It’s a truth universally acknowledged, that a writer in possession of a blog, must be in want of publishing a book 🙂 I went the self publishing route and did it. My mini guide to healing love addiction is now available on Amazon.
I have learned about Gabor Maté from his work with psychedelics and then discovered his amazing work on understanding addiction and childhood trauma. This documentary is a beautifully made summary of his work and the many people he helped over the years showing why we get sick, addicted, unhappy and how this impacts planet and those around us. Heavy but healing. You might need tissues…
Fear + Uncertainty = Anxiety. How true. Who has not felt anxious in the last year? Elisha Goldstein says that 1 in 12 of us used to suffer from anxiety before the Covid pandemic, and now it is 1 in 3. I definitely have been way more anxious than normal in the last year, I’ve struggled with sleeping, panic attacks, depression. What helped me was exactly what Elisha talks about: embodiment, music and dance specifically; nature; connecting with friends and others – professionally, based on interests or as an activist; my devotional and meditative practice, and serving (volunteering). This is a fantastic talk and I hope it gives you a useful perspective and tools if you are feeling anxious. Comment if you want to reach out. Remember, you are not alone. Giant virtual hug.
PS: if you like the talk, donate to Action for Happiness, they are a UK charity who are working hard to help us be happier.
A friend’s partner lost her dad to covid recently and he asked us for resources on grieving. Among other resources, I found this beautiful story by Andy Weir about death, after death, God and reality. The animated version is above.
Last year was hard. Many of my friends are mystics or psychonauts, both of which often come with existential crises, dark nights of the soul, depression and unemployment. As the social roles and identities fall off, the soul reawakens and reclaims spacetime from the ever distrustful, fearful, jittery mind. The soul gently teaches it how to be and co-exist in peace and gradually envelopes it in Love.
The winter of the soul is dark but necessary to germinate the seeds of meaning, integrate the void, truly find oneself, get to see the purpose, learn how to live every day from and be led by the soul, not mind.
Is it manifesting we need to learn, or letting go, surrendering more to see what’s already there? It is not a new sign, a message from the Universe that we need, but rather to still ourselves, quieten our minds, open our hearts and notice what’s already there. We don’t need to work for it. Just get through the period of non seeing with as much faith as possible. The period of clarity will come. In fact, it is already here, waiting for us to pick the right lens with which to see. No rush, all in due time. Happy weekend, fellow nomad-mystics.
I have recently watched this talk on five hindrances to self-mastery by Master Shi Heng Yi. I read about Five Hindrances, a concept new to me – desire, anger, restlessness and worry, sloth, torpor and boredom and doubt (I memorised it as DARED – desire, anger, restlessness, emptiness, doubt). The sloth, torpor and boredom sounded very familiar – non-doing confused for inaction, feeling lost, stuck, feeling numb and depressed in the face of the unknown, feeling empty. In other words emptiness understood on only one level, seen by the mind wallowing in self-pity as existential emptiness, dark void, terrifying abyss – “if there is no self, no me, then what is the point!”
While there will always be a part of you that finds comfort in complacency and overwhelm in the presence of change, the key is to encourage yourself in every step, and to be patient when results may vary, so you can support yourself in learning that positive change won’t always be fast or easy but it’s never as difficult as we believe it to be.
When we love ourselves too deeply to be stagnant and respect the divine too deeply to stand in the way of our next incredible milestone of expression, the beauty of tangible change is a gift to receive and never a punishment to endure. To find this truth and embody it fully, we must dare to love ourselves more, not less, no matter the time it takes to change, regardless how often we seem to miss the mark, and despite the kicking, screaming, begging and pleading that only needs more of your loving support to shift old patterns into new possibilities.
— Matt Kahn
My take aways from the above quote:
Complacency feels good because no risks are taken. Comfort zone is defined by fears.
Non-doing does not mean inaction.
It is natural to be overwhelmed by change and uncertainty.
Love yourself through complacency, inaction, stagnation, stuckness.
Trust the dharma, the process, the Universe, move out of its way and let it unfold.
What is it with us and self-love? Even the most advanced practitioners and spiritual seekers seem to struggle with it and specifically the thought of being judged by others. The infamous “what will people think” is a big one. For some people, what they think others will think or say dictates how they dress, behave, live, what they say and do, or don’t do.
Why do so many of us have this deep rooted sense of unworthiness? What is the source of the lack of self-love so many of us – even those who grew up in a happy childhood and abundance – suffer from? How does this happen? I don’t know and plan to learn more about this one day. Today I wanted to share five practical tips and methods that I found useful in gradually learning to love myself more and worry about what others think less.
Where do you stand in relation to hope? Are you hopeful? Or is it hopeless? Both of them are traps. Best place to stand is half way between hope and hopelessness. Standing nowhere, being everywhere. Doing what you do.