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Posts Tagged ‘mindfulness’

Some people think that to have peace, is to ignore the person that irritates or hurt them.

If only they’d notice that even when all communication, meetings or even bonds are said to be severed – their reactions of anger, sadness, tears or even aloofness upon hearing the name or memories of this person already shows that the mere mention causes irritation or hurt without the actual physical presence of this person in their life.

If that is the case, then what difference would it make to ignore or not? The achievement of Peace was only imagined and rather conditioned in the so-called ‘absence’ of the other.

If only they could realise that whether they meet or not meet this person, what ultimately irritates or hurts them is not this person, but rather, the unconscious hanging on to the memorable perception of this person which can only come from an inner error of judgment and expectation within self.

And that, cannot have anything to do with the other.

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My dear friend swung by to transfer the last koi fish into his boot yesterday evening. Since it was the last fish out of the pond, there was no use left in retaining the water or to have the pump/filter running. Together, we switched it off after which he took the pump/filter with him as well. After all, I have no use of it anymore.

The water was in the midst of draining when I left home for a sharing session. When I got home, an unusual quietness filled the air as I got out of my car. As I placed my bag on the sofa, I walked out of the house again and into the garden. It was a habit to do that; to breathe in and enjoy the night air and to entertain a little inner chatter before heading to bed.

Yet, something was unusual – the quietness which was noticed earlier.

I looked around, memory totally wiped out for a moment what had happened earlier that day, and then suddenly realized that the pond was empty, void of water.

I walked towards the pond and realized that the contrast of sound from previous nights and at that moment was caused by the sounds that came from running water of the pond. At that instance, there was indeed a feeling of emptiness in the midst of that quietness; as if something was amiss. Although I had never really made tense attention to the pond or the fishes, little did I notice at that very moment when I was standing there alone, how significant its presence had been a part of my life every night, or any other moments when I was out in the garden.

It was something that the Mind was so used to that a change or a seeming end to an usual comfort albeit unconsciously, seemed to cause some sort of void. As if something has left. A part of self, gone. Strange.

Well, there was a moment of sadness. Yet, in it too, some sort of gladness accompanied. It was somewhat contradicting not to mention, funny too.

I stared at the empty pond for a while. There were some memories of the sound and sight of the running water, the water in the pond and its fishes. And there was a thought if I would miss the kois jumping up to the air above the water level and splashing itself way back into the pond. Was it their way of saying hi? I don’t know and I can never know. But, it did bring a fuzzy warm feeling of joy each time it happened.

We never know what around us have conveniently condition their own presence as part of our life through our senses, especially so when there is contact with it/them frequent enough. Mind captures everything whether or not our attention is there. What is captured becomes embedded. And if it is repeated, it becomes conditioned. To be able to grasp what Mind is picking up or how it is wiring it, is awakening to how Mind works, and to observe how you become you, and the passing of you… 🙂

Written on 27th March 2013

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Choice, or No Choice is ultimately still just a thought.

~ GG ~

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While it is true there’s no right and wrong,

It doesn’t mean harm is not possible;

For all is but cause and effect,

What you sow is what you reap;

And that includes affecting the experiences of others around you.

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You are like that shadow
haunting me day and night.

An object
capable of bringing me to the heights of a happy dream
or the pits of a nightmare.

Just because of your appearance
with your whims and fancy
denying my whims and fancy
suppressing what is to be
arghhh…. the struggle.

Yet you are only that
an object of attention
and what power I had given out there
inevitably
stirringly within my core
that much inner work to be done
to clean you off the slate.

Not that reciprocal thoughts never occurred
but what is the use of revenge
as if an attack out there can ever cease
when the attack is actually right in here
within the indoor stadium of the mind.

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Loving is really that simple. Just loving, effortlessly.

It is only when beliefs and concepts start creeping in, that it makes the experience of loving a little harder hence propelling people to behave pretty strangely towards each other.  As if to stay away, it is possible to deny what is there; as if to stay away, it is possible to let time ‘heal’ the wound of not having; yet again, it is not about staying away or staying together. It is really about being awake to the moment, awake to the beliefs and concepts that one is still holding on in the mind that is stopping the experience of being maximal in full appreciation without guilt or regret.

Yet, does loving really stop? It doesn’t although it can be easily perceived that way.

