PAGE IS GRAPHICALLY INTENSIVE PLEASE HAVE PATIENCE WHILE IT DOWNLOADS ...
IT'S TRULY WORTH THE WAIT
weekly single-feature newsletters are enhanced once each month with the Inspiration
Line Know & Grow Magazine
filled with uplifting stories, articles,
travelogues, humor, fascinating facts, computer tips and more...
CREATE A MEANINGFUL LIFE ...
HERE for OUR FREE LANGUAGE TRANSLATOR or TO SHARE WITH FRIENDS & FAMILY
Connecting 50 U.S. States & 218 Countries Worldwide
& Grow Monthly Magazine
is a wonderful mythical law of nature that the three things
we crave most in
life happiness, freedom, and peace of mind
are always attained
by giving them to someone else."
~ Peyton Conway March...
August 31, 2009
TODAY'S TUNE [ON/OFF]
a Little Kindness"
the song doesn't play, simply:
HERE to open a media window.
THIS WEEK'S ISSUE
From the Inside Out...
When You're Smiling
Yes You Can!...
Living in the Moment
Just for YOU...
Online All the Time...
Computer Tips, Travel
Guides, Books, Quotes, Music & More
BE the World
You Want to See!
Swami Vivekananda (18631902) is considered
a key figure in the introduction of Yoga in Europe and America. He is also credited
with raising interfaith awareness, bringing Hinduism to the status of a world
religion during the end of the 19th Century. The Unity of Existence is
one of the great themes of his philosophy. On the subject of giving, this quote
from Vivekananda explains it well:
Do not stand on a
high pedestal and take 5 cents in your hand and say, "here, my poor man",
but be grateful that the poor man is there, so by making a gift to him you are
able to help yourself. It is not the receiver that is blessed, but it is the giver.
Be thankful that you are allowed to exercise your power of benevolence and mercy
in the world, and thus become more pure and perfect."
~ Chelle Thompson, Editor
HERE TO FIND OUT HOW
... you can help
around the world without a bit of risk to yourself!
From the Inside Out
AN ANGEL IN QUEENS: "School Bus
Driver Is Responsible For 70,000 Hot Meals And Counting"
am humbled. I met a real life Angel recently. His name is Jorge Munoz and he lives
in Queens, New York. This is not just a story about a man who has spent the last
few years tirelessly cooking, packing and giving free, hot meals to hungry people
every day under a subway stop some 70,000 in total. It's
a lesson about compassion for people and humanity. It's also about how one 46
year-old school bus driver, was moved to take action in a selfless and big way.
Munoz says he found his passion and path in service after choosing to stop turning
his cheek to a growing problem, so prevalent in his neighborhood, and so many
other communities across America.
says he spends more than half of his salary, of roughly $700 per week, buying
food from local grocery stores. Every night, for the past four years, Munoz comes
home from work, takes a quick coffee break, then heads out to diligently collect
food donations from the community and then shops for more groceries. He heads
home to meet a team, consisting of his mother, sister, 5-year-old nephew and a
friend. Together, they are a well-oiled machine, as they multiply whatever they're
having for dinner into, by 120 to 140 home cooked meals, carefully packed with
love and care in his tiny kitchen, in his shoe-box size flat. His living room
looks more like a pantry, filled with fresh food, parceled out, and ready to be
cooked. There are even bags of clothes and blankets, cleaned and ready to be given
out. His stove, isn't fully operating anymore because it's been overused to cook
food in bulk. Because the stove is broken, he carries huge restaurant sized vats
of food up to his sister's apartment to cook just so he can make his daily
deadline. "They depend on me," says Munoz. Even with an injured
back, he never once complains about the love and labor he puts into his daily
routine of service. 9:00pm.
