Tag Archives: joy

A Nonviolent Approach

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"Strength does not come from physical capacity, it comes from indomintable will."-Ganndhi

“Strength does not come from physical capacity, it comes from indomintable will.”-Gandhi

We all learn about the great nonviolent movements of historic figures like Martin Luther King Jr. and Mahatma Gandhi. How these movements changed history and persevered amidst opposition is eye opening.  The importance of these movements lies within the radical and defining changes they brought about in society.  Through nonviolent tactics both leaders produced prolific and resounding revolutions that we still refer to today.  However, despite being introduced to these movements early on we refuse to accept these teachings, no matter how peaceful and gentle we claim to be.

I wrote a paper on Martin Luther King Jr. when I was entering high school. It is difficult to learn about the history of America without learning about slavery.  It is hard not to see the effects Mahatma Gandhi had on the history of India and Great Britain.  The heights Gandhi’s activities reached are unparalleled and were noticed worldwide, but then what? We watch movies, read books, dwell on quotes, and praise these men, but this is all history; what does it matter now?

Learning about these movements teaches us how history was formed,

Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King Jr.

how revolutions were created without weapons, and the force of the multitude.  However there are some lessons that are not taught and less spoken of, lessons that reach far beyond history.  These lessons include how one man can change the world for millions, how a single belief can proliferate, and most importantly, the root of non-violence.

The root of nonviolence lies within us.  Most of us deny living violent lives; we don’t expend force upon anyone, we do not aggressively hit others, nor do we act out in ferocious behaviors. Although aggression, ferociousness, and force are very broad terms they all contain a seed of violence.  The seed of violence is planted within us at a very early age and is given adequate nourishment to grow into very bushy trees.

Each derogatory remark, criticism, and blame we place upon ourselves is a form of violence.  Starting in our early school years to when we start mimicking media: trying to get that perfect figure, getting that perfect grade, trying to perform that flawless routine; we begin pushing ourselves, slapping ourselves, and smothering ourselves.  Every time I fell in public I would call myself names and think I deserved punishment despite the fact that the fall was not really my fault.

The violence within us

The violence within us

Just as the saying goes ‘we are our company,’ we project onto others what we think and do to ourselves.  If our minds are negative, it only follows that we will become accustomed to repeating that negativity.  When we are in school most of us compare ourselves with others, and when this comparison doesn’t meet our expectation we tend to blame and find inexcusable fault with ourselves.

This is where violence begins.  When our minds become agitated and upset we inflict pain and misery upon ourselves. This pain can only be contained for a short period of time before we start projecting our internal state onto others.  When we lash out at others or share an insult with another what is it but a violent act?  Most of us equate violence with physical acts of hate, but words can hurt far more than knives.  If we know how to hate, punish, and sabotage ourselves it follows we will know how to do the same to others.

Violence is a societal phenomenon.  Violence is taught to us in schools, through the media, and via fraternities.  When I was I high school, college, and post grad school I used to pull all-nighters and stayed awake all day, all night, and all day again for the sake of a grade, scholastic learning, or official work; what is this if not violence to our bodies? My average day is 13 hours and when I run above 15 hours I start feeling achy and groggy. When I was in school I sat like a zombie if front of the computer until that 2nd kick came in at 21 hours. It is not the natural state of the body to stay awake for this long, but we feel the need to in order to feel good about ourselves, meet the deadline, or compete with others.

Through competition and comparisons, we are actually taught to commit heinous acts against ourselves, and to propel and amplify the hatred by putting ourselves down, criticizing ourselves, and doubting ourselves.  Violence, like other learned phenomenon is only as effective as the energy you put into it.  So although we are given the tools for violence at an early age, it is our continuous practice and involvement in the behavior that labels us violent creatures.

