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    Gus Tai
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Mental Modules:
When I want to puzzle and still my mind, I’ll sometimes ask:

Where is the water in a waterfall?
And where are the thoughts in the mind?
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Perhaps both mind and waterfall are as much processes as they are things. Always flowing and always changing. And if ever stagnant, perhaps ceasing to be.
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Despite their potential dual nature, mind and waterfall still have an underlying reliability. A waterfall has its stream-carved paths. And the mind has its well-worn routines. These and other properties shape their processes, which are then named as things.
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In the case of a waterfall, the cliff’s height and structure influence the flowing of the falls. And adding the right amount of rain, we might name what arises as “Beautiful.”
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Likewise for the case of the mind. Mental habits shepherd thoughts, which then cascade throughout the mind-body. As we notice arising sensations and emotions, we may label them with whatever texture that appears.
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For me, I generally am at ease with my flowing thoughts. But there are times that certain mental modules conspire to roil my thought-stream. And when this happens, “Unpleasant” arises, as my mind clenches and knots.
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It is in these moments, if I can, I’ll try to remind myself of water in a waterfall. It’s always changing. And so is my mind. Maybe it’s only a matter of time before other mental modules have their say.
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Once they do — if I remember — I may chant a prayer of gratitude. In part to nurture a newer, well-worn mental pathway. But probably just because it feels true to do.
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And with each cycle, I see if I can accept more of what is also true: That is, what is the true nature of mind.
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For better or worse,
pleasant or unpleasant,
the mind is always flowing.
It’s never stagnant.
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It’s as it should be.
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#healing #heal #selfcare #resilience #vulnerability #discomfort #gratitude #kindness #welcoming #acceptance #mindfulness #contemplation #reflection #wisdom #meditation #waterfall #mind #process #module #flowing #changing #wellworn
Mental Modules: When I want to puzzle and still my mind, I’ll sometimes ask: Where is the water in a waterfall? And where are the thoughts in the mind? ▫️ Perhaps both mind and waterfall are as much processes as they are things. Always flowing and always changing. And if ever stagnant, perhaps ceasing to be. ▫️ Despite their potential dual nature, mind and waterfall still have an underlying reliability. A waterfall has its stream-carved paths. And the mind has its well-worn routines. These and other properties shape their processes, which are then named as things. ▫️ In the case of a waterfall, the cliff’s height and structure influence the flowing of the falls. And adding the right amount of rain, we might name what arises as “Beautiful.” ▫️ Likewise for the case of the mind. Mental habits shepherd thoughts, which then cascade throughout the mind-body. As we notice arising sensations and emotions, we may label them with whatever texture that appears. ▫️ For me, I generally am at ease with my flowing thoughts. But there are times that certain mental modules conspire to roil my thought-stream. And when this happens, “Unpleasant” arises, as my mind clenches and knots. ▫️ It is in these moments, if I can, I’ll try to remind myself of water in a waterfall. It’s always changing. And so is my mind. Maybe it’s only a matter of time before other mental modules have their say. ▫️ Once they do — if I remember — I may chant a prayer of gratitude. In part to nurture a newer, well-worn mental pathway. But probably just because it feels true to do. ▫️ And with each cycle, I see if I can accept more of what is also true: That is, what is the true nature of mind. ▫️ For better or worse, pleasant or unpleasant, the mind is always flowing. It’s never stagnant. ▫️ It’s as it should be. ▫️ #healing  #heal  #selfcare  #resilience  #vulnerability  #discomfort  #gratitude  #kindness  #welcoming  #acceptance  #mindfulness  #contemplation  #reflection  #wisdom  #meditation  #waterfall  #mind  #process  #module  #flowing  #changing  #wellworn 
Where Curiosity Takes Me:
I find it fascinating that for children, it’s so natural to play, learn, and inquire. Or at least that’s what I remember!
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As I grew older though, play often shifted to practice. Learning might become optimized for performance. And curiosity, well, many times it would become shunned by efficiency.
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In that curiosity is the desire to ask without having attachment to an answer, in my case, my mind would sometimes judge this instinct as indulgent. Where were the goals? Where was the efficiency?
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And yet.
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And yet relating to a friend’s heartbreak. Or gazing at a redwood forest’s canopy. Or reading playfully to my son: Are these activities best served by an efficient, judging mind?
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In the right situations, a judging mind can be a valuable tool. But for me, it’s often overused.
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So if I’m mindful enough to catch judging being misapplied, I will take a moment to pause. And I’ll gently ask, without attachment, “Where is this judging mind taking me?”
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I may then sense into a childhood memory – such as playing with dandelions on a grassy hill – as I nudge my curiosity instinct to kick back in.
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If I’m lucky, I may notice the questions in my mind becoming less pointed. And the arising answers becoming less judgmental. And I may swell as a tender kindness returns.
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At which time, I might choose to remember more whimsical, carefree childhood moments.
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Ones where I was feeling safe.
Open to whatever would arise.
Without attachment or agenda.
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Because back then, this is where my friend Curiosity would take me.
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#curiosity #curious #play #learn #instinct #mindfulness #reflection #contemplation #memory #kindness #friend #gratitude #wisdom #love #justthis #judging #nonattachment #embodiment #humility #vulnerability #resource #efficiency #streetview #bus #magenta #gaze #eyes #exploratorium
Where Curiosity Takes Me: I find it fascinating that for children, it’s so natural to play, learn, and inquire. Or at least that’s what I remember! ▫️ As I grew older though, play often shifted to practice. Learning might become optimized for performance. And curiosity, well, many times it would become shunned by efficiency. ▫️ In that curiosity is the desire to ask without having attachment to an answer, in my case, my mind would sometimes judge this instinct as indulgent. Where were the goals? Where was the efficiency? ▫️ And yet. ▫️ And yet relating to a friend’s heartbreak. Or gazing at a redwood forest’s canopy. Or reading playfully to my son: Are these activities best served by an efficient, judging mind? ▫️ In the right situations, a judging mind can be a valuable tool. But for me, it’s often overused. ▫️ So if I’m mindful enough to catch judging being misapplied, I will take a moment to pause. And I’ll gently ask, without attachment, “Where is this judging mind taking me?” ▫️ I may then sense into a childhood memory – such as playing with dandelions on a grassy hill – as I nudge my curiosity instinct to kick back in. ▫️ If I’m lucky, I may notice the questions in my mind becoming less pointed. And the arising answers becoming less judgmental. And I may swell as a tender kindness returns. ▫️ At which time, I might choose to remember more whimsical, carefree childhood moments. ▫️ Ones where I was feeling safe. Open to whatever would arise. Without attachment or agenda. ▫️ Because back then, this is where my friend Curiosity would take me. ▫️ #curiosity  #curious  #play  #learn  #instinct  #mindfulness  #reflection  #contemplation  #memory  #kindness  #friend  #gratitude  #wisdom  #love  #justthis  #judging  #nonattachment  #embodiment  #humility  #vulnerability  #resource  #efficiency  #streetview  #bus  #magenta  #gaze  #eyes  #exploratorium 
Open Gratitude:
Forty-two gondolas, suspended from a Ferris wheel. Each compartment vaunting its own spacious view.