It's time to pack his white Toyota pickup truck with coolers full of hot drinks
and food and hit the road.
single night at 9:30pm, for the past four years, Munoz and his family have been
repeating this routine, which he calls his "second job" every day, except
one. With furrowed brows and a disappointed frown on his face, Munoz regretfully
admits, he did miss one day The food and drinks were packed, but a snowstorm
shut down all lines of transportation. He says with disappointment. "The
subway and buses all closed, we couldn't get to them." Why would anyone
spend most their free time and energy putting so much love in home cooked meals
for strangers on the street? Arguably, some people wouldn't don't even do this
for their significant others But that's another topic altogether. Words
can't really describe why Munoz so unselfishly does what he does. He just does.
You just have to be there to experience it. But when you're there, watching him
do his work, at the gritty Roosevelt Avenue subway stop, you begin to understand
Mirza, (who at the time was an unemployed TV producer who I invited to come along
on the shoot) and I hopped on the subway to meet Munoz and his small team at the
subway stop, where a line quickly multiplied... from 7, 14, 20... then a crowd
of over a hundred neatly and politely lined up. Meanwhile, many passersby clutched
their purses when walking by this group of people waiting for food. When Munoz
first started this project approximately 4 years ago, he says there were only
8 people. Then there were 24, and today, the crowd has grown to nearly 150 people
because of the down economy. When Munoz's truck pulls up, the melancholy, stoic,
troubled looks on their faces brightened. (I'm tearing up as I write this and
recall the moment.) And wow, the smiles. The expressions on their faces reminded
me of when family and old friends have just been reunited at the airport, after
not seeing each other for a long period of time. "The smiles on their
faces, when see they got something to eat....aaaaah, [We're] feeding [more than]
a hundred people," Munoz says passionately. "If you change the
life of one guy, that's enough..."
says the idea came to him one day, when waiting to pick up his students at a routine
school bus stop. "I saw people throwing away food at a food factory,"
he says adamantly, "I thought, why are they throwing that away? I can
give those to the hungry people I see on the street everyday." He asked
if he could pick up the perfectly fresh food and take it to the hungry strangers,
he's seen everyday. Strangers whose faces became so familiar. Munoz
says, the inspiration came from, "God and my Mom. Since I was little,
my mom teach me to share, and that's what we're doing here." Although
Munoz isn't getting paid for this second job (remember, he actually has to use
own money to do this), he seems so happy in service Just by the tone in
his voice, you can feel his passion for compassion. His eagerness to serve brings
him joy. He says he's happy to have a paying job, so he can continue doing this.
"You have to see their smiles, on their faces. When they smile, I always
say that's how I get paid." (Watch "An Angel in Queens'"
was moved so much by this story that I teared up as I wrote the preceding paragraphs
And let's be real I cried many times during this assignment. After
the interview, I fought back tears and told Munoz, I was humbled (goosebumps and
all) to be interviewing him, to be sitting in the same room with him, a true angel.
I wept while editing the video and I'm wiping away tears now, as I write this
blog. You see, I once utterly disliked homeless and hungry people. I was angry
and didn't understand their trials and tribulations. I didn't understand or care
to fathom their stories. I was jaded by several experiences where I would give
food to a hungry person some food, just to be turned away by the good gesture
and instead being asked for money. I would think, I come from an immigrant background,
my family and I worked hard and pulled ourselves up from the bootstraps. They're
able bodied, why don't they work? But it wasn't until I've interviewed some homeless
people on the street and spent the day with folks in the Tent city encampments,
that I started seeing a shift in my perception. What a great payoff and life lesson
I learned. I realized that they too, had and have hopes, fears and
dreams just like we do. Some fall on bad times, I realized, just alike I have.
The difference? I have an amazing support system; Thanks to my family and friends.
A social worker also told me one of her homeless clients was a doctor, his wife
a lawyer. "He became homeless and lost everything, when his wife was killed
in a car accident on the way home from work, he lost it," my friend explained.
cynics say they believe the old Chinese proverb, "Give a man a fish and
you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime."
