria due to metaphysical indigestion. Spirits are traditionally believed to inhabit ancient ruins, old and deserted houses, graveyards, places of executions, and similar melancholy spots. They shun the light of day, remain aloof from gaiety and happiness, and return to their graves when the cock crows at dawn. Psychological spooks frequent those gloomy and decadent zones of the subconscious which correspond to the melancholy places of the earth. They rise from the dead hopes and from the ruins of old memories, and they depart in haste at the approach of mental light. When day breaks in us, the specters fade like mist at dawn. When we clean out the gloomy ruins within ourselves, there is no suitable habitation for the shadows of lost causes."

"There is no essential evil in nature, not intent to plague mortals with horrible phantoms. Such a sad condition myst be caused by the individual, and the cure lies in the correction of the cause. Socrates paid homage to happy spirits and found each grove and glade the habitation of useful and kindly creatures ever ready to serve mankind. Having experienced the universe as full of goodness, the philosopher had no place in his own soul for fear. He lived his convictions and died with a good hope. If we do not acknowledge the existence of injustice, we are seldom the victims of any mysterious evil agency. If, however, we lack within ourselves a deep and abiding confidence about the integrity of universals, we plague ourselves innumerable deceits. The remedy is to live and think constructively, develop our internal resources naturally and graciously, correct our faults, forget the past, and dedicate the present and the future to useful and constructive enterprises. The spook, if any, cannot endure such optimism, and departs in search of a more congenial ruin to haunt."


Monday, November 24, 2014

Co-Creating: Improvisational Group Work


"The term co-creation occurred frequently in the study. This underscores an important philosophy of group work that is emerging. The global transformation movement belongs to no one person, group, or belief system. It is a story in process, based not on pre-existing design, but rather as a product of dynamic self-organization. It is a story of people working together to address the world’s most profound challenges. Self-organization is inherent in the evolution of all living things and results in the creation of effective living systems that are more efficient and adaptive than hierarchical rigid ones. Crowdsourcing, peer-to-peer networks, crowdfunding, timebanks, and spontaneous activism are all examples of self-organizing systems that have arisen in recent times."

"The word we use to describe the emerging model for group work is improvisational. Borrowing from the world of music and dance, improvisation is a collaborative and spontaneous process that allows new kinds of order to emerge. The new group work is increasingly ordered by improvisational principles. More akin to a meandering stream or a flock of birds, improvisation follows a natural fluid set of rules, rather than rigid imposed ones. Improvisation requires attention, intention, communication, awareness of self and others near to the self, and awareness of the larger picture or pattern that is emerging. Thus, improvisation is an emergent process, and one expressed abundantly in nature—in the natural ways that systems connect, change, and reassemble to create powerful new forms and ideas."


"The boundaries for work groups and communities have expanded far beyond the local. The Internet has encouraged the sharing of resources and has changed the ways we seek and find one another. It has expanded personal relationships and allowed more voices to be heard—not all voices, but many. It may seem impractical to give voice to every individual in a networked world, chaotic, in fact. But it is precisely at this ‘edge of chaos’—where there is just enough order to recognize a pattern, yet sufficient openness to allow new ideas to take shape—that the most powerful initiatives and practices are emerging. All voices that need to be heard must be heard."

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

"The most exciting breakthroughs of the twenty-first century will not occur because of technology, but because of an expanding concept of what it means to be human." - John Naisbitt

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Atunement

When we clear our heart in the present, and listen to our inner presence, our authenticity will shine forth and clear intentions emerge which will enable us to live more effectively moment by moment, sweetly navigating the exciting unexpected currents flowing from the cosmic heart. Atunement to the inner is atunement to the all.

Sunday, October 05, 2014

Desire, non-duality and freedom...

I found this to be one of the most insightful commentaries on desire and living:

"In many spiritual traditions, desire is considered negative because it is seen as an ego desire, which is a desire based on our animalistic impulses, our need to survive. Generally, it is recommended that you not feel desires, that you push them aside or just witness them, and continue staying focused on the practice rather than attend to the content. This is suggested so you don't get distracted by feelings, thoughts, and memories that can bring a lot of inner conflict. As you see, there is a great deal of difficulty in just allowing the feeling itself. But the trust is that once we allow the feeling, we can understand it and allow to fulfill its destiny. We have to learn how to do this in a way that optimizes our spiritual realization."