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I standing below, longing for their perspective. And then a knowing, graciously revealed:
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I’m in possession of my own.
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Just this.
Just this.
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Wow! Thank you!
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#gratitude #opengratitude #practice #thankyou #welcoming #mindfulness #presentmoment #justthis #kindness #love #appreciation #contemplation #seattle #greatwheel #ferriswheel #vsco #colortherapy #soothing @sacredlotusdough @mpclark3 @smohanty
Open Gratitude: Forty-two gondolas, suspended from a Ferris wheel. Each compartment vaunting its own spacious view. ▫️ I standing below, longing for their perspective. And then a knowing, graciously revealed: ▫️ I’m in possession of my own. ▫️ Just this. Just this. ▫️ Wow! Thank you! ▫️ #gratitude  #opengratitude  #practice  #thankyou  #welcoming  #mindfulness  #presentmoment  #justthis  #kindness  #love  #appreciation  #contemplation  #seattle  #greatwheel  #ferriswheel  #vsco  #colortherapy  #soothing  @sacredlotusdough @mpclark3 @smohanty
Knowing Being Known:
There’s a simple game I like to play. It goes like this:
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Say the word “Echo” silently within your mind. Now repeat the word several times, perhaps imagining as if the mind-sound were reverberating off the walls of a deep canyon.
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As you hear the word repeat, sense into your felt experience and ask, “What is it that I directly sense that is receiving this mind-sound? What is making it known?”
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Your mind may generate answers. And these answers may be true. But for this exercise, notice what you directly perceive.
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Do you sense an entity that is receiving the word “Echo”? Or does it feel as if “Echo” is simply being known?
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This game’s focus is to become intimate with your direct inner-mind experience. I liken it to noticing what it directly feels like to balance on a bicycle, rather than describing the process of doing so.
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In the case of the echo, there very well may be some receiver of the sound. But after my many years of play, what I directly experience is only one thing: the absence of an entity receiving the mind-sound.
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The word is simply a thought being known.
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Whatever your experience, perhaps see for other neutral thoughts how those are made known. Or if you have a minor body sensation, such as an itch, ask yourself, “Where is the receiver that makes this itch known?”
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If you discover that you have a repeatable direct experience, this consistent knowing may become a helpful tool. It might offer an alternative mapping for how to relate to all inner perceptions.
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In my case, since what I directly experience is “knowing being known” independent of “me”, I use this intuition to remind myself that unhelpful thoughts (and all thoughts) are also independent of me.
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Thoughts are just thoughts. They arise without “me” and are simply known. And they’re ready to fade from awareness.
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Just as do droning sounds, streaming from a channel. Playing on a background TV.
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#mindfulness #game #play #contemplation #nonduality #emptiness #knowing #meditation #mind #kindness #intimate #embodiment #ineffable #gratitude #practice #tv @mistymayhem12
Knowing Being Known: There’s a simple game I like to play. It goes like this: ▫️ Say the word “Echo” silently within your mind. Now repeat the word several times, perhaps imagining as if the mind-sound were reverberating off the walls of a deep canyon. ▫️ As you hear the word repeat, sense into your felt experience and ask, “What is it that I directly sense that is receiving this mind-sound? What is making it known?” ▫️ Your mind may generate answers. And these answers may be true. But for this exercise, notice what you directly perceive. ▫️ Do you sense an entity that is receiving the word “Echo”? Or does it feel as if “Echo” is simply being known? ▫️ This game’s focus is to become intimate with your direct inner-mind experience. I liken it to noticing what it directly feels like to balance on a bicycle, rather than describing the process of doing so. ▫️ In the case of the echo, there very well may be some receiver of the sound. But after my many years of play, what I directly experience is only one thing: the absence of an entity receiving the mind-sound. ▫️ The word is simply a thought being known. ▫️ Whatever your experience, perhaps see for other neutral thoughts how those are made known. Or if you have a minor body sensation, such as an itch, ask yourself, “Where is the receiver that makes this itch known?” ▫️ If you discover that you have a repeatable direct experience, this consistent knowing may become a helpful tool. It might offer an alternative mapping for how to relate to all inner perceptions. ▫️ In my case, since what I directly experience is “knowing being known” independent of “me”, I use this intuition to remind myself that unhelpful thoughts (and all thoughts) are also independent of me. ▫️ Thoughts are just thoughts. They arise without “me” and are simply known. And they’re ready to fade from awareness. ▫️ Just as do droning sounds, streaming from a channel. Playing on a background TV. ▫️ #mindfulness  #game  #play  #contemplation  #nonduality  #emptiness  #knowing  #meditation  #mind  #kindness  #intimate  #embodiment  #ineffable  #gratitude  #practice  #tv  @mistymayhem12
Channels of the Mind:
If you’re like me, you may at times notice your mind repeating unpleasant, unhelpful thoughts. For me, my mind may drone on with such phrases as “That was bad,” after I make a mistake, or more simply, “I’m bad.” And worse!
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To work with these thoughts – or at least the less pernicious ones – I’ll sometimes practice a visualization. I’ll describe it here, in case it might be helpful.
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If you’re interested, start by envisioning yourself in a comfortable room, relaxing in front of a television. On its screen is a channel guide that lists dozens of stations.
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What’s unique about this TV is that each channel plays a different, repetitive thought. Some stations have unpleasant messages, whereas others have neutral or pleasant ones.
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Now imagine tuning to a channel that has a slightly unpleasant message. Envision this station repeating its phrase, over and over and over.
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As you visualize listening to the channel, take in the rest of your surroundings. You’re sitting in a comfortable room. It happens to have a TV. Which happens to have its station droning on and on.
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Sense deeply, if you can, how you’re separate from the TV. And how you’re separate from the sound. The noise is present, but you’re having your own independent body and mind sensations.
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And if possible, notice how the phrase is a property of the channel. And how the channel is a property of the TV. Know how the phrase is not you.
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Now zoom back out.
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The next time you have this slightly unpleasant thought, perhaps see if you might remember your visualization. Note how you felt separate from the thought, channel, and TV.
