Although some have called it quieting the mind, there is no such thing as a silent mind. One can go beyond the mind, however.
This simple technique can be used anywhere.
Sometimes, you are trying to remind yourself to stay in the present moment. Sometimes you are trying to practice witnessing "yourself," what some have called the false personality or false person; being aware of the thoughts and emotions that slide across the screen of the mind.
This simple technique can allow you to STOP and refocus.
Wherever you are, when you remember this technique, do this: consciously STOP breathing. Hold the breath and stop...When you hold the breath, if you are able, see if you can stop all other actions: stop chewing the food in the mouth, stop typing on the keyboard, stop fidgeting the leg, stop scrolling down on your phone....
Holding the breath, one refocuses on the essence: the prana or qi that imbibes all and rides within the breath.
Holding the breath, a moment of stillness can be created. One remembers that one is Here Now, centered within one's being.
That is the all.
That is all.
5 Reasons People Consistently Refuse to Have Others Help Them
There are many reasons why someone will consistently refuse the help of others. While we might call it stubbornness, pride or an I-can-do-it-myself attitude, we can view such a pattern of behavior from both a psychological, as well as existential (or esoteric or spiritual) perspective.
Fear Of Rejection/Being Judged. We all understand rejection. We know, it hurts. But why does it hurt? Because we believe it to be true? Partially. Because we care what that other person thinks about us? That too. And yet there are a few golden nuggets ---or lessons, if you will--- that you can understand and do when being judged.
Firstly, when you care what other people think about you, you end up giving away your personal power. Not only do you believe in that judgment about yourself, but you end up in a "one-down" position where you feel bad about yourself because you are not able to live up to the other's expectation. Reframe: Being as you are, with all your faults and idiosyncrasies, is sexy. After all, the sexiest characteristic about a person is confidence. How so? Because it means that a person is down to earth and in tune with themself, because being authentically yourself and showing up in life as yourself is the greatest gift you can give to yourself, and offer to others too.
Secondly, regardless of the reason that the person is judging you (which usually stems from some insecurity on their part), you should thank them AND see if what they are saying is true. Sometimes judgment (although not always well said) may be a truism and the person really is trying to give you an important message. If so, you definitely want to thank the person for their honesty and sincerity.
Often, that's not the case and judgment is tainted with negativity. If so, there are two things to do: 1- thank the person and 2-check your reaction. You don't have to thank the person out loud, but you can do so mentally or energetically. Why should you thank the person? While there are different ways to answer that question, you can look at it from a Taoist perspective and see that negativity as a gift. More to the point, how are you reacting to that gift? Is that person pushing one of your buttons? If so, why is this button there? What does it say about you? Often people are put in our path to test us, and if we are reacting to every little negative tidbit then it shows we have far to go on our inner journey to wholeness, wellness and peace of mind.
Not Knowing All The Answers (but thinking you're supposed to). Even the great ones confess that they do not know---so why are you stressing about it? No one has all the answers. Furthermore, we relate to others who aren't on their high horse and pretend to know everything. Most of us don't dig pretenders, fakes or flakes. We relate to others who are like us---that is, we are all imperfect; we each have our own idiosyncrasies and they are what makes us so charming and loveable. We are all special in our own way. How can it not be otherwise? Each and every one of is completely unique! So fess up to your uniqueness and confess: "I don't know " is music to many people's ears!
Being Seen As Weak/Not Being Able To Be Vulnerable Or Open Yourself Up. There's a great secret in this lesson, I have to confess, and that is: people enjoy a good story. People (especially therapists, but there are so many that love a good book, watching a play, ogling TV dramas or following celebrity news) enjoy the minutiae of other people's lives. Those rag to riches stories, those "what's happening in so-and-so's life?" or "OMG did you hear what happened to my neighbor? Get out!" are the kind of sordid details that drive people to gossip. Why? In order for reflection, growth and self-development to occur.
In other words, being vulnerable shows people that you are just as fragile as they are. Being vulnerable shows that even though it is scary to open up and share your pain, there are so many others who are experiencing the same thing.
