Saturday, 21 April 2012

Started A New Blog

You may have noticed a lack of blog posts here lately, but there is a good reason for this.  As I have recently started a new blog called  The Happy Monk - a little guidance on the path to liberation

However I may occasionally/rarely blog here but most of my time, effort and energy will be spent on maintaining and creating new content for my blog.

So, would you please be kind enough to change your bookmarks to the new website address:

Thank you!

Saturday, 17 March 2012

How Can I Drink From The Deep Well Of Things As They Are?

“All intimate relationships—close friendships and good marriages—are based on continued and mutual forgiveness. You will always trespass upon your friend's sensibilities at one time or another, or your spouse's. The only question is, Will you forgive the other person? And more importantly, Will you forgive yourself? We have to deepen our understanding, make ourselves more equal to circumstances, more easy with what we have been given or not given. We must drink from the deep well of things as they are.”


Monday, 27 February 2012

The Crossroads Of Life

If life is a journey where are we headed? And if we can answer that, how de we get there? What path should I take?

When your standing on the crossroads of life you don’t know which way is necessarily the  best for you. One road may mean happiness, another adventure, and yet another means safety and security. It takes heart to be alive in the world.

In his book, Crossing the Unknown Sea: Work as a Pilgrimage of Identity, David Whyte recounts  a life-changing event at work. In a moment of exasperation he stuck his head into a meeting at work asking if anyone else had seen David. A stunned silence followed by laughter answered him. In that moment he knew he had been lost and the ensuing year was about reclaiming who he was and becoming a full-time poet. In a conversation that evening a friend said to him, “You must do something heartfelt, and you must do it soon.” It was a challenge to him to move out of his comfort zone and to do something with real meaning.

I have finally come to accept I don’t what to do. I am trying to let go and relax back into who I really am – this wise emptiness, this mysterious yet audible silence. I now realized that it is up to my deepest self, this fertile blankness, to create something – and hopefully something soon.

This is now in it’s hands and until that moment I had been resisting trying to let go, trying to figure out things for myself and it is clear that I can’t manage on my own. There is no alternative but to surrender to the One within me. This, after all, is what seeing is all about – awakening to one’s deepest being and surrendering to its guidance.

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Transitions By William Bridges

Are you trying to make sense out of life’s transitions? I'm currently in the middle of a transition and yet the destination is still unknown. Like myself, you’re probably been at the in-between stage more than a few times in your life – but you’re not seeing any results.

You keep asking yourself, “What should I do and how did I end up here?” Maybe your waiting for the next step in your life to appear and you’re feeling frustrated and stuck, like you're not making any progress fast enough.

What else can you do apart from a.) worrying b.) going over things in your head over and over, and c.) feeling like a hamster on a wheel?

It’s no surprise that my copy of Transitions by William Bridges is well thumbed and richly annotated for my own use.

Being in-between marriages or careers can take on a particularly painful and confusing when things are changing so profoundly. It as if we launched from a riverside dock to cross a landing  on the opposite side – only to discover midstream that the landing was no longer there. (And then we looked back to the other shore, we saw that the dock we had left from had broken loose and was heading downstream.)

Life is a series of transitions whether it is personal, a job, marriage, dreams or physical challenges. It is a set of steps that take us from an ending, through a neutral period, then a new beginning.

One day everything seems to be coming apart; the next day, life goes on as usual, and we wonder whether we have been imagining it all.

Previously, I worked in customer services for a large telecommunications company. I thought my job was safe, secure and permanent. But, before I knew it the company announced a large round of redundancies.

Initially, I felt optimistic and hopeful about my future. As  I had just started a new job, was only there for a few months and before I know it, I’m out of a job. But the job search has not been easy as I though it would be.

But recently, I felt as though I was just spinning my wheels. I thought I was doing all I could do, but nothing seemed to be working out, and that was frustrating. Now I was ready, I wanted something to happen immediately as I had took the time and put in effort! Something should have happened by now.

Not knowing what the future holds can make you feel like a hamster on a wheel. You find yourself constantly asking, What do I do now?"

Even though I’m unemployed, I’m trying to enjoy it – the uncertainty of it all. In one word, it’s about acceptance. Surrendering to the uncertainty – you’ve done your best and hopefully things will come together somehow.

The beauty of the book is that it is not just a manual on ‘how to cope’, but gets us to see that the process on disorganization, death and renewal is a fundamental nature and theme of mythology. The cycle is natural and admitting it makes it much easier to deal with it. Whenever a significant change hits me, I always turn to this book. 

I highly recommend this book to anyone who is in the midst of a transition.

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Connecting The Dots

I really like this video as Steve Jobs talks about passion and truly love what you're doing.  As I’ve always struggled with work and career issues – they seem to be the largest unresolved issues in my life right now. 

“Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect then looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever – because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart, even when it leads you off the well worn path, and that will make all the difference “

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Solitary Silence

The practise of spiritual solitary silence, or looking within is a method of self-journey within yourself. It has been practised in one form or another for centuries, from the Tibetian lamas in thier secluded caves to monks in thier quite cells.

The practise of spending time in silence and reflection is important for those trying to communion with that which is bigger than themselves. As Jesus once said, the Kingdom of God is within you. And as spiritual seekers we should take heed of the advice given. Whilst books, teachers have provided invaluable information only can we take the first step of the journey within.

There are several pointers to help us in making this time more productive than just taking a break out from the daily pressures of our life. Before I cam across this technique, I always intuitively knew that I needed silence and time off in isolation to find the answers to the questions that I was seeking. I used to always ask myself, "What am I called to do?" and "Why did God put me here?" or "How come I struggle with work so much?" There are no shortcuts, the answers to these questions can only be found by looking within, and they are best heard in quiet and silence.

Richard Rose gave me the best description of the attitude one should take. He said not to approach isolation as challenging God or the universe for an answer. Don't draw a circle in the sand and say you won't come out until you are enlightened. Instead, and this is my interpretation, work as hard as you can and be thankful for whatever happens

~ Shawn Nevins

When you make the commitment to spend time alone in a solitary retreat, don't forget to watch, to look at the various internal mechanisms before and during that time, your mind will try to get you to postpone, leave early, or pass the time day dreaming. If nothing more, you have made the effort to look within yourself and that's a good thing.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

The Teachings Of Sri Ramakrishna

Sri RamakrishnaGod Is All
I have now come to a stage of realization in which I see that God is walking in every human form and manifesting himself  himself alike through the sage and the sinner, the virtuous and the vicious. Therefore when I meet different people I say to myself, “God in the form of a saint, God in the form of a sinner, God in the form of the righteous, God in the form of the un-righteous.”

God Is Within You
Do you know what I see? I see God as all. Men and other creatures appear to me only as hollow forms. moving their heads, hands and feet but within is God himself.

Perseverance In Your Search
There are pearls in the deep sea, but one must hazard all to find them. If diving once does not bring you pearls, you need not therefore conclude that the sea is without them. Dive again and again, you are sure to be rewarded in the end. So it is with finding God. If your first attempt proves fruitless, do not lose heart. Persevere in your efforts. You are sure to realize Him at last.

 Surrender And Trust
Trust completely in God.  What are you to do when you are placed in the world? Give up everything to Him, resign yourself to him, and there will be no trouble for you. Then you will come to realize that everything is done by his will.

Love Of God Is Essential
Unalloyed love of God is essential and all else is unreal.