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Archive for the ‘meditation’ Category

We will start off cool.

We will start off cool.

Habitual walking.

Cool morning Yoga meditation on Bondi Beach.

Cool morning Yoga meditation on Bondi Beach.

Habitual walking is not as Thich Nhat Hanh, in his beautifully written book “Peace is Every Step.“ describes walking. What he describes is actually walking meditation. If you are an active person you may prefer this rather than sitting.

Some habits are not wise.

Some habits are not wise when you are not so sure-footed.

Mindful walking is a cognitive process you are conscious and aware. If we repeat anything often enough it becomes a habit. This is very useful it enables us to become skilled operators. As long as we do not get too inattentive and become prone to problems.

It could have been worse.

It could have been worse.

Habitual actions describe how we fly through life in a fog. We do not actually see where we are going we are traveling on auto pilot. Our thoughts are on some thing in the future or past, not focused on what we are doing.  Meditation teaches us how to stay focused. Those thoughtless actions are the cause of pain and suffering.

A stitch in me wastes time, but helps healing.

A stitch in me wastes time, but helps healing.

The Buddha Siddhartha Gautama said the first step on The Eight Fold Path is Understanding, next is right thinking the next that automatically follows is right actions. Then he discusses right occupation The Buddha is only interested in getting you into a good job. By good he means harmless and beneficial.

This is a good clean job, not paid for sitting down.

This is a good clean job, paid for sitting up.

You may be more interested in getting a well-paid occupation. I would also advise doing what you enjoy to earn an honest crust. Then making dough is a pleasure. People often say what line of work are you in. They used to say out on the construction site, “What’s your game, mate?” Back then, in the good old days, before tight safety regulations took the virtuosity out of it. I would say, “I am a rigger.” I loved my high position looking down on everyone. I was a young show off and got my thrills riding on the crane hook.

Climbing up steps to operate a tower crane, we used to use the hook and climb in the window.

Climbing up steps to operate a tower crane, we used to use the hook and climb in the window, in the good old days.

The young extroverts today (I dare not call then show-offs) have to hoon-around to get a buzz. Putting the public in danger and they do not get paid for it. Instead it costs them, for petrol their motorbike or car and on top of that they get fined.

The police love hoons, they are keeping them in a good exciting job.

The police love hoons, they are keeping them in a good exciting job.

Well I suppose they could say, “It is better than walking.”

I should have been walking.

I should have been walking.

The next steps to consider are right effort, right concentration and mindfulness, not to stepping off the path. It is human to be unmindful and inevitable to step off the path. When we take a wrong step it is no good placing blame or fretting. Just pick yourself up and try again. The same as you do in meditation when your mind wanders.  You can falter but never fail to try.

It is safe in a sheltered harbour but ships were not made for that.

It is safe in a sheltered harbour but ships were not made for that.

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Bondi Beach International Yoga Day.

Bondi Beach International Yoga Day.

Deep thought Meditation.

Of course Jack was there.

Of course Jack was there.

One  concentrates on a word or a phrase. Analysing it to find deeper understanding. I call this meditation deep thought meditation.

I missed out on the sunrise I went to see but got this surprise.

I missed out on the sunrise I went to see but got this surprise.

By the way I’m dictating this into my iPad and it doesn’t always understand exactly what I’m saying when I said “I called this meditation deep thought meditation” it wrote ‘I call this meditation stupid thoughts medication’. Proof reading is a must.

It was World Peace Day according to Sirs.

It was World Peace Day according to Siri.

Back to the focus of today, I was focusing on the word attachment. I understand the universal truth that all things are subject to change. I have given it the deep thought treatment. Looked at it from all angles, everything is in flux, all things are passing. Children grow up, cars dent, I cannot think of anything that in time does not change.

Some children grow up, others just grow.

Some children grow up, others just grow.

Understanding that change is the nature of all things we are less wanting and clinging. We realise becoming too attached to things is the course of much unhappiness. Wanting and clinging to impermanent things can never bring lasting happiness

Bondi Beach what a good place to meditate.

Bondi Beach what a good place to meditate.