In short, people who aren't afraid to be vulnerable have discovered a strength in themselves that goes by the name of courage. And being courageous doesn't mean being a firefighter or a police officer and saving other people's lives. It means owning up and being responsible for your own behavior --- including both positive and negative--- which is what true maturity and wisdom are about.
False Perception Of "I Owe U." Instead of seeing that we are all ONE energy and that we are all interdependent upon one another, the person who doesn't ask for help believes that by asking for help s/he now owes you. This creates a power shift in the relationship such that the person now feels that there is "a balance owing." Yet when we open our perception to a wider vision and realize that we are all under the same roof of one universe, there is nothing to worry about. Chances are, you'll "pay back" that person in some way or other. And if it's not that person, doing a good deed to ANYONE else will do. The secret is that when you have your back scratched by the universe and you respond in kind, then it's not about being focused on the person who gave you such energy, but about embracing all as one energy. Helping others and receiving help is about give and take, and you can do that with everyone and anyone!
Have you ever considered the sun? Have you ever heard the sun say to anyone, "hey, you owe me?" There is a reason the sun is the sun, that bright shining beacon in the sky: when the sun shines down, as it does every day, it shines down on everyone regardless of who that person (or plant, animal, insect or object) is. The sun is generous to all, regardless.
If you really want to take this balance owing concept a step further, then you can ask yourself, what have you done to earn your existence? If everything has been given to you, and all is inside you, then how can you ever "pay it back?"
Control Issues, Neediness & Perfectionistic Thinking. Not asking for help means: "I am the one in control of the situation, I hold the power in this relationship." This is a falsity, as every time any two people meet, there is always an energy exchange. Furthermore, although being seen as needy is another false control mechanism/belief for denying help, it ironically ends up creating a barrier between you and the other person instead of allowing you to control the situation. How come? This comes from a failure to understand simple human dynamics: people enjoy helping each other. Since we are all drops in the same big ocean of water, helping one another forges friendships and alliances.
When you honor each person as a teacher ---for every person has something to teach us--- then there is no superiority/inferiority or one up-one down position. If you think that you are better than others and are always judging and criticizing others, then you'd be better to turn that mirror around. While it is true that people with a perfectionistic way of looking at the world are harsh on themselves as well, you need to lighten up and see where this harshness is coming from. All perfectionism, you have to understand, comes from negative self-talk and musts, shoulds and oughts. It's based on expectations and standards, and failing/falling short of those standards results in negative consequences.
In other words, behind all perfectionistic thinking are the emotions of guilt, shame and sadness; yet behind these emotions is the base emotion of fear that leaves you feeling and believing that you are unworthy, unlovable and valueless (oh yes, and you will ALWAYS and FOREVER be this way, because it will NEVER be good enough, but you still have to do your best and give it your best--- this is what's called black and white thinking, or thinking in absolute terms). Often these fears and ways of believing and seeing the world stem from negative messages experienced in early life (e.g. from controlling parents, that one had to be the best, crying is for losers, showing weakness means a lack of courage, etc).
The master key to all control/fear issues is the same: awareness. The first step is to take a look inside yourself and see why you are playing this perfectionistic game with yourself and others (remember: you are the creator of your own world, hence only you are responsible for your own behavior, and really, is this the way you want to live to your life?). Control is something that is happening on the surface, you understand, and on the deeper inside is this insecurity of never being good enough, never being worthy, never being lovable enough. From where did this lack come from?
If we have all we need inside of us, then these messages in our heads that we received and were told by others are fallacies, and it is for us to see them and go beyond them. The inner journey means setting aside false pretenses, and revealing and rediscovering our true selves. To go beyond these falsities and the base emotion of fear means we need to vibrate with this fear and realize that this fear has no power over us; that it is this fear which is the true controller of our thoughts, emotions and actions, but it does not have to be, only that we are giving it power and are allowing it to speak for us. Our true self IS love, it cannot be otherwise.
Hence, another master key is love. To be loving, to all, including oneself. Such is the nature of life, to rediscover what love means. Hence, having created a beautiful mess called control and perfectionistic ways of being, you can now take the same energy and refocus it to create meaningful, creative and positive intentions for yourself and others. Let go of all barriers and embrace the beautiful wild flower that you are!
