I believe that the primary goals of consciousness are to keep us alive and to stave off trauma or potential future trauma. Now if I am correct (and I may not be), then self-harm or the extreme of self-harm — self-annihilation — would be extremely difficult. Consider the statistics...
One day, as I was answering a question on the subject of death, the following words came to me: "You are not afraid of death, you are afraid of life." Thinking over that response, I realized how true it was. Our fear of death is all the greater when we have not dared to live.
Whether you were born in December, January, August or September can have a significant and long-lasting impact on your life. Our new research shows your birthday month may also contribute to shaping your personality. In particular, we found people’s self-confidence can significantly differ because of their month of birth.
The structured nature of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and its clearly defined principles (based on the links between thoughts, feelings and behaviours) make it relatively easy to train practitioners, ensure standardised delivery and measure outcomes.
Roger Fisher (1922–2012) served as a reconnaissance pilot in World War II and then graduated from Harvard Law School, becoming a professor there in 1958. Witnessing maiming and death firsthand during the war and then seeing the destructive effects of costly, protracted litigation as a partner in a major law firm, Fisher was passionate about finding more creative alternatives to resolve conflict.
Mention hazardous drinking and most of us imagine teenagers or students getting drunk, causing havoc and filling our emergency departments on a Friday night. But what if I told you that we should be just as worried about how much our parents and grandparents are drinking?
The paths we take in search of happiness often lead us to frustration and suffering instead. We try to create outer conditions that we believe will make us happy. But it is the mind itself that translates outer conditions into happiness or suffering. After 2,000 years of practice, Buddhist monks know that one secret to bliss is to put your mind to it.
Most people think they know what a psychopath is: someone who has no feelings. Someone who probably tortured animals for fun when they were little. But here are five things you probably didn’t know about psychopaths.
I had accepted our culture's stale and simplistic view of adulthood -- that the person you are at midlife is the person you will always be. At precisely the time when I thought my development was coming to an end, I found myself embarking on a totally unexpected journey of growth and change... the "second half of life".
The term give-up-itis was coined by medical officers during the Korean War (1950-1953). They described it as a condition where a person develops extreme apathy, gives up hope, relinquishes the will to live and dies, despite the lack of an obvious physical cause.
Connecting to the true Self gives me access to information and knowledge way beyond anything I have ever learned in a book or the limited amount stored in my memory. I know if I can tap into my true Self I will have access to all the information I need.
All of us have traumatic memories. Over the years we may become aware how they are affecting our lives in negative ways. Here’s a technique you can use on yourself to change your personal history by consciously healing memories with new thinking and imagination...
Awe-inspiring experiences can have negative consequences as well as benefits, according to a new study. The study uses cardiovascular responses to stress to take a broad look at awe and the critical role perspective plays when considering the effects of encountering it.
One of my favorite hiking trails on Maui leads to a magnificent hidden waterfall far off the beaten path. The path to the waterfall begins as an offshoot of a main trail in a county park. County officials posted a sign, "End of trail." I chuckled to think that what was advertised as the end of the trail was really the beginning...
What is the next step? Where are we all going? We are witnessing ... and participating in ... great events, extraordinary events. Nothing less than a planetary transformation is taking place, right here and now. Nothing less than a revolution in consciousness is going on. This is a time of great awakening! Hallelujah!
We live in a culture that worships youth and beauty and often disregards, disrespects and diminishes age. This is a shame for many reasons, not the least of which is the fact that everyone is growing older every day. Don't be defined by it. Don't allow the culture to define you. Don't allow others to diminish you in any way. It's time to take back control of your life and...
What are beliefs really? Beliefs are opinions, assumptions, prejudices, judgments, ideas, and attitudes through which everything you experience in life is filtered. They are the lenses through which we see the world.
We all want other people to “get us” and appreciate us for who we really are. In striving to achieve such relationships, we typically assume that there is a “real me”. But how do we actually know who we are?
