The Team & The Individual

Monday 15 October, 2018

The best thing you can do for your team is to work on yourself. If everyone does that, and people support each other in their respective development, the team will grow and mature. So, too, will the individual. PRACTICE and DISCIPLINE are the foundations of the work. They are qualities you will need to return to again and again as you seek to change certain habits. It can be difficult at first, but if you pay close attention you will be able to SEE YOUR PROGRESS, no matter how small. And it’s important that you see the small steps, because if you wait for the big leaps you will easily become downhearted.

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Connecting In The Stillness

Monday 8 October, 2018

I attended another event from Mind Work Productions. (See also, ‘Courage In The Darkness’.) A whole afternoon of workshops and connection. I felt at home, but I also felt reluctance; not only at the invitation to leave my comfort zone, but also the confrontation of having no real choice. It was an almost breathless journey towards familiarity – familiarity with the environment, with the people, and with the self. This blog post focuses on the three main insights I took from two of the workshops I attended.

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Five Years Later

Sunday 30 September, 2018

When I began, there was no thought about making it beyond the first 100 days. However, the more I carried on, the more inevitable it became. Each milestone made it easier to continue, and each played its part in carrying me to where I am now, five years later. I have recorded my progress on two previous occasions. (See ‘300 Days’ and ‘One Thousand Days’.) What follows are my latest observations of what I have gained from doing a 25-minute exercise routine every day for 1,829 days.

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It’s A Game Changer

Wednesday 22 August, 2018

There was a definite shift during the retreat. I can’t say it happened in an instant, but it happened early on. It grew out of the experience of The Invitation, deepening each day. I saw clearly how being able to drop the identity and rest so effortlessly in the is-ness, meant two things. Firstly, I no longer had to be the person I had worked so hard to be (despite my attachment to it). This alone was a liberating insight. As with every other breakthrough from the retreat, the shift came from experiencing it. This anchors the insight in a way not possible through mere cognition. (See also ‘We Are The Sum Total Of Our Experience’.)

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Observing From The Is-ness

Saturday 18 August, 2018

Day three began with doubt and ended with laughter. The laughter had a purity to it. It arose in the lottery queue for the evening Satsang, as 900 people stood in 15 lines waiting for lots to be drawn. Those lots determined in which order we would file into the hall. It began at the back of the block and spread in gentle waves throughout the silent crowd. Mooji had referred to someone’s joyful laughter the previous evening, saying, ‘There is no way that this laughter comes from the mind’. So maybe what I was hearing from myself and the pockets of people around me, was the sound of the is-ness. In any case, it was a very different feeling to how the day had begun.

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The Mandala Of Personhood

Friday 17 August, 2018

The first thought when I woke up on day two, was a realisation that I am attached to my identity. Just as with the previous day’s insight – everything is a distraction – this is not a new idea. As the sunrise shone through the open window, I lay in contemplation. It didn’t feel like a big deal. My mind started to wander away from the insight. There hadn’t been the revelatory feel I’d had the day before, so I began to question whether I am indeed attached to who I am.

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Everything Is A Distraction

Thursday 16 August, 2018

What surprised me most about the first few hours, was how distracted I was. Having registered, found my room, and left one final voice message for her, I walked around the castle grounds, doing what I thought people did on a silent retreat. I was quiet. But others were still talking. That was perplexing, but not necessarily distracting. My attention, instead, had been captured by the people themselves.

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Deep & Profound Gratitude

Wednesday 15 August, 2018

It was a present from her. Five days at a silent retreat with Mooji. I cannot begin to describe how beautiful the whole experience was; how enriching and life-changing. All I can do for now is to record in the next few posts what my experience of those days was. This piece is the briefest of summaries, and subsequent posts will go into more detail about specific insights and aspects. Some background might be useful, so if you wish you can read the post, ‘The Conclusion Is Emptiness’, as well as the more recent one, ‘When Mooji Came To Town’.

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Deep Sleep & Deep Work

Friday 27 July, 2018

My son lay asleep upstairs, taking his usual morning nap. There is never any way of knowing exactly how long it will last when he sleeps, so as I sat down to write, the clock was already ticking. The aim was to get as much done as possible before the baby went off. Fortunately, I was aided in my work by a new approach, introduced to me by a friend when he gave me the book, Deep Work, by Cal Newport.

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Retreat Insights & Learning

Tuesday 24 July, 2018

This entry is a brief summary of what I took from the summer retreat. Just because I was working, there is no reason why I cannot gain insight and learning. That’s one of the things which Karaj always instilled in us – every experience is a chance to learn. Such an outlook ensures continual improvement, whilst also helping to cultivate humility. Here’s what I took from those 2½ days:

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Creating A New Habit

Tuesday 1 May, 2018

How easy is it to create a new habit? That depends on the habit. Bad ones are a breeze and can develop without us noticing. Good ones, on the other hand, always seem to involve some discipline, effort or sacrifice – those not-so-magic words which can immediately put people off. This and subsequent posts will follow my own attempts to create a new habit, offering insights into the process so that you can see for yourself what happens, what is necessary, and what to look out for.

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Happier Than I Thought

Friday 11 March, 2016

I went to a comedy gig last month, and halfway through the show it occurred to me: I’m happier than I thought. I was watching a Dutch comedian (Samba Schutte) and I laughed from start to finish. I was impressed with his energy, the ease with which he told his story, and the way he played with the audience’s emotions – inviting us repeatedly to indulge in intense peaks of laughter, holding us there for a while, before allowing the whole audience to fall back to earth in the controlled descent of his sombre and serious interludes.

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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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The People We Meet

Sunday 8 June, 2014

They say true wealth is measured not by money, but by how much time we have to do whatever we like. Similarly, we can measure how congruent we are by the people in our lives and the people we meet. This post is a comment on the fact that the people we meet are a reflection of ourselves. They are signposts informing us where we are in life; and our connection with them helps to shed light on whether we should continue on our particular path or make changes. In addressing this, I make a distinction between two environments: one which served me well but was not my goal; and one which brings more harmony.

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