Although I agree with this old adage, I also believe in this comment, from
one of my blogger readers, "Yeah, but the fisherman [or fisherwoman] has
to eat while fishing, don't they?" This blog is about compassion. If
you can teach someone how to cast that net and catch fish, great. If you can't,
think about what you can do. Think about what resources and talents you may have
and what you can do to help someone else in need and improve his/her life. I urge
you to do something to better your community. Remember, as my last blog about
5-year-old Phoebe (HERE)
proves, it doesn't have to be BIG. She saw a problem and wanted to help
hungry people in her community. So she held a can recycling campaign and to everyone's
amazement, she raised enough money to feed nearly 18,000 people. Perhaps Mother
Teresa's quote sums it up best, "If you judge people, you don't have time
to love them."
So I want you to stop for a second, take a deep breath (or a couple) and be aware
of the present moment. Be grateful. Then, I want you to think about what YOU can
do to improve someone else's life. It doesn't have to start off big it
can start off small. If you can't think of what you can do, then please make a
small donation to www.AnAngelInQueens.org
someone saw Munoz's good deed and helped him file for papers to start a
non-profit. Still he has to use his own money to feed people in his community.
See a salute to Jorge Munoz on the August 8th AmeriCAN
segment of Good Morning America.
"'Surprise' Angel In Queens Follow-Up The Gift That Keeps On Giving"
By Toan Lam, Founder of www.GoInspire.com,
an inspirational website and global platform for
people to see and share stories
of inspiration, which uses YouTube, a blog, and several social
inspire people to use their resources and talents to improve their communities.
Visit the YouTube link at Toan's website and check out the stories his team
created, and videos
from viewers, including "Illinois Family Sells Company;
Gives 6.6 Million In Bonuses" HERE.
Stories & More*
WHEN YOU'RE SMILING ...
Yes You Can!
MASTER THE ART OF "LIVING IN THE MOMENT"
live in the age of distraction. Yet one of life's sharpest paradoxes is that
brightest future hinges on your ability to pay attention to the present.
Are NOT Your Thoughts ...
Life unfolds in the present. But so
often, we let the present slip away, allowing time to rush past unobserved and
unseized, and squandering the precious seconds of our lives as we worry about
the future and ruminate about what's past. "We're living in a world that
contributes in a major way to mental fragmentation, disintegration, distraction,
decoherence," says Buddhist scholar B. Alan Wallace. We're always doing
something, and we allow little time to practice stillness and calm.
we're at work, we fantasize
about being on vacation; on vacation, we worry about the work piling up on our
desks. We dwell on intrusive memories
of the past or fret about what may or may not happen in the future. We don't appreciate
the living present because our "monkey minds," as Buddhists call them,
vault from thought to thought like monkeys swinging from tree to tree. Most of
us don't undertake our thoughts in awareness. Rather, our thoughts control us.
"Ordinary thoughts course through our mind like a deafening waterfall,"
writes Jon Kabat-Zinn, the biomedical scientist who introduced meditation into
mainstream medicine. In order to feel more in control of our minds and our lives,
to find the sense of balance that eludes us, we need to step out of this current,
to pause, and, as Kabat-Zinn puts it, to "rest in stillnessto stop
doing and focus on just being."
need to live more in the moment. Living in the momentalso called mindfulnessis
a state of active, open, intentional attention on the present. When you become
mindful, you realize that you are not your thoughts; you become an observer of
your thoughts from moment to moment without judging them. Mindfulness involves
being with your thoughts as they are, neither grasping at them nor pushing them
away. Instead of letting your life go by without living it, you awaken to experience.
a nonjudgmental awareness of the present bestows a host of benefits. Mindfulness
reduces stress, boosts immune functioning, reduces chronic pain, lowers blood
pressure, and helps patients cope with cancer. By alleviating stress, spending
a few minutes a day actively focusing on living in the moment reduces the risk
of heart disease. Mindfulness may even slow the progression of HIV.
people are happier,
more exuberant, more empathetic, and more secure. They have higher self-esteem
and are more accepting of their own weaknesses. Anchoring awareness in the here
and now reduces the kinds of impulsivity and reactivity that underlie depression,
binge eating, and attention problems. Mindful people can hear negative feedback
without feeling threatened. They fight less with their romantic partners and are
more accommodating and less defensive. As a result, mindful couples have more
satisfying relationships. Mindfulness is at the root of Buddhism, Taoism, and
many Native-American traditions, not to mention yoga. It's why Thoreau went to
Walden Pond; it's what Emerson and Whitman wrote about in their essays and poems.
agrees it's important to live in the moment, but the problem is how,"
says Ellen Langer, a psychologist at Harvard and author of Mindfulness. "When
people are not in the moment, they're not there to know that they're not there."