Unfortunately, we are violent beings; most of us won’t admit to it, but the torture we put ourselves through proves otherwise. Our internal monologue creates changes within our bodies and because our minds are so susceptible to subliminal messages and other forms of convincing propaganda our internal monologue creates damaging changes such as the rate of digestion, tense muscles within our body, or secretion of abnormal hormones.

Free yourself from the violence within you and bring peace to the world

Free yourself from the violence within you and bring peace to the world

The effects of violence are so pervasive so why not cut down on the violence and start leading more peaceful lives?  We watch the news and condemn the violence that we see around the world, but we neglect to see and acknowledge the violence within us.  If we are nicer to ourselves, the atmosphere of our minds will be reflected in our surroundings.

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In the beginning

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In the beginning

In the beginning

This first Mayan message serves as an introduction to the Mayan messages and explains how we came to be and how the Universe came to be.

Our spirits came into this world with basic knowledge of the experiences we would have; however the construct of free will made the difficulty and complexity of these circumstances unforeseeable. We directed our own existence, and with the help of Spirit guides and friends we began our journey here.

A simple version of the creation of this world can be found in the book the Little Soul and the Sun by Neale Donald Walsch, but a brief description is as follows.

In the beginning of our Universe there was Oneness; all energies simply existed without form, definition, infinitely, and blissfully.  When there was a desire for Separation, Sparklets of light left the Spirit Realm to convert themselves into physical matter. Each of these Sparklets had memory from where it came and understood this existence was only temporary.  At this time there was no individuality, but as this Universe grew further away from the original Source, the desire to create different Dimensions with different experiences grew. Each Dimension had unique aspects and laws to govern how they would operate.  At this point memories of the original Source was still prevalent and that this is only any ephemeral experience was still intact. However, many universes later our universe was created which was decided to have the inhabitants encounter experiences that are farthest from the Source and to wipe all memory of this Source. This universe is meant for the more adventurous souls who are left to find their own way back to the Source.

Each world has a different set of experiences, and although civilizations on other worlds and planets face similar circumstances it remains noteworthy that Earth civilization continues to exist despite the darkness and destruction it faces. Due to humans’ need to control and manipulate things to their advantage, humans have not only caused damage to themselves but to Earth also.  This is due to the amnesiac effect.

Those who dare not to enter the Earth realm are in awe of those souls that do enter and find their way back.

We all chose our current experiences, but due to the nuances of free will and the amnesiac effect the circumstances we face are a bit problematic.  We have the luxury to choose our experiences, and due to our amnesia we get caught up in the possession and control of these experiences; however we all have the ability to awaken and rediscover our spirit- essence.

As a race, we are starting to look within, harness our spiritual power, and make conscious decisions; this is making our collective consciousness more aware of our Higher Self the part of us that remains in the spirit realm.  We are realizing that the life we want to experience comes from ourselves.  When we experience anything, this information is sent back to the Source. No matter how far from Love we go, there is no judgment; this is simply an experience.

It is no coincidence that we are on planet Earth today. There is a huge line of souls wanting to incarnate. Among the multitude we were chosen for our special talents, because we were one of the original creators, to clean up some of our previous messes or to ride the ultimate rollercoaster. We are accompanied by at least one spirit guide when we incarnate into this world in addition to the many spirits who assist people like us on our journey; the Mayan Day Keepers are such helpers.

So go forth this day as a newborn, observing all with wonder and without judgment!

*Note that the phrases highlighted are the uplifting and philosophical messages I extracted from the original message.

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What you see is what you get

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What you perceive is what's important

What you perceive is what’s important

People wish, want, and pray real hard for that ideal partner, that promotion at work, monetary success, or a better life, but we usually don’t get it.  Despite how much we think we want something, our actions, thoughts, and energies sometimes say something different.  We dream and wish for a partner with specific traits, but when we find them we question this reality.  I always dreamt of finding someone who would love me inspire of and despite my condition, and after coming across this person my suspicions pertaining to his sincerity, loyalty, and motive grow endlessly.  I got what I always wanted, but now that I got it I am thinking and sending energies and affirmations that contradict the very manifestation that I wanted.