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Does this visualization shift your relationship to the thought? See perhaps, what’s true for you.
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A property of the mind is that it generates thoughts. But thoughts do not make the mind. Thoughts are to the mind as water is to a waterfall. And just as water crests over a cliff’s edge, thoughts arise to make their presence known.
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But know that thoughts recede. They wash away. And when they do, what remains is you. Sturdy as the cliff. And bathing in conscious awareness.
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#mindfulness #channel #fountain #waterfall #thoughts #obsession #mind
Channels of the Mind: If you’re like me, you may at times notice your mind repeating unpleasant, unhelpful thoughts. For me, my mind may drone on with such phrases as “That was bad,” after I make a mistake, or more simply, “I’m bad.” And worse! ▫️ To work with these thoughts – or at least the less pernicious ones – I’ll sometimes practice a visualization. I’ll describe it here, in case it might be helpful. ▫️ If you’re interested, start by envisioning yourself in a comfortable room, relaxing in front of a television. On its screen is a channel guide that lists dozens of stations. ▫️ What’s unique about this TV is that each channel plays a different, repetitive thought. Some stations have unpleasant messages, whereas others have neutral or pleasant ones. ▫️ Now imagine tuning to a channel that has a slightly unpleasant message. Envision this station repeating its phrase, over and over and over. ▫️ As you visualize listening to the channel, take in the rest of your surroundings. You’re sitting in a comfortable room. It happens to have a TV. Which happens to have its station droning on and on. ▫️ Sense deeply, if you can, how you’re separate from the TV. And how you’re separate from the sound. The noise is present, but you’re having your own independent body and mind sensations. ▫️ And if possible, notice how the phrase is a property of the channel. And how the channel is a property of the TV. Know how the phrase is not you. ▫️ Now zoom back out. ▫️ The next time you have this slightly unpleasant thought, perhaps see if you might remember your visualization. Note how you felt separate from the thought, channel, and TV. ▫️ Does this visualization shift your relationship to the thought? See perhaps, what’s true for you. ▫️ A property of the mind is that it generates thoughts. But thoughts do not make the mind. Thoughts are to the mind as water is to a waterfall. And just as water crests over a cliff’s edge, thoughts arise to make their presence known. ▫️ But know that thoughts recede. They wash away. And when they do, what remains is you. Sturdy as the cliff. And bathing in conscious awareness. ▫️ #mindfulness  #channel  #fountain  #waterfall  #thoughts  #obsession  #mind 
Cultivating Delight:
There’s a possibility that mindfulness could increase the amount of delight you daily experience. If you’re interested in seeing if this may be true for you, I perhaps have an exercise for you to try.
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If you’re willing, please go ahead and think of a delightful memory. As you sense into this recollection, notice if your delightful sensation feels stronger than what you would describe as “satisfaction” or “simple pleasure”.
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And if this is true, ask yourself, “What was I pleasantly surprised by during this experience?”
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If you’re like me, you may discover that this delight and many of your other delights are amplified by positive surprise.
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Delight, which means “great pleasure”, arises more freely when we’re not expecting more. Or expecting something else. Those two preconceived mindsets often produce disappointment or dissatisfaction.
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How mindful awareness is different is that it increases our capacity to openly receive what naturally arises. And as we notice how much of what actually occurs is unexpected, we may become primed to become curious. We may become ready to be surprised.
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As for me last week, I wasn’t expecting to step into a concrete koi pond in the middle of a San Francisco sidewalk. The sunlight, reflecting off an adjacent hubcap, tricked me into seeing waves.
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Instinctively, I stuttered my feet to avoid stepping on the fish. But then I paused and smiled. How delightful was their enlivened appearance!
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And the thought arose that this encounter might be the closest I get to wildlife. An ironic, ticklish sensation arose, although still amusingly delightful.
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Pleasant surprises can be delightful. And unpleasant surprises, well…. Perhaps the practice is to receive those with compassion. A worthy discussion for another day.
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#mindfulness #contemplation #delight #koi #koipond #liveliness #fish #kindness #compassion #meditation #embodiment #humor #sf #sidewalk #concrete #wave #reflection #curious #surprise #exercise #memory #mindset #satisfied
Cultivating Delight: There’s a possibility that mindfulness could increase the amount of delight you daily experience. If you’re interested in seeing if this may be true for you, I perhaps have an exercise for you to try. ▫️ If you’re willing, please go ahead and think of a delightful memory. As you sense into this recollection, notice if your delightful sensation feels stronger than what you would describe as “satisfaction” or “simple pleasure”. ▫️ And if this is true, ask yourself, “What was I pleasantly surprised by during this experience?” ▫️ If you’re like me, you may discover that this delight and many of your other delights are amplified by positive surprise. ▫️ Delight, which means “great pleasure”, arises more freely when we’re not expecting more. Or expecting something else. Those two preconceived mindsets often produce disappointment or dissatisfaction. ▫️ How mindful awareness is different is that it increases our capacity to openly receive what naturally arises. And as we notice how much of what actually occurs is unexpected, we may become primed to become curious. We may become ready to be surprised. ▫️ As for me last week, I wasn’t expecting to step into a concrete koi pond in the middle of a San Francisco sidewalk. The sunlight, reflecting off an adjacent hubcap, tricked me into seeing waves. ▫️ Instinctively, I stuttered my feet to avoid stepping on the fish. But then I paused and smiled. How delightful was their enlivened appearance! ▫️ And the thought arose that this encounter might be the closest I get to wildlife. An ironic, ticklish sensation arose, although still amusingly delightful. ▫️ Pleasant surprises can be delightful. And unpleasant surprises, well…. Perhaps the practice is to receive those with compassion. A worthy discussion for another day. ▫️ #mindfulness  #contemplation  #delight  #koi  #koipond  #liveliness  #fish  #kindness  #compassion  #meditation  #embodiment  #humor  #sf  #sidewalk  #concrete  #wave  #reflection  #curious  #surprise  #exercise  #memory  #mindset  #satisfied 
Feeling the Fire:
Yesterday was a humorous and humbling day.
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Seeking distractions in the afternoon, I found myself reading threads in a discussion forum. There, the topics felt weighty, and the posts felt increasingly intense.
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As I read along, a heated irritation started arising within me. What was triggering? Was it the topic? Or perhaps the points of view?
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My body informed me that it was the attitude. Some of the posts struck me as self-righteous. They made my body clench.
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I noticed my mind begin to harden. But not enough before I could name my sensation: It was self-righteous anger, triggered by my distaste for self-righteousness! Whoops.
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So I chose to wait the cycle out. And after 20 minutes passed, I was able to chuckle a little bit. At first, maybe at myself, but then kindly, with myself.
