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Here’s a quick video of me trying to sum up meditation in under 2 minutes:

It’s one of a set of about 8 videos Mark Wash and I dashed off in an hour, so the production values aren’t exactly of broadcast quality – but at least this one doesn’t make it massively obvious that I’m too fat for the shirt I’m wearing!

Some slightly odd comments on YouTube so far, and for some reason more dislikes than likes, so any appreciation or constructive criticism welcome. You can do that by clicking on the ‘Watch on You Tube’ icon on the bottom right of the video. Thanks.

‘This Is Water’ by David Foster Wallace

David Foster Wallace

There are these two young fish swimming along, and they happen to meet an older fish

swimming the other way, who nods at them and says, “Morning, boys, how’s the water?” And the two young fish swim on for a bit, and then eventually one of them looks over at the other and goes, “What the hell is water?”

If you’re worried that I plan to present myself here as the wise old fish explaining what water is, please don’t be. I am not the wise old fish. The immediate point of the fish story is that the most obvious, ubiquitous, important realities are often the ones that are the hardest to see and talk about.

Stated as an English sentence, of course, this is just a banal platitude – but the fact is that, in the day-to-day trenches of adult existence, banal platitudes can have life-or-death importance. That may sound like hyperbole, or abstract nonsense. So let’s get concrete … A huge percentage of the stuff that I tend to be automatically certain of is, it turns out, totally wrong and deluded.

Here’s one example of the utter wrongness of something I tend to be automatically sure of: everything in my own immediate experience supports my deep belief that I am the absolute centre of the universe, the realest, most vivid and important person in existence. We rarely talk about this sort of natural, basic self-centredness, because it’s so socially repulsive, but it’s pretty much the same for all of us, deep down. It is our default setting, hard-wired into our boards at birth.

Think about it: there is no experience you’ve had that you were not at the absolute centre of. The world as you experience it is right there in front of you, or behind you, to the left or right of you, on your TV, or your monitor, or whatever. Other people’s thoughts and feelings have to be communicated to you somehow, but your own are so immediate, urgent, real – you get the idea.

But please don’t worry that I’m getting ready to preach to you about compassion or other-directedness or the so-called “virtues”. This is not a matter of virtue – it’s a matter of my choosing to do the work of somehow altering or getting free of my natural, hard-wired default setting, which is to be deeply and literally self-centred, and to see and interpret everything through this lens of self.

By way of example, let’s say it’s an average day, and you get up in the morning, go to your challenging job, and you work hard for nine or ten hours, and at the end of the day you’re tired, and you’re stressed out, and all you want is to go home and have a good supper and maybe unwind for a couple of hours and then hit the rack early because you have to get up the next day and do it all again.

But then you remember there’s no food at home – you haven’t had time to shop this week, because of your challenging job – and so now, after work, you have to get in your car and drive to the supermarket. It’s the end of the workday, and the traffic’s very bad, so getting to the store takes way longer than it should, and when you finally get there the supermarket is very crowded, because of course it’s the time of day when all the other people with jobs also try to squeeze in some grocery shopping, and the store’s hideously, fluorescently lit, and infused with soul-killing Muzak or corporate pop, and it’s pretty much the last place you want to be, but you can’t just get in and quickly out: you have to wander all over the huge, overlit store’s crowded aisles to find the stuff you want, and you have to manoeuvre your junky cart through all these other tired, hurried people with carts, and of course there are also the glacially slow old people and the spacey people and the kids who all block the aisle and you have to grit your teeth and try to be polite as you ask them to let you by, and eventually, finally, you get all your supper supplies, except now it turns out there aren’t enough checkout lanes open even though it’s the end-of-the-day rush, so the checkout line is incredibly long, which is stupid and infuriating, but you can’t take your fury out on the frantic lady working the register.

Anyway, you finally get to the checkout line’s front, and pay for your food, and wait to get your cheque or card authenticated by a machine, and then get told to “Have a nice day” in a voice that is the absolute voice of death, and then you have to take your creepy flimsy plastic bags of groceries in your cart through the crowded, bumpy, littery parking lot, and try to load the bags in your car in such a way that everything doesn’t fall out of the bags and roll around in the trunk on the way home, and then you have to drive all the way home through slow, heavy, SUV-intensive rush-hour traffic, etc, etc.

