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Reflections: Wherever We Go, There We Are

12/06/2011

“I will not hide my tastes or aversions. I will so trust that what is deep is holy, if we follow the truth, it will bring us out safe at last.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

Reflections: Wherever We Go, There We Are… think about it and be at peace

In 1995, Jon Kabat-Zinn wrote a book titled “Wherever you go there you are” which outlined the Buddhist path of mindfulness; a way of living in the moment without judgment. With a mindful approach to living, we don’t second guess our actions or blame others for our mistakes because we act with consideration and care and extend same to others. My blog friend Marsha of InsideJourneys posed a great question; How much can you give up and still have a full life?, in the comments section of yesterday’s post and it reminded me of both the book and title.  Additionally, the prompts from the Daily Post and from #Trust30 fit nicely with the subject;  WP Daily Post: If you knew you were going to live forever, what would change? and RalphWaldoEmerson.me: How will you surprise yourself this week?

#Trust30 is an online initiative and 30-day writing challenge. The #Trust30 Prompt Think of a time when you didn’t think you were capable of doing something, but then surprised yourself. How will you surprise yourself this week?

I look around me everyday and see/hear people talking about their personal expectations and frustrations and what they would do with more; the lottery, the bank gift, the magical gift.  What is surprising is that we don’t say a lot about what we will do with less or how much we will give up… On reflection, what never fails to resonate is the fact that we carry our baggage and blessings with us everywhere we go and unless we are mindful, not much changes even after the big win. Not unless we change.  Since when did moving to a new neighborhood or buying a new car change our basic character? This isn’t surprising, yet some people expect it. Why? What does it take to have a full life? I know it is not stuff; more toys, more trinkets, or even more money. Contentment and peace with what we already have, acceptance of where we are right now, care towards others, and minding our store will give us satisfaction. But we have to believe it or work on changing what we value.  What do you think? More below… 🙂

“On life’s journey, faith is nourishment, virtuous deeds are a shelter, wisdom is the light by day and right mindfulness is the protection by night. If a man lives a pure life, nothing can destroy him.” Buddha

Reflections: Wherever We Go, There We Are… Being Buddha like… try mindful action

I change the world by changing myself. I am changing the world by loving myself, by enjoying life, by making my personal world a dream of heaven. I change myself, and just like magic, other people start to change. Don Miguel Ruiz

If you knew you were going to live forever, what would change? If we operate from a place of dissatisfaction, what we do with our time, let alone more time, and opportunities won’t change. Whether we have 50 minutes or 50 years will have no bearing if our actions show no change. If we don’t trust our abilities, hate our fellow men, and constantly covet the good fortune of others, getting more riches and fine things won’t change our thinking. We must consciously make the effort to change.  It is always easier to blame others when things don’t work out for us because, hey, why change when we can assign blame? Greed, selfishness, and inconsideration come from a place of lack. When we feel depleted and incomplete, we imagine that anything we do for others takes away from us… The reverse is true; the more we give, the more we get… but first we must believe that and change our thinking.

“The most precious gift we can offer others is our presence. When mindfulness embraces those we love, they will bloom like flowers.” Thich Nhat Hanh

Reflections: Wherever We Go, There We Are … let’s share our white and golden flowers

#Trust30 is an online initiative and 30-day writing challenge. The #Trust30 Prompt Think of a time when you didn’t think you were capable of doing something, but then surprised yourself. How will you surprise yourself this week?

How will you surprise yourself this week? Personally, I don’t like surprises, even though I do understand that the prompt is more about pushing through our lazy habits to make mindful and productive decisions.  Moving to the USA, moving to California for work, and even blogging have all been actions I took that helped me grow and that surprised me; but my surprise came in hindsight.  What I do know is that I always aim to learn new things and new ways to live my life without conflict. What I don’t know is how I will surprise myself this week. However, if the opportunity arises for me to stand for dharma; rightful action, in the face of injustice against another, I will. What about you? What are your thoughts? What do you care about most and what could you let go? What guides your actions and do you surprise yourself by the results? Do share! Thank you. 😉

Happy Birthday Anne Frank

Check out TeachStreet: Mirth and Motivation is their Featured Blogger this week! Thank you TeachStreet! 🙂  😳 🙂

This post was inspired by three prompts from InsideJourneys:  How much can you give up and still have a full life? WP Daily Post: If you knew you were going to live forever, what would change? and RalphWaldoEmerson.me: How will you surprise yourself this week?

Positive Motivation Tip: When we live our lives mindful of our purpose and our fellow man, we act with compassion and care, and all benefit.

More Wellness Boosters/Affirmations & Resources

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS: Photo of  Rodin’s The Thinker and Buddha, via Wikipedia. Flora via my personal collection.

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

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39 Comments leave one →
  1. Jackie Paulson Author permalink
    13/06/2011 1:13 am

    “I always aim to learn new things and new ways to live my life without conflict.” I agree with that quote. I like to keep harmony in all relationships with all people. I hope to surprise myself by finding a new job.