To light & loving days ahead,
Are you an empath?
There are some key defining features of being an empath. Essentially, an empath is a highly sensitive, introverted, intuitive individual who is highly attuned to others emotions. They are good listeners and have a penchant for helping people. Creative and adventure-seeking, these free spirits are drawn to seeking the truth and are often interested in holistic or esoteric work. You can read more about the characteristics of empaths from a "psych" perspective HERE and from a more holistic perspective HERE.
The word empath, it must be understood, is a label which can be synonymous with being an intuitive, clairvoyant, mystic or other term. How one chooses to label oneself does not matter, however the "gift" of knowing information about a person WITHOUT the person divulging such information is KEY. In this sense, intuition goes far beyond what is called in Western psychology "body language" and takes the cognitive notion of "communicator" and receiver on a deeper, energetic level.
Based on personal experiences, I have categorized the 4 modalities of intuitive "knowing." Understand that this is ONE WAY of viewing such information (another way, for example, can be to explain similar phenomena through the chakra system).
The 4 intuitive ways of knowing information about a person, place or thing can happen in situ, that is, when the person is present or when the empath is in the actual location OR it can happen when there is a distance between the person/place and the empath. In short, one can know things about a person, place or thing regardless of distance (space) and time.
1. The Physical Level.
a) Information can be known about another person by placing one's hands on the physical body of the other person e.g. one places the hands on the shoulders of a person and knows that the person has a headache.
b) Information can be known about a person by using one's body as a template and NOT touching the other person e.g. one feels a headache in one's own body and realizes that this headache belongs to another person. One can confirm that this other person indeed has a headache and can then push the headache out of one's own body and give back the energy to the person. At this point, one can offer some kind of healing modality if one has such training, for example a reiki, massage or reflexology treatment.
c) Information can be known about a person by knowing something about another person's body by i) scanning the body with the hand(s) ii) scanning the body with the eyes iii) simply looking at the other person's body and the information about the other person's body "comes." Information in this way can sensed by such methods as reiki, medical qi gong and other energy modalities.
2. The Mental Level
A person's thoughts can be known by an empath.
We must therefore clarify first that a person's thoughts can occur in the forefront of the mind and are "clear" or happen in the back of the mind and are "fleeting." Crystal clear word-for-word thoughts are consciously known by the person and the empath can hear them in their own mind. With fleeting thoughts, because the thought is more like an impression or idea, the empath will get the gist of the message, the meaning of what the person thought (although there might be a word or two that accompanies such a fleeting thought). The empath can confirm this with the person. Again, be reminded that the empath can hear these thoughts when the person is in the presence of the empath or is away, as by distance.
Note that an empath as a "receiver" can hear a person's thoughts and experience them in their own body. Such an example of this is when a person is having a sexual fantasy and the empath experiences these thoughts as sensations in their own body.
3. The Emotional Level
The empath is attuned to the other person's emotions, whether positive or negative. a) The empath can feel the other person's emotions as if it was their own, in which case, the empath must recognize that this emotion I am experiencing is NOT my own. A good technique is to use the void energy (i.e., to activate the void and create "a nothingness") and then "see" to whom this emotion belongs. Note that feeling another person's emotions may entirely belong to the other person however it is possible that the empath is feeling that way as well.
b) The empath can sense how the other person feels, but does not experience the emotion as if it was their own. In this way, the other person "keeps" their emotion to themself and there is no energetic "vampiring."
4. The Energetic Level
The empath knows information about a person. There is NO associated thought or emotion, the information "comes" as if it is a fact. It is a language that is understood by mystics in that information is communicated WITHOUT language. One simply knows, and then the information must be "stepped down," in other words, the information must then be put into words and/or feelings in order to be communicated. On this level, information may be about a past, present or future event/person. The key word here is "fact," in that information is an actual fact. It can be verified by the other person ("yes, I was in an accident") or by a historical date (e.g. knowing that someone died in a house).
