[Last updated September 2022]With Christmas and the New Year around the corner, there will be a peak in activities; including end of year work gatherings, family reunions, travelling, and so on. This time of the year usually shakes us out of our comfort zone and our daily routines. For some of us, this could mean
Judgment is not necessarily always harmful. Is judgement helpful or harmful?“Don’t judge me!” could be both a powerful liberating statement and a misguided one creating misunderstanding and separation. Have you ever wondered what judgement actually is? If it is just harmful, then how can we know good from bad and legitimately express our preferences in life and in our relationships? Many of us have a conflicting or ambivalent understanding of judgement. I believe that gaining a clearer understanding of judgment can be extremely helpful and empowering in our relationship with ourselves and with others.
The Buddha said: Your work is to discover your work and then, with all your heart, to give yourself to it. But how do we discover our work? And even if we did, where do we find the “basic trust”; that fundamental capacity to surrender? How do we become able to let go of what we have and what we know, in order to give ourselves with all of
This a re-post from an article which I liked in the PsychCentral blog. I am sharing it because over time I have seen how such habits inhibit one's authentic happiness. I have come across these and similar conditionings in myself and many clients. Bottom line is the lifetime practice of "questioning the status quo", the self-inquiry and
Everything we do involves some sort of decision making. Sometimes we make poor decisions, sometimes we do much better; at other times we get stuck and torn between our choices. Whether we are limited in our choices or have too many options; whether the decision we are facing is trivial or critical, one thing is clear; that we all would like to make “better” choices depending on our restrictions and our capacities. We usually know our restrictions but do we know and utilise all of our capacities? The answer is: “most probably not”.
I asked her what do you want to be when you grow up? The bright-eyed, lively ten year old replied: "I want to be myself". Wow, I was amazed, thrilled; what an exhilarating response coming from a ten year old girl. I remember when I was about ten years old, during the euphoria of man having landed on the
This article is kindly submitted by Saroja Swami and Alphonse Benoit. It adds a valuable different perspective to the question of free will which was explored earlier in Dear Rumi; Do I have free will? Please feel free to share your thoughts and comments below; or even submit them for consideration to be posted in our
Rumi tells us that yes there is a reason we are here and we do have a true purpose. “Someone said: ‘I have neglected that true purpose.’ Rumi replied: When this thought enters a person’s mind and they criticize themselves, saying, ‘What am I about, and why do I do these things?’ When this happens, it is a sure sign that the person is actually loved and cared for. ‘Love continues so long as reprimands continue,’ said the poet. We may reprimand our friends, but we never reprimand a stranger.” ~Rumi 
Can you truly see what is in front of you? Is seeing really believing? Can you really see other people’s perspectives? Our minds are amazing but in doing what they are designed to do –particularly in today’s busy world saturated with sensory inputs and information overload– they can filter out critical information in favour of speed of processing. This can lead into seeing and believing a distorted version of what is actually out there, sometimes leading to our blockage and stuckness. What is filtered out is mostly that which we are not paying attention to and hence not present to. These stem from many factors such as just the way a “normal” brain works, as well as our personal histories, our future hopes, our beliefs, fears, desires, thoughts, feelings, emotions and many other factors. Learning to see multiple perspectives and shifting our perceptions is very helpful in discovering new directions which may have always been in front of our eyes. It also helps us be less judgemental, less reactionary and more present. Check out these amazing examples of how our brains distort or reconstruct the reality to suit the context.
The New Year is almost upon us and the tradition calls for people making their New Year’s Resolutions. Losing weight/getting fit, improving one’s financial situation (debt management, getting a better job, …), creating better relationship with family and friends, and quitting smoking or alcohol are consistently among the most popular New Year’s resolutions every year.