To meditate on attachment by giving it the deep thought treatment. What do we mean by attachment? Adding a tail to the donkey or in the sense of affection or fondness? It is natural for a mother to have an affectionate attachment to her baby. An infant needs this close attachment of trust. The baby will interact with other people while mother or the person they have this attachment to is within sight. But if that person leaves the scene the baby will be stressed. So attachment is natural.

A baby Buddha in a florist shop.

A baby Buddha in a florist shop.

Things change the baby grows physically and its social circle expands. A child finds a circle of people to trust. As time passes, the baby becomes a child with an ever growing circle of friends and interests to explore. Change is the nature of all things the child becomes a young adult. Changing with the interaction of every person and thing encountered, every sensory encounter has an effect, building a unique character.

We are all unique.

We are all unique.

Meditating on attachment we realise all this change causes worry for the loving parents.

Same florist shop.

Same florist shop.

Love is not always a joy, love can hurt. This is an example of the unsatisfactory nature of things the Buddhists call dukkah, where love can causes pain. Love is very much subject to change when outside influences become involved.

An example of love love.

An example of puppy love.

You may agree with Siri (the iPad ) that this is stupid meditation. Then go no further than meditation on the breath it is very beneficial to your health. By calming the mind your stress level drops and stress affects every bodily function. Alfred E Newman was not Mad when he said “What me worry?”

Why not be a little crazy.

Why not be a little crazy.

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This is better than seeing me stretching.

This is better than seeing me stretching.

Beneficial Breathing Meditation.

A stretching demonstration in a shop window.

A stretching demonstration in a shop window.

After doing my morning exercises a mix of Pilates, Tai- Chi and yoga. I do not do this routine as regularly as I should. Why fight the inevitable. I try to be accepting of the prevailing circumstances. Balance and flexibility are not only a physical concern.

You will have to put up with me for this one.

You will have to put up with me for this one.

I usually finish off in the lotus position then meditate on the breath. Actually the whole exercise session is meditating on the breath as the breath is an important part of exercise. Expansion  and contraction, inhaling and exhaling in co-ordination with the movements. Relaxing into a stretch, using the breath helps further the range of movement.

A panting by Elioth Gruner Spring frost, to get over the last photo.

A panting by Elioth Gruner Spring frost, to get over the last photo.

Focusing on the breath for a few minutes settles me down. Breathing is the most basic and important thing in life, it simply is life. Sportsmen especially swimmers know the importance of coordinating the breath with actions. Speakers and performers know a few deep breaths calms the nerves before going on stage.

Ox herding sculpture, taken in a watt in Bangkok.

Ox herding sculpture, taken in a watt in Bangkok.

Concentrating on the breath is a perfect focus for meditation practice. When the mind is calmed by focusing on counting each breath, you can progress to other methods of meditation. There are many ways to practice breathing meditation.

One of the ox herding pictures on a temple in Korea.

One of the 10 ox herding pictures on a temple in Korea.

One may think, ‘one, inhaling with love’ and on the exhale, ‘out with hate.’ ‘Two in with good,’ then ‘out with bad, continuing in this way to six. Then repeat these steps. Using any positive word on the ins and a negative for out. You will find your mind wanders, when this happens do the same as you would if disturbed when reading a book.

Reading an E-book in a quiet place.

Reading an E-book in a quiet place.

We can develop our own method of meditation once the basic breath method is mastered. You will know  this when the invasive thoughts die-down. Like a radio tuned in properly there will be no static  or what is called the monkey-mind stops its monkey business. Like the ox in the ‘ten ox herding pictures’ the beast is trained it will no longer stray. The mind is still and concentration is not difficult.

This picture shows the trained ox will not stray.

This picture shows the trained ox will not stray.

Some days you are focused, other days are difficult the mind wanders and you lose count. Do not let this upset you just return to your chosen focus. If things are too disturbing it is like with reading a book, either put it away till later or move to where there is less distraction. When the mind is calm and under control. Advanced meditations can be practiced to further your understanding of the true nature of things. This is the ultimate goal of Buddhist meditation to reach a state of perfect understanding.