The information that "comes" is a reflection of a person or something that happened, and the empath experiences it as a fact, with non-attachment ("it is what it is"), whether the fact is about a horrible event or something personal about a person. When it comes to personal information about a person, the person has an attachment to the fact e.g. the empath knows that a person has a gambling habit and sees that this pattern of behavior is being "held there" by keeping it secret from others.
Since there are 4 levels of intuitive knowledge, an empath can work on 1 or more levels, depending on their ability. The physical level can be seen as the gross level, while the energetic level can be seen as the highest level. Various energy medicine techniques, including meditation and self-awareness, are tools that can help an empath to go further in their ability and become a better "receiver." Essentially, being highly sensitive, being "in the moment" and "putting aside the ego" are keys to being a receptive vehicle of others, oneself and the divine.
To divinely intuitive days ahead,
The Psychology of Being a Workaholic
There is a difference between being total in work and being a workholic. People who are total in their work fall in love with what they are doing. They may work long hours, but they truly enjoy and are inspired by the work they are doing. That is not the same thing as being a workaholic: the person who feels they must, should or have to work every single day. Musts, shoulds and have-tos are all based on perfectionism and behind all perfectionism lies the base emotion of fear.
In Western psychology, we can talk of the person being neurotic and anxious. Anxiety often pairs well with depression, and mood swings including restlessness and paranoia can be seen. The person appears highly controlling and manipulative, always seeming to play the game of "impression management " in order to put their best foot forward. Indeed, there is a breakdown in communication in that the person will deny others in order to be right. Seemingly narcissistic and lacking in empathy, s/he abhors laziness. Fear of failure is critical in driving the person to perform and to push him/herself everyday. Unfortunately, this adrenaline-response pattern leaves the person feeling chronically fatigued and creates a host of physical health problems including high cholesterol and hypertension.
What is behind this pattern of fearing failure, boredom, laziness and guilt? Western psychology says workaholism is a form of obsessive-compulsive disorder, for which treatment involves medication and psychotherapy.
From an Eastern psychological perspective, workaholism is an addiction no different than drugs or alcohol. It keeps the person distracted from their worries and fears. It keeps the person in a constant state of tension, where rest and relaxation are seen as forms of laziness and boredom.
And yet laziness is completely misunderstood. To be zen is not be lazy, but to have an openness and trust in life. Yet how can one have such trust when "the part" is telling the whole universe that it knows best? Who knows it best is me! This is what is behind the control, that the part thinks that it is greater than the whole...quite a presumptuous position which leads to resistance and a pattern of being unable to let go.
Let go is related to fear, particularly fear of the unknown. When I am in control, I can control events they way that I want them to be. One misses much because one is never in the present moment. Instead, one is attached to being engaged in work so that one doesn't have to face the fear that the only thing permanent is insecurity, that the only thing awaiting one at the end of this journey is an encounter with death, that not to do anything and to be silent means that one must face and be with oneself...and what an odious task, to have to be with oneself. Fear of being with oneself means that one must face the hurt and pain that is inside, that one must face this lack of self-respect, self-worth and self-love...Who is this self that we speak of?
The secret that the workaholic has not figured out is that s/he is trying to be total. Working every day, can one be totally involved? If one can be so totally here now, so totally involved in the present moment, then this moment is itself perfection.
To be so totally aware in this present moment means that one no longer functions as an ego, but is a pure flowing, a pure witnessing. If one can be totally aware, totally present here now while working, then one can be totally aware everywhere and in everything.
That is the truth that the workaholic is seeking: to dissolve as an "I-am-this-ego," and go beyond the concepts of self-concept, self-esteem and self-worth.
Who am i?
I am that...and beyond.
Read more on Workaholism Western viewpoint HERE
Read more on Workaholism Eastern viewpoint HERE
~ By Asoka Void
Gibberish meditation is a technique derived from Osho. It is a very simple technique which helps to dispel excess energy in the mind so that one is better able to go into the silence or to have more silence.
The thing about mind is that it tends to be chatty. And when one looks at what the mind is saying, most of it is a regurgitation of the past OR a projection of the past onto the future. Mind likes to repeat itself and most of what it says is "trash."
