Love Serve Meditate Realize

Monday, Jan 25, 2010 This week’s Food for Thought – January 25, 2010


“To be tested is good.  The challenged life may be the best therapist.” —Gail Sheehy

What holds you back from being all that you are?

In your journal, list at least five things that hold you back.  Now review your answers.

Have you blamed people or other factors outside of yourself?

It’s important to understand that ALL obstructions are rooted in our internal blocks.

Even the problems that appear outside of us are only reflecting back to us problems we have inside.  Once we address our inner issues, the outer problems disappear.

Be personally accountable for everything in your life and watch your perspectives shift.  We claim our power when we accept responsibilty for our lives.

“Conscious evolution begins as we take responsibility for clearing our own obstruction.” —Dan Millman

TIP OF THE WEEK: SATSANG   In Sanskrit, satsang is a compound composed of two words, sat and sang.  Sat carries a dual meaning of “truth” and “being”.  Sang is a shortened form of sanga, or sangama, which literally translates as “going (gam) together (san)”.  In relation to the natural world, sangama is the name given to the confluence of rivers.  In relation to spiritual practice, satsang is a group of people who have converged to enjoy the bonds of friendship and combine their energies in a quest for a greater experience in truth.

Monday, Jan 18, 2010 This week’s Food for Thought – January 18, 2010

I’ve heard it said that prayer is when we talk to God, and meditation is when we listen.  Meditation is a time of quiet when the mind is freed from its attachment to the hysterical ravings of a world gone mad.  It is a silence in which the spirit of God can enter and work His divine alchemy upon us.  Our brains literally emit different brain waves as we receive information more deeply than we do during normal waking consciousness.  There are many forms of meditation, and when we ask in our hearts for God to reveal our path to us, the mystical process of the inner teachings begins to unfold to our conscious mind.  There is Jewish meditation, Christian meditation, Transcendental meditation, Buddhist meditation, the workbook of A Course in Miracles, and many more paths.  What matters is not the path; what matters is its destination.  All genuine spiritual teachings lead us back to the reality of God.

Nothing is more important to the future of the world than that millions of people begin daily, prolonged meditation and prayer.  Why is meditation and prayer our greatest hope for world salvation, the vehicle of our spiritual renaissance?  Because it transforms us at a level of cause.  Prayer is a conduit for miracles.  It addresses the problems of the world at their source.  It changes people at a cellular level, and with each one who changes, others are brought miraculously closer to enlightenment.  —Marianne Williamson, Illuminata: A Return to Prayer

TIP OF THE WEEK: KEEP YOUR YOGA MAT CLEAN   If your mat is lightly soiled, use a spray bottle, damp sponge, or terry cloth rag to apply a solution of two cups of water and four drops of dish soap.  Rub the soiled areas.  Wipe the mat with clean water, then rub with a dry terry cloth towel.  Hang to air dry.  If your mat is heavily soiled, submerge it in a solution of warm water and mild detergent.  Use very little soap, as any residue may cause the mat to become slippery during future use.  Thoroughly hand wash the mat and rinse in clean water.  After squeezing out the excess water, lay the mat on a dry towel and roll the mat and towel together.  Stepping on the rolled up mat will squeeze more moisture out of the mat and into the towel.  Then unroll and hang to air dry.

Monday, Jan 11, 2010 This week’s Food for Thought – January 11, 2010

Excerpts from THE DIAMOND CUTTER by Geshe Michael Roach

With these words, The Diamond Cutter seems to be floating off into that world of nothing-makes-sense which Buddhism is unfortunately known for in our culture. But it is anything but.

Let’s see what’s being said here, and why, and then try to see how it could have any application at all in our lives.  Because it really does—the words here contain the real secrets to a totally successful life.

The conversation seems to amount to this—

SUBHUTI:  What shall we call the book?

THE BUDDHA:  Call it Perfect Wisdom.

SUBHUTI:  How shall we think about the book?

THE BUDDHA:  Think of it as perfect wisdom.  And if you’re wondering why, it’s because the perfect wisdom I’m writing about is perfect wisdom that could never exist anyway—and that’s exactly why I’ve decided to name the book Perfect Wisdom.  By the way, Subhuti, were you thinking that the book was a book?