We’d all like to be a little happier. The problem is that much of what determines happiness is outside of our control. Some of us are genetically predisposed to see the world through rose-colored glasses, while others have a generally negative outlook. Bad things happen, to us and in the world. People can be unkind, and jobs can be tedious.
What happens if, instead of coming from fear of our own past, we initiate change from a state of quiet confidence that the changes we collectively wish to explore are being investigated to discover whether or not they might carry us to a HIGHER state of being than we are presently experiencing—even if there’s nothing significantly “wrong” with our present conditions.
It is becoming clear to me that the way most of us have lived our lives has not been in harmony with the way the universe intended. It seems that we have somehow lost touch with the loving flow of life, our rhythm of being, our sense of peacefulness about ourselves and satisfaction with what we are and what we are here to do.
We have repressed a lot of our emotions, whether they are considered 'good' or 'bad' ones. Sometimes we hold back on expressing our love for fear of being misunderstood, or perhaps thinking the timing is not 'right'. Most commonly, we have been taught to hold back on our 'negative' emotions — fear, anger, sorrow, pain, etc.
As within, so without. Those four words compose one of the most powerful truths brought to mankind. What happens within is the determinant to what happens without. Carrying it one step further, in order to change our physical lives, we must look within for answers.
Human laws form a basis of social agreement and social order, but human laws are only pale reflections of a higher order of laws sewn into the fabric of existence. These laws govern the movement of the Earth, the cycle of seasons, the forces of nature, and the structure of the atom itself. The great laws existed before humanity, before nature.
More and more companies, government agencies, educational institutions and philanthropic organisations are today in the grip of a new phenomenon. I’ve termed it ‘metric fixation’. The key components of metric fixation are the belief that it is possible – and desirable – to replace professional judgment (acquired through personal experience and talent) with numerical indicators of comparative performance based upon standardised data (metrics); and that the best way to motivate people within these organisations is by attaching rewards and penalties to their measured performance.
When we consciously choose what graces our environment, it will harmonize with our inner journey. Our home will be welcoming, restful, and intensely personal. Each book on the shelf, every painting on the wall, and even the decorations we use at Christmas will reflect who we are and what matters most...
On average, men pick up on visual motion significantly faster than women do, according to a new study. Humans’ ability to notice moving objects has always been a useful skill, good for avoiding an animal predator in ancient times and crossing a busy street in the modern world.
The real riches lie in the kingdom within, yet many people live their whole lives not knowing how to find them. The only inner life they know consists almost entirely of their emotional and mental involvement with the world around them...
Vulnerability isn’t timidity or weakness. Rather, it’s an acknowledgment that we are sensitive, alive, and affected emotionally by our interactions and experiences. When we are open and accessible, we are able to connect with ourselves, and we make it much easier for others to connect with us.
Poor mental health among young people is on the rise in the UK, while access to support and treatment remains patchy. There is now a pressing need to build resilience in young people to minimise their risk of poor mental health later on, as our latest report argues. There are 12.5m young people in England, and one in ten will experience poor mental health. Half of all lifelong mental health problems start before the age of 14, but only one in four young people uses mental health services.
Seeing time tick down quickly on a countdown clock may give people more patience than seeing time pass slowly would. In a series of experiments, the speed of a countdown clock affected the patience and decision-making of video game players, both during and after the game, according to David Reitter, associate professor of information sciences and technology at Penn State.
The journey I want to speak about here, is the journey we must all make if we want the mind, body, and soul to be one. If we are to be ourselves, we must take the journey. What happens along the way of your journey, is for you to decide...
In addition to mapping human consciousness, the Seven Levels Model can also be used as a template to describe the stages of human psychological development. Figure 1 shows the stages of psychological development and their correspondence with the seven levels of consciousness.
What is the infinity sign really about? There was a time when knowledge of the power of symbols was the preserve of initiates only and it was passed on in secret. The infinity sign, or lemniscate, is one such fascinating symbol and produces its power regardless of whether we believe in it or not.
It can seem like our human narrative has lost its way. Where the everyday news is filled with stories of humanity struggling with itself. Our eyes can show us everything that we don't want. And the chances for hope can seem fleeting. But there is a much bigger story going on as well. And you are a player in that story too.