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Anger is a natural arising within the body. It’s often a form of extra energy provided to help us protect our boundaries. These boundaries can be physical or conceptual, such as when our identity or belief system is challenged.
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Because anger does naturally and forcefully arise, it may be helpful to mindfully inspect its nature. Is the extra energy additive or depletive, during and after? And what are the attributes of the mind, during and after?
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There may be many firmly held points of view about anger, but what is true for you? When might it be an asset? And when might it be a liability?
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For me, what I sensed was that anger maintained its properties. It had worn both my mind and body. To me, anger’s main property is fire. Not fuel.
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I closed my eyes and sat for another 10. My timer rang, and I arose feeling refreshed. I was ready to be humored, and ready to be humbled. And ready to be intimately human again.
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#mindfulness #contemplation #anger #irritation #kindness #compassion #humility #meditation #beinghuman #intimate #vulnerability #humor #fire #flames #fuel #boundaries #nourish #refresh
Feeling the Fire: Yesterday was a humorous and humbling day. ▫️ Seeking distractions in the afternoon, I found myself reading threads in a discussion forum. There, the topics felt weighty, and the posts felt increasingly intense. ▫️ As I read along, a heated irritation started arising within me. What was triggering? Was it the topic? Or perhaps the points of view? ▫️ My body informed me that it was the attitude. Some of the posts struck me as self-righteous. They made my body clench. ▫️ I noticed my mind begin to harden. But not enough before I could name my sensation: It was self-righteous anger, triggered by my distaste for self-righteousness! Whoops. ▫️ So I chose to wait the cycle out. And after 20 minutes passed, I was able to chuckle a little bit. At first, maybe at myself, but then kindly, with myself. ▫️ Anger is a natural arising within the body. It’s often a form of extra energy provided to help us protect our boundaries. These boundaries can be physical or conceptual, such as when our identity or belief system is challenged. ▫️ Because anger does naturally and forcefully arise, it may be helpful to mindfully inspect its nature. Is the extra energy additive or depletive, during and after? And what are the attributes of the mind, during and after? ▫️ There may be many firmly held points of view about anger, but what is true for you? When might it be an asset? And when might it be a liability? ▫️ For me, what I sensed was that anger maintained its properties. It had worn both my mind and body. To me, anger’s main property is fire. Not fuel. ▫️ I closed my eyes and sat for another 10. My timer rang, and I arose feeling refreshed. I was ready to be humored, and ready to be humbled. And ready to be intimately human again. ▫️ #mindfulness  #contemplation  #anger  #irritation  #kindness  #compassion  #humility  #meditation  #beinghuman  #intimate  #vulnerability  #humor  #fire  #flames  #fuel  #boundaries  #nourish  #refresh 
Open Gratitude:
As I walked inside to attend to a meeting, I noticed a part of my mind stubbornly tugging me back.
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This part yearned to remain outdoors. It wanted to continue watching the sunlight dance with the clouds.
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Would this part of mind distract my presence during my meeting? Might I become steeped in disappointment, ruminating over what I was missing?
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The pull was strong.
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So I steadied my breath and slowly stepped toward the meeting location. Lovingly, I whispered to myself, “Just this. Just this.”
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And what arose was a cloud.
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With a smile.
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And a family, too!
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Sensing into the steadiness of the floor beneath, I allowed the whimsy above to flow into my heart. And another smile arose, this time to light up my face.
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I was now all here, present and grateful. And open for what might arise next.
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Just this. Wow! Thank you.
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#gratitude #opengratitude #practice #grateful #thankyou #welcoming #mindfulness #meditation #presentmoment #justthis #kindness #contemplation #clouds #symmetry #circles #sf #sanfrancisco
Open Gratitude: As I walked inside to attend to a meeting, I noticed a part of my mind stubbornly tugging me back. ▫️ This part yearned to remain outdoors. It wanted to continue watching the sunlight dance with the clouds. ▫️ Would this part of mind distract my presence during my meeting? Might I become steeped in disappointment, ruminating over what I was missing? ▫️ The pull was strong. ▫️ So I steadied my breath and slowly stepped toward the meeting location. Lovingly, I whispered to myself, “Just this. Just this.” ▫️ And what arose was a cloud. ▫️ With a smile. ▫️ And a family, too! ▫️ Sensing into the steadiness of the floor beneath, I allowed the whimsy above to flow into my heart. And another smile arose, this time to light up my face. ▫️ I was now all here, present and grateful. And open for what might arise next. ▫️ Just this. Wow! Thank you. ▫️ #gratitude  #opengratitude  #practice  #grateful  #thankyou  #welcoming  #mindfulness  #meditation  #presentmoment  #justthis  #kindness  #contemplation  #clouds  #symmetry  #circles  #sf  #sanfrancisco 
Healing Without Recovery:
I found myself at an aviation museum, waiting for the start of my favorite company event.
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The building’s interior had planes sprinkled throughout, their thoughtful placements pointing to stories. Perhaps tales of progress. Or invention. Or history.
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And so I quickly went outside. Maybe my body was yearning for chaos – for what was unplanned and hidden. Or maybe it had no real reason at all.
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But once on the grounds, I was immediately struck by a slumping Boeing 747. This jumbo jet was missing its wings, wheels, and much of its body.
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Witnessing its condition triggered within me the arising of a lonely, lacking feeling. And thoughts arose, which wondered what this plane’s untold story was.
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Was it compelled to retire because of irreparable damage? Or perhaps it was just tired and worn from too many long hauls? And then the thought arose, “Maybe it just wants to heal.”
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I was hit hard.
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Maybe at times, all we just want is to heal. I know at times, I certainly do.
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And during that prolonged moment, I allowed myself to feel what healing really means – what it means for the plane, and more gingerly, what it means for me.
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Healing isn’t always recovery, if recovery means restoration to a previous state. Many things happen which are irreversible.
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In these cases, healing is no longer a destination. It becomes a process: that of surrender, acceptance, and integration. Surrendering to the situation; accepting what is; and integrating an ongoing, new knowing into one’s old being.
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Despite what this plane lacks, I know it is still a plane. I know it is still whole. Does it yet know as well?
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And as for me, where am I in my journey? Do I know that I am whole? Or am I carrying old stories?
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Bidding farewell, I nodded to the aircraft to convey my respect. I felt its nose glimmer back, as if it wanted me to know. It just simply wanted to return the same.