SUBHUTI:  Not at all.  We know you never write books.

The crux here, and the key to the hidden potential in all things, is the statement  ‘You can call the book a book, and you can think about the book as a book, because it never could have been a book.’  This statement has a very specific and very concrete meaning, it is not some kind of mumbo-jumbo, and contained in it is all you need to know to be successful both in your personal and business life.

TIP OF THE WEEK: BREATH   In the ancient Sanskrit language, the word for breath is the same as the word for life, Prana.  From the yoga point of view, the air that we breathe contains more than just oxygen, carbon dioxide, and other gases; it contains prana, our life force, that substance from which all life and activity is derived. Prana enters our bodies when we are born and mysteriously leaves us when we die. In the same way that the concept of a person’s soul is unlikely to be proven by modern science, so the idea of prana remains unproven. Yet modern science does acknowledge oxygen itself as the most basic of human needs, and the advanced Yoga breathing techniques called pranayama teach us to make maximum use of our oxygen for optimal health and vitality. The principle of a life force energy is common in various cultures; in China it is known as Chi, in Japan as Ki. —Larry Payne, Ph.D. & Richard Usatine, M.D.

Monday, Jan 04, 2010 This week’s Food for Thought – January 4, 2010


Sometimes in the daily challenges that life gives us, we miss what is really important. We may fail to say hello, please, or thank you, congratulate someone on something wonderful that has happened to them, give a compliment, or just do something nice for no reason.

Charles Plumb, a US Naval Academy graduate, was a jet pilot in Vietnam. After 75 combat missions, his plane was destroyed by a surface-to-air missile. Plumb ejected and parachuted into enemy lands. He was captured and spent 6 years in a communist Vietnamese prison. He survived the ordeal and now lectures on lessons learned from that experience.

One day, when Plumb and his wife were sitting in a restaurant, a man at another table came up and said, “You’re Plumb! You flew jet fighters in Vietnam from the aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk. You were shot down!” “How in the world did you know that?” asked Plumb. “I packed your parachute,” the man replied.

Plumb gasped in surprise and gratitude. The man pumped his hand and said, “I guess it worked!” Plumb assured him, “It sure did. If your chute hadn’t worked, I wouldn’t be here today.”

Plumb couldn’t sleep that night, thinking about that man. Plumb says, “I kept wondering what he might have looked like in a Navy uniform: A white hat, a bib in the back, and bell bottom trousers. I wonder how many times I might have seen him and not even said good morning, how are you or anything because, you see, I was a fighter pilot, and he was just a sailor.”

Plumb thought of the many hours the sailor had spent on a long wooden table in the bowels of the ship, carefully weaving the shrouds and folding the silks of each chute, holding in his hands each time the fate of someone he didn’t know.

Now, Plumb asks his audience, “Who’s packing your parachute?”

Everyone has someone who provides what they need to make it through the day. Plumb also points out that he needed many kinds of parachutes when his plane was shot down over enemy territory – he needed his physical parachute, his mental parachute, his emotional parachute, and his spiritual parachute. He called on all these supports before reaching safety. His experience reminds us all to prepare ourselves to weather whatever storms lie ahead. As you go through this week, this month, this year… recognize people who pack your parachute! —Anonymous

TIP OF THE WEEK: TO THE FLOOR   Chances are, when you think of sitting, you think of chairs and sofas (and maybe even the toilet seat) before you think of the floor.  But, though this seems only natural to modern-day Westerners, who’s to say this is the natural order of things?  After all, humans were sitting long before La-Z-Boys and desk chairs were invented.  As it turns out, spending more time on the floor in your daily life can have some real benefits.  People living in floor cultures have more supple joints and stronger backs, not to mention far better posture.  Try spending some time today on the floor—squatting, kneeling, or just sitting.  It might seem uncomfortable and awkward at first, but if you spend a little time doing this each day (try a little reading or office work on the floor), you’ll find your joints begin to loosen, squatting will become more comfortable, and you’ll see your yoga practice improve.  Maybe some day you’ll ditch the desk and chair altogether! —Yoga Journal,  January 2010

“Do small things with big love.” —Mother Teresa