Overriding the distraction reflex and awakening to the present takes intentionality
and practice. Living in the moment involves a profound paradox: You can't pursue
it for its benefits. That's because the expectation of reward launches a future-oriented
mindset, which subverts the entire process. Instead, you just have to trust that
the rewards will come. There are many paths to mindfulnessand at the core
of each is a paradox. Ironically, letting go of what you want is the only way
to get it. Here are a few tricks to help you along ...
Steps to Living in the Moment ...
To improve your performance, stop thinking about it (unselfconsciousness).
never felt comfortable on a dance floor. My movements feel awkward. I feel like
people are judging me. I never know what to do with my arms. I want to let go,
but I can't, because I know I look ridiculous. "Loosen
up, no one's watching you," people
always say. "Everyone's too busy worrying about themselves."
So how come they always make fun of my dancing the next day? The dance world has
a term for people like me: "absolute beginner." Which is why my dance
teacher, Jessica Hayden, the owner of Shockra Studio in Manhattan, started at
the beginning, sitting me down on a bench and having me tap my feet to the beat
as Jay-Z thumped away in the background. We spent the rest of the class doing
"isolations"moving just our shoulders, ribs, or hipsto build
"body awareness." But even more important than body awareness, Hayden
said, was present-moment awareness. "Be right here right now!"
she'd say. "Just let go and let yourself be in the moment."
the first paradox of living in the moment: Thinking too hard about what you're
doing actually makes you do worse. If you're in a situation that makes you anxiousgiving
a speech, introducing yourself to a stranger, dancingfocusing on your anxiety
tends to heighten it. "When I say, 'be here with me now,' I mean don't zone
out or get too in-your-headinstead, follow my energy, my movements,"
says Hayden. "Focus less on what's going on in your mind and more on what's
going on in the room, less on your mental chatter and more on yourself as part
of something." To be most myself, I needed to focus on things outside
myself, like the music or the people around me. Indeed,
mindfulness blurs the line between self and other, explains Michael Kernis, a
psychologist at the University of Georgia. "When people are mindful, they're
more likely to experience themselves as part of humanity, as part of a greater
universe." That's why highly mindful people such as Buddhist monks talk
about being "one with everything."
reducing self-consciousness, mindfulness allows you to witness the passing drama
of feelings, social pressures, even of being esteemed or disparaged by others
without taking their evaluations personally, explain Richard Ryan and K. W. Brown
of the University of Rochester. When you focus on your immediate experience without
attaching it to your self-esteem, unpleasant events like social rejectionor
your so-called friends making fun of your dancingseem less threatening.
Focusing on the present moment also forces you to stop overthinking. "Being
present-minded takes away some of that self-evaluation and getting lost in your
mindand in the mind is where we make the evaluations that beat us up,"
says Stephen Schueller, a psychologist at the University of Pennsylvania. Instead
of getting stuck in your head and worrying, you can let yourself go.
To avoid worrying about the future, focus on the present (savoring).
her memoir Eat, Pray, Love, Elizabeth Gilbert writes about a friend who,
whenever she sees a beautiful place, exclaims in a near panic, "It's so
beautiful here! I want to come back here someday!" "It takes all my
persuasive powers," writes Gilbert, "to try to convince her that
she is already here." Often,
we're so trapped in thoughts of the future or the past that we forget to experience,
let alone enjoy, what's happening right now. We sip coffee and think, "This
is not as good as what I had last week." We eat a cookie and think,
"I hope I don't run out of cookies." Instead,
relish or luxuriate in whatever you're doing at the present momentwhat psychologists
call savoring. "This could be while you're eating a pastry, taking a shower,
or basking in the sun. You could be savoring a success or savoring music,"
explains Sonja Lyubomirsky, a psychologist at the University of California at
Riverside and author of The How of Happiness. "Usually it involves your
senses." When subjects in a study took a few minutes each day to actively
savor something they usually hurried througheating a meal, drinking a cup
of tea, walking to the busthey began experiencing more joy, happiness, and
other positive emotions, and fewer depressive symptoms, Schueller found.