The monkey mind up to mischief.

The monkey mind up to mischief.

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Quiet time.

Quiet time in our garden.

My Way of Coping.

Quiet time in garden above a busy city.

Quiet time in a garden above a busy city.

We would like a peaceful world no agitation no hatred. I found it was useless grumbling and complaining. I wrote letters to politicians and received printed sheets back with their party’s answers. The only hand written part was the signature. No more acknowledgement than a two-fingered salute. Complaining is useless even to those with some power to change things. Expecting others to fix things by stirring and organising people to protest only adds to the problem and makes you unhappy. Mass protests only aggravate the problem and it becomes a highly explosive situation.

a smile from my grandson Geoff.

a smile from my grandson Geoff.

I have come to the conclusion, mindfulness of others feelings, showing friendliness, being kind caring and sharing is the only way to reverse the downward spiral taking us into the wasteland, created by our greedy throwaway society.

A smile from Jade.

A smile from Jade.

My challenge is in the now, mindful of my thoughts, emotions and action. That is the first step mindful of my thoughts and emotions and understanding grasping and clinging is not the answer, caring and sharing is the only way to alleviate the problem. We must be aware all things are passing and subject to change and everything is interconnected; therefore I must change myself to become a better person. Changing my faults has an effect on all my surroundings. A good attitude and wholesome thoughts brings about a positive change in my immediate world. A smile is infectious and a person’s attitude is passed on.

Jasmine shows a sweet smile.

Jasmine shows a sweet smile.

Practice starts at home with you and I, then will expand to the rest of the world. This is a slow process and we are living in a fast paced age.

Michael is bursting with smiles.

Michael is bursting with smiles.

If we plant and cultivate nourishing seeds of kindness and compassion we will harvest a storehouse of happiness. I am not religious but I am guided by the Buddhist Eightfold Path and helpful wisdom from all beliefs. We need an ethical set of precepts to follow. We do not need a bigoted hierarchy type religion. We need to think for our self and in our heart we know what kindness is. We only have to imagine how we would feel in another sentient beings circumstance.

Amie the newest member of a smiling family.

Amie the newest member of a smiling family.

A smile is a good start to promote friendship; a smile is the seed that love grows from. Be aware of your emotional state, it is difficult to smile if your attitude is negative. A gloomy or tense face can be mistaken for an unfriendly face. Start with a smile then a kind word or deed. Then the true practice starts where effort to be a better person is needed. To be trusted you must be honest and trustworthy.

My grand children follow Jesus I learn from all.

My grand children follow Jesus I learn from all.

So smile be happy stop grumbling, complaining and getting upset. All the worry only upsets you and disturbs your mind and the downward spiral starts. It is this disease that leads to anger, hate and bad actions.

Look above the muddy water to see beauty.

Look above the muddy water to see the beauty.

Change and love life do not destroy it. Meditate on peace, dispelling anger promoting all the virtues, to a point where you glimpse Nirvana. At times I feel everyone is my friend and I am in tune with all that surrounds me. I have reached a point of tranquillity where the outside hustle and bustle has little effect on my inside tranquillity.

Unaffected by the mud the lotus blooms.

Unaffected by the mud the lotus blooms.

 The TV stirs the mud by bringing the problems of the world and tempting advertising into our homes. Inflaming desire and greedy wanting for unnecessary luxuries. When you feel the pressure of commerce and the worries of the world getting to you take a deep breath and if necessary keep quietly concentrating on your breath till you find your mind clear and settle. With regular meditation the turbulent muddy water settles and clear crystal understanding emerges.

Find peace beyond the city.

Find peace beyond the city.

You need to take a rest from the rat race at every opportunity, in nature’s garden. Cultivating and caring, appreciating the wondrous things created for all to enjoy. Be patient, it will take time, but will never happen till you take that first step on the path to paradise. It is a slow process reaching the stage where your part of the world is at peace. It will take much longer for your achievement to inspire others. At least you will have the joy surrounding you. It is up to you the ball is in your court as they  say.