So, instead of listening to the mind repeating this same "trash" over and over again, one can instead understand that there is too much energy locked up in the mind and it needs to be released.
The technique is easy: for the first 15 minutes, let the mind talk in gibberish. That means you are forcing your mind to speak BUT you have to use nonsense words. It could be just one word, like "la, la la" or a whole slew of made up words. You can have a whole conversation about a subject, but the whole time you are talking using made up words. You can do this part of the meditation walking around and talking out loud in gibberish, OR sit down and close your eyes and have a nonsense talk silently in your mind.
If you are the type of person who has a lot of energy (i.e. if you are a "yang" kind of person), walking and talking around would be a better way to dispel the energy. You can also scream and shout in gibberish if you like (just be sure you close your windows not to disturb your neighbors ;)).
Also, you can use a word that has a specific connotation. For example, in TCM/medical gi gong the word "ni" is helpful to release energy in the brain while the word "guo" is useful for helping to clear energy in the liver. If you can use these words or another word which has a specific releasing energy, go for it! Do just be aware that your mind might not want to use that word and if not, just let the mind dictate what nonsense word it wants to use :)
After releasing this energy, you can then sit down, close your eyes and see what transpires in the mind for the next 15 minutes. Mind may continue to go on talking, but you may have a few moments of silence. Note that you might not have silence on the first time or even the first few times you try this meditation, but over time, mind will get "bored" and "annoyed" at having to be "forced" to talk nonsense and will shut down. When that happens, you can then start to have glimpses/moments of silence and going beyond the mind.
You can absolutely do this meditation every single day :)
It should be said that this is a dynamic meditation technique, which means that the first part of the meditation is aimed at throwing out excess energy so that in the second part of the meditation you should/may be able to have more silence. This is something that Osho has spoken about, which is that when people go to meditate, they find their mind is always talking and there is no silence, no peace. Throwing out that extra energy FIRST increases the probability that you will have more silence. In some ways, you can think of it as tiring out your mind, kind of like when you've had a really long day or done a really long, hard workout. Then you want to rest :)
You can also increase the time that you are throwing out energy to say 20 minutes or half an hour, then go into the "silent" portion of the meditation for 10-15 minutes, or longer if you wish.
Speaking from personal experience (and being someone who has a lot of energy), I have found that 15 minutes may not be enough time to throw out the excess energy. Indeed, I have have found myself throwing out the excess energy for a period of 45 minutes, followed by a silent period of 15 minutes. As you can see, you can therefore tailor the meditation to your own specific needs.
To gibberish days ahead,
Q: Could you share a few notes on mind and ego?
~Interested in spiritual things
To your spiritual journey,
A few words of wisdom said to a friend after his dearly beloved dog died:
Death is never the end, but the start of a new beginning.
When one thing ends, a new one is arising.
Life is a cycle, more like a spiral some say, and to live its ups and downs is part and parcel of the human experience.
When unhappiness and sadness are there, good. Embrace them as if they are old friends. Be true to those emotions and yourself, for soon you will see that the same energy that had you so sad has now lifted and is changing to something new.
Life is a flux...and how we choose to live our lives is entirely up to us.
Grieve now so that tomorrow a new tide will come to pass.
All is well because all has always been well.
With loving kindness,
Q: I've come to realize that I'm such an emotional person! My friends have always said that I am a moody person. I feel lately like I am on a roller-coaster, up and down and all around! What to do with all these emotions driving me crazy?
A: Whether from a psychological or mystical perspective, emotions are part of the human experience. The extent to which you aware of them and how you choose to interact and identify with them is something that comes with practice.
From a psychological perspective, there are many ways to "manage" your emotions. Since thoughts and emotions often occur together (they are associated with one another), being aware of your negative thinking and self-talk is a good starting point. Pay attention to how you are feeling. Emotions lead us to feeling stressed out, however there are a variety of coping mechanisms that you can use, such as deep breathing, distraction, relaxation, yoga, laughter and humor. You can read more about stress busting methods HERE and HERE.