does living in the moment make people happiernot just at the moment they're
tasting molten chocolate pooling on their tongue, but lastingly? Because most
negative thoughts concern the past or the future. As Mark Twain said, "I
have known a great many troubles, but most of them never happened." The
hallmark of depression and anxiety is catastrophizingworrying about something
that hasn't happened yet and might not happen at all. Worry, by its very nature,
means thinking about the futureand if you hoist yourself into awareness
of the present moment, worrying melts away. The
flip side of worrying is ruminating, thinking bleakly about events in the past.
And again, if you press your focus into the now, rumination ceases. Savoring forces
you into the present, so you can't worry about things that aren't there.
If you want a future with your significant other, inhabit the present (breathe).
consciously with alert interest has a powerful effect on interpersonal life. Mindfulness
actually inoculates people against aggressive
impulses, say Whitney Heppner and Michael Kernis of the University of Georgia.
In a study they conducted, each subject was told that other subjects were forming
a groupand taking a vote on whether she could join. Five minutes later,
the experimenter announced the resultseither the subject had gotten the
least number of votes and been rejected or she'd been accepted. Beforehand, half
the subjects had undergone a mindfulness exercise in which each slowly ate a raisin,
savoring its taste and texture and focusing on each sensation. Later, in what
they thought was a separate experiment, subjects had the opportunity to deliver
a painful blast of noise to another person. Among subjects who hadn't eaten the
raisin, those who were told they'd been rejected by the group became aggressive,
inflicting long and painful sonic blasts without provocation. Stung by social
rejection, they took it out on other people. But among those who'd eaten the raisin
first, it didn't matter whether they'd been ostracized or embraced. Either way,
they were serene and unwilling to inflict pain on othersexactly like those
who were given word of social acceptance.
does being in the moment make you less aggressive? "Mindfulness decreases
ego involvement," explains Kernis. "So people are less likely
to link their self-esteem to events and more likely to take things at face value."
Mindfulness also makes people feel more connected to other peoplethat empathic
feeling of being "at one with the universe." Mindfulness boosts
your awareness of how you interpret and react to what's happening in your mind.
It increases the gap between emotional impulse and action, allowing you to do
what Buddhists call recognizing the spark before the flame. Focusing on the present
reboots your mind so you can respond thoughtfully rather than automatically. Instead
of lashing out in anger, backing down in fear, or mindlessly indulging a passing
craving, you get the opportunity to say to yourself, "This is the emotion
I'm feeling. How should I respond?" Mindfulness increases self-control;
since you're not getting thrown by threats to your self-esteem, you're better
able to regulate your behavior. That's the other irony: Inhabiting your own mind
more fully has a powerful effect on your interactions with others.
course, during a flare-up with your significant other it's rarely practical to
duck out and savor a raisin. But there's a simple exercise you can do anywhere,
anytime to induce mindfulness: Breathe. As it turns out, the advice my friend
got in the desert was spot-on. There's no better way to bring yourself into the
present moment than to focus on your breathing. Because you're placing your awareness
on what's happening right now, you propel yourself powerfully into the present
moment. For many, focusing on the breath is the preferred method of orienting
themselves to the nownot because the breath has some magical property, but
because it's always there with you.
