Recently, I saw a TED talk on Flow by Psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. He researches happiness and what makes people feel life is worth living
He found that work which brings us into a flow state is most rewarding. This state is beyond culture and education but usually comes when a skill is highly developed and practiced. We don’t have to think about the process but just step into it and go with it.
He outlines these common features of Flow:
1 – completely involved in what we’re doing
2 – a sense … Continue Reading…
Recently, I heard a song from my favorite Donovan album, Essence to Essence. I saw him play this live in Vancouver in the early 70’s.
Not the greatest dub:
There is an ocean of vast proportion
And she flows within ourselves.
To take dips daily we dive in gaily,
He knows who goes within himself.
The abode of Angels,
The mystical Promised Land,
The one and only Heaven, the God of man
Is but the closing of an eyelid … Continue Reading…
The American Dialect Society held its annual “Word of the Year” vote for 2016.
The winner was dumpster fire: an exceedingly disastrous or chaotic situation. (e.g. US election)
In third and fourth place were normalize (what was once unacceptable) and post-truth. But sitting at number two?
Yep, it is in part a reference to enlightened. It also made the slang word of the year list. Of course, it’s use is casual and generalized but it’s fascinating to see words like this migrate into common use.
My, we live in interesting times. … Continue Reading…
There’s a curious balance on the spiritual path between being human and being divine, between self-effort and flow.
If we do not act, we see no results, no fruit. But if we act with expectation, life is bound to disappoint. Life flows in the whole, not the me.
After awakening, there is often a period of winding down the old. We unwind remaining attachments related to expectations and grasping for results. Slowly, we learn to allow and let life be as it is in the various parts of our life. We let go of the ego’s need for control. We step … Continue Reading…
In the growth process, service, devotion, and contemplation help drive our process forward. There are a number of other words we can use to mean the same, like surrender, inquiry, karma, and so forth. But these words describe natural tendencies rather than formal techniques we should adopt and apply religiously.
They are natural ways of being. Does service or contemplation come naturally to you? Then give it space in your life and allow it to unfold. Formal techniques of this type encourage attempts to manage or control our experience. Then it’s just ego. But the right … Continue Reading…
Shiksha, a Vedic text on Sanskrit grammar, tells us in verse 5 that Sanskrit has 64 letters while nature uses 63. This was said “by Brahman himself”.
In other words, nature uses much the same sounds as Sanskrit to create and manage the world.
But there are some key differences between how humans speak and how the devata of nature use sound. For example, human speech is rather linear. A sequence of sounds constructed into words. And rather ponderously slow. And usually driven from an individual agenda rather than an effort to harmonize.
While a devata starts the process the … Continue Reading…
This is a more personal article. My younger son is a prolific graphic artist. He’s completed 2 large graphic novels. For an Xmas present, he gave me a picture, below. As you might have guessed from an image on the About page, Bear is a nickname I carried for many years, including while he was young. The Sanskrit is Davidya. Love how it’s both sacred and playful, and blends old and new. And of course, there are other layers of meaning in there for me personally.
There is a subtle but profound difference between simple acting and efforting. Hawkins called this Power vs Force. Our culture celebrates individual effort but does not discriminate between these. The result is many people trying to control and force things, largely leading to frustration, anger, and other forms of suffering.
The key is action, but learning to be in the flow or current. Learning to work with nature rather than against her. Sometimes we have to dial up the power, but only to move through. If we instead try to force our way through nature, we push against an obstacle … Continue Reading…
This question and some related ones came up in a discussion forum and I thought it worth sharing here. Edited a bit for content.
The question of why the divine would create is one answered by experience also. It doesn’t make a lot of sense until the process is intimate to you. In essence we could say though that Consciousness knows itself globally but the vastness of the details (of divine intelligence) cannot be known without exploring them. So consciousness becomes aware at every point within itself. You are one of those points.
Each of those points of awareness can … Continue Reading…
There is a profound art to sound that we have not yet rediscovered. Mantra, the study of specific sounds has largely lost the understanding of tone. There are references to it in Sanskrit but it’s clearly not understood. This may partly have been influenced by the paternalization of Sanskrit- the shift to men as the carriers of the language.
Indian Ragas, melodies which are aligned to certain times of the day or for certain effects have shifted to the easier western polyphonic scale and away from natures pure tones. The polyphonic scale calls for tones of equal frequency increments … Continue Reading…
It can be very curious how things show up in life for no apparent “reason”. They may even seem disruptive or annoying. But later these things can turn out to be solutions to problems we didn’t even recognize yet.
This is not to say that solutions actually come before problems. They actually come together – every apparent problem has it’s own resolution, it’s own solution. That’s in the nature of energy itself. That becomes much more clear as we step more deeply into the the flow of life itself, rather than our story we tell ourselves about … Continue Reading…
This little parable has been making the rounds recently, so I thought I’d share it.
In a mother’s womb were two babies. One asked the other: “Do you believe in life after delivery?” The other replied, “Why, of course. There has to be something after delivery. Maybe we are here to prepare ourselves for what we will be later.”
“Nonsense” said the first. “There is no life after delivery. What kind of life would that be?”
The second said, “I don’t know, but there will be more light than here. Maybe we will walk with our legs and eat … Continue Reading…