In today’s world, where technology has eclipsed our humanity, many of us are looking for a way to operate in our lives with a day-to-day sense of excellence and wellbeing, a way that fulfills our spiritual nature. People have tried different religions or disciplines with varying degrees of success or failure. They have taken motivational workshops to try to discover some meaning to apply to their lives and many have come away wondering, “Is this all there is?” This vague sense of emptiness or dissatisfaction can permeate our lives, even when we accomplish the goals we set for ourselves. People… Read more.
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Never in history have we had such comforts and ease of living. Our grocery store shelves are stocked and we can cook a meal in minutes. We can communicate with family and friends around the world instantaneously and face to face. Modern conveniences make our day to day life easy. Then why the heck are we so stressed? The reason is because of this technology, and our limbic brain. I have been preaching this a long time and recently spoke about it. Now new research by Dr. Marc Schoen, psychologist and faculty member at UCLA’s Geffen School of Medicine, has… Read more.
I’m sure this sounds like bizarre advice, and you’re itching to know what happiness has to do with peas and grapes. It came from one of my favorite mantras… A friend overheard me quietly saying it one day, and she thought I said “Eat peas and grapes.” It never occurred to me that what I was saying might sound like that. I laughed as I thought it about it for a moment. I do love eating that’s for sure. In fact, it’s probably one of my all-time favorite things to do. It’s not the chewing and swallowing part of eating,… Read more.
By Marina Keegan, Author of The Opposite of Loneliness: Essays and Stories. Every generation thinks it’s special — my grandparents because they remember World War II, my parents because of discos and the moon. We have the Internet. Millions and billions of doors we can open and shut, posting ourselves into profiles and digital scrapbooks. Suddenly and totally, we’re threaded together in a network so terrifyingly colossal that we can finally see our terrifyingly tiny place in it. But we’re all individuals. It’s beaten into us in MLK Day assemblies (one person can make a difference!) and fourth-grade poster projects (what do… Read more.
Why do we end up as often as we do in those painful situations in which the last words usually spoken go something like, “How in the world did I get myself into this mess?” Sound familiar? It should. And while the answer to this woeful question should rescue us from similar future sticky situations, it rarely works out that way. This is very important to admit to ourselves. The truth is we keep falling into the same old snares. Why? There is an authentic answer to this question that may surprise you. The reason we haven’t as yet realized… Read more.
The heart is contained in four ways: first by the physical body, next by the emotional armor we all carry, next by the physical heart itself, and finally, at the very center of everything, is the inner heart, the heart within the heart: Ananda Khanda. This is what desires to be cracked open to the world. Heart opening is a symptom of personal growth. We might call this emotional opening, or psychological breakthrough. But if we use the lens of spirituality, of soul growth, and we accept the idea that the heart is where the soul resides, what then? What… Read more.
Today’s Brilliance is a bit different from other days. I had the honor of spending a few hours with Sir Richard Branson at his home on Necker Island, in the British Virgin Islands. As I walked into his home, I found him lying in a hammock in an alcove of the great room, open to the warm tropical breezes, overlooking the multi-colored turquoise Caribbean Sea. Bliss. Barefoot and dressed in swim shorts and a tee shirt, he looked more like a Jimmy Buffett fan rather than the founder of the Virgin Group, best known as the only person in the… Read more.
Philosopher Dr. Mortimer J. Adler was the first to introduce the Whole Person Concept, which challenges us to strive for a proper balance in all aspects of our lives—spending meaningful time with family and friends, maintaining our health, enriching our lives, becoming all that we can be, giving back to our communities, learning to manage our financial affairs, and growing in our spiritual lives. At its core, the Whole Person Concept is learning to balance our work, our lives, and our successes. The Whole Person Concept encourages us to remember the importance of growing and learning, and it reminds me… Read more.
Yesterday I read a book about boundaries. Why? I had to for one of my upcoming shows. Much to my delight, I started understanding what that bandied-about term meant in relation to me, my family and friends, and my kids. Even my dogs will benefit from my reading the material. We hear a lot in the media about boundaries. Gotta set boundaries. That’s a boundary violation. I have firm boundaries. I have no boundaries. But what does that really mean? I started thinking about how boundaries are being erased as we groove into a society where personal choice often trumps the rights… Read more.
Birth is the only way we enter this world, and death is our only exit. We all share this truth of human existence—and yet our births and our deaths are as individual unique as each of us. Imagine! A new soul, entering the world from the vessel of another body! A new soul, arriving by Divine choice and by Divine selection of a particular mother, a particular father. The miracle of welcoming a new soul affects us so deeply, it’s almost impossible to express everything we hold in our heart. Sit down a group of mothers of any age or… Read more.
