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“There are only two days in the year that nothing can be done. One is called Yesterday and the other is called Tomorrow. Today is the right day to Love, Believe, Do and mostly Live.”

Dalai Lama

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What is essential is invisible to the eyes

landscape“And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince

“Sólo con el corazón se puede ver bien. Lo esencial es invisible par los ojos”

How to Cook your Life

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THE POT IS ALWAYS BOILING

There will always be an infinity of things to do. We can never get our life or our business or our kitchen running exactly the way we want it to run. No matter how we envision it, it can’t be that way. Life is not predetermined to the point that we can get to some stage and then see how it all works. What happens is that we have a better and better understanding of things, we have more and more clarity and ability to deal with things as they arise. But they keep arising, endlessly. The empty sky is always creating new clouds. The pot is always boiling.

How to Cook Your Life: From the Zen Kitchen to Enlightenment by Zen Master Dōgen, Kosho Uchiyama Roshi

 

La cacerola siempre está hirviendo

Siempre hay infinitas cosas que hacer, no podemos hacer que nuestra vida, nuestro trabajo o nuestra cocina vaya exactamente del modo en que queremos. Da igual del modo en que lo visualicemos, no irá de ese modo. La vida no está predeterminada de manera que lleguemos a un punto en el que veamos cómo va a ir todo. Lo que ocurre es que tenemos un mejor entendimiento de las cosas, tenemos mas y mas claridad y habilidad para tratar con las cosas cuando aparecen. Pero siguen apareciendo sin final. El cielo vacio está siempre creando nubes. La cacerola está siempre hirviendo.

Refuge

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Where do we find refuge from destructive emotions?
In the things that we do, in those we love, and in how we spend our time. For me, that has been the answer.

(¿Donde encontramos refugio de las emociones destructivas? En las cosas a las que nos dedicamos, en los que queremos y en lo que hacemos con nuestro tiempo. Para mi esta ha sido la respuesta)

Connect With Your Body

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(Eve Ensler) In the Body of the World: A Memoir of Cancer and Connection

I think – from my own life experience, and certainly what I’ve discovered in many women and men across the planet – is [that] when we’re traumatized, when we’re beaten, when we’re raped, we leave our bodies. We disconnect from ourselves. And if it’s true that one out of every three women on the planet have been raped or beaten, which is a U.N. statistic, that’s a billion women.
Many, many of us have left our bodies – we’re not embodied creatures, we’re not living inside our own muscles and cells and sinews. And so we’re not in our power, we’re not in our energy.
[…]
It’s been a long journey to get fully back into my body. And, certainly, what I’ve seen everywhere in the world is that the more traumatized people are, the less connected they are to their own source of strength, their own source of inspiration, intuition, heart – everything.

Yoga and Mindfulness helps us to connect with our body giving us energy and strength to discover our own source of inspiration and intuition. It allows us to express our interior to the exterior reveling our heart to the word.

“Reframing”

reality-illusion (1)Falling flat on your face into a puddle is usually interpreted as a threat. We’ll assume that our clumsiness is a sign to others that we’re incompetent, and that our social status will drop, which is a painful thing.
But this thing is that this is just an interpretation, not a reality. It’s possible to change our interpretations — the filters that lead to the arising of pleasant and unpleasant feelings — either so that different feelings arise, or so we’re able to bear our suffering more easily.

  • We can reframe by considering unpleasant experiences as being a test, or an opportunity to cultivate patience.
  • We can reframe by considering that unpleasant experiences are impermanent.
  • We can reframe by considering that unpleasant experiences are not us, but are simply passing though us, like clouds through the sky.
  • We can reframe by reminding ourselves that there are others who are suffering as badly, or worse, so that we feel a sense of gratitude.
  • We can reframe by seeing our misfortunes as being a way to develop empathy with others who are suffering, so that we can increase our compassion.

What’s we’re doing in all of these reframes is changing the mental filters that interpret our experience and that normally lead to the mind flagging up potential threats by creating unpleasant sensation. Now the mind registers our experiences as opportunities. We’ve turned a threat into an opportunity, and although we may not find that our unpleasant feelings vanish (though that happens sometimes) we’ll find them easier to be with, and so we won’t cause ourselves unnecessary suffering by engaging in self pity, and won’t cause others unnecessary suffering by acting out in anger.

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80-90 percent of what you fear will happen never really come into reality

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“When I look back on all these worries, I remember the story of the old man who said on his deathbed that he had had a lot of trouble in his life, most of which had never happened.” Winston Churchill

“If you want to test your memory, try to recall what you were worrying about one year ago today.” E. Joseph Cossman

Worrying is most often just a waste of time.

This is of course easy to say…but try this whenever worries pop up in your mind:

Simply remind yourself of how little of what you have feared throughout your life that has actually happened.

Ask yourself a question like: “Honestly, am I overcomplicating this?”

Ordinary Looking

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Right now, you are missing the vast majority of what is happening around you. You are missing the events unfolding in your body, in the distance, and right in front of you…

…I would find myself at once alarmed, delighted, and humbled at the limitations of my ordinary looking. My consolation is that this deficiency of mine is quite human. We see, but we do not see: we use our eyes, but our gaze is glancing, frivolously considering its object. We see the signs, but not their meanings. We are not blinded, but we have blinders…

…By marshaling your attention to these words, helpfully framed in a distinct border of white, you are ignoring an unthinkably large amount of information that continues to bombard all of your senses: the hum of the fluorescent lights, the ambient noise in a large room, the places your chair presses against your legs or back, your tongue touching the roof of your mouth, the tension you are holding in your shoulders or jaw, the map of the cool and warm places on your body, the constant hum of traffic or a distant lawn-mower, the blurred view of your own shoulders and torso in your peripheral vision, a chirp of a bug or whine of a kitchen appliance.

Alexandra Horowitz (On looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes)

Time

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We construct the experience of time in our minds, so it follows that we are able to change the elements we find troubling – whether it’s trying to stop the years racing past, or speeding up time when we’re stuck in a queue, trying to live more in the present, or working out how long ago we last saw our old friends. Time can be a friend, but it can also be an enemy. The trick is to harness it, whether at home, at work, or even in social policy, and to work in line with our conception of time. Time perception matters because it is the experience of time that roots us in our mental reality. Time is not only at the heart of the way we organize life, but the way we experience it…

 

…we will never have total control over this extraordinary dimension. Time will warp and confuse and baffle and entertain however much we learn about its capacities. But the more we learn, the more we can shape it to our will and destiny. We can slow it down or speed it up. We can hold on to the past more securely and predict the future more accurately. Mental time-travel is one of the greatest gifts of the mind. It makes us human, and it makes us special.

Claudia Hammond