My friend is a teacher in a school. She teaches the secondary level students. She said that her school will start to have a face-to-face class in January. But it will work only for secondary level students. They would have both, a face to face and online class at the same time. If the parents do not want to send their kids to the face-to-face, then they can still join the online one. It would be a challenge for the teacher to teach this way. She said that it would not be applied for little kids. Little kids can not practise social distancing.
I remembered a couple years ago when neighbors’ kids were still small, I loved having them playing in my house. I think kids are very genuine in their hearts, they are pure and innocent. Sometimes they made a mess in my house. I miss the scene now because some of those kids have grown up. They don’t play anymore. They prefer socializing with their teenaged friends. I had my neighbors‘s kids in my house yesterday. I noticed that they have changed their toys they play with. They are using gadget now. This kid in yellow is teaching how to use an apps to the other kid.
How can ask them to practise social distancing while they are playing? How can we tell them not to sit close to each other? I then remembered what my friend said, it is very difficult for kids to practise social distancing. At least I reminded them to put their masks on.
You are your best friend and also your worst enemy.
There are two personalities inside us. The true ’I’ and the false ’I’. They are two different personalities. They are not silent. They keep speaking. Do you hear them speaking? The false ’I’ speaks louder than the true ’I’. You can easily hear it. It creates noise in your head. It speaks worries, uncertainties and doubts. The false ‘I’ creates fear and peacelessness. If you do not control it, it will create chaos in your mind. So you need to control it and make it quiet.
The true ’I’ speaks very gently and softly. Sometimes it is almost unheard. It speaks wisdom and truth. It creates calmness in your mind. If you want to experience peace of mind, you need to listen to the true ‘I’ more often. This is the first step to a peace of mind.
So which one is your best friend and which one is your worst enemy?
A few days ago a friend shared to me that she had been working from home for more than a month. She said that it made her so bored. She only went out for her grocery shopping. She said that the virus had been frightening her so much. It is invisible yet so frightening. The virus is so tiny that we can not see it, yet it creates terror to the entire planet. The number of death keeps increasing day by day. Everyone experiences this like a terror.
This made me reflect and think. Are we not creating the same terror for other living beings in this planet? For animals, for example. We might have done some cruelty to animals too. How many lives have been taken for just the stomachs of human beings? What we have been doing might be much more cruel than what the virus is doing to us now. A constant terror! Are those animals not suffering from terror created by human beings? I remember very long time ago I saw an innocent cow was being slaughtered for a sacrifice. I still remember the expression on her face, the two eyes were in tears. The innocent cow was facing her death just right in front of her eyes. I could see the fear on her face. It was so tragic. The innocent cow died on the hands of a man. Since then I can not bear seeing animal being slaughtered.
Last week I read a post by a blogger. One of my favorite bloggers. This coronavirus has led him to a plant-based diet. He has made a resolution to become ’more’ vegetarian because of this coronavirus. Along with the post he wrote a very long description behind the idea of plant-based diet that has been adopted by many people accross the globe.
Someone shared to me a really good piece below. We do not know who has written it.
We fell asleep in one world and woke up in another.
Suddenly Disney is out of magic,
Paris is no longer romantic,
New York doesn’t stand up anymore,
the Chinese wall is longer a fortress,
and Mecca is empty.
Hugs & kisses suddenly become weapons,
and not visiting parents & friends becomes an act of love.
Suddenly you realize that power, beauty & money are worthless,
and can’t get you oxygen you’re fighting for.
The world continues its life and it is beautiful.
It only puts humans in cages.
I think it’s sending us a message: “You are not necessary.
The air, earth, water and sky without you are fine.
When you come back, remember that you are my guests. Not my masters.”
A Japanese friend sent me a picture of Sakura blossom he took from his place last week. Another friend sent me a picture of the blue sky she took from the backyard of her house. The other evening I enjoyed the moon shining in the clear sky from a roof top. Very high. Very quiet. This morning I still could hear the birds singing. Nothing changes in the universe. Everything remains the same. What we might need to do is to pause for a moment, see around and listen. We might have become too busy and forgoten to stop and reflect what the universe tries to show us. We might forget to realize that we are here for a temporary period, that we will go back. It might be not very long from now.
