NOTES to SELF
“There should be somewhere on earth a place which no nation could claim as its own, where all human beings of goodwill, who have a sincere aspiration, could live freely, as citizens of the world, and obey one single authority – that of the supreme Truth.“ ~ Mirra Alfassa, 1954
Today, there is such a place, where people of all colors and creeds live harmoniously without politics, religion or money. It’s called Auroville.
From MindBody Vortex | December 12, 2016
When your mind is uneasy, a sense of urgency is communicated to the body, causing your nervous system to respond with anxiety and adrenaline. Science has demonstrated that even the smallest forms of sickness are far more difficult to overcome when the mind is in constant distress.
The ancient technique of meditation teaches us how to apply focus to our surroundings by bringing us closer to the sensations of our body. This is exactly when your mind can relax and be at peace.
Zen Buddhism is not a theory, an idea, or a piece of knowledge. It is not a belief, dogma, or religion; but rather, it is a practical experience. We cannot intellectually grasp Zen because human intelligence and wisdom are too limited - the dojo (the hall where Zazen is practiced) is different from the university.
Zen is not a moral teaching, and as it is without dogma, it does not require one to believe in anything. A true spiritual path does not tell people what to believe in; rather it shows them how to think; or, in the case of Zen - what not to think.
Zen is not a theory, an idea, or a piece of knowledge. It is not a belief, a dogma, or a religion...Zen Buddhism is not interested in metaphysical theories and rituals and focuses entirely on the mindful practice of Zazen. Zen is very simple. It is so simple, in fact, that it's very difficult to grasp.
In the silence of the dojo or temple, quietly sit down, stop moving, and let go your thoughts. Focus just on your Zazen posture and your breathing. Keep your back straight. Let your ego and your unconscious mind melt away, merge with the universe.
This is Zen.
When we cleanse our perceptions of grasping and attachment, we experience a universe
that is infinite, awakened, and full of delight. Lions Roar features Francesca Fremantle
on sight, sound, touch, and other miracles.
If man were never to fade away like the dews of Adashino, never to vanish like the smoke over Toribeyama, but lingered on forever in the world, how things would lose their power to move us! The
most precious thing in life is its uncertainty. Consider living creatures—none lives so long as man. The May fly waits not for the evening, the summer cicada knows neither spring nor autumn. What a wonderfully unhurried feeling it is to live even a single year in perfect serenity! If that is not enough for you, you might live a thousand years and still feel it was but a single night's dream. We cannot live forever in this world; why should we wait for ugliness to over take us? The longer man lives, the
more shame he endures. To die, at the latest, before one reaches forty, is the least unattractive. Once a man passes that age, he desires (with no sense of shame over his appearance) to mingle in the company of others. In his sunset years he dotes on his grandchildren, and prays for long life so that he may see
them prosper. His preoccupation with worldly desires grows ever deeper, and gradually he loses all
sensitivity to the beauty of things, a lamentable state of affairs.
*from ESSAYS IN IDLENESS by The Surezuregusa of Kenko. Translated by Donald Keene
Great video close up of recent NASA photographs of a sliver of the Universe. Every tiny dot is a star, perhaps a planet...similar to Earth.
If you become frustrated while meditating because your mind is busy swinging like a monkey from thought to thought to thought, you should recognize that the very fact that you are watching the tangle of thoughts in your head is an amazing gift of enlightenment. By observing mind activity, your are watching from the seat of your true nature, separate from thoughts. Let the monkey swing. When you realize that you have been distracted, promptly return your awareness to the breath. Every time you do this, you are rewiring the brain, so that with enough practice, the distractions will diminish and you will remain more and more permanently rooted in the pure and peaceful state of natural awareness.
In regards to the top of the mountain, my own experience has shown me that it is always there and only appears exactly as I predict and perceive it. Note to self: Coming down is hard on the knees. - md 09/18/17
Taken in Munich, Germany. What to say?
Remain calm in every encounter.
Speak less. Hear more.
Believe nothing you cannot verify for yourself.
Investigate and master what you do not understand.
Accept that there are things you may not ever understand.