It is really truly easier just to love, without harbouring the seeds of wanting, having, owning, judging, expecting, leaving, going. Yet, as long as there is still inner work to be done, do it for one’s own sake and not for another. What has the other got to do with all the concepts you have in the mind? The other cannot “add” to your reality. The other’s presence in your life, is ultimately only how you choose to perceive it to be and hence that becomes your reality.

Other than that, it is just as it is.

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I had the privilege to be given a stage two weeks ago to stand in for a friend to conduct a sharing on thoughts. They were a bunch of university students.

Noticing that the crowd was able to grasp what I was sharing on how reality actually works for each of us; similarly and differentiatedly; I took it a step further to introduce the methodology of dissecting thought systems. I invited them to give me their train of thoughts and they gave me pretty relevant ones that were revolving around their current stage of life – exams, assignments, assessments. As I led them to see the meaning that has been put onto each thought, and more – we arrived at the theme thought for that night – failure.

So we worked with ‘failure’, finally recognizing the perception on failure churned out the other superficial thoughts on the surface level. It was expected that all of them perceived failure as an unpreferred circumstance to be in and that it is unacceptable not only to society, but to themselves. It was obvious – fear. Yet to me, fear alone at this juncture was not the ultimate but the ideas of what failure is to each of them; to me too, a long time ago; hence producing fear as effect. As we dissected further on the meaning of failure, they begin to see the other side of failure or rather the potentials that failure of a situation can bring forth. Some nodded their heads in agreement, while some kept silent as if I was about to lure them into the trap of being a failure. Those whom were silent were deep in thought while the class was given a moment to take in what was being shared and conversed. And in a while, one of the participants put his hand up and asked, “If I don’t have a fear of failure, how could I have a goal to be successful? It is because of this fear of being a failure, that I would work hard towards a goal to be successful.” I smiled. It was truly an innocent question.

I did not answer him, but replied him with another question instead.

“Do you have to have a fear of hunger now to know what you would like to eat for lunch tomorrow?”

He seemed a little shocked with that question, at the same time realizing that that question led him back to his own answer, which was “No.”

I went on explaining that we can have a goal and to some extent, even plan the steps towards it. But the trick here is to let go of the plan and come what way. The fear that is seemingly driving us towards the success is actually already telling us that we know what our future is like; and in a thwarted kind of way, we are actually already creating that for ourselves.

Our job is to do or be our best now, for now, and not for some imaginary future because there is none! Of course, it sounds like a swell ‘plan’ and to actually be something like that requires quite a huge amount of courage to surrender to what is, or perhaps, what is to become. The courage has to come beyond from the timidity of being involved in the limited ideas that one has already been conditioned or rather ‘gotten used to’ or ‘resigned to’ as the way of life in the world. Yup, learned through observations of surroundings not to mention the added on elements of being convinced by the people around. And nope, there is nothing wrong with that, too.

A memory now pops up of a conversation I had with a friend who called for counseling last night. She realized that all the decisions that she makes always backfires on her. She already recognized the manifestation of her experiences, or more true, her perceiving of what seemingly happens were related to some self-sabotage and unworthiness patterns. Yet what she wasn’t really seeing is that all her apparent choices were made from the same patterns of which led her to the same thing almost 100% of the time! She wasn’t really ‘moving out’ of the box as she struggles to justify her choices. She was in a merry-go-round chase. You know, like the snake biting its own tail. Perhaps the best thing she ever did ‘out of the box’ was to pick up the phone to dial my number!

Since she was a student of A Course in Miracles; though in my egoic opinion, not a very devoted one; I invited her to invite the *Holy Spirit into her decision making. And she asked a very pertinent question, “How would I know if it was the Holy Spirit’s Guidance to make a particular decision?”

I smiled (and yes, I have been smiling a lot).

“When it is unconditional.” I answered.

“Unconditional? What do you mean?” she asked shockingly, coming from a background of needing to do something for a purpose, a reason (geez, don’t we all?).

“Simply unconditional” I repeated. “When you could not find any reason to why you feel like doing it, do it! And be open to where it takes you!”

She laughed, as if ready for the adventure. Well, I don’t know actually… that was how it sounded like to me.

Any form of goals, decision makings when made out of information and perception of past experiences could never bring you out of where you think you are stuck. As Albert Einstein said, “You can’t solve the problem at the level it was created.” It means to say that you need to ‘get out’ of the problem and when I say that I am in no way implying that you run away from it, but merely move yourself to another level to look at the so-called problem. At that level, you will see the cause and effect of it. When you finally see it, it becomes the end of everything. This is the sense of anew-ness, where clarity, trust and surrender become a prominent pattern in the so-called process of Life.