For several hundred years, people have mistakenly believed that technology, once fully developed, would solve the ills of mankind, that science would provide the path out of the woods, away from illness, poverty, misery, and pain. We now know that...
New research may explain why some people—like sports stars—anticipate and react to fast-moving objects much quicker than others. When Serena Williams returns a lightning-quick tennis serve—most of us marvel at her skill and speed. Considering what the human brain overcomes to make it happen, these kinds of feats are nothing short of miraculous.
You are dissipating your energy out into existence through the personality, instead of using it to stay in your reality. The mask is kept on by energy going out. As you deny the projection of the personality, you conserve energy.
Once upon a time, the tribe of humanity embarked upon a long journey called Separation. It was not a blunder as some, seeing its ravages upon the planet, might think; nor was it a fall, nor an expression of some innate evil peculiar to the human species. It was a journey with a purpose: to experience the extremes of Separation, to develop the gifts that come in response to it, and to integrate all of that in a new Age of Reunion.
You know that you are indulging in black and white thinking when you use words like “always” and “never”. Or when you generalize about something or someone and say “everyone” or “no one”.
Guess what?! August is National Happiness Month, and that means the whole month of August is dedicated to celebrating what makes us happy. You see, no matter what your age or gender, we all have one desire in common: to be happy.
My friend Mark has been a physician for over 40 years. Recently he told me a story that helped me understand what real healing is.
In a Twitter account called So Sad Today, the American writer Melissa Broder has been sending out snippets of her daily inner life since 2012. Broder writes about mundane sadness – ‘waking up today was a disappointment’ or ‘what you call a nervous breakdown i call oops, accidentally saw things as they are’– and she is brutally honest about her own shortcomings (‘whoops, hurt myself conforming to socially accepted standards of beauty that i know are false but still feel compelled to fit into’ or ‘just felt a flicker of self-esteem and was like what the fuck is this’).
Science is rapidly proving that the mind, brain, and body are tightly linked. Though emotional and physical pain register in the body similarly, the long-term effects of emotional pain are actually greater than those of physical pain.
Before I met my wife I was always rushing; rushing to get to the store, rushing to reach my goals, rushing through life hoping to get there faster.
World Cup football teams with a higher proportion of players smiling in their official portraits have scored more goals on average in all group phases since 1970.
We feel good when both the rational and emotional parts of our brain interact perfectly and are in balance. Things to do with our feelings and emotions are dealt with by the right side, while the left side handles analytical thinking.
When we suppress our originality, we lose touch with the source of our vitality and initiative. One of the unwritten codes I came to believe in was, "If everyone else is doing it, don't." Through the years I have learned that when using this approach many individuals in all walks of life have...
When we decide between alternative courses of action, an immediate consideration is whether our choice will serve us: make us happier, fulfill a desire, increase our comfort, enhance our security or boost our wellbeing.
Miracles happen all the time. You probably know someone who has had a miracle happen to them, or maybe a miracle has happened to you.
Memories of past events play a key role in how our brains model what’s happening in the present and predict what is likely to occur in the future, according to a new study.
Finding a way to engage more fully in our lives and open ourselves to greater love, peace and happiness is a yearning many of us feel. Yet we tend to occupy ourselves with daily distractions and busy-ness, only to watch the days slip by without connection to any meaningful core.
What begins as an exercise that may take three to five minutes can quickly become an automatic habit, easily accomplished in seconds and integrated into your life as unconscious competency.
You can probably acknowledge that in your past, you held a distinctly lesser image of yourself, and have judged yourself, made assumptions about your worth (or lack thereof), or seen yourself through a dark filter of insecurity, cynicism, or pain. You also have experienced repetitive patterns of ...
How will the evolution of humanity’s consciousness be reflected in leadership practice? How will the aims of leadership evolve, and what will leadership look like in the new “global” world?
Words work as a glue, allowing us to group together different experiences under one label.
