Is it possible to live without judgement? We are now living in a society where everybody is free to make any judgement on anyone and anything. You are free to have your opinion on someone or something and you are given enough room to express your opinion (judgement). You are free to leave your comment in their chat boxes. You have that freedom.
A friend showed me a video of someone doing a pole dance. I am not exposed to this dance so I never had any curiosity to know it, but I remembered one of my colleague learned it very long time ago. She liked it. It looks very difficult, more like acrobatic for me. I know how difficult it is to do it. So when my friend was showing me the video, I was amazed to the woman on the video, she was doing it really well, like a pro. She asked me my opinion about the video, about the woman. I said ‘it is good. She is doing it so well.’ Then she asked me if I didn’t see anything wrong. I said ‘No.’ I didn’t know the woman. I didn’t see anything wrong with her. A pole dancer wears a bikini costume. For some societies it is not considered to be polite to show it in public places. Well, social media is now considered as a public place because the public can see it. Finally she said ‘You are too positive.’ Probably she meant ‘too naive’.
My friend knows the woman on the video. She is a consultant on Human Resources. She didn’t expect her putting the video on social media. This image may create judgment to some people, especially those who use her expertise in Human Resources. Everybody can have professional life also personal life. Both may be in line and may not be in line. We are free to choose anything we enjoy, just be aware that people may create their judgement on you and what you are doing. It is always like that. And at the end, it is your choice to let yourself be influenced by their judgement or not. I agree to this, always live the life you want, not based on people’s judgment.
I have noticed that for the last few years I have been hearing from friends that I should publish a book. After reading articles I wrote, a friend said to me ‘I want to see how far you will take this’. Another friend never stops encouraging me to write a book and publish it. I have been asking myself this question. Why do I have to write a book and publish it? for an approval? for a recognition? or for what? for myself? or for whom? So far, I haven’t got the answer and I don’t feel any urgency to do that till this moment. Before working on something, begin with why. I remember this advice. When the why is clear, you will carry it on more easily, and happily. I think I have been believing this.
A friend called me from far away last week, on Friday evening. He brought me a good news. He said that he just published his first book. I was happy for him. He also said to me that I was the one who inspired him finishing and publishing his book. He joined my journaling workshop a few years ago. So he called me to encourage me back to start thinking of publishing a book. I was not feeling any jealousy nor feeling less than him. I do not compare myself to anyone. I know myself quite well. So I congratulated him for what he has done.
Every time I think of publishing a book, I think of the long process of it, I might not be free to express my own idea in preparing a book for a publication but I need to consider what the readers want to read. I am not ready for this. I know I have a lot of ideas in my head to put in writing. Many of them are personal. Let me just process them. At the moment I think blogging accomodate my needs a lot. I don’t experience any pressure. I thank to myself for being consistent with this and I also thank to you, the readers.
A few weeks ago my car got hit. I was driving on my way back home from work. It was already dark. I was shocked when another car hit my car from the back. It was then followed by uncomfortable feelings of sadness and anger inside. I blamed the guy who was driving that car. We were in argument for a few minutes. Then I went home with very uncomfortable feelings. How long do you usually process such feelings? To be honest it took me days or even weeks to process it.
It was my heart that was shocked, not my car. Why shocked? I had been developing the idea of owning that car, and this idea had become so strong. It became part of me. It became an attachment. A mental attachment, not a physical attachment.
This idea of owning that car has occupied my awarness or probably my heart also and it is how it becomes part of ‘me’. So whatever happens to that car, my heart creates the feelings accordingly, based on the awarness. It is like I let my feeling is controlled by what I posess (what I am attached to).
How did I process that uncomfortable feelings? I talked to myself to put my awareness right again. It is false to consider that car to be part of me. It took me a bit of time till everything became fine. That I and the car are different entities. Nothing can become part of me. If you want your car always safe, then don’t drive it. Keep it at home. But a car is meant to transport you for one place to another. It is meant to support you. To make your life easier. It is not meant to be kept in your car port. To get hit by another car is a risk. And you have mitigated the risk by having it insured. That is the way how it is.
Since then I see that car differently. As my transportation facility. Not more than that. I won’t allow any idea of owning it to become part of me. In this way, I set my mental free from being hurt.