A quiet place is never far away.

A quiet place is never far away.

 

 

 

 

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Jonny Cash walking the line.

Johnny Cash walking the line.

Get On The Right Path.

Don't be tempted off it.

Don’t be tempted off it.

The irony of my cryptic writing is, if you understand it you have no need to read it. Many will not understand, they have lost the Way. They have lost the balance, they do not understand the true nature of things. They look for happiness in impermanent things. They have cleared the trees to see the light. Had the carpenter been a gardener things may have
been different. We now realise we are not the centre of the universe.

This Buddha and the amulets helped me write this post.

This Buddha and the amulets helped me write this post.

We still do not understand the Way, the Way is beyond our understanding. It is the force that keeps the whole cosmos in equilibrium. When the opposing forces are in balance we find a state of perfect bliss.

The tranquil unspoilt quiet.

The tranquil unspoilt quiet.

There is another way, it is the path called the middle way. The path of understanding, walking this path we find peace, contentment and true understanding. Peace can never be found with violence. Peace is understanding, it is the turbulence that creates the muddy undrinkable water.

There is salt in this water but the water is wonderful.

There is salt in this water but the water is wonderful.

Still  the mind to find the clear crystal water.  Thirst for nothing else, to want for nothing is to have it all.

The wild steeds, wild water.

The wild steeds, wild water.

Remain calm under pressure allow the angry mud to settle. Anger is mud polluting the pure water, rise above it as the  lotus flower opening to the sunshine.

Unblemished by the mud to the light.

Unblemished by the mud to the light.

To become unbalanced by the anger in another being is to blame the sufferer for the dis-ease they are suffering from. Do not become infected by the disease yourself and spread the pain and suffering. Do not mistake the pure water for the mud spoiling it. Do not blame the person for what ales them. There are no bad people only the unbalanced, the  ignorant and infected. The only cure to their problem is understanding what they are suffering from.

More reminders of balance in music and life.

More reminders of balance in music and life.

Suffering could be caused by dehydration, lack of water, a necessary need, or fear could be causing their foolish actions. The coward dies a 1000 deaths the hero dies but once. With help and compassion we can ease their pain and calm their fear. Those that suffer the pain of greed and aversion, chasing their desires and running from their dislikes, they are never at rest. We must try to understand their pain and treated them accordingly. The greedy are suffering a dis-ease that can never be killed by force. They will struggle in the dense jungle with the wild beasts of envy, hatred, ignorance and anger. Till they find their way back on a righteous path or suffer their obesity and choke on their greedy hoard.

No longer Jungle, it is rain forest.

No longer Jungle, it is rain forest.

We cannot help them by slashing our way into their violent jungle of venomous, vile, vengeful beasts. We must walk the path step-by-step, each step bringing us closer to perfection.
Walk in comfortable shoes with souls of love, kindness and compassion.
Understanding is a giant stride, with knowledge  skip  along the path. Ever mindful of hazards on our joyous Way. It is inevitable in our exuberance we will stumble off our righteous path. When this happens it is not a sin, it is a lesson we can learn from. It is like when distracted in meditation – calm down and return to your focus.

I know the path he is focused on.

I know the path he is focused on.

All is good on the right path, critics tell us our faults so we can correct them. Adversity and accidents are our teachers.
Even the bad times are good with the right attitude and understanding.

Be mindful of very step.

Be mindful of very step.

You can be given a map showing the path to perfection. But to know and not to do is still not to know. No one can carry you all the way, you have to make the effort. Knowing the steps and not dancing is to waste the music. Life is a song to be sung. Love life and appreciate all the gifts and you will be appreciated and life will be reciprocal.

Your views will be enhanced.

Your views will be enhanced.

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Hidden Behind the Queensland rock orchid in  full flower.

Hidden Behind the Queensland rock orchid in full flower.

Finding your way.

Pauline almost hidden.

Pauline almost hidden.

 I made a little pathway, out of old recycled bricks, into the garden and built a little hideaway there out of materials from the tip, sheltered seat behind the shrubs and plants. Pauline painted a boarded with folk art pictures of flowers and the words “stop and rest and let the world catch up.”