"You know, girl, after forty-eight years, need I remind you of that old adage -- God never puts more on your plate than you can handle." She sat for a long moment, then looked me straight in the eye and said, "Right now I'm very clear about one thing: I need a smaller plate!"
If we’ve learned anything, it’s that we create less of whatever we fail to reward and more of what we reward. It should therefore come as no surprise that the creative outputs and capacities of our two most neglected centers—heart and spirit—are marginalized in society today.
While healthy eating, regular physical exercise, stress management, and getting enough sleep constitute advice that our grandparents might have provided, we all need the tools to move from knowing to doing, from thought to belief to massive action.
The busy habit is just like any other habit — breaking it takes practice. You may be accustomed to rushing from place to place, saying yes when you really need and want to say no, or being the go-to person all the time, and it’s exhausting! I’m sure you know far too well what that feels like...
How much is success down to skill or just a lucky break?
Many of our choices have the potential to change how we think about the world. Often the choices taken are for some kind of betterment: to teach us something, to increase understanding or to improve ways of thinking. What happens, though, when a choice...
Human beings have essentially two modes or mind-sets that we operate or live in, with, of course, some shades of gray in between. We have what you might call a healthy mode, and another, which you can think of as reactive. When we are in our healthiest state of mind, we 'dance' with life. We're...
Writing about positive emotions may help to reduce stress and anxiety, according to our new study, published in the British Journal of Health Psychology.
At some fairly early point in our lives, we solidify our perspective -- the way we look at the world -- into a filter through which all our senses pass. Turning your world upside down by learning to see it from another's point of view rearranges habitual patterns.
An emotion is something we attach to an event and it arises as a result of our interpretation of the event. This emotion is not inherent in the event but is always the result of our opinion or interpretation of what’s happening.
Grief is an important emotion. Not an easy one, but it’s how we digest the experience of loss and transform it into something that has depth and meaning. People who have owned and transformed their grief are like heavy boulders that can stand unmoved in the midst of hurricanes, providing shelter and refuge to others.
In the spring semester of the school year, I teach a class called ‘Happiness’. It’s always packed with students because, like most people, they want to learn the secret to feeling fulfilled.
Transport experts have warned that rising inner city populations and demand for new infrastructure could lead to more collisions, serious injuries, and possibly fatalities involving heavy vehicles, such as trucks.
Writer Michael Hobbes says there are too many stereotypes about millennials. So, there are three things that every millennial should know. The first one is that there is no evidence for any of the stereotypes about us.
Least effort is expended when your actions are motivated by love, because nature is held together by the energy of love. When you seek power and control over other people, you waste energy. But when your actions are motivated by love, there is no waste of energy, your energy multiplies and accumulates.
Life is a great school, and nature is the ultimate teacher, but without awareness, or free attention, we miss life's teachings. Awareness transforms life experience into wisdom, and confusion into clarity. Awareness is the beginning of all growth.
Most of us are addicted to email. Some estimates say we spend nearly five and a half hours each weekday checking it.
To explain what good luck is and how to create your own, Nick Offerman leans on the wisdom of Tom Waits, Socrates, Tom Jefferson and Nick Offerman.
Although the healing process can really occur in three simple steps — find your willingness to see differently, give your willingness to your Inner Therapist, and trust that it is done — I find that I often need more ways to separate myself from the ego because it hangs on so tightly. Or, perhaps, because I hang on to it so tightly.
New research digs into how setbacks affect the pursuit of our goals, such as weight loss.
Problems can be overcome by just thinking about them differently. Often, says Benjamin Hardy, people think problems are going to be far worse than they actually are.
Happiness is the current wave. It’s in book names, article titles, Coke ads, McDonald’s Happy Meals, and, you name it. I think happiness is a general word that encompasses the pure physical body sensations of the emotions of joy, love, and peace.
The heart is a key concept in shamanism, a specialized term that refers to one’s deep source of aliveness, spiritual center, soul, or core. The word core itself comes from the French word coeur, meaning “heart.” It is understood to mean our individual, localized expression of the Great Spirit, God, or Universal Consciousness. It is our individual wave moving upon the greater sea of spirit.