"Even so, we need to understand that not all desire is the same. For most individuals desire and grasping onto the object of desire are the same thing. Desire that is related to attachment is suffering, and keeps us dissociated from our nature; this type of desire has mostly to do with the self and its object of desire, not with the desiring itself. But as we have seen, desire can function as an avenue to our nature - if we use the desiring energy that is usually directed outward, thereby creating attachment, to go inward. It takes a determination a love for the truth to stay with that energy and follow it back to its origin, thereby liberating the energy of desire to serve freedom instead of keeping us bound in suffering."

"And that is what we are trying to do here-- harness that energy, feel it fully. Even the smallest desire has a trickle of that energy, so experiencing that wanting and following it inward, feeling the energy of it, can release our mind from the content of the desire. Just staying with the energy will naturally open up into a deeper level of our existence, and this is the naturalness of the process."

"So if we want to be ourselves completely - to know our nature at its depth and be fully in the world - this requires being alive and being in touch with that energy. And that brings the erotic into love. In other words, to be able to experience divine eros, we need the purity of love, the ground of lovingness and goodness, the experience of the presence of love, plus the scintillating, erupting explosive quality that has an energy to it. Such energetic dynamic love can be very, very fine - like very gentle bubbles or a gentle vibration - or it can be explosive. This love has an erotic quality to it, and we can feel it draw us toward the divine, toward the truth, toward our inner nature. We can have the experience of desiring to penetrate the mystery, to know the spirit."

"A deep understanding of reality can follow from such a realization of desire. We can see that dualism arises when we are separated from our nature, for it is then that we experience the desire to fill ourselves. We believe there is something external that we need to have, and we deeply believe that we don't have that something. However, with the energy of desire, when we feel it as the blissful wanting of another - but with a sense of sufficiency, not from lack -we don't feel the same kind of otherness we do when we have a dualistic perspective. We feel that the other is arising from the same ground as we are. There is a sharing of a blissful communion, and that communion is a recognition that both of you are one reality."

"We can also feel a loving desire toward our essential nature as the Beloved. Then we are in a dance with that nature, an ebb and a flow with it, and we are not separate - nor are we one. There is enough differentiation for us to feel the excitement of moving toward Beloved again. We feel that we are, in a sense, ourselves in union. It is nice to appear as two, but it doesn't mean that there are two. So the appearance of two is what allows the love to have that vigorous feeling of wanting another and the enjoyment of wanting. There is a fullness to that desire, and you know that within each other, you are the same. A dualistic or a monistic view alone keeps us from the recognition that our nature is a continuous unity within which we can view and appreciate one another as manifestations of reality, recognizing that the Beloved is what you are in union with."

From "The Power of Divine Eros"

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Stunning Wholeness

Stunning wholeness fills our cups
With luminous ancient radiance
Shining from the heart of the cosmos
Here we see, again.
Skin suits dancing, learning, living, serving, celebrating.
Evolutionary energy alive amidst the chaotic death rays
Coherent connections catalyze human integration
As the little Bodhisattva butterfly emerges from the collective chrysalis, smiling wide!


Riding youth through the ancient meadows of starstuff,
Galloping gayly through the timelines
Feeling, flowing, trusting the inner knowing
Allowing the unfolding,
Of love of all to emerge every step....

Saturday, September 27, 2014

To reinvent organizations we must reinvent ourselves...


“Cognitively, psychologically, and morally, moving on to a new stage is a massive feat. It requires courage to let go of old certainties and experiment with a new worldview. For a while, everything can seem uncertain and confused. It might be lonely, too, as sometimes in the process we can lose close relationships with friends and family who can no longer relate to us. Growing into a new form of consciousness is always a highly personal, unique, and somewhat mysterious process. It cannot be forced onto somebody. No one can be made to evolve in consciousness, even with the best of intentions – a hard truth for coaches and consultants, who wish they could help organizational leaders adopt worldview by the power of conviction. What can be done is to create environments that are conducive to growing into later stages. When someone is surrounded by peers who already see the world from a more complex perspective, in a context safe enough to explore inner conflicts, chances are higher that the person will make the leap.”

Here’s a link to the book "Reinveinting Organizations" 

Sunday, September 07, 2014

Laniakea: Our home supercluster

Kind of keeps things in perspective....

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Spiral Dynamics and The Middle East

This article is great because it gives a very clear discussion on Spiral Dynamics and then it applies it to the Middle East conflict.

Saturday, August 09, 2014

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

What is non-duality?

