The List

Wednesday 16 August, 2017

What follows is a list of many of the most important pieces from this blog. The list makes it easy for you to understand at a glance what is necessary in this work. It takes you through the process of self-development and self-realisation – from awareness, observation and reflection, and back to awareness – offering you guidance on what to expect along the way and what you can do to help yourself.

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The Paradox Of No Choice

Friday 30 June, 2017

Having emphasised in the previous post the influence of choice on our lives – the unconscious nature of so many of our daily choices, and the need for awareness in order to make better ones – it can also be very helpful to have no choice at all. More specifically, it can be helpful to give yourself no choice. Having no option but to pursue a certain course of action means there is no internal dialogue; no time or energy wasted flipping between need and desire (‘I should but I don’t want to!’). You have to do it, so you get on with it.

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The Choice Is Always Yours

Thursday 22 June, 2017

Every action, every word, every thought is a choice we make and for which we are responsible. What we seldom realise is that we have always been choosing. We may have been conditioned by others to make certain choices – and to make them over and over again – but we always had the freedom to make different ones, no matter how limited that freedom may have seemed. We have been choosing for so long, and doing so thousands of times every day, that our choices have become automatic, passive, unconscious, habitual. Over time, familiar pathways gradually become furrows, deeper and deeper, so that even if we become aware of them, it can seem too difficult to find a way out.

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Limited Only By Our Beliefs

Wednesday 22 March, 2017

Is it possible to influence the result of a football match which has already taken place if you have no knowledge of the result? When this question occurred to me years ago my conclusion was: ‘Yes, it is possible.’ After all, if the focus of thousands of people can have an effect on the outcome of an event, then so can the focus of one person. And if time is an illusion and everything already exists simultaneously, then all we have to do is choose – with complete conviction and belief – whichever reality we want. Our very own placebo effect. The difficulty occurs because we have firm ideas of what we believe to be true and real. Let those go and everything becomes possible.

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Distracted By The Shiny Stuff

Thursday 15 December, 2016

This year it has become clear to me why we are so easily distracted by the shiny stuff, even when the evidence tells us that consumption does not offer long-term contentment: We think this is all there is. We have no idea that there is an alternative. For so many of us there is only the physical plane. Anything which might exist beyond what we perceive with our immediate senses is too abstract for our rational minds to comprehend. We see only what is there, and we dismiss all notions of what might exist beyond that. Life, therefore, quickly becomes focused on the pursuit of earthly pleasures and the avoidance of any kind of pain.

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Reality’s Shopkeeper

Tuesday 13 September, 2016

She stands behind the counter, waiting patiently for you to arrive. She has all the time in the world and will wait forever because infinity is something she is comfortable with, and because she sees her work as the highest form of service. Every day she has the chance to make dreams come true and bring joy to whoever walks into her shop. You see, she has an infinite stockroom, with infinite shelves, holding every imaginable reality. She is your servant and will bring you whatever you wish for. You just have to tell her what it is.

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And So It Continues…

Monday 8 August, 2016

How you choose to see life makes a difference to your perception of yourself, the world, and your place in it. Your outlook and attitude define the qualities you attribute to the whole of existence. They affect how you think and feel, and, therefore, every experience you have. For example, if you choose to believe in coincidences, life takes on a more random quality as different events simply collide without reason or purpose. In those instances the assumption is that if there is any control over what happens, it is beyond us; aspects of our fate are decided elsewhere.

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Journeys Within Journeys

Thursday 2 October, 2014

In the days before I set off to spend a month in the sunshine, there was reluctance. I had booked the trip primarily out of need, rather than desire. Desire alone would not have sufficed to make it happen, because I have come to value routine over adventure; repetition over novelty. These past weeks have re-awakened the adventurous side of my character in the most gentle way possible: within the secure friendship of good people, and in a beautiful, warm part of the world where everything was in place for me to create my normal routine, meet new people, indulge ever more effortlessly in new experiences, and see myself in sharper focus.

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300 Days

Thursday 24 July, 2014

Every day for the last 300 days I have followed a 25-minute exercise routine. It has been a goal of mine for some time to establish such a habit. There have been numerous attempts over the years with plenty of tinkering along the way to get it right. Early routines were dotted with painful episodes because I overdid things. I pushed myself too hard, in too much of a hurry to make progress. Back problems have littered all previous attempts, enticing me each time to throw in the towel. And I did give up. But I came back to it again and again. This current run is my most successful ever.

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No Past, No Future, Just Today

Tuesday 15 April, 2014

I was woken last Saturday at 06:30 by a phone call from a good friend on the other side of the world. We caught up on the recent events of our respective lives, re-connecting with a familiar ease and appreciation. As our conversation drew to a close he told me to have a great day, adding the simplest of instructions: ‘No past, no future, just today.‘ His words reminded me of the book I am reading; a book I was prompted to pick up again after another recent contact with a different friend.

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There’s A Choice To Be Made

Saturday 7 April, 2012

Without awareness much of our behaviour occurs automatically, unconsciously. When that happens we surrender control of our lives to our conditioning and to the patterns of behaviour which have been our companions for so long. There is, however, an alternative. In the everyday situations in which we find ourselves – whether real or assumed – we always have a choice of how to act, react, behave, think and speak. We are able to choose how to be.

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Have Fun

Sunday 7 September, 2003

Dev called and we talked about choices. You choose what you want. Yesterday I saw clearly the choice I have made to live. Any doubts or temptations are made less powerful because I have already made choices. Dev talked of wanting to have his childhood again so he can make it perfect and not turn out the way he has. I assured him there is no point dwelling too much on the past, adding that what I have learnt about my parents in recent years has made me angry, but it has shown me that who I am is not necessarily me. Essentially, I am a result of my parental conditioning (as well as my familial, ancestral, cultural and societal conditioning).

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It’s Your Choice: Brilliance Or Pain

Friday 5 September, 2003

In this evening’s men’s group there were comments to me from Karaj which prompted me to reflect on aspects of who I am.

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Curtailing My Choice

Monday 16 June, 2003

I chatted with Karaj about our partnership. Karaj: ‘You bring the credibility and I bring the relationship. That’s how we can work together for the rest of our lives. You have discretion. You are pleasing but firm and people do things for you.

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