To make the most of time, lose track of it (flow).
the most complete way of living in the moment is the state of total absorption
psychologists call flow. Flow occurs when you're so engrossed in a task that you
lose track of everything else around you. Flow embodies an apparent paradox: How
can you be living in the moment if you're not even aware of the moment? The depth
of engagement absorbs you powerfully, keeping attention so focused that distractions
cannot penetrate. You focus so intensely on what you're doing that you're unaware
of the passage of time. Hours can pass without you noticing. Flow is an elusive
state. As with romance or sleep, you can't just will yourself into itall
you can do is set the stage, creating the optimal conditions for it to occur.
first requirement for flow is to set a goal
that's challenging but not unattainablesomething you have to marshal your
resources and stretch yourself to achieve. The task should be matched to your
ability levelnot so difficult that you'll feel stressed,
but not so easy that you'll get bored. In flow, you're firing on all cylinders
to rise to a challenge. To
set the stage for flow, goals need to be clearly defined so that you always know
your next step. "It could be playing the next bar in a scroll of music,
or finding the next foothold if you're a rock climber, or turning the page if
you're reading a good novel," says Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, the psychologist
who first defined the concept of flow. "At the same time, you're kind
also need to set up the task in such a way that you receive direct and immediate
feedback; with your successes and failures apparent, you can seamlessly adjust
your behavior. A climber on the mountain knows immediately if his foothold is
secure; a pianist knows instantly when she's played the wrong note. As your attentional
focus narrows, self-consciousness evaporates. You feel as if your awareness merges
with the action you're performing. You feel a sense of personal mastery over the
situation, and the activity is so intrinsically rewarding that although the task
is difficult, action feels effortless.
If something is bothering you, move toward it rather than away from it (acceptance).
all have pain in our lives, whether it's the ex we still long for, the jackhammer
snarling across the street, or the sudden wave of anxiety when we get up to give
a speech. If we let them, such irritants can distract us from the enjoyment of
life. Paradoxically, the obvious responsefocusing on the problem in order
to combat and overcome itoften makes it worse, argues Stephen Hayes, a psychologist
at the University of Nevada. The
mind's natural tendency when faced with pain is to attempt to avoid itby
trying to resist unpleasant thoughts, feelings, and sensations. When we lose a
love, for instance, we fight our feelings of heartbreak. As we get older, we work
feverishly to recapture our youth. When we're sitting in the dentist's chair waiting
for a painful root canal, we wish we were anywhere but there. But in many cases,
negative feelings and situations can't be avoidedand resisting them only
magnifies the pain. The
problem is we have not just primary emotions but also secondary onesemotions
about other emotions. We get stressed out and then think, "I wish I weren't
so stressed out." The primary emotion is stress over your workload. The
secondary emotion is feeling, "I hate being stressed."
doesn't have to be this way. The solution is acceptanceletting the emotion
be there. That is, being open to the way things are in each moment without trying
to manipulate or change the experiencewithout judging it, clinging to it,
or pushing it away. The present moment can only be as it is. Trying to change
it only frustrates and exhausts you. Acceptance relieves you of this needless
extra suffering. Suppose
you've just broken up with your girlfriend or boyfriend; you're heartbroken, overwhelmed
by feelings of sadness and longing. You could try to fight these feelings, essentially
saying, "I hate feeling this way; I need to make this feeling go away."
But by focusing on the painbeing sad about being sadyou only prolong
the sadness. You do yourself a favor by accepting your feelings, saying instead,
"I've just had a breakup. Feelings of loss are normal and natural. It's
OK for me to feel this way."
of an unpleasant state doesn't mean you don't have goals for the future. It just
means you accept that certain things are beyond your control. The sadness, stress,
pain, or anger is there whether you like it or not. Better to embrace the feeling
as it is. Nor does acceptance mean you have to like what's happening. "Acceptance
of the present moment has nothing to do with resignation," writes Kabat-Zinn.
"Acceptance doesn't tell you what to do. What happens next, what you choose
to do; that has to come out of your understanding of this moment." If
you feel anxiety, for instance, you can accept the feeling, label it as anxietythen
direct your attention to something else instead. You watch your thoughts, perceptions,
and emotions flit through your mind without getting involved. Thoughts are just
thoughts. You don't have to believe them and you don't have to do what they say.