If you continue to see the negative then that is what you will receive.  Pessimism is vicious cycle: no matter how much one wills or wants to receive and be part of something positive their pessimicity will always come in the way.  Many of us have wanted to change jobs, maybe even career paths at some point, but when that opportunity comes we second guess it either because of security, comfort, or disbelief. If you wake up at 8 every day with a grunt to go to a job that you could enjoy, but refuse to look past the hours you are putting in, the increasing workload, or to the monotonous tasks to what you are receiving, then the first reaction to everything will be a grunt.  Most jobs are roughly 9 hours hence it is important to be comfortable when we are there as it occupies more than half our day.  So if you chose to change jobs make sure it is not your perception and negativity forcing you on, but some other motivation.

Seeing an inadequate job will make that job inadequate. Once you convince your mind that your job is inadequate, your mind will reciprocate and only hone in on things that convince you that your job is inadequate.  When you constantly read about and see infidelity, your mind will take no extra time in raising suspicions and pointing out the negative qualities of your partner.   This is not to say that you should censor your mind, but if you constantly feed negativity to your mind that is what you will see and become.  Our minds are thus susceptible, but also influencable.

When your mind is positive, what you see will be positive.  Your mind controls the hue, emotion, and meaning of everything your eyes see. So even when we get what we want our minds can blur our vision so much so that it is construed as something we don’t want. Similarly,

When you can see the rainbow admist the rain, clouds, and dreariness that is what you'll get

When you can see the rainbow admist the rain, clouds, and dreariness that is what you’ll get

when we get something we don’t want our minds can construe it as something positive.  Negativity (pessimism, criticism, complaining etc.) narrows and blinds our minds whereas positivity (optimism, resourcefulness, happiness etc.) opens our minds to possibilities.

Getting what we want involves two things: first there needs to be active participation in attaining the item sought. This means that dreaming is not enough; we need to make a conscious effort towards attaining what we want. We can think about it, imagine what it would be like to have it, or act as though achieving it is inevitable.  Second, once the item is in our horizon of acquisition don’t question it. Unknowingly we question and contradict our own efforts and realizations when trying to make our dreams come true by disbelieving, being suspicious, or being afraid.

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Flowing with the Flow

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Ride in the current of Flow

Ride in the current of Flow

I believe all of us need to practice something we enjoy that will bring us closer to ourselves. Something that gives us joy. Something that gives us peace of mind. As we grow, we tend to forget to do this because of the responsibilities and tensions life hands us. We slowly, but surely lose touch with the child we once were. Children know joy; they aren’t preoccupied with the restrictions, etiquette, and responsibilities of life.

If we, as adults practice something we enjoy, the rewards we will reap are immeasurable. Although some adults, me included, thoroughly enjoy working our jobs, I don’t mean this. I mean a hobby; something we do for ourselves.  Don’t know what to do? If you had one hour what would you do; you have no pending professional work, no housework, and no friends online, or even available, what would you do? This is just YOU time.

I’ll give you my example: in 6th grade we were given creative assignments and I choose to remember and recite “If” by Rudyard Kipling. I was an avid reader and enjoyed writing (homework and assignments), but this was my first experience with poetry. My first poem was written in grade 7, and thereafter became my preferred creative process for assignments and such. I realized that when writing poetry I would lose track of time, block out noises and other disturbances, and enter the world of the poem which I was in the process of writing. This process gave me so much pleasure, that I looked forward to any chance I got to write poetry.  When I write a poem, I lose track of time and continue writing until the work is done.  Being inspired, trying to rhyme phrases, and writing aesthetically can be 1-8 hour process, but when you are in the Flow it seems minutes.