"Don't at me look at Pauline's art work.

“Don’t look at me, look at Pauline’s art work.

It is our secluded place to hide away from the busy world, to be still and observe nature with all our senses. To study the plants, observe the small creatures and the details that busy people have no time to notice.

Take a seat relax, let the joy of life catch up to you.

Take a seat relax, let the joy of life catch up to you.

 A place to be still for a few moments till a hush descends upon us that fills all our being and leaves us calm and relaxed. There is nowhere to rush, we have arrived. To that place where there is no judgement, no good or bad, things are just as they are.

The words Pauline wrote remind me to slow down.

The words Pauline wrote remind me to slow down.

 Everything then comes together we are one with the Almighty that controls the universe. Everything is then one deep connection, there is no them and us we are one. We are then embraced in life, in appreciation of creation and harmony in the flow of nature.

Secluded seats are a feature of our garden.

Secluded seats are a feature of our garden.

 Quiet places are needed to still and calm the turbulent waters flooding our mind, an undisturbed hide away to control the wild thoughts that dampen joy. To quench the thirst of wanting and find calm and contentment.

Also seats to share company.

Also seats to share with company.

There are many paths to a tranquil place where peace and contentment can be found, not all made of demolition bricks. Your path may be different to mine. As long as it has a sound base made with love in your heart it will serve you well. And your destination will be a place of joy.

After the watering is finished.

After the watering is finished sit and admire the gem stone columns.

 Do not stray from your righteous path, walk it mindfully. A path must be walked in steady steps to reach the destination; there are no free rides in this world. There are only free gifts from nature but you will not experience them if you are in a hurry. Slow down enough to let the world catch up to you.

I made some blues friends to share my hideaway with.

I made some blues friends to share my hideaway with.

 

 

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Australian Native Flowers.

Australian Native Flowers.

Plant Loving Kindness.

Canberra Botanical Gardens.

Canberra Botanical Gardens.

 Unaware of the silver bell chime a thought is born in my conscious mind.  Mary, why Mary, that is contrary, Mary Mary quite contrary, how does your garden grow, silver bells and cockle shells and pretty maids all in a row. This English nursery rhyme has had many things read into its origin. What was the hook that fished it up from the past, invading my ‘monkey mind’? That is a difficult question. I am supposed to be meditating, focusing on my breath.

Were you expecting Blue Bells.

Were you expecting Blue Bells.

If we are contrary our garden will not flourish in a profusion of Silver Bells, Blue bells or beautiful flowers. There will be a crop of weeds. I have lost concentration.

This Golden Wattle.

This Golden Wattle.

Mindful Mary always wary, how will her garden grow? She will cultivate and something great will eventuate.

I do not know what it is called but it is not Blue Bells.

I do not know what it is called but it is not Blue Bells.

Aware of what we are planting in the garden of our mind we cultivate a nourishing crop of sustenance. When seeds of weeds are allowed to invade our garden a tangled jungle grows. Then we are lost in the weeds of greed, impatience or anger.  Allowing these aggressive weeds to invade and pollute our mind spoils our contentment.

Tiny white flowers, who knows their name?

Tiny white flowers, who knows their name?

The brain holds every sensory perception from the cradle to the grave this formes the illusion of a self, an ego a driving force. Past memories shape our interpretation of all we encounter.  Our character is formed and things are seen in our individual unique way. What we perceive is never lost. It is filed in our memory store. It is our recall that is at fault. We cannot always find what we need in our memory.  Till the recall is triggered by a key like hook and eureka, there it is in our conscious mind like a silver bell.

So many beautiful flowers.

So many beautiful flowers.

A subliminal perception such as a smell, a sight, a touch or a sound can prompt a conscious thought. It could be a distant bell; it is difficult to tell, what prompts those thoughts that can distract our concentration. Those contrary thoughts that plague our mind like static on a radio. If we are aware of these foolish thoughts we will disregard them and keep our concentration focused.

Who knows them all?

Who knows them all?

