From Delusion to Discovery

Delusion and Denial

A dated joke in the addictions field is that “denial” is a river in Egypt (de Nile). A more contemporary description of D-E-N-I-A-L as standing for “Don’t Even know I Am Lying. When we discount things we hear more than once, from more than one person, and on repeated occasions, we might want to consider what they are saying. Some of our habits and patterns of behavior my be different from reality. Buddhism often talks about “delusion” which is a much better term than denial. Our delusions are a result of long term ways we view our life. We don’t … Continue Reading

Quote 1, Week 1: Discovering Happiness & Joy by Jack Kornfield, Ph.D.

Happy Waking Kid Square

Welcome…Once a week, I will bring you the “Mindfulness Quote for the Week”. I invited our FACES Conferences expert mindfulness teachers such as Jack Kornfield, Ph.D., Daniel J. Siegel, M.D., Tara Brach, Ph.D., Sharon Salzberg, Sylvia Boorstein, Ph.D., LCSW, and many others to pick their favorite mindfulness quotes, and to answer these questions: “Why did you pick this quote?” “Why is the quote important to you?” “What are some suggested “mindfulness practices for the week” Each week, we will bring you one of these quotes, for the next 52 weeks. We would love your feedback, and experiences related to practicing … Continue Reading

Living in the Past… Living in the Future: Being in the Now

Berline Wall Living in the Past

“Find the narrow gate that leads to life. It is called the NOW.” - Echkart Tolle, The Power of Now It is habitual to ruminate about the past, the bad and the good, or daydream about the future, at the expense of ”being in the now”. Jack Kornfield tells a story where a friend saw a sign in a Las Vegas casino that said “MUST BE PRESENT TO WIN”. Ironically, that is what we must do in life. Mindfulness is about embracing the now, good and bad. It is about not beating yourself up about lost opportunities and mistakes in … Continue Reading

Blocks to Self-Compassion: Holding on to the Past - Resentments and Blaming

Compassion Free Hugs

Self-compassion Involves Self-Acceptance Self-compassion is blocked when you hold on to resentments from the past, anger towards those who hurt you, and blocks openness to what is happening “in the now”. We can have self-compassion when we see our role in conflicts in the past and present. Letting go, allows us to move on with our life and not be stuck blaming others, when appropriate forgiving them, and/or accepting what happened. Revenge, bitterness, and anger, gives control back to the person who you blame for your own personal misery. You are then engaged in “hating” which prevents you from being … Continue Reading

Compassion: The Mainstay of Mindfulness

Compassion Puppy Hands

One of the quickest and most effective way to start being mindful is to invoke compassionfor yourself and for others. If there is one thing you can do immediately it is to become more compassionate. Here are some ways that you can be compassionate: Being reflective (gentle) & responsive (feeling) instead of reactive (angry) Being sensitive to others’ suffering as well as your own suffering Changing critical attitudes (greed, hatred, delusion) into compassionate attitudes ( generosity, love, awareness) Taking responsibility for mistakes instead of blaming & defensiveness Invoking “right speech” – instead of complaining about others Cherishing (loving) your partner/spouse … Continue Reading

On Blaming and Forgiveness

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Blaming keeps you stuck, whereas understanding and forgiveness frees you up. “We habitually erect a barrier called blame that keeps us from communicating genuinely with others, and we fortify it with our concepts of who’s right and who’s wrong……” - Pema Chodron, When Things Fall Apart We can practice mindfulness by slowing down, recognizing our strong emotional feelings (i.e. anger, blame, criticism, etc.) and choose not to over react. Breathing and quieting down enough to make the next best decision. Metaphorically you “keep on paddling”. A “tireless debate” is when both parties are embroiled in an argument that is not … Continue Reading