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#contemplation #acceptance #selfcare #kindness #compassion #healing #recovery #understanding #respect #747 #airplane #mindfulness #reflection #missing #vulnerability #hopscotch #counting #abandoned #belonging #community
Healing Without Recovery: I found myself at an aviation museum, waiting for the start of my favorite company event. ▫️ The building’s interior had planes sprinkled throughout, their thoughtful placements pointing to stories. Perhaps tales of progress. Or invention. Or history. ▫️ And so I quickly went outside. Maybe my body was yearning for chaos – for what was unplanned and hidden. Or maybe it had no real reason at all. ▫️ But once on the grounds, I was immediately struck by a slumping Boeing 747. This jumbo jet was missing its wings, wheels, and much of its body. ▫️ Witnessing its condition triggered within me the arising of a lonely, lacking feeling. And thoughts arose, which wondered what this plane’s untold story was. ▫️ Was it compelled to retire because of irreparable damage? Or perhaps it was just tired and worn from too many long hauls? And then the thought arose, “Maybe it just wants to heal.” ▫️ I was hit hard. ▫️ Maybe at times, all we just want is to heal. I know at times, I certainly do. ▫️ And during that prolonged moment, I allowed myself to feel what healing really means – what it means for the plane, and more gingerly, what it means for me. ▫️ Healing isn’t always recovery, if recovery means restoration to a previous state. Many things happen which are irreversible. ▫️ In these cases, healing is no longer a destination. It becomes a process: that of surrender, acceptance, and integration. Surrendering to the situation; accepting what is; and integrating an ongoing, new knowing into one’s old being. ▫️ Despite what this plane lacks, I know it is still a plane. I know it is still whole. Does it yet know as well? ▫️ And as for me, where am I in my journey? Do I know that I am whole? Or am I carrying old stories? ▫️ Bidding farewell, I nodded to the aircraft to convey my respect. I felt its nose glimmer back, as if it wanted me to know. It just simply wanted to return the same. ▫️ #contemplation  #acceptance  #selfcare  #kindness  #compassion  #healing  #recovery  #understanding  #respect  #747  #airplane  #mindfulness  #reflection  #missing  #vulnerability  #hopscotch  #counting  #abandoned  #belonging  #community 
Shadows:
Last week was a tough one.
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Reminders that we never know others’ inner experiences. And how easy it is to believe that we do.
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That parts of the mind can so quickly judge and assume. And how they may cause the loss of concern and care.
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That what we see in others might be just a fraction of who they really are.
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And what others see in us: Well, it may simply be the same.
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So perhaps it’s best time to pause. To take a deep breath. And to acknowledge that this might be what a human mind does.
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For at times, we may not know what’s hidden in the shadows.
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We may feel uncomfortable. We may feel exposed. We may feel scared.
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And we can still be okay.
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So from a place of alert vulnerability, allow me to offer a loving, kind prayer:
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May we all be safe.
May we all be peaceful.
May we all be healthy.
May we all live with ease.
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And may we all have much love, light, and compassion in our journeys to become whole.
Gus
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#compassion #kindness #understanding #support #lovingkindness #metta #vulnerability #innerpeace #breathe #shadow #shadowwork #contemplation #reflection #loveandlight
Shadows: Last week was a tough one. ▫️ Reminders that we never know others’ inner experiences. And how easy it is to believe that we do. ▫️ That parts of the mind can so quickly judge and assume. And how they may cause the loss of concern and care. ▫️ That what we see in others might be just a fraction of who they really are. ▫️ And what others see in us: Well, it may simply be the same. ▫️ So perhaps it’s best time to pause. To take a deep breath. And to acknowledge that this might be what a human mind does. ▫️ For at times, we may not know what’s hidden in the shadows. ▫️ We may feel uncomfortable. We may feel exposed. We may feel scared. ▫️ And we can still be okay. ▫️ So from a place of alert vulnerability, allow me to offer a loving, kind prayer: ▫️ May we all be safe. May we all be peaceful. May we all be healthy. May we all live with ease. ▫️ And may we all have much love, light, and compassion in our journeys to become whole. Gus ▫️ #compassion  #kindness  #understanding  #support  #lovingkindness  #metta  #vulnerability  #innerpeace  #breathe  #shadow  #shadowwork  #contemplation  #reflection  #loveandlight 
Office View:
A New York City morning, overlooking Central Park.
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I was sitting with my closest college friend, in his office, captivated by his work on immunotherapy — the amplifying of the human immune system to treat cancer.
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Back when we were in school, I never would have imagined his path leading here. Or my path reconnecting with him on this topic.
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But decades later, I can’t say I was surprised he would find his way to such an inspired pursuit. Such is his nature.
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And then it occurred to me: Perhaps such is the nature of all of us. What we may need though, is a reliable sanctuary. One which makes us feel nourished and safe.
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Might this be true? Would such a refuge help us rediscover our ennobled nature? And if so, where might this oasis be, both inside and out?
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Where are these inner states of being and verdant forests that consistently amplify our better selves?
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I guess that’s also part of the journey. I gather it’s for each of us, if willing, to find for ourselves.
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#verdant #centralpark #newyork #comtemplation #reflection #officeview #immunotherapy #journey #lifepurpose #sanctuary #woods #cityscape #mindfulness #meditation #friendship #reconnect
Office View: A New York City morning, overlooking Central Park. ▫️ I was sitting with my closest college friend, in his office, captivated by his work on immunotherapy — the amplifying of the human immune system to treat cancer. ▫️ Back when we were in school, I never would have imagined his path leading here. Or my path reconnecting with him on this topic. ▫️ But decades later, I can’t say I was surprised he would find his way to such an inspired pursuit. Such is his nature. ▫️ And then it occurred to me: Perhaps such is the nature of all of us. What we may need though, is a reliable sanctuary. One which makes us feel nourished and safe. ▫️ Might this be true? Would such a refuge help us rediscover our ennobled nature? And if so, where might this oasis be, both inside and out? ▫️ Where are these inner states of being and verdant forests that consistently amplify our better selves? ▫️ I guess that’s also part of the journey. I gather it’s for each of us, if willing, to find for ourselves. ▫️ #verdant  #centralpark  #newyork  #comtemplation  #reflection  #officeview  #immunotherapy  #journey  #lifepurpose  #sanctuary  #woods  #cityscape  #mindfulness  #meditation  #friendship  #reconnect 
Mindfulness-Based Innovation:
We all carry within us an implicit ingenuity. It’s our ability to be original, inventive, and inspired. When we apply this capability toward improving upon a current solution, what we create is called ‘Innovation.’
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Being able to innovate can be quite rewarding. What’s challenging, though, is unlocking our inventive capacity. This is where mindfulness can help.
