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Meditation – our experience of self and of the world…

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“Positive emotions, such as compassion and patience, are teachable skills; and the way we think directly influences our experience of the world.”

Excerpts –

Montaigne believed that meditation is the finest exercise of one’s mind and David Lynch uses it as an anchor of his creative integrity. Over the centuries, the ancient Eastern practice has had a variety of exports and permutations in the West, but at no point has it been more vital to our sanity and psychoemotional survival than amidst our current epidemic of hurrying and cult of productivity. It is remarkable how much we, as a culture, invest in the fitness of the body and how little, by and large, in the fitness of the spirit and the psyche — which is essentially what meditation provides.

We know that the self is a social construct and the dissolution of its illusion, Harris argues, is the most valuable gift of meditation:

The conventional sense of self is an illusion [and] spirituality largely consists in realizing this, moment to moment. There are logical and scientific reasons to accept this claim, but recognizing it to be true is not a matter of understanding these reasons. Like many illusions, the sense of self disappears when closely examined, and this is done through the practice of meditation.

See the posting:  http://www.brainpickings.org/2014/09/29/sam-harris-waking-up-meditation/

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‘Try to be a little kinder’…

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It’s a bit embarrassing to have been concerned with the human problem all one’s life and to find at the end that one has no more to offer by way of advice than ‘Try to be a little kinder.’

Aldous Huxley, quoted in The Open Road: The Global Journey of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama by Pico Iyer

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A couple of responses sent to other blogs – re: Mindfulness and distractions. Something we all must manage daily.

Mindfulness is an important consideration in the management of stress/distress/anxiety/adhd/depression. It’s about attending to the moment, and without sounding mystical on this, mindfulness is – for me – about managing the distractions, not always being in what has been referred to as “continuous partial attention” – not a state easy to live with, if one wants to concentrate on a particular goal or activity.

When I mention mindfulness, I am also commenting on the idea of accepting a bit more of yourself – as you are – and as your post suggests you are doing since the diagnosis helped offer ‘relief’ to you. Prior to the incredibly distracting times we live in – internet, Google feeds, tv, relationships, psychiatric diagnoses, inter alia, many people struggled or grappled with the strength or pull of distractions, including Montaigne (1500s), Lord Chesterfield (1700s, I think), Virginia Woolf…When I say ‘acceptance’ or mindfulness, I’m speaking of learning to manage these feelings, these ‘states of being’ within oneself “in the best way one can.” Conversations help considerably.

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