Archive for the ‘Philosophy and Psychology’ Category
Mel, a good friend of mine, recently posted the following on Facebook. It struck a chord with me, so much so that I obtained permission from Mel to share it with you, as I’d like to pose the same question also.
“Funny how the end of a year makes you all reflective and philosophical (though truth be told I’m both most of the time). Here’s what 2012 has taught me. The only thing that has any true value in life, the only thing that matters at all, or ever makes a difference of any lasting kind, is love. There’s a reason I don’t spew frustration, irritation or even hate on here or in life generally (at least, not often!). I choose not to add harshness to the world if I can avoid it. I choose to offer up peace, compassion, kindness, tolerance, love – or if I’m struggling, to just breathe and be silent until my heart is open again. I wonder what world we would live in if everyone simply chose love.”
This makes perfect sense, to me at least. My take on Mel’s musings is if we want to add value to our life and our community, conversations based on love is the true way of achieving this in a meaningful and sustaining way. The Law of Attraction informs us that what we focus our thoughts and feelings on and what we put out to the world is what we get more of.
It seems quite empowering that I can positively impact both my life and the people and community around me simply by communicating love through my thoughts, words, and actions.
I’d welcome your thoughts and feedback?
Quote text: “There is the true joy of life – to be used by a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one – to be thoroughly worn out before being thrown on the scrap heap – to be a force of nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that life will not devote itself to making you happy.” – George Bernard Shaw
Thanks to Samineh I. Shaheem for this timely advice…
“It’s important to remind yourself to regularly engage in psychological life audits. By doing this, you can better understand your physical and emotional needs in order to prevent illnesses rather than having to worry about ways of later curing the tribulations of modern living.
These steps below can be used as a starting point to consider aspects of your life which might need to be fine-tuned as well as some suggestions as possible solutions to those feeling stuck and stagnant:
• If thinking about something/someone hurts, it’s probably because it requires your attention. Repressing it just to temporarily stop the pain is not going to make it go away.
• Think about all those people who have contributed positively to your life. Now compare the way in which you’ve shown your appreciation. Remember it is never too late to do so.
• If you have a physical or emotional pain of some kind, even if its not constant and just comes and goes, seek the help of a medical professional to try and sort it out once and for all. Waiting for it to disappear might just lead to a more serious ailment.
• Make sure you have a healthy balance between guilt and resentment. Being a constant people pleaser can lead to disappointment and anger. At the same time always gauge your own expectations from others.
• Don’t just talk about all those things you would love to do – do them. What’s stopping you?
• See the best in others and appreciate them instead of clawing away at their flaws just to feed your own insecurity.
• Rest. More important than any other activity today, we need to rest since our well-being is dependent on the restoration that takes place while we chillax.
• Avoid feeling fragmented. Think about ways in which you are stretching yourself too far, sometimes even breaking into different pieces. Try and regroup so you feel healthy and whole.
• Burn bridges where necessary. Staying in touch or trying to constantly resurrect a dead relationship may do more harm than good.
• Learn from your past mistakes and try to eliminate repeating the same negative patterns.
• Assess the amount of time you spend on the Internet. Turn some of that virtual interaction into real interaction instead.
• Try and take some time off from work. You could either take a vacation or a ‘staycation’ meaning those who vacation at home either by choice or due to financial restraints.
• Celebrate your achievements regularly – never down play them or underestimate yourself.
• Remain aligned with the truth. The further you stray, the more confused and complicated life will seem.
• Happiness is not always an adjective nor is it a constant state so you need not ask yourself whether you are a ‘happy person’ or not. Instead praise and welcome happy moments.
• Don’t let the past define you but do remain mindful of the defining moments that have shaped your life.”
“We all have been inspired in our life, whether it is through our own experiences or through those of others. Part of mindfulness practice is the capacity to remember that being inspired is part of our deepest humanity to feel life. And we all know what to do when we are inspired — we give it away. It is not ours to keep; there is no benefit to holding onto it. So, be an inspiration — pass it forward, share with your world how precious our world is. She can only return it back to you a thousand fold.”
Larry Yang, The Huffington Post, 14th April 2012
During an interview on ABC TV’s “One Plus One” programme, Alain de Botton has advised that he will be bringing “The School of Life” to Australia in late 2012, to a location in either Sydney or Melbourne.
The School of Life aims to bring Alain de Botton’s ideas to everyday life through relevant learning. Opened in 2008, the school in London offers psychotherapy and has courses that focus on careers, relationships, politics, travels, and families.