The point is that petty, frustrating crap like this is exactly where the work of choosing comes in. Because the traffic jams and crowded aisles and long checkout lines give me time to think, and if I don’t make a conscious decision about how to think and what to pay attention to, I’m going to be pissed and miserable every time I have to food-shop, because my natural default setting is the certainty that situations like this are really all about me, about my hungriness and my fatigue and my desire to just get home, and it’s going to seem, for all the world, like everybody else is just in my way, and who are all these people in my way? And look at how repulsive most of them are and how stupid and cow-like and dead-eyed and nonhuman they seem here in the checkout line, or at how annoying and rude it is that people are talking loudly on cell phones in the middle of the line, and look at how deeply unfair this is: I’ve worked really hard all day and I’m starved and tired and I can’t even get home to eat and unwind because of all these stupid goddamn people.

Or if I’m in a more socially conscious form of my default setting, I can spend time in the end-of-the-day traffic jam being angry and disgusted at all the huge, stupid, lane-blocking SUVs and Hummers and V12 pickup trucks burning their wasteful, selfish, 40-gallon tanks of gas, and I can dwell on the fact that the patriotic or religious bumper stickers always seem to be on the biggest, most disgustingly selfish vehicles driven by the ugliest, most inconsiderate and aggressive drivers, who are usually talking on cell phones as they cut people off in order to get just 20 stupid feet ahead in a traffic jam, and I can think about how our children’s children will despise us for wasting all the future’s fuel and probably screwing up the climate, and how spoiled and stupid and disgusting we all are, and how it all just sucks …

If I choose to think this way, fine, lots of us do – except that thinking this way tends to be so easy and automatic it doesn’t have to be a choice. Thinking this way is my natural default setting. It’s the automatic, unconscious way that I experience the boring, frustrating, crowded parts of adult life when I’m operating on the automatic, unconscious belief that I am the centre of the world and that my immediate needs and feelings are what should determine the world’s priorities.

The thing is that there are obviously different ways to think about these kinds of situations. In this traffic, all these vehicles stuck and idling in my way: it’s not impossible that some of these people in SUVs have been in horrible car accidents in the past and now find driving so traumatic that their therapist has all but ordered them to get a huge, heavy SUV so they can feel safe enough to drive; or that the Hummer that just cut me off is maybe being driven by a father whose little child is hurt or sick in the seat next to him, and he’s trying to rush to the hospital, and he’s in a much bigger, more legitimate hurry than I am – it is actually I who am in his way.

Again, please don’t think that I’m giving you moral advice, or that I’m saying you’re “supposed to” think this way, or that anyone expects you to just automatically do it, because it’s hard, it takes will and mental effort, and if you’re like me, some days you won’t be able to do it, or you just flat-out won’t want to.

But most days, if you’re aware enough to give yourself a choice, you can choose to look differently at this fat, dead-eyed, over-made-up lady who just screamed at her little child in the checkout line – maybe she’s not usually like this; maybe she’s been up three straight nights holding the hand of her husband who’s dying of bone cancer, or maybe this very lady is the low-wage clerk at the Motor Vehicles Dept who just yesterday helped your spouse resolve a nightmarish red-tape problem through some small act of bureaucratic kindness.

Of course, none of this is likely, but it’s also not impossible – it just depends on what you want to consider.

If you’re automatically sure that you know what reality is and who and what is really important – if you want to operate on your default setting – then you, like me, will not consider possibilities that aren’t pointless and annoying.

But if you’ve really learned how to think, how to pay attention, then you will know you have other options. It will be within your power to experience a crowded, loud, slow, consumer-hell-type situation as not only meaningful but sacred, on fire with the same force that lit the stars – compassion, love, the sub-surface unity of all things.

Not that that mystical stuff’s necessarily true: the only thing that’s capital-T True is that you get to decide how you’re going to try to see it. You get to consciously decide what has meaning and what doesn’t. You get to decide what to worship.

Because here’s something else that’s true. In the day-to-day trenches of adult life, there is no such thing as atheism. There is no such thing as not worshipping. Everybody worships. The only choice we get is what to worship. And an outstanding reason for choosing some sort of god or spiritual-type thing to worship – be it JC or Allah, be it Yahweh or the Wiccan mother-goddess or the Four Noble Truths or some infrangible set of ethical principles – is that pretty much anything else you worship will eat you alive.

If you worship money and things – if they are where you tap real meaning in life – then you will never have enough. Never feel you have enough. It’s the truth. Worship your own body and beauty and sexual allure and you will always feel ugly, and when time and age start showing, you will die a million deaths before they finally plant you.