A long time friend called me and told me that he was experiencing a spiritual awakening. Actually we had not been communicating for a quite long time. And we never talked about anything spiritual before. So when he suddenly called me and started discussing spiritual topic, I was surprised. He said that he remembered me practicing meditation. He might think that probably I could help him.
It is the spirit that is awaken. To be awaken means to be aware. The spirit is the awareness or the consciousness. The spirit resides in the body. The body is the vehicle for the spirit. It is not the awareness. To say that the spirit is awaken means that the spirit was in a sleep before. Because the spirit was sleeping, so the spirit was not aware. He was not aware of what he was missing either. When the spirit is awaken, he begins to be aware of it. He started searching.
In my opinion it will happen to everybody. Because everybody is in fact a spiritual being living in a physical body. Different people take different time to be awaken, and also different ways to respond to it. Some probably respond the way like my friend did, some probably deny it and decide to go back to sleep.
It is like a voice calling from the inside. For some the voice is too soft, for others it is quite loud, so it disturbs the sleep of the spirit. I remember it happened to me when I was in my early twenties. It was so disturbing. It was the beginning of my spiritual journey. It is a very long journey, not an easy one, but very rewarding.
I think it is a never ending process. Probably a life long journey for many of us. But let me tell you, it is a worthed journey to take. A very rewarding journey. It takes so much of your patience and your persistence to keep going. Don’t stop till you get what you search for.
I realize the need to explore the spirit within when I was in my early twenties. At that time I didn’t have any ide of being a spirit at all. What I knew was that I was yearning something but I couldn’t define what it was. I was introduced to meditation. I would have to say that meditation is probably the only way that helped me to find what I had been yearning. But it never happens over night. It took so much effort. I have been practicing meditation for a long long time, but to be frank with you I only made an intense effort for the last seven years. When I consciously put all my effort on this journey and enjoyed it, I could finally say that I have attained what I had been yearning. what have I attained through meditation and through my constant effort? the answer is my self-respect. Yes, I have got my self respect back. There is so much contentment inside. When there is contentment, the spirit is experiencing the fullness. Only when you are content inside or completely full inside, you will remain stable and nothing or none can shake you inside. No matter how chaotic the situation around you or in the world, if you keep the oasis of peace within you, you will remain uninfluenced. You will become the oasis for people around you to seek peace. You will move with so much courage and hope to those who are helpless. The world will need this more and more.
If you are in a journey of exploring yourself, keep doing it and never stop.
Nature never fails in giving gifts to us, if we may notice. I have a gardenia tree in my little garden. I noticed that it has been giving gorgeous flowers since June this year. I have been enjoying its white color and also the fragrance so much. Look at the beautiful picture below. I shared this picture to some friends and contacts. Along with the picture, I put a caption ‘what do you feel looking at this flower?’. Most of the people expressed their good feelings about it. It validated my thought that everybody loves flowers. A friend used the same word to express with me, ‘so gorgeous!’ We shared thr same feeling.
Only one person said that she didn’t feel anything. My other friend said that everyone relates to flower differently. The feeling might be different from one person to another as well. The seed of the beauty is not in the flower, but in the heart. The flower is just the trigger. The beauty (the feeling) is kept in the heart. Some will get triggered, other may not get triggered.
When I got covid-19 and just got tested, it said that my CT level was only 14. It was very low. The lowest among anyone I knew who got covid-19. I was introduced to start knowing some numbers. The body temperature, the pulse rate and also the oxygen saturation. All is indicated in numbers. I had an oxymeter to check the oxygen saturation and pulse with me. I heard from people the oxygen saturation tends to drop in covid patients. and when it drops to 90 or 85, one needs oxygen. The virus infects the lungs and quickly affect the respiratory system. Most of the covid patients experience shortness of breath, including me.
It should be checked regularly to know whether the patient need oxygen or not. Every time I checked my oxygen saturation that little monitor showed numbers, it kept changing from 99, 98, 97, 97,95, then 94. It takes a little bit of time to finally stop and show a number of oxygen saturation level. If you are the patient, that few seconds can make so panicked and restless. It was said that you need to be cautious if it goes down below 95. In such a situation, I decided not to check it again. I just didn’t want to know it anymore. Much later a friend who shared her story to me, taking care of four people in her family who got covid at the same time said that she became very stressful hearing the word oxygen saturation. The four people had to be hospitalized and all needed oxygen. The sad story was that one of them died, her brother in law.