Know that you don't know (engagement).
probably had the experience of driving along a highway only to suddenly realize
you have no memory or awareness of the previous 15 minutes. Maybe you even missed
your exit. You just zoned out; you were somewhere else, and it's as if you've
suddenly woken up at the wheel. Or maybe it happens when you're reading a book:
"I know I just read that page, but I have no idea what it said."
autopilot moments are what Harvard's Ellen Langer calls mindlessnesstimes
when you're so lost in your thoughts that you aren't aware of your present experience.
As a result, life passes you by without registering on you. The best way to avoid
such blackouts, Langer says, is to develop the habit of always noticing new things
in whatever situation you're in. That process creates engagement with the present
moment and releases a cascade of other benefits. Noticing new things puts you
emphatically in the here and now.
become mindless, Langer explains, because once we think we know something, we
stop paying attention to it. We go about our morning commute in a haze because
we've trod the same route a hundred times before. But if we see the world with
fresh eyes, we realize almost everything is different each timethe pattern
of light on the buildings, the faces of the people, even the sensations and feelings
we experience along the way. Noticing imbues each moment with a new, fresh quality.
Some people have termed this "beginner's mind." By
acquiring the habit of noticing new things, says Langer, we recognize that the
world is actually changing constantly. We really don't know how the espresso is
going to taste or how the commute will beor at least, we're not sure.
musicians who are instructed to make their performance new in subtle ways not
only enjoy themselves more but audiences actually prefer those performances. "When
we're there at the moment, making it new, it leaves an imprint in the music we
play, the things we write, the art we create, in everything we do," says
Langer. "Once you recognize that you don't know the things you've always
taken for granted, you set out of the house quite differently. It becomes an adventure
in noticingand the more you notice, the more you see." And the
more excitement you feel.
Just Do Something, SIT THERE ...
a consistently mindful life takes effort. But mindfulness itself is easy. "People
set the goal of being mindful for the next 20 minutes or the next two weeks, then
they think mindfulness is difficult because they have the wrong yardstick,"
says Jay Winner, a California-based family physician and author of Take the Stress
out of Your Life. "The correct yardstick is just for this moment."
Mindfulness is the only intentional, systematic activity that is not about
trying to improve yourself or get anywhere else, explains Kabat-Zinn. It is simply
a matter of realizing where you already are. A cartoon from The New Yorker sums
it up: Two monks are sitting side by side, meditating. The younger one is giving
the older one a quizzical look, to which the older one responds, "Nothing
happens next. This is it."
can become mindful at any moment just by paying attention to your immediate experience.
You can do it right now. What's happening this instant? Think of yourself as an
eternal witness, and just observe the moment. What do you see, hear, smell? It
doesn't matter how it feelspleasant or unpleasant, good or badyou
roll with it because it's what's present; you're not judging it. And if you notice
wandering, bring yourself back. Just say to yourself, "Now.
the most fundamental paradox of all: Mindfulness isn't a goal, because goals are
about the future, but you do have to set the intention of paying attention to
what's happening at the present moment. As you read the words printed on this
page, as your eyes distinguish the black squiggles on white paper, as you feel
gravity anchoring you to the planet, wake up. Become aware of being alive. And
breathe. As you draw your next breath, focus on the rise of your abdomen on the
in-breath, the stream of heat through your nostrils on the out-breath. If you're
aware of that feeling right now, as you're reading this, you're living in the
moment. Nothing happens next. It's not a destination. This is it. You're already
By Jay Dixit, Senior Editor,
Today; he has also worked as a freelance writer
for The New York
Times, The Washington Post, Rolling Stone, Slate, and Wired.
TREATS & ANNOUNCEMENTS
to learn more ...