Another activity that forces me to lose myself is listening to music. I am a type A personality: very anal. As such, I am very particular about time and feel the need to be early to every appointment: classes, movies, meetings, doing assignments early, and the like. In my 1st year of college I had a statistics class at that I had to be driven to. Apparently, one day I got ready a little early so my mom had me wait; I decided to listen to music for the time to pass. I switched on my 60 cd player stereo and stated listening (and singing along with) the soundtrack of “A Walk to Remember’; I got so caught up in the emotions of the music that my mom had to come to me and tell me I was late.

Things I do to calm, center, and give myself joy: 1. Writing 2. Listening to music 3. Chanting 4. Meditating/ yoga 5. Reading

So, in the one hour you have for yourself, do any of my meditations interest you? Do any of these things give you joy such that if someone comes knocking you will be irritated? Will these or any other activity be so pleasurable and centering that it will put you into a trance like state?

I invite and urge you to spend some time to go back to your simpler life and remember something that gave you joy. Plug this activity into your hectic and busy life and see the wonders it will do for you.  Spending time investing in this activity will provide to you the same fruits as meditation provides.

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Happiness- a learned phenomenon?

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What makes us happy when everything adds up to unhappiness?

The age old question. What is happiness? Is it a feeling, an object, attaining a certain status? Can it be measured? Can it be learned?

Isn’t happiness relative to the human being? What I derive happiness from is different from what you may derive it from. Hence it seems from this statement that happiness can be measured. If happiness can be objectified it follows that more of that object will increase our happiness. What are some things that make us happy?

Flowers; smelling nicely scented flowers always bring a smile to my face; waking to a fresh picked bouquet of jasmine flowers started my day on a happy and stress free note, having a bouquet of appropriately arranged (colors depend on the which colors make you happy, for me its vibrant colors i.e. sun yellow. bright pink, tree green, bright blue etc.) placed in my house makes me happy when I look at it. Music; listening to upbeat music always puts me in a happy mood. What are other things that make you happy, comment on this and let me know.

So it follows that if someone places a bouquet of flowers by my night table for me to wake to the scent to, if I place a bouquet of pink and yellow flowers on my table, or if I listen to Batameez Dil (Hindi song) or A thousand years (English pop song) I will be happy? Not really. Happiness then can’t be objectified? I think it can, to a certain extent. Swinging on a swing, listening to upbeat songs, eating thick cheesy vegetarian pizza, and regressing to a child- like state are things that make ME happy. But they can only supplement my happiness that is already there. Do you think if I come home from being humiliated and disrespected a bouquet of strategically placed bright blue and pink flowers are going to change how I feel? No, Objects (flowers), actions (swinging or eating a potato patty), attaining status (getting an A in class or getting a promotion), and other materialistic objects or gains can only give us ephemeral happiness. These things cannot change our mood but gives us pleasurable experience which can help elevate our mood.

Our mood is our emotional state and happiness vis a vis joy, pleasure, satisfaction, etc is one of the elements that get us into a good versus bad mood. Happiness thus is a state, made up of various elements including joy and pleasure that helps us project a good mood. Happiness is subjective, formed by each individual’s beliefs and interpretations, and thus and thus cannot be measured. Different things give us feelings of happiness, our interpretation of external stimuli: swinging on a swing (joy), seeing Mom, (delight), eating pizza (pleasure), hearing Rafat Ali Khan (pleasure) , seeing and smelling bright/ fragrant flowers (pleasure) or writing poetry (content); these things produce feelings of happiness within me, and although these feelings of happiness i.e. joy. pleasure, delight etc. can combine to make me happy and therefore in a good mood, there is not one stimulus that can always guarantee a feeling of happiness. Swinging on a swing will not give me joy if I just had an argument with a friend, writing poetry will not provide me with a feeling of contentment if I am sleepy, eating pizza will not be pleasurable if I have a stomachache etc.

If nothing can guarantee to give us happiness, is it a hit and miss equation? Is there something that can provide us with a static happiness?

YES. I just discovered and will share it with you.

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