“We often wonder: ‘How will I be when I die?’ The answer to that is that whatever state of mind we are in now, whatever kind of person we are now: that’s what we will be like at the moment of death, if we do not change. This is why it is so absolutely important to use this lifetime to purify our mind-stream, and so our basic being and character, while we can.”
“May I enlighten in this lifetime, despite what I feel. No matter what. Despite my various experiences and emotions, may I tirelessly work for the benefit of all beings.”
Even in this world, and even now, there are said to be many hidden yogis or discreet yogis, called bepay naljor in Tibetan. It means those realized ones who are not generally recognized as great spiritual sages or saints, but have deeply tasted the fruit of enlightenment, and are living it. Perhaps they are anonymously doing their good works here among us right now!
The infinite vast expanse is one’s own inconceivable nature. Who can say who has realized it and who hasn’t? When we travel around the world or experience other dimensions, there are so many beings who have tasted it. We can see it in their behavior, in their countenance, and in stories that are told—not just in the Dzogchen tradition or the Buddhist tradition, but in any tradition, and in our Western world too.
This true nature is so vast and inconceivable that even some birds and animals and beings in other unseen dimensions can be said to have realized it, as in some of the ancient Indian Jataka stories and other teaching tales. It is always said that everything is the self-radiant display of the primordial Buddha Samantabhadra. There are infinite numbers of Buddhas and infinite numbers of beings. Who can say who is excluded from it?
Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche
from the book “Natural Great Perfection: Dzogchen Teachings And Vajra Songs”
By USC News
Children’s lungs grew stronger as pollution declined in LA and throughout the basin over the past two decades.
Air quality has improved throughout the Los Angeles basin, resulting in health improvements for growing children. (Photo/Nserrano via Wikimedia Commons)
From USC News
Focusing on the present has positive effects on daytime fatigue and depression, two conditions that often result from the poor sleep of older adults.
Mindfulness meditation appears to have clinical importance by serving to reduce sleep problems among the growing population of older adults, a researcher reported.
By Johann Hari
It is now one hundred years since drugs were first banned — and all through this long century of waging war on drugs, we have been told a story about addiction by our teachers and by our governments. This story is so deeply ingrained in our minds that we take it for granted. It seems obvious. It seems manifestly true. Until I set off three and a half years ago on a 30,000-mile journey for my new book, Chasing The Scream: The First And Last Days of the War on Drugs, to figure out what is really driving the drug war, I believed it too. But what I learned on the road is that almost everything we have been told about addiction is wrong — and there is a very different story waiting for us, if only we are ready to hear it.
Pamela channels Mary Magdalene
Dear friends, I am here filled with respect for the path you are on. I am Mary Magdalene, and I have also been on Earth in an earthly body. I have experienced the confusion, the emotion, and the darkness that can be present in a human life. I have also experienced the light, those moments of insight and deep ecstasy, because I sensed the presence of my soul, and that experience lifted me out of the confusion, and away from the loneliness of earthly life.
This going back and forth between light and dark is characteristic of being human. It is also the purpose of earthly life to get to know and respect these opposites which occur both in yourself and in the world. The light, as well as the dark, carry treasures within them. From the perspective of unity, that which transcends the duality of earth life, there is no conflict between light and dark; there is only the dynamic between these two opposites.
Through darkness, you descend into depths that are only possible to experience while in a human body, with the mind and the emotions of a human being. From those depths, a light can be born that adds something new to Creation, to the universe and the cosmos. What you are doing while here on Earth is especially valuable. To be torn between feelings of pain, loneliness, and confusion, and ecstasy, lightness, and joy is part of being in the earthly realm of duality. Accept that ebb and flow, because doing so makes life so much lighter.
You very often fight against those waves, because you want to avoid feeling miserable and to return to the light pole as soon as possible. But from that resistance to the darkness emerges an artificial separation between light and dark, between good and bad. They become antonyms: light is good, dark is bad, but that opposition creates a duality that is false, untrue. Dark emotions have value as well and carry meaningful messages. Light alone is not enough. The dark represents enormous power, because from there comes the possibility to be an independent self who makes choices and decisions, explores new things, grows in strength and self-awareness. The whole evolution of your soul is dependent upon your having knowledge of the dark, so you can work together with it and transform it.
That becomes very clear when you are dealing with illness, with physical symptoms that disrupt and overthrow your everyday life and habits. The presence of these symptoms forces you to take a dive into the darkness, because under the pain and the physical level of the disease lies a whole reservoir of emotions that want to be seen, that have been repressed for some amount of time. It is those voices in the darkness that often want to come up through illness. However, because you, through your upbringing and society, have brought with you so much prejudice about bad and good, what may and may not be, you suppress the messages of the illness, and you often focus on the physical level, that is to say the external aspects of the disease.
