21 Sep 2010 @ 23:48, by jerryvest. Ideas, Creativity Our international health promotion team is a modest effort, but hopefully an expanding opportunity, to awaken individuals, couples, families, groups, organizations and communities to an awareness that touch or physical interaction with mindfulness, respect and love are basic human need requirements for safety, survival, resiliency, and for the wellbeing of humanity and all that exists. Our 15-Minute StressOut Program is a great model of Quality Care and Best Practice Research for bringing about change and improvement for the quality of lives, health and relationship throughout our society and beyond.
This past week I was invited to present our safe,skillful and nourishing touch program for soldiers, families and health care professionals at White Sands Missile Range as part of their Suicide Prevention Awareness Program. As we know, physical interaction or touch is one of our basic human need requirements for learning, relating and for experiencing health and wellbeing. Our soldiers were very brave to partner up and give each other one of our "StressOuts" as described in our 15 minute stressout website-- [link]
I also introduced some mindful exercises, breathing, and meditations to support their daily health. There is a lot of evidence that these long and multiple tours produce an injury in the body, mind, emotions, spirit and social relations that is commonly referred to as PTSD. Unfortunately, most mental/behavioral health systems don't include integrative health practices, especially massage & meditation. These methods reduce the agitation, anger, isolation, fear and lonliness, while promoting circulation, healing, and interaction with all of the organs, nervous, muscular-skeleton, skin-protective, digestive and cardia-vascular systems. The brain and other systems are also energized and support the healing processes.
Everyone in this massage forum knows the benefits of massage and integrative health practices, but our conventional mental health and academic therapeutic programs are still mostly skeptical and fearful of touch. I introduce many research programs and guidelines for the safe and skillful use of touch on our forum as well. I recommend that all of our team members and students, visit Dr. Zur's website for the most thorough understanding of the myth of the use of touch by all professionals, health and human service programs.
Anyway, it is good that our program is being used in many military programs and we will continue to advance our safe, skillful, ethical and nourishing touch program in all human and social service programs.
Note: Picture is clinic staff and soldiers in medical clinic learning to give and receive our Stressout Program during Suicide Prevention Week.More >
16 Sep 2010 @ 19:00, by jhs. Ideas, Creativity
Learning how to subtract
Max: "Anthony, look at that tree!"
Max: "Thank you! How many monkeys do you see in that tree?"
Max: "That's right. Now, if one of the monkeys would fall from the tree, how many monkeys would there be left?"
Anthony: "Monkeys don't fall from trees. Leaves, dead branches, Abacates (1), Açai. Goioba, Maracuja, and Carambola, all these can fall from trees. But monkeys don't. But Cajá-manga and Guabiroba and Jatobá and..."
Max: "Ok, Ok, thank you! Let's just say one of the monkeys would come down to get a banana or something. How many monkeys would there be left in the tree?"
Anthony: "They ate the last of our bananas yesterday, don't you remember, you said /(%"£..."
Max: "Ok, ok, ok, you're right again. So let's assume one of the tree monkeys would come down from the tree to play with you, How many monkeys would there be left in the tree?"
Anthony: "No monkey would come down there. Our Rottweilers are sitting in front of that tree."
Max: "Very well so, Let's say I would call now the Rotties to come over here to play with us and then...
Anthony: "...they wouldn't come if you would call them. They listen only to me."
Max: "Ok, ok, ok, ok. Then let's say YOU would call them, and then one of the monkeys could come down, and then, please tell me, how many monkeys are there in that tree?"
Anthony: "Look, there are now four of them. They got something to play with!"
Max: "Fine. Do you see what they're playing with? Let's see how many monkeys would there be left if two of them would escape with the thing they're playing with? What is that thing?"
Anthony: "It's your wallet. Look they play with your credit cards! Now, let's say you had 5 credit cards and the monkeys took away two of them. Tell me, how many cards do you have left, Max? Max?? Maaax?????"
Max (running&screaming): "&()/&%$$$£)..."
(1) Brazilian fruits native to the Sandorian Grove, such as Mutamba, Pequi, Taperebá, Cupuaçu, Mangaba, Siriguela, Pinha, Pitanga, Sapotí. Umbú, just to name a few more.. More >
12 Sep 2010 @ 03:36, by Unknown. Personal Development
Heres sept desktop moon/sun calandar
Autumn Equinox is on the full moon this year Sept 23 as well as the winter solstice is on the full moon producing a lunar eclipse on Dec 21, an alignment of sorts or realignment it would appear. Two in a row? Hmmmmm interesting.... More >
31 Jul 2010 @ 16:29, by anandavala. Spirituality
This is the latest version of the structural basis of the high level design for a general innovation project. Note: I'll keep updating the diagram and adding comments until this design reaches a steady state...
Here are some slides of the various components shown separately... More >
30 Jul 2010 @ 16:30, by jhs. Spirituality
Anton Walter Smetak, 1913-1984, wrote in an enigmatic way, mixing contemplations of art with philosophical speculations and humanistic insights of profound depths.
My take on his way of seeing life may not be accurate and I don't know therefore if he himself would have approved it or not.