Do not re-live past mistakes or predict future distress.
Live ONLY in the moment.
Make a complete study of how the human mind & body function and be master of yours.
Do not participate in or associate with ignorance.
Never define yourself.
Finish what you start.
Always do the very best that you can.
Do not be chained to anything that in the long run can destroy you.
Assume the best in others until proven otherwise.
Always be kind and well mannered.
Be generous without witness or need for recognition.
Receive gifts with gratitude.
Keep home and work areas organized and clutter free.
Do not take up too much space.
Do not lie, steal, or cheat.
Do not seek fame or excessive wealth.
Do not follow trends that are not in line with your own code.
Question the status quo.
Do not make unnecessary noises or gestures.
If you are not at peace, act as if you are.
Do not be impressed by strong personalities.
Eat and sleep only as much as is necessary.
Sit quietly for a few moments at the start and end of each day.
Do not discuss your personal problems.
Do not pass judgments or criticize when you do not know all the facts.
Do not have useless friendships.
Do not follow fads.
Do not sell yourself.
Respect the contracts you have signed
Be on time.
Do not be envious.
Speak only when necessary and with few words.
Do not make threats.
Follow through with your promises.
In an argument, put yourself in the place of the other.
Accept when someone is better than you.
Do not react when others speak well or ill of you.
Transform your pride into dignity.
Turn your anger into creativity.
Transform your greed into respect for the beauty.
Transform your envy into the admiration for the values of others.
Do not praise nor insult yourself.
Respect the property of others.
Do not complain.
Use your imagination.
Do not give orders or make demands.
Pay what you owe.
Do not fall into debt, buy and pay immediately.
Do not boast or brag about your possessions or accomplishments.
Do not rest on your laurels.
Do not seek or request pity, admiration, or sympathy from yourself or others.
Never contradict, just be silent.
If you offend someone, ask for forgiveness.
Admit and accept your mistakes and abandon them immediately.
Do not keep useless objects.
Be your own judge.
Do not let your possessions define you.
Never talk about yourself.
Be willing to change.
Accept that nothing is yours.
Never speak poorly or critical of others, especially when they are not present.
Look everyone and everything directly in the eye.
Live within your financial and moral means.
If you are meditating and a demon arrives, make the demon meditate.
Do not kill.
Be prepared to take risks.
Re-write this list and edit where you deem appropriate.
Neural lace could be the answer to debilitating neurological disorders, and if Elon Musk has his way, the next step in human and computer advancement.
Hooked on a Feeling
*Taken from a booklet I shared with clients when I worked with people struggling with mental health and addiction issues.
Let’s start with a fact: What you choose to think is what you will feel and what you feel is how you will act. If you think this way on a daily basis and therefore feel this way on a daily basis, eventually your body becomes addicted to this feeling and begins to crave it.
Knowing that your thoughts have a profound effect on your emotions is a primary ingredient to every recovery success story of people just like you and from all walks of life. I urge you to invest yourself in this knowledge. Read it, know it, memorize it if you must. I can assure you that it will produce profound and amazing results in all facets of your life.
With the majority of people I have worked with, one consistent response when presenting this idea is, “But I can’t change how I think. This is who I am, like it or leave it.” It doesn’t matter whether or not I or anyone else likes or dislikes it. What should matter to you is how it makes YOU feel. More importantly, you CAN change how you think. It has been proven by science to be a fact. Here’s how it works:
Inside your brain, there is a tiny chemical factory called the hypothalamus. It may be tiny, but it is one of the most productive chemical factories in production on the planet! The hypothalamus produces chemicals called peptides. These peptides are created to duplicate specific emotions, such as: joy, sadness, excitement, fear, relaxation, stress, anger or depression.
From the hypothalamus, the peptides are sent to the pituitary gland and then out into the blood stream which contains anywhere from twenty to thirty trillion cells. Each cell has receptor sites. The peptides dock onto the receptor sites, taking control of the cell, and eventually creating new cells with more receptor sites ready and waiting for that particular type of peptide.
Believe nothing you cannot verify for yourself, kids.