Life is a never-ending stream of sensory input. What we focus on our mind absorbs and it can take root and grow. Try to plant positive, wholesome seeds in the garden of your mind. Scheming, evil thoughts grow if allowed to take root in the mind. Kind helpful caring thoughts one day germinate into beneficial fruit.

There a 177 different known varieties of Bancsia.

There a 177 different known varieties of Banksia.

Be aware of the sensory input in your surroundings. They affect your thoughts and recurring thoughts become habits. Aware of our thoughts we can control our emotions. When we are aware of impatience arising, we will not allow it to turn to unruly anger. The one who cannot control the flames of anger is the first to get burned. If we feel envy we know this will not do us any good. It is better to share the joy with the fortunate person. Getting your nourishment from a garden of loving kindness you grow strong and healthy.

How many unknown?

How many unknown?

I was distracted, no need for me to get emotional and give up. It is all good if I accept those thoughts and return to concentrating on my breath. Give in but never give up. Try even if you fail but never fail to try. Meditation is not a waste of time it clears the mind allowing it to concentrate in the midst of the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Not only the banksia flowers are fantastic.

Not only the Banksia flowers are fantastic.

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First Choice Fitness, on my way to the beach.

The burliegh beach is around the corner.

Turn in and Tone up.

Hard work pays off.

Hard work pays off.

We have been busy traveling and although we both have not been taking it easy. As we have been gardening, biking and a lot of walking and for me the occasional swim. We also have been spending a lot of time on the computer since we started blogging.

Go at your own pace.

Go at your own pace.

I realized I was loosing what little muscle I still had and stiffening up in all the wrong places. Travelling is wonderful but it is easy to get out of the exercise routine. Casual visits to gyms are more expensive and a bit inconvenient.

It all helps.

It all helps.

That is only an excuse if I make the effort I could have fitted in a visit to a gym. Like I am now doing, three weeks in one place then miss a week then start again at a gym in another place. I will do it and also keep to my morning stretching exercises where ever I am.

Good use of the area by Burleigh Beach.

Good use of the area by Burleigh Beach.

All exercise is good but I find I need to get into a habit of systematically doing a variety of exercises. We need stretching exercises to keep supple, resistance to tone up the muscles and strengthen our bones.

I do not let my ego stop me.

I do not let my ego stop me.

Weights are good for this but at my age it is better to do more repetitions with relatively light weights. I am not trying to get big muscles, just tone up. The cardio vascular exercises are for the heart and lungs.

Same exercise but more weight.

Same exercise but more weight.

I like the cross-trainer as I can monitor my progress, time, resistance; cadence and heart rate are shown on the dash-board.

On the cross-trainer.

On the cross-trainer.

I try to beat my best effort and it gets easier after a few weeks then I add five more minutes or put up the resistance. At least twenty minutes at a challenging pace is advisable for best results. Work hard as possible but not to the point that you cannot carry on a conversation.

They say no pain, no gain but there should never be pain, just a demanding uneasiness. Get out of your comfort zone, but not to the point of hurting. Challenge yourself; you only need to compete against your best performance. There are days you will not quite reach your best performance, but with effort and perseverance we do improve.

This is dedication to muscle strength.

This is dedication to muscle strength.

I hope this post inspires any one that needs reminding, that doctors are not responsible for our health. It is our responsibility to respect and not abuse the gifts we are given.

82 year olders are prone  to falls, practice balance.

We are prone to falls at 82, so I practice balance.

Like yin and yang balance is needed for a healthful life. Balance food intake against calories burnt. Balance physical exercise against mental exercises, the body needs its quiet time to rejuvenate. Meditation is a part of this process.

I think they are over dressed.

I think they are over dressed.

Blogging helps me and perhaps may help others. If nothing else it reinforces and reminds me of the important things to value in life.

Eye candy the only candy to keep you slim.

Eye candy the only candy to keep you slim.

This world, regardless of dukkha http://buddhism.about.com/od/thefournobletruths/a/dukkhaexplain.htm, world is a wondrous place, with the right attitude and understanding. I rave on a bit but when you are in love you are apt to do this. I am in love with Mother Nature and this wondrous life I am blessed with.