From a more esoteric and deeper level, we can understand that we are not our emotions. Emotions are like fluffy clouds in the sky; they come and go, and we can enjoy the show and watch them as they make an appearance and exit the stage. No one emotion can last forever and if you bring your awareness to any one particular emotion, you will notice that it only has so much "juice" before it falls away.
Knowing that emotions come and go is a mighty powerful tool because it means that whatever you are experiencing at any given moment will not and can not last.
Being an "emotional person" simply means that you are allowing yourself to be identified with your emotions instead of being the center of the cyclone. Using a meditation technique like Vipassana or the Hollow Bamboo technique can be helpful to you in creating a distance between your emotions and your "witnessing" self. You can read more about Vipassana meditation and the different methods of the meditation HERE.
To smooth-sailing days ahead,
Q: I have been noticing that my mind is so obsessive! It keeps obsessing about the same things. Is there a psychological or meditation technique that you can recommend?
A: The very nature of the mind is that it is repetitive. It is like a broken record player that keeps playing the same songs over and over again. Besides the fact that mind has its own self-interest "at heart," one of the reasons why mind is so obsessive is that things left undone will continue to "haunt" it. The act, you see, must be finished for mind to release this energy.
Try this psychological/meditation technique just before you go to sleep:
---> Go Back in Time on all the events that happened to you today. Start with what just happened before you went to bed and continue to go backward in time. As you do so, finish or put an end to any act that was left undone. It could be something that you wanted to say but didn't (so in your mind's eye, see that you DID say what you wanted). It could be that someone made you feel guilty and you didn't want to feel that way and you are still feeling that way now. Finish the act by rewriting what the person said or change your response so that the end result is a positive one. It could be that you were late and just the fact that you didn't brush your teeth, you felt so dirty inside. Go back and brush your teeth as if you did have time and tell yourself that you are clean whether teeth get brushed or not.
This technique of going back in time and finishing the acts or "rewriting" your day the way that you want to live your life means that you are changing your thoughts, emotions and actions to have a more desirable, positive and fulfilling life. Doing this technique, you should also see that your mind will start to be less obsessed about things DURING the day. It will free up a lot of wasted energy such that this energy will now be transformed to living your life the way you want.
You can do this technique every night before you go to sleep.
As an experiment, after doing this for several days or weeks, skip one day (do NOT do this technique) and see how you think/feel/act the next day. Like all meditation techniques, the purpose of this technique is to bring your awareness to how you are living your life, to the thoughts, emotions and behavioral patterns that you are allowing to happen in your life.
To your continued success on your journey,
Q: When being around people who are consistently negative or emit toxic energy, is there a way to protect myself or some strategies I can use with them?
A: Yes, there are many ways you can distract, neutralize or change the energy and/or protect yourself. There are both psychological and energetic/esoteric techniques that you can use.
Here are 5 Strategies To Protect Yourself from Negative Energy. See which one(s) work for you.
1. Laughter and Humor. These can be viewed as both psychological and esoteric techniques which can help neutralize and/or lift negative energy. Joke telling, "keeping it light," not taking things seriously, playing the role of the fool are some ways that this can be achieved.
2. Let Go. Seeing the negative energy for what it is, do nothing. Let the negative pass as if was a storm cloud in the sky, soon to pass. If the energy is too strong for such a strategy, you can always excuse yourself away from the person or try another strategy.
3. Refuse or Revoke the Negative Energy. Thank the person, but decline the invitation to participate with the toxic energy. Return the negative energy to the person (e.g. mentally say thanks but no thanks) in a loving way. If the person continues to embark with the negative energy, remember that it is her/his choice to do so.
4. Offer Compassion, Love & Understanding. Sometimes negative energy is there because it needs to be cleared out or because the person does not understand the situation. Offer compassion, love and understanding to the other person, for who are you to interfere in their life anymore than they you in your life? Walking 10 000 miles in another's shoes can bring great rewards and understanding.
5. Bathe in White Light. Focus on the white light to block the other person's negative energy. There are several ways this can be achieved, such as:
To Light Days Ahead,
Asoka shares her experience & wisdom on psychology, meditation, life and the beyond..
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