News!! ~ Here's The Latest Book From Dr. Barbara Sinor:
Whats Really Going On? Inside a Heroin Treatment Program
Whats Really Going On? Inside a Heroin Treatment Program contains powerful
true-life stories woven together to form a tapestry filled with pain, joy, defeat,
and success. The entire book is molded around Deborah McCloskeys heartfelt
desire for her clients to be free of drugs. Her counseling methods both endeared
her as the counselor to get and locked her into a decade of searching
for better ways to help those she felt were stuck on the merry-go-round of a methadone
system. This book should be read by teachers, hospitals employees, college students,
government officials, and our general adult population whether addicted, sober,
is evident throughout the book that Deborahs passion for aiding those in
addiction became her focus, as well as, to help redirect the way we as a society
handle our drug addicted population. This passion led her to write the fascinating
stories which pose the compelling question: Whats really going on? The book
addresses this question and others surrounding the need for change in how those
with drug addictions are treated in our society. One of Deborahs goals was
to manifest this vision and to bring the reality of addiction out-of-the-closet.
stories are true, the people are real, as are the life threatening incidences
and tales of pain. To balance the darkness, Deborah used her candid sense of humor
to reel in the reader until he can no longer resist. Once he enters, he will not
leave until he finds justice. But is there justice? The reader will search for
illumination within the intriguing stories of depression and defeat, but find
it rarely. Only in a few select brave souls who have struggled to become drug-free
will the reader find the answers to the manuscripts questioning title. The
book instructs us all to ask questions surrounding those we love and those we
do not know our addiction population.
Sinor, Ph.D. Counselor and Author ~ Visit my web site for more details: www.DrSinor.com.
Online All the Time
COMPUTER TIPS, TRAVEL GUIDES,
INSPIRATIONAL BOOKS, QUOTES, MUSIC & MORE...
Inspiration Line Fundraising Update
send lots of love and gratitude to the following readers who have
to help me pay Inspiration Line's overhead this year:
Sandy /South Carolina
Rick & Patricia /California
Gabrielle /New Mexico
Lee /New Jersey
Kathleen /New York
Balaraman /Saudi Arabia
Rick & Patricia /California
Gary & Marian /Arizona
Rajendra /New York
Steve /Rugby, UK
Nicholas /Bristol, UK
Larissa /British Columbia
Carol / Canada
Jennie /New Zealand
Deborah & David /Australia
Susan /Hertfordshire, UK
Kathleen / New York
Laura / Florida
Lee /New Jersey
Reverie /New Mexico
Janice / Minnesota
Patricia / Arizona
Kathleen / New York
Jeanne /New Jersey
Anne / British Columbia
Chris / Wyoming
Donna / Texas
Ted / California
eMail Subscribers Have Made
Donations So Far This Year = $1236
... So, To
Cover Annual Expenses
We Still Need to Raise $664
TO OUR INTERNATIONAL READERS:
When you use PayPal, your contribution
automatically converted from your country's
currency into U.S. dollars for
IS INSPIRATION LINE'S
VALUE IN YOUR OWN LIFE:
or $5, or $10, or More for
52 Issues Each Year?
You can make donations through PayPal
By using the link below for my secure donation form:
TO OUR INTERNATIONAL READERS:
When you use PayPal, your contribution is automatically
from your country's currency into U.S. dollars for Inspiration Line.
prefer to mail a check or an International US money order
Please make it payable to "Chelle
Thompson" and send to:
THOMPSON - INSPIRATION LINE
P. O. BOX 22189, SANTA FE, NM 87502 USA
sure to include your e-Mail Address, so I can forward your Thank-You Gifts**
(If you are a new subscriber,
simply spread the word about Inspiration Line to all of your family and friends.)
"The intent of Inspiration Line is to
show What Is Possible by choosing new perspectives,
we can change ourselves
from the inside out to improve our relationships, our community and our planet."
Cancel eSubscriptions Use the Unsubscribe I.D. Link in Your eMail|
NOTICE: All articles and images shown are believed to be public domain and, therefore,
We make every attempt to credit original authors and
websites, and do not intentionally infringe on anyone's copyright.
source is available, it has been stated. If you believe a mistake has been made
or know the source of
an unattributed article or image, please write to: Editor@InspirationLine.com
and a correction will be made.
Jane Cate, The TechAngel
This publication originates in
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87502 U.S.A.
Copyright © 2008 Inspiration Line -
All Rights Reserved
include "Reprinted from www.InspirationLine.com" whenever you copy and
share Inspiration Line articles.