They can't keep up with Pauline on her bike.

They can’t keep up with Pauline on her bike.

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Waves like Queen 'We will rock you.'

Waves ”We will rock you.’ like Queen.

Mindful.

Some can handle the waves.

Notice some can handle these waves.

Aware, alert, focused and attentive all similar words but the word mindful fits what I am writing about. To be mindful of our thoughts and emotions and the effect they have on our wellbeing. We need to understanding how a sensory perception or a subliminal perception triggers a thought in our mind and gives rise to waves of emotion. with this understanding we pause before these waves break.

Stay safe ride the waves to the beach.

Stay safe ride the waves to the beach.

A thought has no power of its own, till the person experiencing that thought grants it the power. Discernment is needed before we act on a thought and the emotion it gave rise to. Mindful of these thoughts and emotions, pause and realize the feeling being experienced. Unmindful of strong emotional waves breaking in our mind, we are like a ship in heavy seas off a rocky shore. Aware of these emotions in our mind we have the power to steer clear of the hazards that can wreck our life.

These wawes can be handled.

These waves can be handled.

Aware that a wide range of thoughts and emotion can be prompted by our daily encounters. We are mindful of what is harmful and beneficial sensory input. What we surround ourselves with will reflect our thoughts, in a positive or negative way. Life today is full of distractions to be wary of, negative media reports and entertainment and unethical people create negative emotion. Such as impatience, anger, jealousy, hate, and other unhelpful emotional states to enter our mind. If mindful we pause and correct these negative thoughts. To be conscious of impatience and realize it is unproductive and if unmindful develops into anger. If anger is not controlled, like a fire it burns the one closest to it. Why do we upset ourselves in this way?

A fire out of control.

A fire out of control.

In heavy traffic impatience and anger often get out of control. Curtsy and consideration are The antidote. If someone lacks courtesy, anger is not the answer. Consideration is the answer. Perhaps the driver is under life threatening pressure, probably not, but to assume so is to lower our tension. Life is not always to our liking. We must be cooperative and obliging, going with life’s flow. Thoughts give rise to emotions, watchful of these thoughts and arising emotions gives us more control over events in our life.

Stopped by Bushfire.

Stopped by Bushfire.

Aware, alert and focused is not all, we need mindful as well. Aware and alert can avoid an accident but if we are not mindful of our thoughts and emotions we could react in a foolish way. By honking the horn in anger, alarming other drivers unnecessarily, or stick our arm out the window to make a rude gesture at the offending driver, thoughtless of passing vehicles. Unmindful we have lost our composure and our focus on what we are doing.  Letting the outside sensory perceptions run our mind unconsciously is to be out of control. Mindfulness is the first step in taking control of our life.

Natures restful cathedral.

Natures restful cathedral.

Meditation helps one understand how thoughts can disturb us. In breathing meditation when we are concentrating on the breath we should not be upset by invasive thoughts, this is how we learn to let thoughts come and go while staying focused on what we are doing. We become mindful of what is important to us in the now and, unflustered, can return to our practice. This is the way to become tranquil and undisturbed by the unimportant.

reflect on a peaceul mind.

Reflect on a peaceful mind.

Where do these invasive thoughts come from? If they are prompted by a noise directly experienced that is obvious. Some time they are a mystery. In our quiet secluded well-chosen meditation sanctuary, a gentle breeze touches us softly bringing the fragrance of frangipani. Concentrating on our breath we are only subliminally aware of the breeze and the scent but a thought from the past comes into our mind. We have a lifetime of memories waiting to be aroused. Mindful of pleasant or unpleasant thoughts we stay focused not distracted in this way we learn self-control.

The frangipani sent Pauline the thought in prompted.

The frangipani scent prompted the thought of Pauline.