Of course, you can’t realize one without knowing another. And it is not possible to push or ignore one to pursue another. I’d say that the entire process of disengaging past conditionings moves you backwards – backwards because you have gone way forward in a dream… another word for it is ‘undoing’. Without the undoing, what we all are is simply effects, effects of rotten thought systems. For all you know, when you are ‘done’ with the undoing, perhaps you would still be moved to make the same decisions, except this time, with a fresher perspective which is nearer to what it truly is! Good luck!

*Note: Holy Spirit is merely a terminology used in A Course of Miracle and does not denote any religions connotations. Holy Spirit in this context can be any word so chose by one – for all I care, it can be Wisdom, God, Life, Universe, or perhaps even D-O-G. 

 

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I had a meeting with two gentlemen some weeks ago. After the discussion on the initial planned topics, the flow swayed towards meditation and spirituality.

I offered my other name card, sharing the work that I do. They asked me, “How often do you meditate?” I smiled and said, “often enough, even now as I speak to you.”

One of them laughed and another, seemed puzzled. And I could relate to that if my guess on their perception of what meditation was accurate. One of them later shared that he meditates as well and their form of meditation is in form of prayers at a temple, that is, if I heard it accurately.

I smiled. I shared with him, what I am seeming practicing is one form of what is perceived as meditation. He invited me to share more. I shared further that we are observing all the time. We are always watching something except that, more often than not, it is something out there that we are observing, watching or questioning about, rather than our own inner experience relating to what we are apparently observing, watching. I gave him an example – he is people watching, and he sees a man throws rubbish on the floor, and he might feel repelled by that sight and judgment comes to be. He might talk to himself about it, or even to another. And I pointed out, that the attention is usually given to what is right or wrong out there, rather than our own experience in relating to the man who threw the rubbish. He laughed, as if there was some truth in it. Well, there is a lot of truth in it.

This brings me back to a memory where I was in a car ride with a friend quite some time ago and he pointed out his curiosity on a dented divider which in his memory was not there a few days ago. He openly shared his query if there was an accident and asked if I noticed the difference between the divider that day and a few days ago. My answer was I don’t know. He seemed puzzled and asked how could I not know since I have been driving along the same road for the past few days. I pondered a moment on that and shared with him that it was none of my business, or perhaps more true, out of my conscious awareness. To put it another way, because it was out of my conscious awareness, it was none of my business. Feeling in the mood to say more, which I normally do when I am with this particular friend for some strange reason, I shared with him that more often than not, there isn’t much interest or attention on the outer world. I don’t read the newspapers, or listen to the radio for world news or latest fad. To some, I may even sound ignorant and dumb. And perhaps I am. But I don’t really care. Because I have noticed that the experience that arises in me constantly is more real than what is happening out there, and if what is happening out there is beyond my control and has little of my personal interest, there is really not much out there for me, except what is in here.

My friend then commented that if that is the case, how could I be aware of what is happening around me. I shared with him that if it is meant for me to know, or to be aware of it, it will be made known to me. It is not like I am totally oblivious to the world. I have just arrived at a state where if it concerns me, it will be made known to me or find its way to my attention. I gave him an example. Say, I am driving along this road, and a tree fell on the side of the road and is not an obstacle to me or to anyone and there is no thought about it, it is none of my business. The most sane thing to do is actually to continue doing what I am doing, that is, to drive; unless I feel like doing otherwise. But if the tree has fallen right on the path of the road, being an obstacle for me and others to further our journey, that would and will catch my attention (obviously and inevitably) and I would have to get down from the car and decide what I would like to do about that. But that too, ought not to take away my attention or observation of my own inner world, except to extend that attention and awareness to a seeming outside situation that I have got to deal with. It has become my business so to speak, because it has been made known to be, come ‘into’ my awareness, found itself to my attention – whatever you want to call it. So since it is that, then I become moved to do something about it if I can, or not. Depending on what is called upon.

It was the same thing when the new gentlemen asked my thoughts on the US Banks-whatever-incident that happened a few years ago when I shared that I was in the job of an investment banker before. I smiled and answered, “I don’t know”. He laughed and asked how I could not know. Well, my reply to him was that I loved my job and I was doing what I loved to do and it didn’t require me to know what was happening to the US Banks but to get the damn deal that I was working on to its fullest potential. That was all that mattered to me, at least at that time. And I seemed to do a good job then.  I could tell because my bosses loved me. It was a reflection of my own love and joy for the work I was doing. Well, I didn’t know then, but I know now. And that is all that matters.

