Exploring soul

Soul is one of those words that is difficult to define. The situation isn’t helped by the fact that people use the word in quite different ways, adding to the confusion. I thought I’d do a little investigation to see the breadth of its use and see whether that would help me clarify things for myself. Care of the soul For Thomas Moore, author of Care of the Soul, the soul is not a thing but a quality. I’ve often heard it used that way in phrases such as ‘he or she has soul’. It is a quality of depth, [...]

2024-05-20T14:26:32+10:0020 May 2024|

Happiness and circumstance

Part of my iRest® training is learning to recognise uncaused joy. An aspect of our true nature that is always here, and that is unrelated to circumstance. I practice this in my daily meditation by feeling into the felt sense of aliveness in my body and mind. The felt sense of being alive. I find it to be a gentle buzz or hum and an openness, a readiness for what is to come. A readiness for experience. It’s unrelated to good or bad. I have found that I can access uncaused joy by feeling the gratitude for being alive and [...]

2023-07-15T05:41:23+10:0015 July 2023|

Welcome everything as it is!

That is easier said than done, right? It’s simple, but it’s definitely not easy. Accepting things as they are, is well understood as the first step of mindfulness. Being with what is. Not suppressing or denying our experience, or getting caught up in ideas about the way things should be, rather than how they are. The closer we can come to doing this, the more peaceful and happier we are. I think we’re reluctant to ‘welcome everything as it is’ because there’s always so much that we want to change or improve. It feels far too passive to just accept [...]

2023-04-23T16:00:37+10:0023 April 2023|

Notes on the second half of life

I am privileged to be experiencing the second half of my life. (That is, of a lifespan that most of us reasonably expect to have.) And, it is a stage of life that I have felt totally unprepared for. Not supported by the culture I live in. Not talked about. Not really even acknowledged as a thing. We all know we have around ‘three score and ten’ years on this planet, notwithstanding accident, disaster, war.  During that timespan things change, but not just the obvious inevitable physical deterioration, that despite our best efforts none of us will escape. From early [...]

2023-03-08T08:04:07+11:008 March 2023|

The difference between a mistake and sin

I really wanted to write a piece on guilt and blame. I’ve come to understand that whether directed outwardly or inwardly, guilt and blame are nothing other than by-passes that keep us stuck. Guilt and blame are unhelpful. I didn’t bargain on how hard that is to say. The belief in guilt, its expression as blame and the punishment that results, whether it be towards our self or others, is entrenched in our culture. We have a whole legal system that is based on it. So how can I suggest that our belief in guilt, sin, punishment and all that [...]

2023-02-05T19:39:07+11:005 February 2023|

Learning new things and resolutions

There is such joy in learning new things. Discovering the secrets of how things work, how things are done, understanding the clever systems and structures we’ve designed as a species to support our lives. The freshness of understanding something for the first time is a wonderful thing. So much of what we’ve already learnt may have been useful and fit for purpose when we first learned it, or made it up on the run, but as our situations and environments have changed, it may no longer be so. Letting go It’s hard to let go of skills learned, adaptive habits [...]

2023-01-04T12:35:13+11:004 January 2023|

When does positivity become toxic?

No one wants to suffer. It’s totally natural that we don’t want to feel unpleasant emotions like loss, sadness or anger. And, they are messengers too, they inform our lives. There’s another thing that we do betwixt the attraction to pleasant things and the aversion to unpleasant things. We want things to be a particular way (which is of course related). We have ideas about the way life should turn out. Put simply, we overstate our capacity to control things, we develop expectations and when life doesn’t turn out how we’d like it to, we experience a sense of failure [...]

2022-12-04T15:32:38+11:004 December 2022|

It’s all ok

Most of my life has been spent sifting through what is ok and what is not ok; to do, to think, to say. As if some axe would fall if I got it wrong. Living in fear, in terror of straying from some imagined salvation, some way to keep me safe and protected. Truth is, I’m always safe and protected in this moment. My ‘unholy alliance’ against the present has seen me in a constant state of argument with what is. My ideas of how things ‘should’ be; ideals, concepts, grand schemes to which I subscribe, all robbing me of [...]

2022-11-13T16:38:44+11:0013 November 2022|

Working with negative internal material

How I manage unwanted emotions and experiences has been a study for me over the last half decade or so. Until I was 50, I did as my family and culture had taught me; move away from them, suppress them, deny them, distract myself from them, or flat out run! Do anything but feel them! A change of pace For the last eight years the momentum has changed. I’m learning to feel, to heal. Turning towards them, rather than away from them. In other words I’ve stopped running. I’m meeting with curiosity and interest whatever is arising, honouring my experience [...]

2022-10-09T20:06:48+11:009 October 2022|

The lava lamp of life

Each week a friend and colleague of mine (fellow iRest® teacher) meet for co-meditation. We take turns. Co-meditation is called a Dyad in the iRest practice. It is essentially someone reflecting back to you your moment to moment experience across all dimensions from gross to subtle (e.g. physical, energetic, emotional, mental) that you’re sharing with them. So, kind of mindfulness on steroids. The power of this practice rests on the understanding that meeting whatever is arising in your present moment experience is the greatest wisdom we can follow. Withdrawing our attention from past and imagined future experiences, which aren’t real [...]

2022-09-01T04:51:32+10:001 September 2022|
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