Fitmind.co brings us a deep dive into the concept of non-duality, the belief that we’re not all separate selves, interacting with a world of discrete objects, but instead, are all manifestations of a single, all-encompassing awareness.
This idea can be found in the teachings of Buddhism, Sufism, Kabbalah and others, and is actually not as strange as it first appears. For instance, Non-duality immediately does away with one of the most difficult questions facing philosophers and neurologists today; how matter (in the form of the brain) can give rise to consciousness.
According to proponents of non-dualism, scientists have the question backwards. It’s not matter that gives rise to consciousness, it’s consciousness which gives rise to (the appearance) objects. The whole hing is well worth a read.
More Dan Harris goodness, this time from with a video on how to get started with meditation. My favourite thing about Dan is the simple, jargon-free language he uses to talk about meditation:
Despite what you may have heard, meditation does not involve joining a group, paying any fees, wearing any special outfits, sitting in a funny position, or believing in anything in particular.
It is simple, secular, scientifically validated exercise for your brain.
It’s no exaggeration to say that meditation is the most valuable tool I know of. But it didn’t always feel that way. In fact, my meditation practice was spotty for years, simply because I got into a wrestling match with my mind every time I sat down, and thought that there was something wrong with that.
Of course, being put off meditation because your mind protests is like being put off exercise because your muscles do. That’s what’s supposed to happen, especially in the beginning.
Meditation doesn’t always feel wonderful. The more we make that clear, the less we risk discouraging newcomers, who were expecting a stream of endless bliss, instead of a mind that sometimes feels even more hyperactive than before. Understanding that meditation is a process gives them the best chance of discovering what it can bring to their lives.
The struggle is that the mind that knows that meditation is good for you, is the same mind that doesn’t want to stop thinking. This part of the mind doesn’t like meditation, in fact, it hates it, simply because meditation subdues its very purpose; thinking…
Einzelgänger with 8 simple ways to integrate mindfulness practice into your daily life. Mindfulness needn’t (and shouldn’t) be something which we consider separate to our ordinary life. The aim is to find ways to integrate mindful moments into our typical day-to-day. I particularly liked this part about listening:
By listening closely to what people have to say, you basically shift your attention from your thoughts to to the person speaking. Havingdealt with social anxiety myself, I can say the following; when I’m socially anxious or shy, I’m entailed in thoughts like “What do I have to say now?” “What can I say to impress this person?” Or “why the hell did. I have to say this?”
The nature of these questions is the they relate to the past and the future. Thus when someone is speaking to me, I rather focus on what I said earlier or what I’m going to say, instead of truly listening.The secret is, when I fully focus on what the person is saying, my own words often come naturally and without hesitation.
Back in 2019, Matt D’Avella decided to kickstart his lapsed meditation practice. He didn’t mess around either. He decided to meditate for an hour every day for thirty days.
So what happened? I won’t spoil the ending, but if you have a spare 15 minutes I highly recommend checking it out. It’s filled with useful tips and insights for those new to meditation, including this absolute gem from Dan Harris on what I think is the key benefit meditation brings to daily life:
You’re seeing how crazy you are, and that actually has a real value. The systematic collision with the asshole in your head has a real value.
Because when the asshole offers you up a shitty suggestion in the rest of your life, which is basically it’s job; like oh yeah, you should eat the 17th cookie, or say the things that’s gonna ruin the next 48 hours of your marriage, or whatever, you’re better able to resist it.
This is now my default response when somebody asks me why they should meditate.