How to Cultivate Presence

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Josiah Ingels

Bring more present moment awareness into your life. Start with small, every day activities. Instead of indulging in thinking (as you cook, take out the garbage, shower)…be present. Be sensory aware. Feel the energy in your body. Be aware of your surroundings. All it takes is 30 seconds and everyone has 30 seconds.

Eckhart Tolle

No Two Are Alike

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“The middle one is pregnant,” says the husband.

Every zebra has unique stripe patterns – much like humans’ fingerprints. 

If we could just appreciate our singularity – and the originality of others, this world would be a more peaceful place.

I like Ram Dass’ observation: When we go out and see trees, we don’t judge them. We don’t say this one is better than that one. We appreciate every tree. We should do that with people. Appreciate every person. 

Judgmental people tend to judge themselves fiercely. They believe it makes them work harder and be better. In fact, judgmental people possess an insecurity and sometimes a level of self-hate that disables them to love others.

There is strife in America right now. There is a great divide. But ignorance is being met with consciousness and ultimately, awareness will win.

 

 

 

I’m Glad I Asked

He came in the second day without his backpack.  I resisted the urge to roll my eyes and sigh. How can a 5th grader forget his backpack? Didn’t he feel like something was missing? 

Instead,  I asked him to walk me through his morning. Maybe I could help him.

“I pack my things and walk to the garage.  I put my backpack down and get my little sister.  Then I strap her into her car seat. I guess I forgot to get my backpack. ”

My irritation became empathy and respect. 

This illustrates why judging others can be harmful – to others and ourselves. We each have our own cross to bear.

The Non-Judgment Experiment

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Photo from Sebastian Spindler

 

Animals and Zen masters are the most peaceful living creatures. They don’t judge.

 

I’ve noticed that I’m a lot more judgmental than I’d like to be. And this tendency is a formidable block to inner peace.

I’m on a self-imposed challenge: stop judging people. First, I must be aware of when I judge. It’s strongest when I’m driving. Wow! Do I have very negative thoughts! The good news is that it’s completely impersonal. I don’t know these people.  But still…

Will you join me? Next time you’re in the company of one or more other people, notice your thoughts. Are you judging? Be aware. And then let it go. Don’t try to fight it. Just let it go. Just say to yourself, isn’t that interesting? My mind is judging. 

As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him.

Gandhi

 

When you change, your world will change.