"What Is Nonduality?"

"At the Nonduality Institute, nonduality is understood as the realization of a very subtle, non-conceptual, unbounded consciousness that is experienced as the essence of one’s own being and of all life. This is a mutual transparency of self and other, in which everything, including one’s own being, is revealed as made of a single, vast expanse of consciousness. It arises together with phenomena; it pervades the movement of perceptions, thoughts, emotions and sensations. This nondual consciousness is not known as an object separate from ourselves; rather, it knows itself."

 "This level of consciousness has been regarded as the source of positive qualities of being, in the sense that such qualities as compassion, insight, joy and equanimity manifest spontaneously when one realizes it. These qualities are experienced as non-referential, in other words, not a specific compassion for someone, but an open-ended state of compassion that pervades one’s entire field of experience."

"Most contemporary teachings consider nonduality to be the direct unmediated perception of phenomena, along with spontaneous, unmediated expression and action. In other words, direct, spontaneous participation in life, unhampered by preconceptions. Students of this view are usually instructed to fix their attention on the present moment, or to relax into an all-inclusive awareness."

"There are two limitations with this approach. One, nondual consciousness is more subtle than simple attention. It not only focuses on phenomena, it pervades phenomena. It renders all of one's experience as suffused with a radiant emptiness. Two, the fixations that obscure the present moment are not just mental. Long-held constrictions in the body limit our perception, cognition, emotional responsiveness and physical sensation. We cannot open to our fundamental nature just with our minds, we need to open throughout our whole body. Because of these bodily constrictions, when we attempt to let go into the present moment, we generally let go only from the surface of ourselves. In order to realize nonduality, we need to let go from deep within the core of our being."

"Approaches to nonduality that focus on recognizing and dissolving mental constructions also de-construct the notion of the self. Any fixed ideas of the self, such as "I am a teacher" or "I am a good person" will obscure our realization of nondual consciousness. However, when we realize nondual consciousness pervading our body and environment, we uncover a qualitative, authentic sense of our individual self. Nonduality is neither the subject nor the object of experience. It is the unity, the oneness of subject and object."

"Nondual awakening is not dependent upon a particular spiritual lineage. When we realize nonduality, we are not realizing Buddhism or Hinduism. We are realizing our own fundamental nature—the spiritual foundation of our being is self-arising. It is naturally there, and it appears spontaneously as we become open enough to uncover it. Although the different spiritual lineages describe nondual awakening in different ways, the arising of nonduality itself is unmistakable."

From the website of the "Nonduality Institute" co-founded by neuroscientist Zoran Josipovic, Ph.D
and Judith Blackstone, Ph.D

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Sunday, July 06, 2014

Emotional mastery creates new possibilities!

A thought provoking article called "Generating Emotions" shares:

"Your emotions are your inner guidance system. They fuel you as they drive many of your decisions and actions, for better or for worse. They add to the quality of your life, and can rob you of vitality. Your emotions reveal what you truly love and value. They nourish your creative, artistic and intuitive abilities. In fact, having all the wealth in the world does not matter if you do not feel good."

"You have a wonderful capacity to feel a vast array of emotions, from sorrow to elation; anxiety to peace; frustration to relief. Moreover, you can experience those emotions within minutes, each one colouring your perception, adding or subtracting from the quality of a moment. You can feel uplifted and radiant when someone compliments you about how great you look at a party, but also uncomfortable when you scan the room, catching a glimpse of someone who you have had a conflict with. As you hear the news that an old school friend of yours has been diagnosed with cancer, your emotions sink further, but are uplifted by a bear hug that you receive from an old friend that you have not seen in a long time!"

"But you have been conditioned to seeing yourself as being separate from the world rather than as being part of your world. You have been trained to only have feelings about something in response to something that has already occurred outside of yourself. If, as the ancient traditions suggest, you are participating within a holographic Multiverse, rather than being mere observer; if everything is ultimately one and that an independent, detached reality does not exist; then when you take the time to generate a new emotional response to something in your life, you effectively create a new template of possibility that is available for anyone to access. You become an emotional generator."

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Poetry Surrounds Us - Vincent Van Gogh

“The more I think it over, the more I feel that there is nothing more truly artistic than to love people. People are often unable to do anything, imprisoned as they are in I don’t know what kind of terrible, terrible, oh such terrible cage. Do you know what makes the prison disappear? Every deep, genuine affection. Being friends, being brothers, loving, that is what opens the prison, with supreme power, by some magic force. Without these one stays dead. But whenever affection is revived, there life revives."