Impatience, anger, hate and thoughts of revenge are not going to help anyone. Instead we can feel sorry for the drivers with problems. They will have  accidents hurting their self or someone else. Actions always have consequences and thoughts come before actions. Those wild, angry, hateful thoughts and actions will one day hatch into monsters that will bite the one who gave them birth. No need to be the judge and executioner that is a thankless task.  Kind and caring thoughts and actions will enhance our life. Meditate or sit quietly and think about being aware of emotional states as they arise in the mind.  Emotional states shape our life. To be mindful and have control of our emotions will bring peace into our life.

Devilish thoughts.

Devilish thoughts.

 

 

 

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In buddhism a symbol of purity and enlightenment.

In buddhism a symbol of purity and enlightenment.

WORDS OF WISDOM.

Blue ones stand for wisdom.

Blue ones stand for wisdom.

To hear the word noble brings forth thoughts of inspiring deeds of kindness, generosity and selflessness. Just reading these words is uplifting. Words can conjure up all kinds of connotations. Words have associations in our mind that promote positive or negative thoughts. Thoughts give birth to like actions repeated actions become habits that shape our character.

Rising out of the mud to flower.

Rising out of the mud to flower.

A simple breathing meditation using words of beauty, encouragement and appreciation combined with concentrating on the in and out flow of air to and from our lungs promotes a tranquil, calm and contented state of mind. Life is dependent on the breath it is a necessary function automatically done, usually without thought.

Stay on the Path.

Stay on the Path.

To appreciate the life force air brings, consciously take a couple of deep breaths to settle yourself. Then focuses on an appropriate word while inhaling and another suitable word as you breathe out. ‘Calmness’ would be a good choice of words to focus on while you follow the inhalation of air to your lungs think “I breathe in calmness” then as you breath out think ‘I exhale all the tension. You can pick any word you like, wisdom, understanding or nourishment are suitable for the in breath and foolishness, ignorance or negative for the out breath.

Not an easy path.

Not an easy path.

Concentrating on the breath grounds us in the now and using positive words as affirmations in conjunction with following the breath brings self-control. In this way you become aware of the wondrous good in life and learn not to hold the negative emotions within you that spoil the enjoyment of life. People, unmindful of their thoughts, allow fires of hate and anger to flare-up. Those aware of negative, hot emotions can extinguish them and discard negative thoughts as soon as they arise.

A path to a worthwile goal.

A path to a worthwhile goal.

Knowing how to meditate is useless without constant practice. You have to practice till it is intrinsic, second-nature. To be successful in any endeavor practice is essential. This type of meditation plants seeds of goodness in the mind and removes the invasive weeds that plague our mind. As you practice meditation you become aware of those disturbing thoughts that come uninvited, like TV ads interrupting what we are focusing on. To be aware of thoughts and emotions is the first step in taking control of our life.

Flowers  and insacts are interdependant.

Flowers and insects are interdependent.

Reciprocity is one of my favorite words. It is the idea of the ‘golden rule’ expressed in one form or another in all ethical traditions. The modern day version is ‘treat people the way you would like to be treated.’ Equanimity is another word I am fond of because it is synonymous with dignity, calmness and poise. I would like to have these qualities dignity, composure and serenity. These are the words that motivate me and inspire me to be a worthy member of humanity. Alas there is a jester, to put it kindly, residing in me ready to divert me from my noble quest.

Keeping on is a challenge.

Keeping on is a challenge.

Excuse me while I take in a couple of deep breaths then as I inhale I think beauty queens and as I exhale with a sigh I think all things are subject to change, beauty queens are no exception. Then I think I have changed over the years and value other qualities more than superficial beauty. Then I realize I am off on a tangent my thoughts are not focused. I return to my breathing meditation inhaling I think kindness and breathe out all the nastiness.

Where trere are watter lillies there are frogs.

Where there are water lilies there are frogs.

What are your favorite or inspirational words? You may help me improve my vocabulary or give me some new inspiration. Also let me know if this way of meditation is helpful. I am sure there are ways to meditation I have not tried, which could help me. This is not a one-way street the maxim is, ‘it is better to give than receive.’ I am looking forward to some helpful comments, ideas to assist me handle life’s challenges.

My reminder to get back on The Eigh Fold Path.

My reminder to get back on The Eight Fold Path.

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