    Like

  2. 13/06/2011 1:25 am

    I hope so for you and the rest of us too… Be Blessed and thank you for stopping by to comment and support. 🙂

    Like

  3. 13/06/2011 1:51 am

    I also believe the more we give the more we get and sometimes the wonder of how that happens is a surprise in itself!!
    Chris

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    • 13/06/2011 2:59 am

      Good point BB! Now if we can get all the embezzlers and corrupt and greedy heartless twits to rethink their behavior and work on strategies that benefit all, we might be on to something; world peace?

      Like

  4. 13/06/2011 5:26 am

    I have just found your blog and I am glad I did.
    I love the quote” I change the world by changing myself.” Isn’t that so very true. How can we expect things to come out differently when we keep doing things in the same way again and again.
    And as I am a quotations nut, I shall add this Don Miguel Ruiz quote to my collection. Thanks for the introduction.
    Great post
    Judith

    Like

    • 14/06/2011 2:16 am

      Welcome Judith and thank you for your feedback. I love quotes too and use them liberally throughout my blog. I agree that unless we try a new approach, nothing changes… New stove, old pot, same old, same old! 🙂

      Like

  5. 13/06/2011 7:45 am

    we visited the Anne Frank house in Amsterdam. an example how writing can help to ignore suffering …

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    • 14/06/2011 2:17 am

      Yes, a every powerful experience too to be in that space… Writing is a powerful medium and a way to keep history alive. 🙂

      Like

  6. 13/06/2011 9:17 am

    I can understand what you say.Every day we can learn various things through daily life.
    Great article as always.

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    • 14/06/2011 2:18 am

      Thank you Cocomino! The prompts have been excellent and given me lots of delicious food for thought. 🙂

      Like

  7. 13/06/2011 9:27 am

    I’m a firm believer in ‘you get what you give’. I can see it in my own relationships when I’m not feeling loving toward someone it totally affects what comes back. I’m dealing with it now with my aging father-in-law who is the grumpiest man on the planet. I have to step back and focus on what I’m emitting.

    Another thoughtful post Eliz. Thanks.

    Like

    • 14/06/2011 2:19 am

      I have the same response… whenever I’m feeling contracted, it shows in my interactions and then I have to regroup… I do hope you can find a way to work with him… mend fences TY!. 🙂

      Like

  8. 13/06/2011 9:46 am

    When we tune in to the present moment . . . we realize there are no ordinary moments. Trouble is, as adults, we are lost to the moment and don’t “see” things through the eyes of a child.

    When we become awake and aware, we feel the breeze, smell the scents, hear the birds, and taste all that is offered right here, right now.

    Life is good. Be Here Now.

    Like

    • 14/06/2011 2:21 am

      Whatever we do follows us and then some… Adulthood numbs many of us to our innate joyfulness and granted, there is so much pain in the world… But we must persevere… never easy but worth the growth that comes. 🙂

      Like

  9. 13/06/2011 10:03 am

    This is a beautiful and moving post, Elizabeth. I read and re-read it because it touches me on so many levels. I used to be consumed with the idea of attaining material things when I was younger. As I aged, I came to understand suffering. With that understanding, came a change in myself to be giving and more understanding. Daily, though, I see the greed, selfishness and blame of others who seek legal counsel for perceived wrongs. Others will take those cases. For me, only true and deep losses come into my life. When I fight for these people, it is not to cast blame but to find justice through acknowledgment of responsibility. But mostly I find that those who should be responsible in some instances with catastrophic events causing deaths cannot come to acknowledge them responsibly because they cannot live with the guilt and shame. Thus, there will be no change. I wish it were that the “twisted” minds would right themselves. I think that can only come with honesty to self. Very few realize that. I care most about righting wrongs and have to let go of those who cannot see how wrong their actions are…

    Like

    • 14/06/2011 2:25 am

      Hi Karen,
      Thank you for sharing honestly and openly. I’ve often wondered how those in your profession handle the yin/yang of characters who walk through the door… How you manage…to stay true to you personal ethics. It does come with self-analysis and brutally honest self examination.
      I’m glad that, at least, you make choices that speak to your moral boundaries… a good thing. TY! 🙂

      Like

  10. 13/06/2011 10:21 am

    Thank you, Eliz, for always helping us to find our way by lighting the path with thoughtful words, insightful questions and wonderful quotes.
    One of my favorites is, “Happiness is wanting what you have, not having what you want.”
    And I enjoyed reading everyone’s comments. As Nancy said, we often lose the ability to see things through the eyes of a child…maybe that’s why I love connecting with preschoolers…the question is, how can we remain child-like, not childish?