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Innovation has many recipes, but some more-likely-to-succeed formulas tend to share these common steps:
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1) nurture divergent thinking to expand the breadth of creativity;
2) drive convergence to reduce the solution set to a manageable size; and
3) prioritize and refine to make chosen solutions actionable.
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Mindfulness can play a key role during each of these process steps.
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First, for divergence, non-judgmentally sensing into the body can often surface knowing information which will be quite different from deductive thoughts. If there’s a brainstorming step, feel into the body, and note which memories have similar sensations. Can these memories be helpful at expanding possibility?
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Second, for convergence, noting thoughts can often help name intuitive, creative themes. If there is a narrowing step, ask yourself if your arising thoughts point to recurring patterns that simplify what is being seen.
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Third, calling out body feeling tones may add discrimination to the prioritization process. Logically, there may be an order. But does the order ‘feel’ right? Any misalignment may point to new information.
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I realize that this summary for applying mindfulness is likely too abstract and brief. But if you happen to engage in an innovation process, perhaps just simply start by seeing what role mindfulness can play for you.
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And if you’d like to discuss how to imbue mindfulness into an innovation exercise, please DM me or comment below. I will do my best to respond.
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Best wishes at making your ingenuity explicit!
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(Office view from an R&D center and venture firm which hosts meditation gatherings.)
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@mindful_compassion @stanforddschool #mindfulness #innovation #discrimination #creativity #sangha #meditation #ingenuity #invention #entrepreneurship #sf #startups
Mindfulness-Based Innovation: We all carry within us an implicit ingenuity. It’s our ability to be original, inventive, and inspired. When we apply this capability toward improving upon a current solution, what we create is called ‘Innovation.’ ▫️ Being able to innovate can be quite rewarding. What’s challenging, though, is unlocking our inventive capacity. This is where mindfulness can help. ▫️ Innovation has many recipes, but some more-likely-to-succeed formulas tend to share these common steps: ▫️ 1) nurture divergent thinking to expand the breadth of creativity; 2) drive convergence to reduce the solution set to a manageable size; and 3) prioritize and refine to make chosen solutions actionable. ▫️ Mindfulness can play a key role during each of these process steps. ▫️ First, for divergence, non-judgmentally sensing into the body can often surface knowing information which will be quite different from deductive thoughts. If there’s a brainstorming step, feel into the body, and note which memories have similar sensations. Can these memories be helpful at expanding possibility? ▫️ Second, for convergence, noting thoughts can often help name intuitive, creative themes. If there is a narrowing step, ask yourself if your arising thoughts point to recurring patterns that simplify what is being seen. ▫️ Third, calling out body feeling tones may add discrimination to the prioritization process. Logically, there may be an order. But does the order ‘feel’ right? Any misalignment may point to new information. ▫️ I realize that this summary for applying mindfulness is likely too abstract and brief. But if you happen to engage in an innovation process, perhaps just simply start by seeing what role mindfulness can play for you. ▫️ And if you’d like to discuss how to imbue mindfulness into an innovation exercise, please DM me or comment below. I will do my best to respond. ▫️ Best wishes at making your ingenuity explicit! ▫️ (Office view from an R&D center and venture firm which hosts meditation gatherings.) ▫️ @mindful_compassion @stanforddschool #mindfulness  #innovation  #discrimination  #creativity  #sangha  #meditation  #ingenuity  #invention  #entrepreneurship  #sf  #startups 
Cultivating Relational Intimacy:
If you reflect for a moment on your friendships, it’s likely that your most valued are your most intimate. To the degree that intimacy contributes to value, know that in many cases, it can be cultivated intentionally and naturally.
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To grow relational intimacy, what’s required are shared, vulnerable moments. During these moments, if vulnerability is witnessed, received, and honored, then intimacy will deepen.
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Mindfulness is well aligned with nurturing intimacy because it’s a process that inherently notices, accepts, and appreciates. When practiced in the context of honoring vulnerability, mindfulness naturally grows relational intimacy.
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If you’re interested in seeing if this is true for you, here’s something to perhaps try. In a safe setting with a friend, mindfully relax and sense into a vulnerability. It can be either your friend’s or your own.
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Perhaps you could try this on a roller coaster. Or during a suspenseful movie.
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If it’s your own vulnerability, notice, if true, your friend accepting and honoring your state of being.
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And if it’s your friend’s vulnerability, honor it! After doing so, perhaps kindly communicate in an appropriate way, that you’re grateful for having shared this vulnerable moment.
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Sense what arises in you in either of these cases. Is this building relational intimacy for you?
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For me, recently I was graciously invited to participate in a movement to normalize meditation by meditating in public. I felt at ease doing so. But I felt anxious because my wife felt nervous joining me.
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During the brief sitting, I chose to sense into my wife’s vulnerability as well as my own. Feeling into my wife’s fears, I expanded with proud appreciation of her courage. And tasting into my own anxiety, I felt a tingly, unbounded gratitude for my wife’s willingness to support me.
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Opening my eyes, all I wanted to do was hug her and say, “I love you!”
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Thank you, Anna. And thank you, @mandydalekelso, @ericantonow and @publicmeditations!
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I feel closer to you all. And grateful.
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#intimacy #mindfulness #vulnerability #honoring #publicmeditations #kindness #iloveyou #gratitude #thankyou #relationships
Cultivating Relational Intimacy: If you reflect for a moment on your friendships, it’s likely that your most valued are your most intimate. To the degree that intimacy contributes to value, know that in many cases, it can be cultivated intentionally and naturally. ▫️ To grow relational intimacy, what’s required are shared, vulnerable moments. During these moments, if vulnerability is witnessed, received, and honored, then intimacy will deepen. ▫️ Mindfulness is well aligned with nurturing intimacy because it’s a process that inherently notices, accepts, and appreciates. When practiced in the context of honoring vulnerability, mindfulness naturally grows relational intimacy. ▫️ If you’re interested in seeing if this is true for you, here’s something to perhaps try. In a safe setting with a friend, mindfully relax and sense into a vulnerability. It can be either your friend’s or your own. ▫️ Perhaps you could try this on a roller coaster. Or during a suspenseful movie. ▫️ If it’s your own vulnerability, notice, if true, your friend accepting and honoring your state of being. ▫️ And if it’s your friend’s vulnerability, honor it! After doing so, perhaps kindly communicate in an appropriate way, that you’re grateful for having shared this vulnerable moment. ▫️ Sense what arises in you in either of these cases. Is this building relational intimacy for you? ▫️ For me, recently I was graciously invited to participate in a movement to normalize meditation by meditating in public. I felt at ease doing so. But I felt anxious because my wife felt nervous joining me. ▫️ During the brief sitting, I chose to sense into my wife’s vulnerability as well as my own. Feeling into my wife’s fears, I expanded with proud appreciation of her courage. And tasting into my own anxiety, I felt a tingly, unbounded gratitude for my wife’s willingness to support me. ▫️ Opening my eyes, all I wanted to do was hug her and say, “I love you!” ▫️ Thank you, Anna. And thank you, @mandydalekelso, @ericantonow and @publicmeditations! ▫️ I feel closer to you all. And grateful. ▫️ #intimacy  #mindfulness  #vulnerability  #honoring  #publicmeditations  #kindness  #iloveyou  #gratitude  #thankyou  #relationships 
Open Gratitude:
I arrived into town a bit later than hoped. My favorite donut places were too far away, and so I chose to have ice cream instead.