There are distinct moments in life when the truth comes closer to us. Unfortunately, almost all of these important, potentially life-changing moments are entirely missed, because what is wrong with us, our false nature, sees what is true as an attacking enemy. Let me show you what I mean so that the next time truth makes an unexpected appearance in your life, you will recognize it for what it is: a friendly and beneficial force that is on your side. Permitting the truth to do what it is intended to do will permit you to be what you want to… Read more.
Gordon Dean, former head of the Atomic Energy Commission, scrawled the following quote on the back of an envelope found beside him after his death in a plane crash. Never judge people, don’t type them too quickly, but in a pinch, always assume that a man is good and that at worst he is in the gray area between good and bad. Wise words, realized only hours — possibly moments — before Mr. Dean tragically died. If you are reading this, then hopefully you have the luxury of more life to live — and to learn a valuable lesson from… Read more.
Years ago, I worked with a gifted hypnotherapist. He was a newbie to the craft, just starting out, and I don’t think either he or I understood the scope of his abilities then. Suffice it to say, I went to places and spaces that were far beyond the price of his introductory sessions! We worked together in the dank basement room of a rental office downtown, the kind of place where folks set up flimsy folding tables and phone banks, then clear out overnight to whereabouts unknown. A way stop for fly-by-night businesses, filled with all the ghosts of failed… Read more.
It is only in the most recent history that people subscribe to the ideal of “independence,” of doing it on your own, of not needing anybody to support you. And in concept, this may be a good idea but only as a concept. We have millions of years of a genetic heritage that argues for community and we have maybe 75 to 100 years that argues for independence. Human beings have survived out of their interdependence, not their independence. When infants are born they are completely helpless and would surely perish if not for the love and care given by… Read more.
About a month ago, I was in New York City and stopped into Loehmann’s, an off-price store known for great deals on high-end merchandise. I stumbled upon the perfect little blue cocktail dress at the right price and bought it, even though I had no idea where I would wear it. This dress was a designer dress and the original price was over $2000, but it was discounted to only $180. The dress is gorgeous and the perfect color for me. The only thing “wrong” with it, is that it’s the wrong size (or I am), but I bought it… Read more.
My bathing cap is too tight; it doesn’t hold the cascade of hair that someone’s piled on my head in order to squash it on, pull it tight until it covers my ears. When I take it off later, my hair will be sodden, snarled, and the long strands will catch in the cap, causing me to yelp in pain. I wear it, because I want to pretend I am immune from the water: that even when I am submerged, my body will be safe from all that scary wetness. If we wore goggles back then, I’d have put them… Read more.
Most people think that where they are right now “isn’t it” and that something in the future will produce satisfaction. But in reality, this moment is all we have – the past is over and the future hasn’t yet arrived. Once we saw a goat who was put out to graze in a lush field. The grass was high and feeding was plentiful. But he wasn’t satisfied. He made a funny picture as he strained toward the field next door. His front legs were suspended mid-air, dangling over the fence as he vainly reached for a tempting bit of green,… Read more.
There is a hidden part of you that knows, without thinking about it, how to always be perfectly relaxed, carefree, and in command. This higher intellectual and emotional intelligence is to your present thoughts and feelings as is the mighty oak to its own spreading branches. Once you come into contact with its perfect strength and power, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it. Great masters of the past have called this part of us by different names – none any better than the rest – but the one that seems most complete is… your Original Fearless Self. The… Read more.
We human beings are born with an indefinable longing to grow beyond ourselves, to penetrate and illuminate the mysterious depths of our own heart. The ideal and pursuit of perfection is literally seeded into our soul; it pervades our very being. Our longing to walk among the stars does not seem out of reach; the wish to be eternal goes with us everywhere. In more down-to-earth terms, if we wish to live without resentments that linger in our hearts and rid ourselves of fear with all of its debilitating limitations, we must shed the skin of our selfishness. We must… Read more.
We’re often led to act against ourselves by an undetected weakness that goes before us — trying to pass itself off to others — as a strength. This is secret self-sabotage. It sinks us in our personal and business relationships as surely as a torpedo wrecks the ship it strikes. Learning how to stop this self-sinking is the focus of this exercise. Let’s begin by gathering the higher insights we’ll need to succeed. Any person you feel the need to control or dominate — so that he or she will treat you as you “think” you should be treated —… Read more.
Much of the self help world doesn’t begin to address what we really need: what you need, what I need, what anyone needs in our lives. That’s because our current state of evolution is so fast, that what made sense even a few years ago is no longer current or relevant to where we can go today. Recently, I was invited to take part in a seminar that promised it would teach me how to access my authentic self. That sounded great! Who doesn’t want to live authentically? But as I looked at the list of all the things this… Read more.