The only thing that I kept with me is a thermometer. It was to check my body temperature. I needed to know if I still needed to take paracetamol or not. Covid-19 might not a simple disease. But I didn’t want to get myself complicated with those numbers and get stressed and worried. Worries would never help me. So I chose not to be worried.
When I had to stay in my self quarantine due to Covid-19 recently, as soon as I experienced something was not right with my body, I decided to disconnect myself from the world. And what it means to me is that I didn’t follow the news of what was happening out there. I did not allow it to enter my mind. I made my mind completely free from anything from external. I didn’t read any news nor watch any news. I kept telling myself that it was not the time to read or search for more information. The only information I needed at that time was how to deal with Covid-19. And I thought I was having enough of it with me. So I made myself focused on what was essential for me to do.
If something happened in the world and it was related to me or I had a responsibility in it, then I would surely know it very soon without me following the news of it. But if I didn’t know it or someone didn’t tell me, then I was so sure that it might not be related to me or I didn’t have any responsibility in it.
To be honest I was disconnected myself from ‘the world’ for a month. And I experienced my mind to be very clear through having very less thoughts. I listened to a class on zoom in the morning, it was my meditation class. So practically during the day I only had the thoughts of what taught in the morning class, which were positive and empowering ones.
What happened then with my mind? My mind became very clear in processing each thought. The decision I made was accurate. Practically I had no waste thoughts in my mind. When the number of thoughts is less, then they will become powerful and very clear. There is no clarity and thoughts are not powerful when you allow many thoughts occupy your mind.
So the practice of being disconnected from the world for a period of time is really really essential. I wish I can have this opportunity to do this again in the future, but of course without Covid-19. It is really a good practice for the mind and also for the heart. It empowers the soul.
I remember I had a thought of having a celebration when I got recovered. I call it ‘30 Minutes Celebration, free from Covid-19’. I shared this idea to a friend. In fact my body was so weak at that time. My friend might think that I had been feeling better. He said ‘It is a great idea. When you keep light and positive about it, it will inspire people.’ Actually I was not even going through my lowest point, my body was too weak and I still got high fever. Yet my mind was busy thinking and planning on the idea – the format of the celebration, what I wanted to share or say, who would be invited etc. Thinking of the celebration is having a positive thought. A positive thought gives power to the soul. This thought has made me focus on the recovery and not on the sickness. It must have contributed to my speedy recovery.
Since then I have a mission to encourage people to stay calm and stay courageous in dealing covid-19. Last Sunday I had my celebration on ZOOM. I invited my bosses, colleagues and friends for this. I was very happy that they could make it. I shared my experience in dealing with Covid-19 fearlessly, how I stayed happy and courageous. To my bosses, colleagues and friends, thank you for making time to join my celebration. You have supported me through your good wishes. I am so grateful to have you all.
I think everyone agrees that suffering in this world is increasing day by day. In all levels – physical, emotional and mental levels. This pandemic has made the suffering even more and more real in front of us. Natural calamities – flood, fire, storms and earthquakes have also contributed to the suffering in the world. The five elements of nature have shown their fearsome faces. Conflict and wars are no less. There is no peace in the world nowadays.
If God is almighty, He can do everything He needs to do to stop this suffering in the world right now, our logic say. Why does God not finish all this suffering in the world with His mights? It is not a big thing for God to finish all of these. Why does He not do it? A friend asked me this question not long ago. We were in a discussion on this topic. It was an open discussion between two friends. Just two of us. Topic on God was not sensitive to be discussed for both of us. I said to him ‘I think God is not emotional nor sentimental like us.’
We need to understand God’s role and also His timing. God loves everyone, God can’t bear seeing anyone suffering. It is no doubt! God doesn’t stop the suffering, but He provides strength for us to take from Him so we can go through all of these situations and suffering more easily. All of these have to happen. What is meant to happen will happen and God will not interfere. He provides the strength we need. This is His role in this world, to help us. So take that strength from Him. Take the help from Him. Draw that strength into your soul and make yourself so powerful inside.