Posts tagged tibetan buddhism
New Year's EVOLUTION
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At the end of 2007 I was feeling pretty miserable. I had a list of complaints including rejection, unfulfilled ambition and uncertainty about the future. Regardless I found myself on a last minute getaway over New Year’s with a good friend, eager to have some end of year reflection. As NYE approached I found myself considering the nature of resolutions. As I thought about things I wanted to change I began to feel that perhaps New Year’s resolutions where not that great and were actually a means of confirming the list of insecurities I was carrying around. Why was I easy to reject? Was I getting too fat? Should I exercise more, eat less, be more outgoing, less unconventional? And on it went ad nauseam. Not only would my resolutions confirm everything that was ‘wrong’ with me,  but when I inevitably failed to live up to these changes I’d also be able to ad that failure to the list of inadequacies. Not great for self-esteem.

Rather than challenge myself with resolutions reliant on my will power and based on subjective imperfections I decided to take on a New Year’s evolution instead. I wanted to change the way I saw myself and the world in a way that might be more productive and positive. We are, after all, a species that can adapt and change. But where do you start when it comes to evolving?

When I thought about it, all I had that I could control were the means with which I perceived the world. The five senses, and of course my human mind.

I later discovered this was called a mindful practice and it completely transformed my life. Over the following months I found joy in the smallest of moments and my despair evaporated. When I added meditation a few years later things got even better.

A number of years later, however, and I’m ready to do it again. Over the last few months I’ve allowed the screaming demands of life to erode my regular practices. While I feel fundamentally happy, old patterns of frustration have re-emerged and I don’t want to be subject to them.

Here is what I said to myself in 2007 and what I’m saying to myself again today:

Sight

Look at the world in ways you don’t normally see it. Take time to examine objects in your every day life that you’ve seen thousands of times, but really examine their structure and construction. Don’t just look for the beauty in things, look past your initial observation and deconstruct your automatic responses.

Sound

When you wake in the morning listen for sounds in your environment you may have previously heard but not acknowledged. Quiet moments are not always made from the absence of sound. There may be things in your environment that you are hearing but not consciously perceiving.

Taste

Savour not only the foods you enjoy but examine what it is about things that initially disagree with your pallet. Food is not all you can taste. Lick someone’s neck, someone you like of course, with permission. Examine what properties make things taste good to you.

Smell

Breathe in the aromas of your world. They are abundant, pungent, delicate and multi layered. Detect the layers, ad fragrance to your environment the you enjoy. Walk through the various environments in which you live and sniff the delight and the not so delightful odours that waft in and out around you.

Feel

Touch everything you can. Caress surfaces, feel textures, enjoy skin, bristles, clothes, bench tops, steering wheels, food, soapy water. Remember your entire body can perceive touch. Exploit it.

Evan Shapiro www.amazon.com/author/evanshapiro

This blog is edited and used with permission of the author. Originally posted @ https://noexpertbut.wordpress.com

Mindfullness Meditation and 3 Paths to Happiness
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Flyer for Stephen
Learn the techniques of mindfulness meditation and the ancient secrets of the Tibetans for leading a happy and meaningful life.  This class will serve participants new to meditation and those who already have an established practice. We will go over the graded stages on the path to enlightenment and discuss the stages of realization  and how they apply to our lives to create transformation, foster opening and create a healing world view. In the Tibetan tradition the development towards the highest happiness or enlightenment is presented in thorough stages.  This six week class will provide students with hand outs, and ask everyone to commit to a regular meditation practice based on the instructions. Audio recordings and a link to a blog for support will be provided to keep the ideas fresh in your mind during the 6 weeks.
The Dates for the class are Nov 12th, 19th ,26th December 3rd, 10th and the 17th. (Wednesdays)
Time is from 7:40-9:40
taught by Teddy Szcudlo
$10 suggested