From stories dating back to my childhood, I have memories of the lamb as being the weak one... The one who followed innocently... the one who had to be sheltered... the one who had to be picked up and carried to its nourishment and to its shelter. I recall seeing a lamb at its birth, and its legs were unable to support its weight. The lion on the other hand has...
It can seem like there’s never enough time – not enough for sleep and not enough for play, not enough for cooking and not enough for exercise.
Worrying about things we have no control over is counterproductive. It makes you tense -- which, in turn, ruins your judgment. When you are worried, you live in a state of fear. This makes it difficult, if not impossible, to be loving, helpful, and kind on a day-to-day, moment-to-moment basis.
I interviewed numerous people who have regrettable ink and most admit their decision to get a tattoo was impulsive and not really contemplated. Their experiences with having a bad tattoo included suffering from severe depression and panic attacks. Some people even resort to therapy and antidepressants over a bad tattoo.
A decomposed, mummified body of a man was recently found by forensic cleaners in a Sydney apartment. The apartment’s owner is thought to have suffered from hoarding disorder, and police believe the decomposed body had been there for more than ten years.
When I was a child, I remember my mother using time-outs as punishment. However, even then, I enjoyed going to my room to think about how I was behaving and what I needed to do "to be a good boy". I enjoyed my time-out then, and I still do...
Awakenings may happen because of some alarming event like a negative medical diagnosis or the death of someone you love. An awakening may rise out of necessity or it may come as a “sobering” of a drunken ego overwhelmed with guilt. Once awakened, we must prepare ourselves for the journey.
Most people who seek out Buddhism think that practice will enable them to eliminate their pain and provide them with a state of permanent happiness. But the reality is that all that Buddhist practice will do is help us develop the skills to cope with this constant dissatisfaction and not turn our pain into suffering.
When Google promoted a software engineer named Chade-Meng Tan to the role of “Jolly Good Fellow”, his career – and the entire culture of Silicon Valley – took a sharp turn.
Do we have the right to believe whatever we want to believe? This supposed right is often claimed as the last resort of the wilfully ignorant, the person who is cornered by evidence and mounting opinion
There is a meme that speaks directly to the hearts and minds of the overly self-conscious. Perhaps you’ve seen it; it goes something like this
Each event in our life builds off other events emotionally so that they create our core themes. Every perception, drama, trauma, relationship (both the good and bad ones), fear, belief, success, and failure are rooted in our core themes. They're all just waiting for ...
Each of us passes through an array of experiences that creates a beautiful but complex weaving of life. Here is how you can find impressions from your past for the purpose of directing your future...
Earlier this year, one of us visited a prominent U.S. medical school to give a lecture on the topic of burnout and how physicians can find more fulfillment in the practice of medicine.
I saw a man wearing a t-shirt that declared, "Baseball is life. All else is details." Like this fellow, each of us chooses something that brings us life, and all else becomes details. I encourage you to stay with what brings you life, and let the details be just that.
Tattoos are something you are going to wear and stare at for a long time. Once you decide to get a tattoo, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the body’s energy zones and how they interlock together as one consciousness.
The moment we can ask ourselves “Does this thought have anything to do with reality?” “Is this thought true?” we are starting to wake up. This understanding breaks the bondage, which is our total identification with thoughts, and empowers us to wake up from the dream state.
I understand why people feel unsettled, confused, and even frightened by what they observe going on in our world today. Everywhere we look we see chaos and change, disruption and destruction. We see suffering and privation; we see inequality and constriction of opportunity. We see a positive future for ourselves only dimly, at best.
We may be born surrounded by people and circumstances who will set us gently on our journey -- or we may have more difficult conditions. Those who, on Earth, seem to be our harshest taskmasters, may be very close to us in our soul group.
Your brain is a fascinating piece of machinery. It has remarkable capacity for development. Very subtle changes in how the brain develops, or in how it responds, can lead to us experiencing the world in vastly different ways.