No Death No Fear

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Thích Nhất Hạnh

“The day my mother died I wrote in my journal, “A serious misfortune of my life has arrived.” I suffered for more than one year after the passing away of my mother. But one night, in the highlands of Vietnam, I was sleeping in the hut in my hermitage. I dreamed of my mother. I saw myself sitting with her, and we were having a wonderful talk. She looked young and beautiful, her hair flowing down. It was so pleasant to sit there and talk to her as if she had never died. When I woke up it was about two in the morning, and I felt very strongly that I had never lost my mother. The impression that my mother was still with me was very clear. I understood then that the idea of having lost my mother was just an idea. It was obvious in that moment that my mother is always alive in me.

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What are you so Busy About?

When was the last time you made the time to be silent and still? When was the last time you carved out a chunk of time to enjoy the power of solitude to restore, refocus and revitalize your mind, body and spirit?   

All of the great wisdom traditions of the world have arrived at the same conclusion: to reconnect with who you really are as a person and to come to know the glory that rests within you, you must find the time to be silent on a regular basis. Sure, you are busy. But as Thoreau said: “It is not enough to be busy, so are the ants. The question is what are you so busy about?”   

The importance of silence makes me think about the story of an old lighthouse keeper. The man had only a limited amount of oil to keep his beacon lit so that passing ships could avoid the rocky shores. One night, a man who lived close by needed to borrow some of this precious commodity to light his home, so the lighthouse keeper gave him some of his own. Another night, a traveler begged for some oil to light his lamp so he could keep on travelling. The lighthouse keeper also complied with this request and gave him the amount he needed. The next night, the lighthouse keeper was awakened by a mother banging on his door. She prayed for some oil so that she could illuminate her home and feed her family. Again he agreed. Soon all his oil was gone and his beacon went out. Many ships ran aground and many lives were lost because the lighthouse keeper forgot to focus on his priority. He neglected his primary duty and paid a high price.

Experiencing solitude, for even a few minutes a day, will keep you centered on your highest life priorities and help you avoid the neglect that pervades the lives of so many of us.     And saying that you don’t have enough time to be silent on a regular basis is a lot like saying you are too busy driving to stop for gas – eventually it will catch up with you.

Robin Sharma from Who Will Cry When you Die?

Emotions: The Hidden Risk Factor for Heart Disease

Dr. Stephen Sinatra

Emotions The Hidden Risk Factor for Heart Disease

Early in my career, as part of my effort to understand how our emotions affect heart health, I trained as a psychotherapist. I discovered then that our heart is indeed much more than a pump.

We all know the sayings, “you touched my heart,” “you stole my heart,” and “my heart is broken.” The heart is the only organ in the body that carries such emotionally charged meaning. But more importantly, these sayings are not simply images; they can describe real, physical, medical events in the heart. The “heavy heart” that comes with sadness, for example, can actually lead to chest pain.

Our emotions and our stresses are far bigger risk factors for heart disease than we acknowledge them to be. When stressed, the body floods itself with the hormones cortisol and adrenaline. Over time, an overdose of these hormones can lead to symptoms such as heart palpitations, ulcers, stroke, or heart attack. So, although we may tell ourselves that we are not as upset as we think we are, our emotions show themselves in other ways.

Simply put, the body never lies. Do not neglect the emotional risk factors for heart disease. How can you reduce such stressors? Here are 15 ways to keep emotions from putting your heart at risk.

  1. Explore Your Anger. Anger is the Achilles’ heel of the cardiovascular system—a trigger for serious problems, including a heart attack. Your blood vessels constrict and your blood pressure rises. The electrical currents to your heart become unstable. And if you have arterial plaque, anger is like throwing a match into a can of gasoline. The plaque can rupture, and the resulting clots can kill you. 

    One of the best ways to keep anger from becoming a risk factor for heart disease is to release it. Find a place of solitude and scream, yell, or cry. Talk to a friend or visit a skilled psychotherapist to work on your anger. Or, try twisting towels, hitting tennis balls, or punching pillows. It also helps to ask yourself why you feel angry. Recognize that you cannot be effective when you are possessed by anger. If you understand why you’re coming to such an emotional point, you’ll be better able to identify and avoid those triggers……….
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Book of the Month – March 2021: The Map of Consciousness Explained by David R Hawkins

“I recommend this book for every spiritual aspirant for climbing the unseen ladder of real spiritual progress.”
— Swami Chidatmananda, Hindu spiritual monk at Chinmaya Mission, Bharat India

About the Author

David R. Hawkins, M.D., Ph.D., was Director of The Institute for Spiritual Research, Inc., and Founder of the Path of Devotional Nonduality. He was renowned as a pioneering researcher in the field of consciousness, as well as author, lecturer, clinician, physician, and scientist. He served as an advisor to Catholic, Protestant, and Buddhist monasteries; appeared on major network television and radio programs; and lectured widely at such places as Westminster Abbey, the Oxford Forum, the University of Notre Dame, and Harvard University. People from all walks of life and nationalities honor Dr. Hawkins as a teacher of advanced awareness, exemplified in the title “Foremost Teacher of the Way to Enlightenment.” His life was devoted to the upliftment of mankind until his death in 2012.

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An accessible exploration of best-selling author’s most famous work, The Map of Consciousness, that helps readers experience healing and transcendence.

The Map of Consciousness Explained is an essential primer on the late Dr. David R. Hawkins’s teachings on human consciousness and their associated energy fields.
Using muscle testing, Dr. Hawkins conducted more than 250,000 calibrations during 20 years of research to define a range of values, attitudes, and emotions that correspond to levels of consciousness. This range of values–along with a logarithmic scale of 1 to 1,000–became the Map of Consciousness, which Dr. Hawkins first wrote about in his New York Times bestseller, Power vs. Force.
In this book, readers will gain an introduction and deeper understanding of the Map, with visual charts and practical applications to help them heal, recover, and evolve to higher levels of consciousness and energy.
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Book of the Month – January 2021

Change Your Questions, Change Your Life: 10 Powerful Tools for Life and Work
“The moment anything happens to us, that’s when we start asking ourselves questions. The sooner we recognize what we’re asking, the better”

Questions are at the core of how we listen, behave, think, and relate–as individuals and organizations. Virtually everything we think and do is generated by questions. Questions push us into new territories. The future begins with our thinking, represented by the questions we ask ourselves.”Change Your Questions, Change Your Life” shows readers how to consistently choose the questions that can lead them to success, both personally and professionally. This technique, called “QuestionsThinking,” stimulates innovation, accelerate productivity, and create more rewarding relationships.

Absolutely loved this book. I recommend this to any leader, educator, professional, college student, husband, wife, etc. The ideas discussed are very relevant and applicable in todays era. The themes can be utilized in most any stage of life and nearly every form of work. The concepts that Marilee Adams reviews are broken down into the simple questions (verbal or nonverbal) we ask ourselves on a day-to-day, moment-to-moment basis. First of all, I couldn’t believe that I am literally asking questions every day. It’s so subtle and happens so unconsciously that we don’t even realize it. Once I did, I couldn’t believe how my questions were driving my habits, actions, and feelings. By increasing overall awareness (observer self) while learning to ask yourself the right questions, in any given situation, can give you the power to change your life in nearly every facet. 

This has to be one of the best psychology books I’ve come across that has both the personal relevancy and impact to truly change your life. This is a must-have to your personal library.

– Kahea Clark

(Contributed by Mr. Maharajah)