Alain went on to say that Australians are present in around one-third of the school’s classes. Alain commented that Australians are young intellectually in the sense that they are very receptive and open to trying out new ideas.
You can find out more about the existing school in London via this link – http://www.alaindebotton.com/pages/about/index.asp?PageID=199
ABC TV’s One Plus One site can be found here – ABC TV – One Plus One
A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, wordlessly he picked up a very large empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls. He then asked the students if the jar was full, and they agreed that it was.
The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open spaces between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full – they agreed that it was.
The professor then picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course the sand filled everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students replied with an exasperated “Yes!”
The professor produced a cup of coffee from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar, effectively filling the empty space between the sand.
The students laughed!
“Now”, said the professor as the laughter subsided, “I want you to recognise that this represents your life”.
The golf balls are the large, the important things – your family, your children, your faith, your health, your friends and your favourite passions. Things that, if everything else was lost and only they remained, would still leave you feeling your life was full.
The pebbles are the other things that matter – your job, your home, your car.
The sand is everything else-“the small stuff”. If you put sand into the jar first, there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls.
The same goes for life! If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you. Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Play with your children. Take time to get medical check-ups. Take your partner out to dinner. Play another 18 holes.
There will always be time to clean the house – fix the cupboard- etc.!!!!
Take care of the golf balls first, the things that really matter. Set your priorities… the rest is just sand!”
One of the students raised her hand and enquired what the coffee represented.
The professor smiled. “I’m so glad you asked!”
“It just goes to show that no matter how full your life may seem, there is always room for a cup of coffee with a friend!”
- Adapted from “Sam’s Letters to Jennifer” by James Patterson.
The first day of school our professor introduced himself and challenged us to get to know someone we didn’t already know. I stood up to look around when a gentle hand touched my shoulder.
I turned around to find a wrinkled, little old lady beaming up at me with a smile that lit up her entire being.
She said, “Hi handsome. My name is Rose. I’m eighty-seven years old. Can I give you a hug?”
I laughed and enthusiastically responded, “Of course you may!” and she gave me a giant squeeze.
“Why are you in college at such a young, innocent age?” I asked.
She jokingly replied, “I’m here to meet a rich husband, get married, and have a couple of kids…”
“No seriously,” I asked. I was curious what may have motivated her to be taking on this challenge at her age.
“I always dreamed of having a college education and now I’m getting one!” she told me.
After class we walked to the student union building and shared a chocolate milkshake.
We became instant friends. Every day for the next three months, we would leave class together and talk non-stop. I was always mesmerized listening to this “time machine” as she shared her wisdom and experience with me.
Over the course of the year, Rose became a campus icon and she easily made friends wherever she went.
She loved to dress up and she revelled in the attention bestowed upon her from the other students. She was living it up.
At the end of the semester we invited Rose to speak at our football banquet.
I’ll never forget what she taught us. She was introduced and stepped up to the podium. As she began to deliver her prepared speech, she dropped her three by five cards on the floor.
Frustrated and a little embarrassed she leaned into the microphone and simply said, “I’m sorry I’m so jittery. I gave up beer for Lent and this whiskey is killing me! I’ll never get my speech back in order so let me just tell you what I know.”
As we laughed she cleared her throat and began, “We do not stop playing because we are old; we grow old because we stop playing.”
“There are only four secrets to staying young, being happy and achieving success. You have to laugh and find humour every day. You’ve got to have a dream. When you lose your dreams, you die.”
“We have so many people walking around who are dead and don’t even know it!”
“There is a huge difference between growing older and growing up.”
“If you are nineteen years old and lie in bed for one full year and don’t do one productive thing, you will turn twenty years old. If I am eighty-seven years old and stay in bed for a year and never do anything I will turn eighty-eight.”
“Anybody can grow older. That doesn’t take any talent or ability. The idea is to grow up by always finding opportunity in change. Have no regrets.”
“The elderly usually don’t have regrets for what we did, but rather for things we did not do. The only people who fear death are those with regrets.”
She concluded her speech by courageously singing “The Rose.”
She challenged each of us to study the lyrics and live them out in our daily lives.
At the year’s end Rose finished the college degree she had begun all those years ago.
One week after graduation Rose died peacefully in her sleep.
Over two thousand college students attended her funeral in tribute to the wonderful woman who taught by example that it’s never too late to be all you can possibly be.
When you finish reading this, please send this peaceful word of advice to your friends and family, they’ll really enjoy it!
These words have been passed along in loving memory of ROSE.
REMEMBER, GROWING OLDER IS MANDATORY. GROWING UP IS OPTIONAL.
We make a Living by what we get; we make a Life by what we give.