I invite you to look more deeply at illness, and in a way that begins to suspend all judgments about bad and good, which are really detrimental to inner examination: the exploration of yourself. Disease is not bad in a moral sense. It is, of course, annoying, inconvenient, painful, and in light of that, it is natural that you long for harmony and health, but the disease itself is not bad. It is the end result of an inner process, and a dynamic between repressing and wanting to be seen, and that dynamic makes itself known through the body.
See your body as a very pure instrument. While your head is full of moral judgments about good and bad, the body remains external to that. The body comes before, and is outside, the realm of judgment and morality. That in itself is a miracle; the body will not be ensnared by, and join with, the voices of prejudice, fear, and morality. In this sense, the body is the most pure instrument at your disposal in the here and now.
Do not regard the body as just a physical thing, as just a lump of matter, but as a much more complex manifestation or phenomenon. The body is first of all an energy field. Sense yourself from head to toe, even as you sit here now. Be aware of the crown of your head, and your feet and toes, and feel that there is an all-encompassing field around you. That field does not stop at the surface of your body, it extends farther out, and is larger than your body.
This field about which I speak, your energy field, is very closely related to the cells and organs which make up your body on the physical level. The body and the field are deeply intertwined; one does not exist without the other. Feel the living field in and around you, and connect with it. Breathe into your belly and relax. This field contains truth about you and it is so close, it pervades and surrounds you, and yet you often cannot get at it because your thoughts act as a barrier that keeps you away from the impulses and signals, the truth of your body.
That barrier of thoughts is composed of judgments, rules on how things should be, what is allowed and what not. This barrier works like a cutting sword, because it divides your experiences and feelings into boxes, and the smooth flow, the unity of the whole becomes severed and fragmented. Try to feel the field without thinking about it; simply allow it to be there. Say “hello” to your body, to the sophisticated and fine-tuned field of energy that it is. Your soul is as present in this field as it is in the physical cells of your heart, your organs, your blood, and they all are intimately linked. What disconnects you from this living field are your thoughts, which separate and judge. Let go of this now by welcoming yourself. Go against all those centuries-old prejudices by saying “yes” to your heart, to your belly, to all the emotions you carry inside you, the so-called good and bad, and see them as a whole. Be free in yourself! Assume that everything that is alive and here in this field is good and welcome, and has value.
Imagine that you seek out the edges of this field with your consciousness. See if you can sense to where they extend, to where it feels right, to how big your field is. Imagine that you glide very lightly along those edges with your awareness and you confirm: “Yes, this is me; this is who I am now and that is good. All of it is allowed to be”. Also, please determine whether the field extends under your feet, and if it makes contact with the Earth. If it does not do so fully, go with your consciousness just below your feet and feel how the energy of the Earth welcomes you.
The supportive and nourishing power of Mother Earth helps you to feel more relaxed and quiet within your own energy field, and does so without judgment. The Earth and your body belong together; they work from the same dynamism, the same wisdom. This is the start of connecting with the energy of a disease or a complaint; become free of prejudice and come home to yourself. Feel how you need that connection and how you have missed it. To continually judge and compare yourself with others is detrimental, it creates tension and nervousness.
In order to learn to understand illness, it is necessary to come home to yourself, to say “yes” to who you are, and to enter the field of non-judgment that is around you and in your body. Imagine, as you become still, in a state of quiet watching and letting be, a gate appears before your inner eye. Behind that gate is a part of you which you have hidden, that you have not wanted to see. Your body experiences a complaint or disharmony, because you want to keep that part under lock and key. Let go in your thoughts about what that part might be, and now imagine the gate is opened. By your attention and quiet presence that energy, that part of you, is now allowed to come out. You no longer feel the need to hold it back. Just see what comes out, what appears. And remember – all is well!
If you find yourself about to make judgments, or if you start to doubt that the process is working, again, let go of those thoughts. You need not see anything, just simply feel what flows out of the gate and say “yes” to that. If you feel heaviness there, a certain mood setting in, or if you see an image or a color coming out of the gate, ask where it belongs in your body. What comes out is an emotional energy you have repressed and now ask where that repression is taking place in your body. Is it occurring high or low in your body, in a particular organ, or in a certain location in your energy field? Simply look for something that catches your attention in the energy field that you are. Let the body talk to you; it wants to speak to you, to give you suggestions, to allow you to see something. Open yourselves, and even if it does not succeed initially, do it over again when you are alone and in a relaxed state.