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Strolling with my chocolate mint in hand, I went about seeking a welcoming place to sit, eat, and meditate. What I found were a bench, a tree, and a view.
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Just this. Wow!
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Thank you!
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No donuts. But still grateful.
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#gratitude #opengratitude #grateful #thankyou #welcoming #mindfulness #meditation #appreciation #presentmoment #justthis #vsco @mpclark3
Open Gratitude: I arrived into town a bit later than hoped. My favorite donut places were too far away, and so I chose to have ice cream instead. ▫️ Strolling with my chocolate mint in hand, I went about seeking a welcoming place to sit, eat, and meditate. What I found were a bench, a tree, and a view. ▫️ Just this. Wow! ▫️ Thank you! ▫️ No donuts. But still grateful. ▫️ #gratitude  #opengratitude  #grateful  #thankyou  #welcoming  #mindfulness  #meditation  #appreciation  #presentmoment  #justthis  #vsco  @mpclark3
Finding Connection:
A mindfulness exercise to perhaps try is one I’ve previously mentioned, called “Just like me.”
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When you’re walking down a populated street, the exercise is to kindly notice someone nearby — if safe and appropriate — and sense into how he or she might be “just like me.” What might the two of you share in emotions, thoughts, moods, experiences, or history?
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The goal isn’t to know for certain. But rather, it’s to sense into our interconnectedness and interdependency.
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Since human beings are social, we feel more peace, ease, and safety when we feel connected. And since we’re more similar than we are different, there’s usually a basis for feeling relationship.
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Having a kind disposition can also help cultivate feelings of shared joy and shared compassion. These can be bountiful, nourishing energies when balanced with equanimity.
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If this exercise resonates with you, perhaps sense into several people as you walk down the street. And see how to set up reminders to make this practice habitual.
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I practice this habit so much, I now wonder if my mind automatically fabricates connections.
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On a recent city walk, I noticed my mind curiously ask if a blue paisley car would be driving by, so that it could relate to the dress in the shop window. Fortunately, I only waited to see for a handful of minutes before continuing my journey.
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There is such a thing as too much practice!
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#mindfulness #connection #relating #kindness #justlikeme #exercise #habit #streetshot #citystreets #dresses #cars #colors #pairs #coupling #paisley #shopwindow #brahmaviharas #lawofattraction #loa #manifest
Finding Connection: A mindfulness exercise to perhaps try is one I’ve previously mentioned, called “Just like me.” ▫️ When you’re walking down a populated street, the exercise is to kindly notice someone nearby — if safe and appropriate — and sense into how he or she might be “just like me.” What might the two of you share in emotions, thoughts, moods, experiences, or history? ▫️ The goal isn’t to know for certain. But rather, it’s to sense into our interconnectedness and interdependency. ▫️ Since human beings are social, we feel more peace, ease, and safety when we feel connected. And since we’re more similar than we are different, there’s usually a basis for feeling relationship. ▫️ Having a kind disposition can also help cultivate feelings of shared joy and shared compassion. These can be bountiful, nourishing energies when balanced with equanimity. ▫️ If this exercise resonates with you, perhaps sense into several people as you walk down the street. And see how to set up reminders to make this practice habitual. ▫️ I practice this habit so much, I now wonder if my mind automatically fabricates connections. ▫️ On a recent city walk, I noticed my mind curiously ask if a blue paisley car would be driving by, so that it could relate to the dress in the shop window. Fortunately, I only waited to see for a handful of minutes before continuing my journey. ▫️ There is such a thing as too much practice! ▫️ #mindfulness  #connection  #relating  #kindness  #justlikeme  #exercise  #habit  #streetshot  #citystreets  #dresses  #cars  #colors  #pairs  #coupling  #paisley  #shopwindow  #brahmaviharas  #lawofattraction  #loa  #manifest 
Parting Ways:
My last Mendocino sunset before heading home.
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The week was quite kind to me. Arriving knotted in discomfort, I was leaving mostly untethered. Internal waves may come, but they will eventually change. And usually go. It felt relieving to be on the other side of this arising and passing.
▫️
In situations like this of improving well-being, it might be helpful to practice two things that could help with future healing.
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First, perhaps mindfully note that your system is recovering. What’s true in the moment is that your body has the capacity to heal.
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Sense into this truth. And if feeling safe, maybe lightly touch into other healing situations. This exercise may help nurture your trust and confidence in your own resilience.
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Second, if this discomfort-healing cycle were light enough, perhaps imagine the cycle returning, just as a cold does. Could the discomfort be received like a cold?
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A cold is undesired and unpleasant, but it’s allowed to be, and allowed to go. Accepting discomfort as part of a manageable cycle can help reduce the stress that arises resisting what is.
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As for me, I was feeling increasing ease as the end of the stay drew near. That’s when I noticed part of my mind firmly stating, “Goodbye and good riddance!”
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And then a larger part of my mind kindly voiced, “If we see you again, know that you are welcome.”
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I did not like that invitation. But a knowing arose within.
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Allowing pleasant and unpleasant to flow – whether desired or undesired – is a helpful path toward healing. Hard to do, but worth practicing.
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Goodbye, Mendocino. Thank you for the ocean views and salty air. For the interrupting showers and swelling evening sunlight. I leave behind all that you are. And welcome all that you become.