Some who would read this article may have an inclination towards a kind of selfishness or narcissistic behavior going on. Yet, it is actually a lot more than that. It is not about being self-sufficiency, self-contained or even self-love for we can’t really do that kind of things to ourselves, otherwise it is mimicking an effect that we want and that takes us far further than what is actually true. Yet the doorway to that is right here and not out there.

It is common that attention is constantly outside pondering what is going on there rather than in here where the churning of experience is more real. But yet that too, is untrue as, if the noticing has taken place to notice that the pondering is targeted towards something out there than in here, a kind of noticing is already happening inwardly.

Now, one may ask, so what if I notice? Well, that is when we can finally begin.

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No thought ever belonged to you.

A thought is inspired by the Spirit,
or propelled by the Ego.

Both serves different purposes.

You are that Still Silence.

Which would you choose?

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We are all living from memory. There is nothing that comes to our senses which is not known or understood from some form of memory.

Memories are information or knowledge from the past, whether it is being taught by another or through an individual experience, or even an observation. Whenever any piece of these information or knowledge is picked up whether consciously or unconsciously, they are retained in the mind. In other words, there is really no real sense of choice or choosing when or what comes and at the same time being picked up by the mind to make memory. In short, we can conclude (for the sake of mutual understanding that the function of retaining information or knowledge whether through observation, experiential or being taught is what we refer to as memory. If you haven’t noticed, any realization that you have had before also becomes part of memory.

Imagine if you were standing in a room with a table, a chair, a piece of paper and a pen on the table and a live chicken on the same table. Without memory, you would not be able to discern that the position that you have undertaken is actually standing not to mention the possibility of not being able to tell apart the floor, the door, the ceiling, the table, the chair, the piece of paper, the pen and the live chicken. Without memory too, you might not be able to tell or feel weird that a live chicken is sitting on the table. And that is what memory does, it forms your perception and hence an experience comes about.

People either appreciate or do not appreciate their experience. When they appreciate or do not appreciate their experience and try to recreate or detest that experience again, it is the function of memory occurring again with additional elements of attachment and greed to the same experience or its opposite. Either way, there is no difference as both are still functioning from memory. Now, memory is not the problem, but the meaning put onto that memory. In truth, memory is just memory but memory becomes heaven or hell depending very much on the information or knowledge on such information or knowledge itself. It is like those bricks which is laid cemented one on top of another building a wall. And that is how our blocks come about, as in the limitation of how we are each time perceiving and thus experiencing life – because a wall has been built, and is constantly thickening whenever further subscription is applied onto it – more bricks, more cement.

How the majority of the world functions today is that they try to change their outer circumstances in order to change their experience instead of realizing that their experience is churned out by memory. Now, I am not saying that we don’t change any outer circumstances if it is within our power to do so. For example, if it is within your power to walk from the centre of the room to the door, do it! And if you are on a wheel chair, and you want to move from the centre of the room to the door, you roll the handles on the wheel chair and move yourself from the centre of the room to the door. But if you want to walk when you are in the wheel chair, then there you have had it – your suffering, because even though it might happen through some form of therapy or surgery in near future, it isn’t going to happen today. And when it doesn’t happen today, you will feel resentful towards yourself being in such a situation. And that too, is because of memory, because there is a remembrance of what it was like before the current situation of being seated in a wheelchair. And like it or not, this very experience of resentment forms part of memory also, accumulating the bricks and cements.

Since the function of memory is not personal except taken personally, it is helpful to acknowledge that what comes up in experience is a meaning attached to memory. This is the first step in cultivating a new pathway in the mind for a different kind of experience away from suffering. In my observation, this methodology can form as memory only that this kind of memory frees you, instead of keeping you trapped in the previous meaning of memory that brings about limitation and suffering.

Because of this function, it does seem as if we can never ‘run away’ from the past. In this sense, it is somewhat true since memory is beyond our control. Yet, as mentioned above, there is nothing wrong with memory except for the meaning that we put onto memory. To constantly realise or to possess the inner knowing of this, is giving you a choice right now to choose again how you would relate to this memory.

Inviting you to a related article The World is Over, Long Gone, authored by a dear friend.

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