Why is it important to have faith in life? How to develop faith in life?
Life is what happens. Whatever happens, big or small, it happens to you or someone else, it has happened or it is still going to happen, all is called life. How do you see life of the past and how do you see life of the future? Do you always see it as a good one? Or do you sometimes think that it is unfair or that it should not happen the way it happened? How do you see the future? Does it always look bright? Or does sometimes worry creep into your heart that you are not so sure?
I remember an advice from one of my dear friends who kept saying to me ‘Everything is good’. Whatever happened was good, what is happening is good and what is going to happen will be good. Don’t carry any regret of the past. It passed. No need to think ‘why did it happen that way? It shouldn’t have happened etc etc’. This is how we usually develop regret. It belongs to the past. Leave it in the past. Don’t create fear of the future. Trust that life in the future will be good.
Whatever happens is what is meant to happen. There is no mistake in life. There is nothing to regret nor to be worried about. If you keep saying this to yourself or you keep reminding this to your self everyday, what would happen? You are developing faith in life. You will see everything with your new understanding. You will then accept everything that happen very easily. You will easily forgive and accept.
“I am the captain of my soul”. You might have heard this many times. I think it was said by the late Nelson Mandela. It is a very good quote. What does this quote mean for you? How to become the captain of the soul?
To become the captain means to lead the soul. You need to know what the soul is, only then you can lead the soul. What is soul? Soul is you, the living being in your body. The soul is not the body, but the spirit living in the body. It is in your head. Someone said to me that the soul is in the middle of the forehead. We can not see our soul because it is not physical. Our physical eyes can only see what is physical. Soul is a form of energy. Some say that a soul is a point of light. Very subtle but you can feel its existence. You can feel your existence, do you?
What is in the soul? Mind, intellect and heart. Know your mind and know how it works. It creates thoughts. Know your intellect. Intellect is said to be the eye of the soul. Some call it as the third eye. The eye is for seeing. What does this third eye see? The true and the untrue. It is the intellect that can discern between truth and falsehood. The wisdom is created by this intellect through churning the thought. To churn is to think deeply, then it becomes an experience. It then creates feeling accordingly. You keep that feeling or that experience in your heart. The three (mind, intellect and heart) are in fact in one. It is one with 3 different functions.
So how to become the leader of the soul? Understand the process of creating, churning and experiencing – thought, feeling and wisdom. Take a lead in each process. To take a lead means to be aware. This is internal awareness. This is self-awareness. How much do you need to develop this self-awareness? You have your own answer. I leave it to each one of you.
A friend told me that she had decided to divorce her husband. She has talked about it with him. When she shared it to me, I could feel that she was feeling so relieved. She said that she was amazed by herself for being very calm while talking to him about this separation, no emotion was involved. She said that she had been listening to the ‘real I’ a lot and it helped her in controlling her emotion. I was happy listening this from her, not for the divorce, but for the way she handled herself.
She said to me that she did not love him anymore, so she wanted to end the marriage. They had gone through so much conflict. It was not healthy for both of them and also for their children. But she said that her husband still loved her. I replied ‘Wait, is it a real love?’ True love never hurts. If it hurts, it is not a true love.
This short conversation reminded me to a book written by Echart Tolla. I read the book long time ago. It is said in the book that ‘I love you’ often means ‘I need you’. So it is a self-centered love. Because it is self-centered, so expectation is involved – there is dependency and possessiveness. Of course it is not true love. True love is liberating. True love is without any expectation. True love is not self-centered.
She paused for a moment and finally said “Yes, he loves himself.”
In every workshop on journaling, I always encourage people to start writing with an honest heart. Open the heart and start writing the feelings out, because this is how the heart will get healed. Be honest with the self by writing the feeling out.
