Book of the Month – July 2021: ATOMIC HABITS BY JAMES CLEAR

Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones by [James Clear]
No matter your goals, Atomic Habits offers a proven framework for improving–every day. James Clear, one of the world’s leading experts on habit formation, reveals practical strategies that will teach you exactly how to form good habits, break bad ones, and master the tiny behaviors that lead to remarkable results.

If you’re having trouble changing your habits, the problem isn’t you. The problem is your system. Bad habits repeat themselves again and again not because you don’t want to change, but because you have the wrong system for change. You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems. Here, you’ll get a proven system that can take you to new heights.

Clear is known for his ability to distill complex topics into simple behaviors that can be easily applied to daily life and work. Here, he draws on the most proven ideas from biology, psychology, and neuroscience to create an easy-to-understand guide for making good habits inevitable and bad habits impossible. Along the way, readers will be inspired and entertained with true stories from Olympic gold medalists, award-winning artists, business leaders, life-saving physicians, and star comedians who have used the science of small habits to master their craft and vault to the top of their field.

Learn how to:
*  make time for new habits (even when life gets crazy);
*  overcome a lack of motivation and willpower;
*  design your environment to make success easier;
*  get back on track when you fall off course;
…and much more.

Atomic Habits will reshape the way you think about progress and success, and give you the tools and strategies you need to transform your habits–whether you are a team looking to win a championship, an organization hoping to redefine an industry, or simply an individual who wishes to quit smoking, lose weight, reduce stress, or achieve any other goal.

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Rethinking Your position

Celebrated organizational psychologist and author Adam Grant provides compelling insight into why we should spend time not just thinking, but rethinking. In this episode we cover how to change our own views, how to change the views of others, hiring processes, psychological safety, tribes and group identity, feigned knowledge, binary bias, and so much more.

Grant is a Professor of Psychology at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and the author of five books, including his most recent release, the New York Times bestseller Think Again. He also serves as the host of WorkLife, a TED original podcast.

University of Unlearning

“`German scholar: I have come to learn from you.

Sri Ramana Maharshi – Venkataraman Iyer.
Born – December 30, 1879, India
Died – April 14, 1950. Tamil Nadu, South India.

Sri Ramana Maharshi said, ‘then you go elsewhere, because here we teach unlearning. Learning is not our way. You go elsewhere. If you are ready to unlearn, be here. If you have come to learn more, then this is not the right place. Then go somewhere else – universities exist for learning. When you come to me, come to unlearn. This is a university for unlearning, university to create no-mind, a university where whatsoever you know will be taken away. All your knowledge has to be dropped so that you become knowing, so you get a perfection, a clarity, so that your eyes are not filled with theses, or theories, with prejudices, concepts; so your eyes have a clarity, an absolute clarity and transparency, so that you can see. The truth is already there. It has always been there.“`

(Contributed by Mr. Balasunder)

What they have and what they do are secondary to what they are….

Mother Teresa
Mother Teresa (1910-1997)

Mother Teresa’s greatness and power arose because she addressed the most noble qualities within human nature—unconditional love and nonjudgmental compassion.

When someone dedicates their life to carrying out the principle of universal truth, that person becomes magnetic. They develop the power of attraction. What they have and what they do are secondary to what they are. It is that quality, which the world acknowledges and brings them, that we term success.

What was it that Mother Teresa acknowledged in others and, by so doing, magnificently brought forth for all of us to see in her? When she ministered to the poor and the sick and the dying in the streets of Kolkata, was she trying to save them from death? Was she trying to raise funds for the poor? No. What she ministered to and acknowledged was the intrinsic truth of human dignity, worth, value, nobility, lovability, and greatness. Those qualities are intrinsic in every human being no matter how abysmal their external life situation may seem to be.

The Map of Consciousness Explained: A Proven Energy Scale to Actualize Your Ultimate Potential by David R. Hawkins

relinquish the desire to be ‘right’ or of imaginary value to society…

With humility comes the willingness to stop trying to control or change other people or life situations or events ostensibly ‘for their own good’. To be a committed spiritual seeker, it is necessary to relinquish the desire to be ‘right’ or of imaginary value to society. In fact, nobody’s ego or belief systems is of any value to society at all. The world is neither good nor bad nor defective, nor is it in need of help or modification because its appearance is only a projection of one’s own mind. No such world exists.

– David Hawkins, The Eye of the I: From Which Nothing is Hidden

Book of the Month – April 2021- Think Again by Adam Grant

Think Again: The Power of Knowing What You Don't Know

Progress is impossible without change; and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.