On one level, we all know this stuff already – it’s been codified as myths, proverbs, clichés, bromides, epigrams, parables: the skeleton of every great story. The trick is keeping the truth up front in daily consciousness.

Worship power – you will feel weak and afraid, and you will need ever more power over others to keep the fear at bay. Worship your intellect, being seen as smart – you will end up feeling stupid, a fraud, always on the verge of being found out.

The insidious thing about these forms of worship is not that they’re evil or sinful; it is that they are unconscious. They are default settings. They’re the kind of worship you just gradually slip into, day after day, getting more and more selective about what you see and how you measure value without ever being fully aware that that’s what you’re doing.

And the world will not discourage you from operating on your default settings, because the world of men and money and power hums along quite nicely on the fuel of fear and contempt and frustration and craving and the worship of self. Our own present culture has harnessed these forces in ways that have yielded extraordinary wealth and comfort and personal freedom. The freedom to be lords of our own tiny skull-sized kingdoms, alone at the centre of all creation.

This kind of freedom has much to recommend it. But there are all different kinds of freedom, and the kind that is most precious you will not hear much talked about in the great outside world of winning and achieving and displaying.

The really important kind of freedom involves attention, and awareness, and discipline, and effort, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them, over and over, in myriad petty little unsexy ways, every day. That is real freedom. The alternative is unconsciousness, the default setting, the “rat race” – the constant gnawing sense of having had and lost some infinite thing. I

know that this stuff probably doesn’t sound fun and breezy or grandly inspirational. What it is, so far as I can see, is the truth with a whole lot of rhetorical bullshit pared away. Obviously, you can think of it whatever you wish. But please don’t dismiss it as some finger-wagging Dr Laura sermon.

None of this is about morality, or religion, or dogma, or big fancy questions of life after death. The capital-T Truth is about life before death. It is about making it to 30, or maybe 50, without wanting to shoot yourself in the head.

It is about simple awareness – awareness of what is so real and essential, so hidden in plain sight all around us, that we have to keep reminding ourselves, over and over: “This is water, this is water.”

 

· Adapted from the commencement speech the author gave to a graduating class at Kenyon College, Ohio

 

This version is taken from the Guardian website, where it is bizarrely described as ‘fiction’. It is also published in book form by Hachette.

Here’s another book precis from my friends at Coaching on Call

3 Seconds: The Power of Thinking Twice by Les Parrott
As a psychologist, Les Parrott was interested in research that showed that it only takes three seconds to redirect a negative impulse in the human brain. Three seconds – the time it takes to make a decision.

In this book he outlines the six common impulses that typically sabotage success, claiming that three seconds is all that stands between those who settle for ‘whatever’ and those who insist on ‘whatever it takes’.

The Six Impulses

The six immediate impulses that Parrott identifies are, he claims, predictable and accepted by most of us without a second thought. Yet they lead to mediocrity and unfulfilled potential. Here he suggests that instead we take just three seconds to reconsider – to consciously replace the first automatic impulse with a second less natural but more effective one, as follows:

Empower Yourself
“There’s nothing I can do about it,” vs “I can’t do everything, but I can do something.”

Embrace a Good Challenge
“It’s too difficult to even attempt,” vs “I love a challenge.”

Fuel Your Passion
“I’ll do what happens to come my way,” vs “I’ll do what I’m designed to do.”

Own Your Piece of the Pie
“It’s not my problem, somebody else is to blame,” vs “The buck stops here.”

Walk the Extra Mile
“I’ve done what’s required, and that’s that,” vs “I’ll go above and beyond the mere minimum.”

Quit Stewing and Start Doing
“Someday I’m going to do that,” vs “I’m diving in … starting today.”

“People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are.
The people that get on in this world are those who get up and look for
the circumstances they want and if they can’t find them, make them.”
George Bernard Shaw

A day workshop led by Jnanagarbha
Sunday 19th June,

10.30am – 4.30pm
Croydon Buddhist Centre

Jean-Paul Sartre infamously claimed that “hell is other people”. Whatever we think of this, the truth is that practising in the Triratna community we have to spend a lot of time with other people.

If you’d like to

  • feel more fully at ease in groups
  • understand how different people relate to groups in different ways
  • communicate with others more fully – hearing and being heard
  • explore the phases that groups go through

Then this workshop is for you.