Some people find it so hard to do it. They said that they have fear that others might read their journal, that other might know their feelings. Is it really harmful if others know what you feel? Fear is definitely unhealthy. It doesn’t make the soul free. Someone shared that when she was a teenager, someone read her diary and told everyone about what she wrote in the diary. This made her really ashamed and since then she stopped writing it.
For me, journaling is the best way to deal with any negative feeling and finish it quickly. I agree that some emotions might be so strong and it takes more time to finish. You might need to journal it several times. But it will definitely become weaker and weaker if you keep journaling it. Finally it will finish completely. When it finishes, you don’t feel it anymore. You still remember the situation, but the feeling is no longer there. Then if others know what you felt, it will be okay with you. I remembered I shared my journal with a friend. I read it for her. She knew what I was writing about. She knew my situation, what I felt and also how I was dealing with that. We laughed together.
This journaling is primarily for the self, not for anyone else. In fact this is a good practice to know the self better, and understand the self better. It is a practice to develop self-awareness. In the long run, it will build a healthy relationship with the self. When you have a good relationship with the self, you will find it very easy to relate to anyone. It is just not possible to have a good relationship with others when the relationship with the self is not healthy.
When someone asks me how to keep writing or how to keep being inspired to write, what I can suggest is to write what she or he observes. To observe means to see. Use your eyes and your heart to see what is happening around you. Each and every moment in your life is interesting if you don’t miss it and you give time to reflect for yourself. It is always interesting to write it down. It always gives you a lesson to learn, if you are ready and open enough to learn. Lesson from life doesn’t have its own timing like in a school. It may come any time. So be always ready for what life is going to teach you through your observation. You are the student and life is your teacher.
This is what I observed last week when I was on a train. It was 8 hours trip. I was sitting in the aisle. An Indian family blocked the 3 double-seats, two in front of me and one on my left. They were going on a family trip. They were with three boys. The 3 boys were very special to me. The youngest one was only 3 years old, very sweet with his curly long hair, looked more like a girl. They looked more alike with the mom than the dad. All of them had smiling happy faces, especially the mother. I noticed that they looked very happy during the 8 hours trip. They enjoyed the trip. Unlike any other children who ussually become cranky for some times and start teasing one another. They looked very happy and very peaceful. “This is a happy family” I said in my heart. I enjoyed seeing them, especially the kids.
Finally I said to the mother “Your boys are very special. They look so happy.” She said: “Because they love train” Hearing this from the mother, the second boy said : “I love boat too.” This made me smile.
I remember I was sharing a taxi with four people on our way back from a program. The program was a big one, attended by many people from different countries with variety of languages. We could not know everyone in the program, because it was too big. The program was organized so well. Everything was very well-organized, including our transport. When I booked the taxi for my return journey at the transport department, I didn’t know whom I would share the taxi with.
An old lady was sitting in the front row next to the driver, and in the middle row there were one young man from Russia and two middle-aged men from France. I was sitting at the back row with our luggages. The space was very small and the luggages were piled up. It was a 4 hour journey. How would you enjoy a 4 hour trip with people you don’t know? What I did was listening music. Music really helps to enjoy the trip. I am always ready with some music in my smartphone and an earphone for a trip. I think music has the power to change our mood into positive one, quite instantly. Some times I had a conversation with the passengers who were sitting in the middle row. We talked about the weather, the journey to our home countries, our flight etc.. A general topic.
We stopped for a toilet in the middle of the trip. Everybody got down from the taxi. There, when I had the opportunity to talk to the old lady who was sitting in the front row. I was so amazed about her. She was 80 years old, traveling alone. She is from Colombia. She didn’t speak English, but I think she could understand a little. She could respond simple questions like ‘Where are you from? What time is your flight?’ We talked and shared on how much we enjoyed the program we just attended. I talked mostly. While talking to her I could see the light on her eyes, shining very brightly. The happiness inside was reflected on her face through the eyes. it was just so obvious.
I said to myself “This is what is called inner beauty.” The beauty of the soul that is coming from the heart of an old lady. The more permanent beauty. Not the beauty because of the cosmetics. Cosmetics only brings beauty on the skin, not the heart.
I still remember the lady’s name was Gloria Carmago.