Having a meditation toolkit

March 6, 2013

100 Day Meditation ChallengeOne of my online students wrote:

I find that when a dark thought or uncomfortable feeling comes up during meditation, my habitual reaction is to very quickly label it “thinking” and then return to my breath, which feels very much like I am suppressing my emotions and feelings.

And my reply was: This is a great thing to have learned about yourself. It seems that you innately know, with your inner wisdom, that this kind of suppression isn’t the way you want to live your life, and in fact with mindfulness we should be prepared to give our darker feelings room to breathe — or at least some of them.

That brings up the question … Read more »

Feeding the wolf of love

October 20, 2011

I once heard a Native American teaching story in which an elder, a grandmother, was asked what she had done to become so happy, so wise, so loved and respected. She replied: “It’s because I know that there are two wolves in my heart, a wolf of love and a wolf of hate. And I know that everything depends on which one I feed each day.”

This story always gives me the shivers when I think of it. Who among us does not have both a wolf of love and a wolf of hate in their heart?

I know I do, including the wolf of hate, which shows up in small ways as well as … Read more »

Creating choice with inner wisdom

June 26, 2010

Srimati discusses the nature of inner wisdom, and how to make creative, rather than reactive, choices. Speaking to the Conscious Evolution group at Sharpham House, Totnes, Devon, she explains that inner wisdom is a deep level of intelligence available to us all and that accessing our inner wisdom allows us make the best choices in our life.

How can we trust our intuition?

April 18, 2010

How do we know what’s a valuable intuition and what’s some other voice — perhaps the voice of fear, or just a delusion? Srimati explains that our responses come either from fear or love, and that we can learn to recognize the difference by asking ourselves what’s our motivation. In a way, intuition tells us whether our responses are creative and intuitive, or reactive.

True non-attachment and the freedom to choose

October 7, 2009

John Dewey: “The self is not something ready-made, but something in continuous formation through choice of action.”

September 21, 2009

John DeweyDewey’s saying echoes Buddhist notions of impermanence and not-self. Bodhipaksa points out that the Buddhist position is not merely descriptive of how things are. Rather it amounts to a technology of happiness — a set of perspectives and tools that allows us to create more deeply fulfilling lives.

One of the most crippling — and often unacknowledged — beliefs we can have is that the self is something fixed and unchanging. When we have the idea that our personalities are set like words carved in stone the possibility of change is closed off to us.

A mountaineering friend of mine once commented that when coming down a hill you were faced with innumerable choices about … Read more »

Antoine de Saint Exupéry: “No single event can awaken within us a stranger whose existence we had never suspected.”

February 22, 2008

A common misquotation of a saying by a famous French writer gives Bodhipaksa pause for thought: are both the misquotation and the original saying true, even if they’re saying opposite things?

“No single event can awaken within us a stranger whose existence we had never suspected. To live is to be slowly born.”
— Antoine de Saint Exupéry (1900-1944).

Antoine de Saint Exupéry was a famous French aviator and writer who most notably wrote the children’s fable, The Little Prince and who died when his plane crashed in the Mediterranean while on an Allied surveillance mission over France. His writings are deeply philosophical, poetic, and charming.

Interestingly, this quotation from his memoir, Pilote de GuerreRead more »