-George Bernard Shaw

The bestselling author of Give and Take and Originals examines the critical art of rethinking: learning to question your opinions and open other people’s minds, which can position you for excellence at work and wisdom in life

Intelligence is usually seen as the ability to think and learn, but in a rapidly changing world, there’s another set of cognitive skills that might matter more: the ability to rethink and unlearn. In our daily lives, too many of us favor the comfort of conviction over the discomfort of doubt. We listen to opinions that make us feel good, instead of ideas that make us think hard. We see disagreement as a threat to our egos, rather than an opportunity to learn. We surround ourselves with people who agree with our conclusions, when we should be gravitating toward those who challenge our thought process. The result is that our beliefs get brittle long before our bones. We think too much like preachers defending our sacred beliefs, prosecutors proving the other side wrong, and politicians campaigning for approval–and too little like scientists searching for truth. Intelligence is no cure, and it can even be a curse: being good at thinking can make us worse at rethinking. The brighter we are, the blinder to our own limitations we can become.

Organizational psychologist Adam Grant is an expert on opening other people’s minds–and our own. As Wharton’s top-rated professor and the bestselling author of Originals and Give and Take, he makes it one of his guiding principles to argue like he’s right but listen like he’s wrong. With bold ideas and rigorous evidence, he investigates how we can embrace the joy of being wrong, bring nuance to charged conversations, and build schools, workplaces, and communities of lifelong learners. You’ll learn how an international debate champion wins arguments, a Black musician persuades white supremacists to abandon hate, a vaccine whisperer convinces concerned parents to immunize their children, and Adam has coaxed Yankees fans to root for the Red Sox. Think Again reveals that we don’t have to believe everything we think or internalize everything we feel. It’s an invitation to let go of views that are no longer serving us well and prize mental flexibility over foolish consistency. If knowledge is power, knowing what we don’t know is wisdom.

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I am the world and the world is myself

Question: You seem to advise me to be self-centered to the point of egoism. Must I not yield even to my interest in other people?

Maharaj: Your interest in others is egoistic, self-concerned, self-oriented. You are not interested in others as persons, but only as far as they enrich, or enoble your own image of yourself.

And the ultimate in selfishness is to care only for the protection, preservation and multiplication of one’s own body. By body I mean all that is related to your name and shape— your family,
tribe, country, race, etc. To be attached to one’s name and
shape is selfishness.

A man who knows that he is neither body
nor mind cannot be selfish, for he has nothing to be selfish for.

Or, you may say, he is equally ‘selfish’ on behalf of everybody
he meets; everybody’s welfare is his own. The feeling ‘I am the
world, the world is myself’ becomes quite natural;
once it is established, there is just no way of being selfish.

To be selfish
means to covet, to acquire, accumulate on behalf of the part
against the whole.

I Am That

Nisargadatta Maharaj

This is Water

……There are these two young fish swimming along and they happen to meet an older fish swimming the other way, who nods at them and says “Morning, boys. How’s the water?” And the two young fish swim on for a bit, and then eventually one of them looks over at the other and goes “What the hell is water?”………

……Here’s another didactic little story. There are these two guys sitting together in a bar in the remote Alaskan wilderness. One of the guys is religious, the other is an atheist, and the two are arguing about the existence of God with that special intensity that comes after about the fourth beer. And the atheist says: “Look, it’s not like I don’t have actual reasons for not believing in God. It’s not like I haven’t ever experimented with the whole God and prayer thing. Just last month I got caught away from the camp in that terrible blizzard, and I was totally lost and I couldn’t see a thing, and it was 50 below, and so I tried it: I fell to my knees in the snow and cried out ‘Oh, God, if there is a God, I’m lost in this blizzard, and I’m gonna die if you don’t help me.’” And now, in the bar, the religious guy looks at the atheist all puzzled. “Well then you must believe now,” he says, “After all, here you are, alive.” The atheist just rolls his eyes. “No, man, all that was was a couple Eskimos happened to come wandering by and showed me the way back to camp.”…..

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Life as a Movie

“Take this whole life as a myth, as a story. It is one, but once you take it this way you will not be unhappy. Unhappiness comes out of too much seriousness. Try for seven days; for seven days remember only one thing – that the whole world is just a drama – and you will not be the same again. Just for seven days! You are not going to lose much because you don’t have anything to lose.

“You can try it. For seven days take everything as a drama, just as a show.

“These seven days will give you many glimpses of your buddha nature, of your inner purity. And once you have the glimpse you cannot be the same again. You will be happy, and you cannot conceive of what type of happiness can happen to you because you have not known any happiness. You have known only degrees of unhappiness: sometimes you were more unhappy, sometimes less unhappy, and when you were less unhappy you called it happiness.

“You don’t know what happiness is because you cannot know. When you have a concept of the world in which you are taking it very seriously, you cannot know what happiness is. Happiness happens only when you are grounded in this attitude, that the world is just a play.

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