Knowing something about group processes, and having more awareness of our own habits and responses in group settings can help us both to use them more effectively for our own Dharma practice, and to communicate the Dharma more effectively and to a wider range of different people.

This is workshop is designed to help us to make more of groups, and is designed as much for those who feel comfortable in groups as for those who find them challenging, and as much for those who lead groups, as for those who take part in them.

The content of the workshop will evolve in response to those who are taking part, although I expect we’ll cover material such as:

  • An exploration of the fundamental issue of how to be in relation to others while retaining a sense of self – known as the Love-Will polarity
  • Introducing some simple models of group stages:

Tuckman’s famous ‘forming, norming, storming, performing’ progression
John Heron’s Seasons metaphor
Schutz’s ‘inclusion – control – openness’ model.

    • Addressing some of the issues of our own and others’ anxiety in groups, looking at:

The three domains of anxiety: understanding, acting and connecting
Existential and archaic anxiety

While this day is a companion to the Mandala of Kalyana Mitrata Day earlier in the year, it is suitable for everyone to attend.

The cost for the day is just £25 and you can book online, or call the Centre on 020 8688 8624

Your don't have to meditate to be mindful

Over the last 20 years, mindfulness has become an increasingly important concept in psychology. The term and idea come from Buddhist teaching and meditation, although the original term (Pali: sati, Sanskrit: smti) is better translated as ‘recollection’. Contemporary scientific interest in mindfulness emerged from the work of Jon Kabbat-Zinn, who began working with mindfulness meditation in a Massachusetts clinic in 1979. Initially his focus was on pain and symptom management, but it soon broadened out to a much wider range of applications, including preventing depression relapse, anxiety, heart disease and managing cancer treatments.

Kabbat-Zinn’s definition of mindfulness is

paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, non-judgmentally’ (1994)

Marlatt and Kristeler define it as

bringing one’s complete attention to the present experience on a moment to moment basis’ (1999)

Although Bishop, Segal et al (2004) have sought to clarify two dimensions of mindfulness:

i. self regulation of attention on immediate experience

ii. orientation of curiosity, openness and acceptance to it

This definition emphasizes the fact that noticing is often not enough in itself to effect helpful change, the emotional tone or attitude is also important.

Dr Richard Davidson of Wisconsin University has carried out wide-ranging research into the effects of meditation, including the benefits it brings to immune response, mood, energy levels, etc. as well as measuring the changes in brain chemistry and function that accompany these. Most recently, research has shown that meditation also results in physical changes to the brain in as little as eight weeks.

Californian professor, Dr Paul Ekman undertook research on people’s sensitivity to ‘micro expressions’ and found that meditators were the only group to consistently score higher on recognition of these. This means that meditators are better judges than police officers and other professionals of, for example, whether somebody is lying or not.

Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy for Depression (pioneered by Segal, Williams and Teasdale) is now recommended by NICE as the most beneficial treatment for those suffering multiple episodes of depression. Similar work is now being done in the use of mindfulness for recovery from addiction, and management of stress (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction – MBSR.

A day workshop at Buddhist Centres across England

Connect with more people, more deeply.

Sangharakshita has famously said that he believes that we can be friends with anyone. This is a bold ideal, and one that most of us struggle to come anywhere near.

In this fun and challenging day we will see how the symbolism of the mandala, the magical rites of the Tantra and Jungian archetypes can offer us new insights into communication and connection, and support us to be a better spiritual friend to more people.

why?
• To connect more deeply with your friends, and help you to make friends with a wider range of people
• To explore your habits and assumptions about communication
• To make your interactions with your friends more conscious, so as to increase your choices, and expand your range of responses

what?
A day workshop that will include:

  • Mining our collective knowledge of the Mandala of the Five Buddhas, myths, fairy tales, books, movies and real life to explore the archetypes of the King/Queen, Warrior, Magician/Wise Woman and Lover.
  • An exploration of the Tantric rites of Attraction, Prospering, Pacification and Destruction and their correlations
  • Music, embodiment exercises, and plenty of opportunities to experiment with communicating in a range of different styles
  • Mantra chanting and meditation

when and where?

time?
Probably 10.00am to 4.00pm, but check with Centre to confirm precise times.

how do I book?
Call me for more information or contact the Buddhist Centre concerned

what do people say about it?
“This was a great day, that Jnanagarbha led with consummate skill. I was touched by his openness in the expression of his core values and his trials in living by them. The day had the perfect mix of instruction, participation, playfulness and challenge. I think all participants will have been surprised to have expanded their communicative range to a greater degree than they perhaps realised was happening in such a fun and engaging day. I would recommend this event to other Buddhist centres, and look forward to welcoming Jnanagarbha back to Croydon for more. Sadhu!”
Dhammavijaya, Chair, Croydon Buddhist Centre

why aren’t you coming to my local Centre?
I’d be delighted to! Talk to your Centre team or give me a call.

