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I find that the sensation of myself as an ego inside a bag of skin is really a hallucination. What we really are is, first of all, the whole of our body. And although our bodies are bounded with skin, and we can differentiate between outside and inside, they cannot exist except in a certain kind of natural environment. Obviously a body requires air, and the air must be within a certain temperature range. The body also requires certain kinds of nutrition. So in order to occur the body must be on a mild and nutritive planet with just enough oxygen in the atmosphere spinning regularly around in a harmonious and rhythmical way near a certain kind of warm star.
That arrangement is just as essential to the existence of my body as my heart, my lungs, and my brain. So to describe myself in a scientific way, I must also describe my surroundings, which is a clumsy way of getting around to the realization that you are the entire universe. However we do not normally feel that way because we have constructed in thought an abstract idea of our self.
This is none too cheery, but thought it rang very true.
"We move through the world in a narrow groove, preoccupied with the petty things we see and hear, brooding over our prejudices, passing by the joys of life without even knowing that we have missed anything. Never for a moment do we taste the heady wine of freedom. We are as truly imprisoned as if we lay at the bottom of a dungeon, heaped with chains."
Yang Chu, fourth century BC Chinese philosopher.
This is a quote from the Buddha himself. He's musing on how everything - and all beings - are interconnected:
"Just as a man shudders with horror when he steps upon a serpent, but laughs when he looks down and sees that it is only a rope, so I discovered one day that what I was calling 'I' cannot be found, and all fear and anxiety vanished with my mistake."
' A quiet mind is all you need. All else will happen rightly, once your mind is quiet. As the sun on rising makes the world active, so does self-awareness affect changes in the mind. In the light of calm and steady self-awareness, inner energies wake up and work miracles without any effort on your part '
' Love says "I am everything". Wisdom says "I am nothing". Between the two, my life flows. '
Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
"A desire arises in the mind. It is satisfied immediately and another comes. In the interval which separates two desires, a perfect calm reigns in the mind. It is at this moment that we are freed from all thoughts, love or hate."
Swami Sivananda, founder, Sivananda yoga
Here's another one by Swami Sivananda:
"Do not brood over your past mistakes and failures as this will only fill your mind with grief, regret and depression. Do not repeat them in the future."
That's very true, I think...
Here is a quote that used to reflect my life.
Often people try to live their lives backwards: they try to have more things, or more money, in order to do more of what they want so that they will be happier. The way it actually works is the reverse. You must first be who you really are, then do what you really need to do, in order to have what you want. (Margaret Young)
Dancer Pose: Nataraja
Writer and yoga teacher Sarah Dawson re-discovers contentment at Portugese retreat centre, Vale de Moses.
Mindfulneses author & coach Shamash Alidina explains the importance of switching from 'doing' to 'being'.
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