I Learnt 3 Valuable Lessons

I Learnt 3 Valuable Lessons

Whilst growing up I was never around animals and when I was, I was afraid of them. I have no idea why I was scared of them. I must have been incorrectly wired to believe that animals can hurt me so I always kept my distance. Besides, living in the city I did not have much opportunity to be around them so my lack of exposure limited me in knowing and understanding them.  Fast forward to today. I’m in love with animals. Especially in the last year. I am stunned at how little I knew about them. My ignorance got me curious to learn about the many beautiful species and so my journey began.  One of my favourite animals are dogs and specifically border collies. I have been lucky enough to get to know Lily. Lily is 4 years old and shes is a quarter labrador but she has very distinct border collie characteristics. Lily loves being around people and when she is stroked or itched, her facial expression can melt one’s heart. I know because it did mine. I am learning valuable lessons from Lily.  Lily is authentic. She waits by the stairs because she knows that we walk down the stairs and she gets attention; love. She is not embarrassed to display that side of her. It reminds me how I used to find it hard to ask for love. I masked what I wanted hence made it hard for others to know when I needed support or comfort. But if I showed what I felt then there would not be any issues in getting the love... read more
What a blissful weekend looks like? 

What a blissful weekend looks like? 

Have you ever gone to a place and felt like time has stopped and you’ve gone back in time? That’s how my weekend felt like.

We frequently go to this place, the second hand bookstore and get some great buys. Last Saturday was no different. As we left, we got chatting with the owner, a retired Englishman. I learnt so much about him, his family, his life and we even chatted about diet and fitness. I was so intrigued that I didn’t want to leave!

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Live Your Childhood Dream

Live Your Childhood Dream

I’m hitting 41 this year and yet I feel like a kid. I feel more alive than ever. I remember when I was in high school, I loved writing. I was one of the editors of the school newsletter and was so proud of my work even though it probably wasn’t all that great! I had the passion and the love for writing. Even though I was not fortunate enough to study writing after graduation, my first Masters was in Creative Writing and now I blog whenever time permits.

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For Buddha’s Day of Enlightenment

For Buddha’s Day of Enlightenment

I’m often reminded in my own practice about the different states of consciousness that the mind can reach. I was doing a Sam Harris meditation with my husband a few days back and it very much stressed the idea of anatta (no self). This is a great meditation for realising that you have no self at all but it slightly ignores the different stages of consciousness that can reach towards this one point. For beginners, this would be an extremely difficult meditation as it doesn’t pin point the necessary conditions that are needed to reach the state of no-mind.

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Are We Awake?

Are We Awake?

Samadhi is usually translated as concentration and from my perspective it is an essential meditation practice. The practice of Samadhi envisages a mind that is calm, clear and gentle. It is unattached to anything and let’s go of thoughts as easily as raindrops gently dripping from a leaf during a Summer storm. It is very hard to achieve this state of mind as we have been so conditioned by life. Every form of conditioning must be removed for Samadhi to be achieved. Samadhi can be achieved in short bursts or in a whole lifetime (an example would be the Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh). To obtain longer spans of Samadhi we must look to firstly reconditioning ourselves, and secondly to letting go of conditioning of any state or form. This is much harder than it sounds!

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A Buddhist Approach to the Selfless Self

A Buddhist Approach to the Selfless Self

What I am about to say encapsulates only some of the traditions in Buddhism. Given the fact that there are so many traditions (Nicheren, Chan, Zen, Mahayana, Theraveda, Kadampa etc), there are also many different takes on this. Broadly speaking, the view I will be taking comes from the Mahayana (Greater Vehicle) school, with a mix of Tibetan tradition on top!

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Are You Happy 24/7?

Are You Happy 24/7?

What is happiness? Today more than ever, there are tons of self help books written by monks, saints, scholars, philosophers etc. on what happiness is. Happiness is different to each person at different times. I like how Abraham Lincoln puts it “Most folks are as happy as they make up their minds to be.” This is very true. We choose to be happy when we want to and while we are stuck being unhappy what do we do?

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Row Row Row Your Boat

Row Row Row Your Boat

I have come across a number of different philosophies, theologies and theocracies during my life which address the way we live and the purpose and meaning of our lives. Many of these ideologies have influenced me in a variety of ways but one philosophy/ideology that has really struck a chord in me is the notions and thoughts of Taoism. In all its incarnations, Taoism has come into contact with me in both in its infinite simplicity and its absolute difficulty. It is much more than just a philosophy of life, it is a philosophy of being.

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Stop & Breathe!

Stop & Breathe!

Strange title and you’re right. It is strange but it’s so true. When an obstacle occurs, what do most of us do? React! I can guarantee that our reaction to the situation doesn’t make it better. It probably creates more stress, anxiety, bitterness etc. So why react when we know our autopilot response actually backfires? Sadly it’s how we have been programmed through our upbringing and the influence of society. In order to have a different outcome; an outcome that will make the situation better we need a different way of responding. So what’s that? Stop& Breathe!

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Running Away from You

Running Away from You

Seems like an odd title for this blog but I feel it’s an apt heading for something I have seen time and time again. How often has a person run away from their “problems” only to realise too late that the problems they face are themselves? How many of our problems are actually created by our own minds and the fractured elements that make up ourselves?

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Who Do You Turn To?

Who Do You Turn To?

Do you ever feel that when the shit hits the roof those that you thought would be there aren’t? It’s interesting that it takes life’s hurdles for us to discover who we can rely on. Lately I’ve been feeling lost not so much on the physical level; and I find it hard to turn to my girlfriends simply because my shit isn’t the usual stuff that we cry over like career, men or family issues that most of us seem concerned with 24/7.

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My Summaries with my Monk

My Summaries with my Monk

First Session:

The monk shared 3 ideas to work on on forgiving others which was today’s topic.
1) see the bigger picture. Everyone wants to be happy. Whatever they did / said etc is meant to bring them happiness. But more importantly does this resentment help in the long run? Holding onto it? Do you remember a trivial incident your buddy did when you were 7? Holding on is punishing you and not the other person because you are in pain with the negativity. After a period of time our perception towards this painful incident would change so why not forgive now.

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Being Spiritual

Being Spiritual

Many people think that being ‘spiritual’ is all to do with the act of doing. Going to church, chanting prayers, showing that you are ‘spiritual’. I feel that spirituality has more to do with being than doing. Anyone can do spirituality, but it’s what you say and do every day that counts. If you go to the temple once every week and act with brutish intent, then that’s not spiritual. That’s merely an attempt to alleviate your guilt about the acts that you perform. What’s the point of going to a religious building once a week when you end up acting like an ass?

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