"If only we try to live sincerely, it will go well with us, even though we are certain to experience real sorrow, and great disappointments, and also will probably commit great faults and do wrong things, but it certainly is true, that it is better to be high-spirited, even though one makes more mistakes, than to be narrow-minded and all too prudent. It is good to love many things, for therein lies the true strength, and whosoever loves much performs much, and can accomplish much, and what is done in love, is well done."

"What am I in the eyes of most people? A nonentity, an eccentric, or an unpleasant person — somebody who has no position in society and will never have; in short, the lowest of the low. All right, then — even if that were absolutely true, then I should one day like to show by my work what such an eccentric, such a nobody, has in his heart. That is my ambition, based less on resentment than on love in spite of everything, based more on a feeling of serenity than on passion."

"Though I am often in the depths of misery, there is still calmness, pure harmony and music inside me. I see paintings or drawings in the poorest cottages, in the dirtiest corners. And my mind is driven towards these things with an irresistible momentum… Poetry surrounds us everywhere, but putting it on paper is, alas, not so easy as looking at it. I dream my painting, and then I paint my dream." "That God of the clergymen, He is for me as dead as a doornail. But am I an atheist for all that? The clergymen consider me as such — be it so; but I love, and how could I feel love if I did not live, and if others did not live, and then, if we live, there is something mysterious in that. Now call that God, or human nature or whatever you like, but there is something which I cannot define systematically, though it is very much alive and very real, and see, that is God, or as good as God."

"To believe in God for me is to feel that there is a God, not a dead one, or a stuffed one, but a living one… When I have a terrible need of — shall I say the word — religion. Then I go out and paint the stars.”
 ~Vincent van Gogh ~

Sunday, June 08, 2014

"Self knowledge" a piece by David Whyte


"Self Knowledge - is not fully possible for human beings. We do not reside in a body, a mind or a world where it is achievable or from the point of being interesting, even desirable. Half of what lies in the heart and mind is potentiality, resides in the darkness of the unspoken and unarticulated and has not yet come into being: this hidden unspoken half will supplant and subvert any present understandings we have about ourselves. Human beings are a frontier between what is known and what is not known. The act of turning any part of the unknown into the known is simply an invitation for an equal measure of the unknown to flow in and reestablish that frontier: to reassert the far horizon of an individual life; to make us what we are – that is - a moving edge between what we know about ourselves and what we are about to become. What we are actually about to become or are afraid of becoming always trumps and rules over what we think we are already." 

"The hope that a human being can achieve complete honesty and self-knowledge with regard to themselves is a fiction and a chimera, the jargon and goals of a corporate educational system brought to bear on the depths of an identity where the writ of organizing language does not run. Self-knowledge includes the understanding that the self we want to know is about to disappear. What we can understand is the way we occupy this frontier between the known and the unknown, the way we hold the conversation of life, the figure we cut at that edge, but a detailed audit of the self is not possible and diminishes us in the attempt to establish it; we are made on a grander scale, half afraid of ourselves, half in love with immensities beyond any name we can give."

"Self-knowledge is often confused with transparency, but knowledge of the self always becomes the understanding of the self as a confluence; a flowing meeting of elements, including all the other innumerable selves in the world, not a set commodity to be unearthed and knocked into shape. Self-knowledge is not clarity or transparency or knowing how everything works, self-knowledge is a fiercely attentive form of humility and thankfulness, a sense of the privilege of a particular form of participation, coming to know the way we hold the conversation of life and perhaps, above all, the miracle that there is a particular something rather than an abstracted nothing and we are a very particular part of that particular something."


"What we recognize and applaud as honesty and transparency in an individual is actually the humble demeanor of the apprentice, someone paying extreme attention, to themselves, to others, to life, to the next step, which they may survive or they may not; someone who does not have all the answers but who is attempting to learn what they can, about themselves and those with whom they share the journey, someone like everyone else, wondering what they and their society are about to turn into. We are neither what we think we are nor entirely what we are about to become, we are neither purely individual nor fully a creature of our community, but an act of becoming that can never be held in place by a false form of nomenclature. No matter our need to find a place to stand amidst the onward flow of the world, the real foundation of the self is in the self-forgetfulness that can occur when we meet something other than our reflection." by David Gordon Whyte