Proud Crow Warrior

Proud Crow Warrior

Pride has a mixed press in our culture, our relationship with it having been complicated by its heading the list of the Seven Deadly Sins. This perspective was imported from the Ancient Greek concept of hubris, in which the crime of a mortal seeking to become godlike and suffering the inevitable retribution of Nemesis formed the plot outline of many Greek tragedies. The continued bad press for pride has sometimes been seen as a tool of oppression in an inequitable system, as the encouragement of humility in those who are disempowered can be used as a way of encouraging acceptance of inequity and passivity.

However, since the seventeenth century there has been a gradual shift in perspectives on pride, so that it can now be seen as healthy, rather than excessive, sense of self-worth. It can be argued that the hubristic inflation of self-worth is not really pride, and is often a compensatory mechanism for a lack of genuine pride. It is now more commonly the case that individuals lack a sufficient basis of self-esteem, although hubris can be a significant issue for a leader, and we all know people who have ‘believed their own publicity’ and experienced the sense of schaudenfrade when they ‘got what they deserved’.

In its pure form, pride is rather more a mode of being than a feeling per se. Pride is expressed in presence, bearing, and how you relate to yourself, to others and to the circumstances of your life, especially in how in how you respond to success and failure. Such a healthy self-regard is often reflected in a healthy regard from others. Pride can also be looked at in terms of what it is not, as it is characterised by a freedom from shame and guilt and from the need for self-justification. In this respect it is an essential component of a maturation process, and an essential ingredient in the psyche of a leader. The relation to shame and guilt here reflects the fact that pride has a social aspect that can enhance the individual dimension, so that the vague sense of pride is amplified to a fully-fledged feeling. It is in this respect that pride has been adopted by the LGBT community.

As a feeling experience that makes an impact on us, pride is most likely to be experienced in relation to a specific achievement. Pride is usually associated with accomplishment not moral worth, so that it has been said that one can feel pride about doing well, but not about doing good. Perhaps it can be argued that one’s underlying sense of pride comes from a sense of moral worth and general capability, and that full-blown feelings of pride arise from specific achievements. Many people’s strongest experience of pride is in relation to the achievements of their children. As a leader, while you may experience pride in relation to a job well done or a strategy achieved, it may well be in regard to your metaphorical children – be they projects of protégés – that you experience most pride, albeit vicariously.

You ask me why I entered the mountain deep and cold,
Awesome, surrounded by steep peaks and grotesque rocks,
A place that is painful to climb and difficult to descend,
Wherein reside the gods of the mountain and the spirits of trees.

Have you not seen, O have you not seen,
The peach and plum blossoms in the royal garden?
They must be in full bloom, pink and fragrant,
Now opening in the April showers, now falling in the spring gales;
Flying high and low, all over the garden the petals scatter.
Some sprigs may be plucked by the strolling spring maidens,
And the flying petals picked by the flittering spring orioles.

Have you not seen, O have you not seen,
The water gushing up in the divine spring of the garden?
No sooner does it arise than it flows away forever:
Thousands of shining lines flow as they come forth,
Flowing, flowing, flowing into an unfathomable abyss;
Turning, whirling again, they flow on forever,
And no one knows where they will stop.

Have you not seen, O have you not seen,

Kukai

That billions have lived in China, in Japan,
None have been immortal, from time immemorial:
Ancient sage kings or tyrants, good subjects or bad,
Fair ladies and homely – who could enjoy eternal youth?
Noble men and lowly alike, without exception, die away;
They all have died, reduced to dust and ashes;
The singing halls and dancing stages have become the abodes of foxes.
Transient as dreams, bubbles or lightening, all are perpetual travelers.

Have you not seen, O have you not seen,
This has been man’s fate, how can you alone live forever?
Thinking of this, my heart always feels torn;
You, too, are like the sun going down behind the western mountains,
Or a living corpse whose span of life is nearly over.
Futile would be my stay in the capital;
Away, away, I must go, I must not stay there.
Release me, for I shall be master of the great void;
A child of Shingon must not stay there.