But he shares a particular direction of viewing, in common, interestingly enough, with fellow Frenchmen Pierre Verger (1902-1996), Claude Lévy-Strauss (1908-2009), and the Englishman David Bohm (1917-1992), to name a few, in that they touched Brazilian ground, especially the magic land of Salvador, Bahia, and reversed their occidental way of seeing Life, Universe, and Everything. Some, like Smetak and Verger, never left, others kept dreaming of being there (Lévy-Strauss: Tristes Tropiques & Saudades do Brasil) or traveled on to other mystic lands, like Bohm teaming up with Krishnamurti.
They all seem to have parted from the nightmarish occidental vision of having fallen from grace, expelled from paradise and they do not endorse the Western lifestyle of consumerism, its ever more obvious decadence, increasingly so in recent decades. Some try to find their way back to nature, Ralph Waldo Emerson-style, and decry the impact of modern technology on human conscience, but they very well know that the wheel cannot be turned back.
Setting foot on Brazilian soil changes perspectives, at least of some of the great thinkers of the past century, and, beyond mere escapism, enables a positive stance, a shimmer of hope, for societies of the future:
Like Jean Baudrillard (1929-2007) puts its [link] : "Perhaps Brazil, Italy and Japan are in this respect more advanced societies than America. Pessimism itself is something that only afflicts Western values and is itself part of Western values."
Below, or behind, these contemplations we can find another paradigm, and Walter Smetak examplified this point clear and concise like no one else:
the question of diversification versus global norms, the former a natural phenomenon in all cultures of the past around the world. the latter now imposed, and even enforced as necessary, equally on all countries on Earth.
It seems that Brazil left the impression on the noted thinkers that it could escape this dictate and preserve at least a portion of its stunning diversity. As time passes on, this too seems an illusion, the tollbooth barring access to once public roads look alike in Brazil and Italy and the United States, and nobody seems to notice that it is a fall-back to medieval practices that were believed to have been overcome. The ever-expanding laws to rule the individuals and their families in every little aspect of their lives walk their grim path forward in unison in every part of the globe.
Smetak proposes, carefully implicitly, that a standardization of cultures is AGAINST the law of Nature, that it may be even blasphemical to curb or squelsh the variety that the human mind produces. That any truly religious man, whatever denomination he may count himself to belong to, should stand up against it and insist that diversification is the 'will of Gxd', whatever name you'd call her or him, if there should exist anything beyond the symbol of itself.
Nature's innocent vanity, its display of beauty on every dimensional level, from the stars at night to the fractal beauty of visualized mathematical formulas, and to the wondrous world under the microscope, indeed would seem to prohibit any 'norm' on any level as an interference with the divine will, the expression of the sacred behind the appearance of the ordinary.
It seems that nothing can slow down the invasion of our last jungles by the global food chains which are implanting their plastic & uniformal trade-marked stamps on everything they touch as they eat they way through our societies.
But it is the people, or better, the manipulated consumers who were made to think that they would have a 'choice', that makes it possible. And who could stop this disastrous march by simply insisting on their own culture. Or by creating other alternatives... More >
22 Jul 2010 @ 13:16, by solomoreno. Spirituality
To take this or that turn, to form this relationship or that relationship, to thrust one's body toward the laboratory or the monastery...modifying all of that, are the machinations of the mind.
The mind itself does nothing. The mind is akin to the driver of a carriage. It is truly the horses that cover the distance. The driver can set direction and pace: to stop, to proceed, to turn left, to turn right. The mind--its ideas, conceptions, significances, associations, observations, lines of reasoning, computations--creates direction.
The mind receives information or signals from "out there"; think of the mind in that case as a camera that takes snapshots of the world "out there." From these snapshots, the mind commits its other functions, forms these snapshots into ideas, extrapolates, calculates, associates... But it all begins with snapshots of "out there." These snapshots function as an interface between a person and his or her reality. They are what passes from outside to inside.
It bears noting that a snapshot can never exhaust reality. Reality is much too broad, too deep for that. These snapshots are finite portayals of what is in its essence, infinite. The very word "perceive" means "through a filter." Some things come in, some things stay out.
Is the mind always and inevitably misleading then? By the same token, will the driver of a carriage always lead his passangers off of the edge of a cliff? Certainly not. Not if he is monitored and managed, scrutinized with an air of neutrality and clarity. Not if he is made to serve, rather than being made a master into which we put our most sincerest, and blindest faith.
These snapshots, or representations, or signals, are assumed to represent what is actually there, through passive reception. Gathering these impressions, we attempt to create a perfect reflection of what we see outside of ourselves. We attempt to craft a perfectly correlative model within our personal space of what is outside of our personal space. In short, we try to map the territory. We are the cartographers of no-man's land.
Yet, at some point, the mind no longer remains passive, it becomes active. No longer merely an instrument that receives signals of what's there, it decides what could ever be there. What one sees and does not see, becomes what one can ever see and cannot ever see.
Because from these snapshots, a person will form ideas about what to expect from reality. These ideas become fixed, or permanently held and consistently unchallenged. The person will cling to these fixed ideas about what is "out there."