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#healing #heal #selfcare #resilience #vulnerability #discomfort #cold #kindness #welcoming #befriend #mindfulness #contemplation #exercise #sunset #tree #ocean #waves #vedana #departure #silhouette @val.wayne
Parting Ways: My last Mendocino sunset before heading home. ▫️ The week was quite kind to me. Arriving knotted in discomfort, I was leaving mostly untethered. Internal waves may come, but they will eventually change. And usually go. It felt relieving to be on the other side of this arising and passing. ▫️ In situations like this of improving well-being, it might be helpful to practice two things that could help with future healing. ▫️ First, perhaps mindfully note that your system is recovering. What’s true in the moment is that your body has the capacity to heal. ▫️ Sense into this truth. And if feeling safe, maybe lightly touch into other healing situations. This exercise may help nurture your trust and confidence in your own resilience. ▫️ Second, if this discomfort-healing cycle were light enough, perhaps imagine the cycle returning, just as a cold does. Could the discomfort be received like a cold? ▫️ A cold is undesired and unpleasant, but it’s allowed to be, and allowed to go. Accepting discomfort as part of a manageable cycle can help reduce the stress that arises resisting what is. ▫️ As for me, I was feeling increasing ease as the end of the stay drew near. That’s when I noticed part of my mind firmly stating, “Goodbye and good riddance!” ▫️ And then a larger part of my mind kindly voiced, “If we see you again, know that you are welcome.” ▫️ I did not like that invitation. But a knowing arose within. ▫️ Allowing pleasant and unpleasant to flow – whether desired or undesired – is a helpful path toward healing. Hard to do, but worth practicing. ▫️ Goodbye, Mendocino. Thank you for the ocean views and salty air. For the interrupting showers and swelling evening sunlight. I leave behind all that you are. And welcome all that you become. ▫️ #healing  #heal  #selfcare  #resilience  #vulnerability  #discomfort  #cold  #kindness  #welcoming  #befriend  #mindfulness  #contemplation  #exercise  #sunset  #tree  #ocean  #waves  #vedana  #departure  #silhouette  @val.wayne
Ocean View:
Alongside a cliffside path on the Pacific Coast.
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An ocean view – up close, but from a safe place – can sometimes induce an automatic state of mindfulness. The ocean’s vastness has the power to loosen the mind’s grip on a sense of self. And the crashing waves can jolt the body into knowing its own vulnerability.
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It is from this place of dropped identity and widened alertness where intimacy will naturally arise. And if one is in communion with this up close and vulnerable experience, then he or she will automatically enter a mindful state.
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A tossing ocean, of course, isn’t mandatory to cultivate mindfulness. But if you ever find yourself safely enveloped in vastness from the ocean, forest, or sky, perhaps take a moment to sense into your own tender being.
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You might discover a vast universe integrated within and throughout you.
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Or not. But you’ll still have the ocean, the forest, or the sky.
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And a great view.
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#mindfulness #contemplation #intimacy #ocean #waves #ego #identity #vulnerability #vast #cliff #oceanview #mendocino #meditation #alert #healing
Ocean View: Alongside a cliffside path on the Pacific Coast. ▫️ An ocean view – up close, but from a safe place – can sometimes induce an automatic state of mindfulness. The ocean’s vastness has the power to loosen the mind’s grip on a sense of self. And the crashing waves can jolt the body into knowing its own vulnerability. ▫️ It is from this place of dropped identity and widened alertness where intimacy will naturally arise. And if one is in communion with this up close and vulnerable experience, then he or she will automatically enter a mindful state. ▫️ A tossing ocean, of course, isn’t mandatory to cultivate mindfulness. But if you ever find yourself safely enveloped in vastness from the ocean, forest, or sky, perhaps take a moment to sense into your own tender being. ▫️ You might discover a vast universe integrated within and throughout you. ▫️ Or not. But you’ll still have the ocean, the forest, or the sky. ▫️ And a great view. ▫️ #mindfulness  #contemplation  #intimacy  #ocean  #waves  #ego  #identity  #vulnerability  #vast  #cliff  #oceanview  #mendocino  #meditation  #alert  #healing 
Being Human:
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“When I look inside and see that I am nothing, that is wisdom. When I look outside and see that I am everything, that is love. Between these two, my life turns."
- Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
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It can feel so compelling to read delicious quotes like the one above. For me, my mind will sometimes say, “Perhaps one day, this perspective will be accessible to us all!”
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And then reality strikes.
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My recent reality was the discomfort of the last couple of weeks. Nothing external was troubling. Rather, I was experiencing the frequent arising of internal emotional discomfort.
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Waves of fluid sadness would pool into pockets of clenching numbness. And perhaps beneath the numbness were the arisings of aversion and alarm to the flowing waves.
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I tried to look inside to be present to the experience. To be in skillful relationship with arising mental processes: That is wisdom.
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And what did I do? Harden and become both the discomfort and the resistance to it. That is being human.
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I then tried to look outside to normalize. To know we’re all sharing human experiences together — whether pleasant or unpleasant — is to cultivate love.
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And my response? Define unpleasant as a singular problem for me to solely expunge. That, too is being human.
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Walking up a lovely path, I felt a glimpse of that containing me. It was larger and more tender than just “an unpleasant to be solved”. I sensed my chest muscles soften and my head slightly clear.
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Enough to pause to breathe in the evening pastel colors.
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And enough to faintly know that the fragrant wisteria would be present in the morning.
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#mindfulness #wisdom #kindness #selfcare #healing #presence #quotesaboutlife #beinghuman #awareness #meditation #contemplation #wisteria #pastels #path #emotions #love @yijenliu
Being Human: ▫️ “When I look inside and see that I am nothing, that is wisdom. When I look outside and see that I am everything, that is love. Between these two, my life turns." - Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj ▫️ It can feel so compelling to read delicious quotes like the one above. For me, my mind will sometimes say, “Perhaps one day, this perspective will be accessible to us all!” ▫️ And then reality strikes. ▫️ My recent reality was the discomfort of the last couple of weeks. Nothing external was troubling. Rather, I was experiencing the frequent arising of internal emotional discomfort. ▫️ Waves of fluid sadness would pool into pockets of clenching numbness. And perhaps beneath the numbness were the arisings of aversion and alarm to the flowing waves. ▫️ I tried to look inside to be present to the experience. To be in skillful relationship with arising mental processes: That is wisdom. ▫️ And what did I do? Harden and become both the discomfort and the resistance to it. That is being human. ▫️ I then tried to look outside to normalize. To know we’re all sharing human experiences together — whether pleasant or unpleasant — is to cultivate love. ▫️ And my response? Define unpleasant as a singular problem for me to solely expunge. That, too is being human. ▫️ Walking up a lovely path, I felt a glimpse of that containing me. It was larger and more tender than just “an unpleasant to be solved”. I sensed my chest muscles soften and my head slightly clear. ▫️ Enough to pause to breathe in the evening pastel colors. ▫️ And enough to faintly know that the fragrant wisteria would be present in the morning. ▫️ #mindfulness  #wisdom  #kindness  #selfcare  #healing  #presence  #quotesaboutlife  #beinghuman  #awareness  #meditation  #contemplation  #wisteria  #pastels  #path  #emotions  #love  @yijenliu