Do You Want To Buy A Meditation Cushion?

* The main types of sitting cushions are zafus, benches, and half moons
* There are different heights and firmnesses of cushions, and different ways to sit, based on body type
* It is helpful to try out different kinds of cushions before buying one

For many people establishing a meditation practice, buying a sitting cushion of one’s own is a big moment. Many people find that there is something special about having their own cushion – a cushion to sit on daily at home and to bring to classes and retreats, a cushion to be loved and supported by and to love and care for. Continue reading

Only The Flow

945466_10151370642766389_1885596251_nMy main Buddhist teacher says that there are no objects in this universe, only events.

I think of my car as an object. But the cars that I’ve owned and driven around in the past are no more – I think now that the steel, fiberglass, plastic, aluminum, etc molecules that made up their parts are scattered all over the planet. Continue reading

In This Moment of Now, You Can Handle It

200px-Marcus_Aurelius_Metropolitan_MuseumFrom Marcus Aurelius’ “Meditations”, Book 8, #36:

Do not disturb yourself by picturing your life as a whole; do not assemble in your mind the many and varied troubles which have come to you in the past and will come again in the future, but ask yourself with regard to every present difficulty: ‘What is there in this that is unbearable and beyond endurance?’ You would be ashamed to confess it! And then remind yourself that it is not the future or the past that afflicts you, but always the present, and the power of this is much diminished if you take it in isolation and call your mind to task if it thinks that it cannot stand up to it when taken on its own.

Meditation While Driving

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Meditation in Motion

When most of us think of “meditation”, we think of someone sitting motionless in a cross-legged position with their eyes closed.  And, yes, generally, the quickest way to make positive progress in meditation practice is to regularly spend time sitting still on a cushion, doing nothing else but meditating. Continue reading

Book Review: “Spiritual Enlightenment: The Damnedest Thing”, by Jed McKenna

spiritual-enlightenment-damnedest-thing-jed-mckenna-paperback-cover-artI just finished reading the book “Spiritual Enlightenment: The Damnedest Thing“, which was written anonymously under the pen name “Jed McKenna”.  I had heard about this book for years, but had formed mostly negative impression based on the words and actions of those who said that they had read it.  Several friends who I trust also suggested that I read it, however, so I reconsidered my attitude, read the book, and am glad that did. Continue reading

Status, Certainty, Autonomy, Relatedness, and Fairness

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An excerpt from David Rock’s informative book “Your Brain At Work”:

There are five domains of social experience that your brain treats the same as survival issues: Status, Certainty, Autonomy, Relatedness, and Fairness. The model describes the interpersonal primary rewards or threats that are important to the brain. Some of life’s most intense emotional reactions involve a confluence of the elements of S.C.A.R.F.. Continue reading

Two Types Of Growth

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I came up with a theory many years ago that there are two main ways for us to make significant-impact positive growth in our lives.

One way to make a big impact on our life for the better is instantaneous, emotional, intense, and invokes making a courageous and bold big change.  Examples of this would include to decide to take our life in a completely different direction (to go back to school to get a graduate degree, to quit a job and become a yoga teacher), to go and ask someone for something (a cute stranger for their number, one’s boss for a raise), to make a big public declaration (“I am going to quit this addiction from here on”, “You can count on me from now on to do XYZ”, etc), to make an apology or ask for one, to try something new for the first time, or to make a phone call or send an email with important content (“I’ve never told you how much I love you”, “I quit”, “let’s start a organization together”). Continue reading