This creates a feedback loop. A feedback loop is where the results of a process--that's the feedback--are fed back into the process whereby more results are gathered and fed back into the process. In our case, the mind draws in actualities. The contents of that reception, that is the feedback, the results of perception. Those signals are turned into fixed ideas about reality which are projected back upon reality, those projections are re-internalized, and so on.
This is what the Taoists called, "The mind becoming its own teacher." The mind first plays the role of the student, passively consuming information about reality. It then turns around and becomes the teacher of reality, telling itself what it can and cannot see. When the mind becomes both the student and the teacher of reality, much of reality can become...ignored.
Beyond missing out on much of what could truly be out there, there is another consequence that can devastate one's freedom and efficacy. The most dangerous of computations can arise from this error, when the mind becomes its own teacher. It is:
INABILITY = INCAPABILITY
What that means is that what you cannot do now, you can never do. There is another way to render this computation. It is:
WHAT IS NOT ACTUAL IS IMPOSSIBLE
What that means is that what a person has never done, or seen done, is impossible.
Now when applied to certain realms, this computation seems utterly crazy...and other realms, it seems to make perfect sense to people.
For instance, many people can drive a car. Not many people can drive an 18-wheeler. Many people have an inability to drive an 18-wheeler. Yet most of these people would never say that just because they have an inability to drive an 18-wheeler that that means they have an incapability to do so.
One difference apparently is that even if one cannot drive an 18-wheeler oneself, one sees others doing it all over the place. The notion that driving an 18-wheeler is impossible never becomes a fixed idea that people project upon reality. Seems rather silly actually...
In other realms, this computation makes perfect to people...or so it would seem. For instance, when it comes to viewing Time in its entirety, all at once, including all of one's past lives and future rebirths (asavakkhya); when it comes to reading others thoughts (Cetopariya); when it comes to communicating telepathically; when it comes to healing one's body without medication; when it comes to exteriorizing from space-time altogether--all of these are inabilities for most people. Yet, many would say that they are simply incapable of these certain...faculties. They might say that they are impossible. Why? What's the difference between operating an 18-wheeler and using these certain faculties?
First of all, again, people can see others driving 18-wheelers all around them--it is actual. Most people do not ever see others around them displaying these certain faculties of higher awareness--they are not actual. In accordance with that peculiar and inane computation, what is not actual is impossible, therefore they are impossible.
It's simple to understand. A little girl grows up never, ever seeing certain events transpire. Like, she probably never sees an ill person sit down with another person, and during the course of their conversation, the ill person becomes healed. In fact, that little girl grows up to see that the only thing "healing" people are chemicals. At some point, there are decisions made within her mind. This becomes a fixed and dearly held notion. That's the word belief means, "dearly held." She decides that the only means to heal one's body are chemicals.
These are the thought-patterns that people carry around with them, banishing so many possibilities from the realm of acceptable reality. For everyone, there is a line. A line at which inabilities become incapabilities. Yet under the light of honest inquiry, the computation proves to be pure nonsense. Simply because one does not ever observe others in their world committing this action or that action does not mean that that action is impossible.
The crux of the issue is perhaps that driving an 18-wheeler does not conflict with a person's worldview, a person's overriding idea of what shape the world should take. It does not conflict with many people's ideas about who they are, how their beingness as such automatically limits their perception. Those who would irrevocably identify themselves with their bodies may say that their identity as such renders certain abilities impossible; that the body is simply not capable of such awareness. Again, an inability is not an incapability. Merely because one is inside of a body and employs its limited channels for seeing and doing now, in one's current state, does not necessarily mean that that cannot change. It may very well be what-is, i.e. currently one is one's body. And if it is what-is, then it would detrimental and counter-productive to deny it. However, if it is what is, that in and of itself says nothing about what could be.
That truth alone is revolutionary. Actuality is not potentiality. "What is" and "what could be" should be held separate and distinct for they are separate and distinct. What mediates between the two is change. When they become collapsed in on one another, change gets crushed and change gets lost. Once that happens, one will have more and more of what one already has. What can one do to change any of the conditions of life is one's inabilities have been rendered into incapabilities?
Once one beholds and embraces the notion that change is real and at hand, that the conditions of now, be them any limitation or condition need not be inaccessible and never-ending, then one has truly opened one's mind. Once one fully realizes that inability does not equal incapability, that actual does not mean forever actual... Once one illuminates these blind and unconscious computations, these inane beliefs that work their silent doom in the background of our lives, then...change is real.
Then, it becomes not a question of action, of whether one can do or not do. Through the immense power of honest and unbiased inquiry, the clouds of doubt will dissipate revealing a new and exhilirating curiousity. The true seeker does not ask whether it can be done or not. The true seeker asks only , how can it be done. More >
22 Jul 2010 @ 02:28, by erlefrayne. Spirituality
The likes of Bush, both father and son, who espoused hawkish policies of war and attrition in the guise of America’s role as global policeman, are indubitably war criminals. Yet they roam the world so freely like the wildest monsters that call the shots in a jungle. More >