    Like

    • 14/06/2011 2:29 am

      Hi Viv,
      Yes and I love the company of children for the same reason… The freshness and curiosity they bring to their worldview… they are not jaded at all. We can tap into that if we maintain a Beginner’s Mind… not so easy to do in an ego driven world. TY! 🙂

      Like

  11. 13/06/2011 11:30 am

    Hey Elizabeth, I’m glad to know my comment was part of your inspiration for today’s post. Thank you.
    And thank you for letting me think, making me connect with my current situation. It’s not a bad one, just one I feel like I’m trying to rush through without really living it, breathing it, experiencing it. Your posts bring me back and touch me on many levels. So, not to be mysterious– I’m wrapping up things here so I can move back home. (Believe me, it’s more than a notion!) I thought it’d be easier but as a friend pointed out, I’m shifting energy, so I’m trying to slow it down, make my steps more deliberate. I’ve been keeping it under wraps because of the naysayers, including those in my family but today, I feel the need to say it out loud, that I can and should.
    This move is calling for me to strip away the baggage, to pare down to the essentials, to reconnect with me. There are no accidents. There’s a reason I started reading your blog. It’s helping me to make this less stressful, to realize I have all I need and to find joy in my discoveries.
    Thanks again,
    Marcia

    Like

    • 14/06/2011 2:32 am

      Thank you for giving me the prompt as it got me thinking… a lot! I’m excited to read about your decision and, as always, I send you prayers and blessings for much success. Follow your heart’s calling as it never leads one astray.
      I will definitely keep abreast of your efforts via your blog… Also, I will send you the information I mentioned on your blog. Thank you! 🙂

      Like

  12. 13/06/2011 10:07 am

    I love the first quote!

    I think the more we give ourselves over to love in our daily lives, the less we’ll need to feel happy and fulfilled.

    Blessings,
    Orea

    Like

    • 14/06/2011 2:27 am

      Hi again and welcome back! Self love and compassion towards others help us all in the long run. I agree. When we act with love, then the sensation of fulfillment and satisfaction become a given rather than a need. TY! 🙂

      Like

  13. 13/06/2011 2:03 pm

    I believe a large percentage of people are caught up in this trap of thinking that something outside of them will bring them happiness and content. More money, fancier cars, over abundance of clothes, etc., bring a sense of temporary satisfaction until the newness begins to wear off, and then we’re right back to our same old self with all its thoughts, emotions, memories. Soon, we begin searching for bigger and better in hopes of that contented, satisfied and happy feeling only to find that we never get there. Once we learn the truth of it all, that true happiness and contentment is already within us, then we can really begin to be free.
    Loved this post Elizabeth! 🙂

    Like

    • 14/06/2011 2:33 am

      Thank you Kimmie and I concur… “true happiness and contentment is already within us,” We must learn it on our own and embrace it too. 🙂

      Like

  14. Bree permalink
    13/06/2011 4:03 pm

    I like the way you wove three questions into one post and tied them all together over the subject of change.
    I find the daily challenge of living a productive life taxing enough that I don’t need any new surprises.
    What I would like to see changed is the global disparity between the haves and the havenots… The rest takes self effort.
    B

    Like

    • 14/06/2011 2:35 am

      I don’t need any surprises either… I agree. Your wishes are mine too. I believe that with the resources in the world, there is no reason why the basics are not available to every human on this planet… a darn shame! TY! 😦

      Like

  15. 13/06/2011 4:45 pm

    Yet another wonderful post!
    Congrats on being a featured blogger!

    Like

    • 14/06/2011 2:36 am

      TY Sharon and I love your recent post… made me smile. Keep it up. 🙂

      Like

  16. 13/06/2011 5:11 pm

    I’ve heard that many people who win the lottery say that it ruined their life! I guess they were still the same person, but with more money came even more problems!

    Like

    • 14/06/2011 2:37 am

      Exactly! They simply saw their character flaws exacerbated by the presence of huge sums of money… By the same token, may have won the lottery and parlayed it into a successful life. All outcomes vary… our character determines our outcome. TY! 🙂

      Like

  17. 13/06/2011 5:58 pm

    So, true the more we give the more we get. The same goes for our marriages and relationships, happiness and joy- the more effort we put into them, the more we get out of it. Life boils down to our efforts put forth. Great Post !

    Like

    • 14/06/2011 2:39 am

      Yep, our efforts and attitude make us and break us. I’ve always believed that a generous act is never wasted even if it appears so sometimes… We give and we get… TY! 🙂

      Like

  18. 16/06/2011 4:25 am

    You heading is a favourite saying of a friend of mine and one I have often repeated. It is so very true!

    Like

    • 16/06/2011 4:16 pm

      It so so, so true… I’ve always liked it because we do things/buy things and think those things will change the inner conversation… but they don’t. TY! 🙂

      Like

Trackbacks

  1. Inspiration: Tuning Out, Turning In… | Mirth and Motivation
  2. Reflections: Know Yourself and Bloom Where You Are… | Mirth and Motivation
  3. Inspiration: Facing Our Window On Life… | Mirth and Motivation
  4. Reflections: Be At Peace With Yourself… | Mirth and Motivation
  5. Reflections: Lessons From The Blogging Journey… | Mirth and Motivation

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