Our minds are all we have. They’re the filter through which we receive our reality. The thread of the cosmic fabric we’ll inhabit until the day we don’t.
It’s integral to a good life that our minds are pleasant places to be. Mental clarity shapes life quality.
But the fitness of our minds…
The mindful person knows that a wandering mind is an unhappy mind. And she knows that, with (non-dual) mindfulness, the mind rests where it is and tranquility arrives.
But, she may not know, the more she tries to be mindful, the less tranquil she’ll be.
I recently listened to Judson Brewer, Ph.D. — psychiatrist, neuroscientist, and meditator — discuss his powerful research on meditation and the default mode network with Sam Harris.
He mentioned something late in the conversation — something I missed before. It’s critical for anyone on the mindful path to know.
What researchers term ‘Non-Suicidal Self-Injury’ grips us and demands: what will you do for those who suffer in the shadows? Those whose trouble is right under your nose, but just out of sight?
As a candidate for our desperate answer, I here examine non-dual mindfulness.
Self-harm is here and it’s rising. According to this analysis of self-injury across 40 countries:
Women and the youth are especially hit. Women account for 65% of victims…
When my Papou (grandfather) was alive, he nurtured his garden every day. He’d rise with the sun to walk among the plants and trees. He’d water and cultivate them, singing Greek war songs and hymns to support their growth.
His garden was beautiful and thriving — a wonderful world to explore when I was a boy.
But it took time to grow. My Papou nursed a relationship with it, giving of himself every day. And in return, that garden brought light to his life.
There was no shortcut to growing Papou’s garden. It took hundreds of hours of Greek vocals…
Your mind is a dark ocean, surging with primal motivators and ancient emotion. It’s the product of millions of years of mistakes made and lessons learned.
On the thin surface are your thoughts and actions. You might believe you think, and you act. Hence when your thoughts or actions aren’t optimal, you berate yourself.
But this is naive. Self-awareness means acknowledging that you see only the waves on your mind’s surface while accepting that the depths within are what really drive you.
Then, how to do what you want to do? How to take control of what drives you? There…
I have a confession to make.
Recently my roommate and I, bored, threw on a reality TV drama compilation. I’ll admit, it was my suggestion. But we went with it and observed twenty minutes of fights, arguments, and general spice.
It was an emotional storm. Like children in a playground, reality TV stars are played like puppets by their feelings. They don’t navigate but react to the emotions— especially anger — that arise when co-stars do inevitably awful things.
This seems to be the point of reality TV. It’s what’s entertaining. I say so because that’s what I enjoyed about…
Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life was an instant classic. There, he reasserted the importance of taking responsibility and forging order in your life. For it is on this bedrock that you prevail against chaos and entropy.
Beyond Order is the counterpart to its predecessor — the yin to its yang. Once you’ve established order, Peterson argues, you must reach into the chaotic unknown and create a future that outshines the present.
This is the core that echoes through Peterson’s latest 12 rules. It manifests in many ideas, three of which left a distinct imprint on me. Consider them below…
It was 2 pm, and for 6 hours straight I’d sprinted on a treadmill of corporate graft. Stress levels were high. Then, I looked for my head.
Finding none, awareness opened. Suddenly I stopped feeling stress and started receiving it. Instead of letting it drive me like a helpless passenger, I noticed it.
With that, I stopped acting out the stress. And without my reinforcing actions to give it steam, stress subsided — completely.
Douglas Harding is the founder of The Headless Way, a mindful philosophy that grew from the seed of a powerful experience Harding had on a mountaintop…
My eyes glazed as my coworker explained a concept I just wasn’t getting. Try as she might, she couldn’t pull me from the ocean of confusion in which she’d submerged me with dozens of details.
Eventually, after quadruple the time it should’ve taken, the light of understanding dawned and I got it.
And when I saw how simple the concept really was, I was annoyed. She had done it again.
I like my coworker. She’s funny, helpful, and kind. But I go out of my way to learn things without her having to explain them.
Why? She complicates simple explanations…
I was seated in my moderate apartment, yet awareness felt the size of a city. It had massively expanded during one of Loch Kelly’s ‘Glimpse Meditations’ on Waking Up.
As instructed, I began by sitting comfortably. I became aware of my body, seated in the chair. I became aware of my breath, as my lungs expanded and contracted. I felt I was aiming awareness at the breath, shining a spotlight from my head to my lungs.
On cue, the ‘aiming’ concept shattered, and open awareness emerged. The sense that someone was directing awareness fell away. There was no aimer, and…