I have never tired of watching the pine trees and the rocks at Mount Koya;
The limpid stream of the mountain is the source of my inexhaustible joy.
Discard pride in earthly gains;
Do not be scorched in the burning house, the triple world!
Discipline in the woods alone lets us soon enter the eternal Realm.

There is a profound teaching in the movie Wayne’s World. When asked by the evil Benjamin “How do you feel about making a change?”, Wayne’s friend and side-kick Garth responds in a deadpan voice “We fear change.” It’s a popular part of the movie, with thousands of references to it online, and like many jokes it has a significant truth at its heart.

We really do fear change. We don’t know what change may bring us, and for many people that fear of the unknown is so strong that it not only stifles their growth and development, it keeps them in abusive relationships or jobs that they hate. For many people the security of the familiar, however unpleasant, appears preferable to the uncertainty of change.

I recently took part in some training on the Solution Focus coaching methodology OSKAR, and I was very struck by the way that this approach is particularly effective in working to overcome our innate fear of the unknown.

As you’ve probably guessed, OSKAR is an acronym, and the O stands for Outcome. (I don’t intend to explore the whole methodology here, you can follow the links if you’d like to know what the other letters stand for.) In OSKAR, Outcome has two aspects:

• clarification of what the client wants to achieve, both overall and within the context of the particular coaching session (known as Building the Platform)

• imagining a Future Perfect, in which a miracle has taken place and the desired outcome has been fully achieved (in Solution Focus this is known as the Miracle Question)

In demonstrations of the OSKAR approach I was struck by the way a whole session could focus almost exclusively on clarifying what the client wanted to achieve. Sometimes we’re so hung up on what we don’t want in our current situation, that it’s hard to see through to what we do want instead. Just gaining this clarity about the desired goal can be all that we need – a strategy and the imperative to act seems to naturally emerge from it.

Of course different people have different responses to the idea of change, and different responses to life itself. In Buddhist psychology a simple distinction is made between what are traditionally known as ‘greed types’ and ‘hate types’. I usually explain this by asking people to imagine a buffet table at a party or event. A greed type will approach the table and have an internal discourse along the lines of “Ooh look, mushroom vol-au-vents, I like those … and there’s some nice looking samosas … oh, and look at the puddings!” because he (or she) pays attention to the aspects of their situation that they find attractive.

In contrast, a hate type’s inner discourse will be much more along the lines of “I hate eating standing up … and I can’t eat chicken wings … and look they’ve put celery in the salad, I can’t stand celery … and those puddings are really fattening”, because they pay attention to the aspects of the situation that they dislike.

When they look at the future, greed types and hates types imagine very different things: greed types get excited and enthusiastic about all the things they’re looking forward to, and hate types worry about how everything might go wrong! Greed types are natural optimists and hate types are inveterate pessimists, and as the pioneer of positive psychology Martin Seligman points out in Learned Optimism, optimists live longer, healthier, happier lives – albeit with an occasional tendency to naivety and seeing life through overly ‘rose-coloured spectacles’.

Of course I’m exaggerating the differences here to emphasise a point. We are all greed types and hate types to different degrees at different times, depending on circumstances and how well-resourced we are. Nevertheless this simple model can be one of many useful lenses to look at our habits and help to address our resistances to change.

Useful though the OSKAR methodology can be, the importance of clarifying your goal is fundamental to change of any kind. It’s not a new observation, but we seem to need reminding of it again and again. Back in the 1940s the Hindu teacher Swami Ramdas was unequivocal: although many embark on a path of spiritual development few make progress because most lack a clear idea of the goal they wish to reach, and they also lack a clear idea of how to get there.

If you don’t like where you are now, then be careful to clarify where you’re trying to go at the very start of the journey, otherwise fear of the unknown may undermine your ability to get anywhere at all.

Welcome to my blog, an opportunity for me to lay out some of my ideas, or more often lay out the ideas of other people that I think are worth some attention!

I had been thinking of having a number of separate blogs – one on work and leadership, one with thoughts on spiritual practice, and maybe a third for me to just generally opine. However, I realise that since my work (both personal and professional) is about integration, it makes more sense to host everything in the one space – and use tags and titles to identify different strands. But I’d better concentrate on learning to blog-crawl before I start trying to blog-run.

You can see my main websites at The Buddhist Coach and Helping Change, as well as my Buddhist Coach Facebook page.

My Twitter feed

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