Connect with the field that knows no judgment. Imagine that there is a gate through which something that belongs to you, and that you have pushed away, wants to manifest and to show itself. Allow awareness and light to flow to the part of your body that has suffered from the repression. And it does not matter if this process of connecting with your body does not immediately produce noticeable results. What you are battling against are ages-old traditions of seeing things based on judgment and fear. To recover pure intuitive connection with your body demands, over and over again, that you bow to yourself in a state of stillness and non-judgment. If you do this regularly, you will begin to sense how effective this is. Even if a message does not come to you immediately, it is still good to be with yourself on this very pure level.
Finally, I ask you once again to experience the power of the Earth beneath your feet, and also as she is present in your body. Feel the natural strength and the absence of judgment there. The Earth knows instinctively what you need to heal, both physically and on the emotional level. Receive her strength now, and be open to the Earth force within your body.
© Pamela Kribbe
“Home is where you can always return, no matter how long you’ve been gone.”
By The Dodo
Yet another city has announced a ban on circuses that travel with animals — and this one is in the most populous city in Central America. Guatemala City, the capital of the Republic of Guatemala, announced a ban on traveling circuses that use animals as entertainment.
“We do not tolerate the mistreatment of animals. We will not allow circuses that include animals in the city of Guatemala.”
“[Circus animals] are subjected to a brutal mistreatment, and we don’t want to participate in this type of behavior…I think most Guatemalans will understand.”
The policy follows a similar ban that outlawed exotic circus animals in the federal district of Mexico City last June. Last month, the entire country followed suit, enacting a nationwide ban on circuses with exotic animals.
Mexico joined the countries of Malta, Bolivia, Peru, Cyprus, Greece, Paraguay, Colombia, Slovenia and the Netherlands, all of which have banned the practice.
“Always remember who you are, and you will always know where you are going.”
As we ring in 2015, we may also be greeting a new year during which several species, including the African elephant, polar bear and white rhino, may go extinct.
According to a new study recently published in the journal Nature, 41 percent of all amphibians on the planet now face extinction, while 26 percent of mammal species and 13 percent of birds are similarly threatened.
By The Economist
About 3 billion people live within 100 miles (160km) of the sea, a number that could double in the next decade as humans flock to coastal cities like gulls. The oceans produce $3 trillion of goods and services each year and untold value for the Earth’s ecology. Life could not exist without these vast water reserves–and, if anything, they are becoming even more important to humans than before.
Today is National Fig Newton Day, so we have to give an ode to figs as they’re rightly due one. Figs aren’t just for eating in Fig Newtons, however. In fact, organic dried figs are one of the best dried fruits you can choose, despite being higher in sugar than fresh figs (also a great choice). Figs are offer an incredibly delectable flavor that is somewhat like a raisin, less intense than a date, but still creamy, sweet and indulgent that you just won’t get elsewhere. You can use dried figs anywhere you would normally use a date, whether it be in raw desserts, smoothies, dried granola bars, raw energy bites or however else you enjoy using dried fruit.
“Just like a dream, being nursed to life, we are nursed back into eternity. The meaning of love defines the meaning of being born. To be allowed to change on our own is to breathe. Indifference is a quarantined difference. Conscious breathing of the Universe creates a symphony where we receive life like a gift and release it like a present, during a race where everyone holds their own truth. The finish line is a surprise. Discovering peace is worth every effort. But when you find peace, you possess the whole world and you no longer need. The views expect our walking; the perspective expects our effort. Effort always crosses the finish line. In order to comprehend the truth, we need to see the road it travels. In order to trust the truth, we need to remove from its road the speed limit. In order to choose the right path, we don’t have to figure out the wrong one. We just need to follow the light. Purpose of life often becomes a labyrinth, yet any puzzle can be solved from any direction. In order to have a future, we have to live and leave the present. Hope is a knot in a rope that keeps us from falling down. Love is never alone. Love is always crowded. Love is a shared self. We cannot own our love. We cannot teach our love. The longest breath of love is the shortest distance to heaven. Love is not rest. Love is peace. Love is the purpose. No matter what distance we cross, each step is still an infinity.”
“Focusing on what we love and are passionate about creates a purpose and nurtures our creative genius. We need to enjoy life’s journey, not just a destination. Welcoming both triumphs and mistakes is a major part of our growth. Then the inspiration will come to us when we least expect it. Any expressions of arts can be real to others only if it comes to life. It heals us and brings us closer together.”
“I see ordinary life in an extraordinary world, and I see extraordinary life in an ordinary world. Everything is One. We are all connected. If we experienced the present through eternity and eternity through the present, we would know true Love.”