Off-beat perceptions and life tips of the world and all its players.
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Nisha Srinivasan and her husband Ragu Padmanabhan had Silicon Valley careers, when in 2008, soon after having their son Aum, they promptly sold everything and moved to rural India. They wanted to farm, but had no experience in it and so set out as students of the land -- for instance, when they planted 9000 trees on their barren land, thousands didn't make it, but thousands blossomed into a mini-forest. They jumped in with the intention of living and being in a way that was better aligned with their inner voices, and learning what they needed along the way. In their own words, they saw it simply as an "experiment in laying a new path on an old road that leads to simplicity, sustainability and dare we say, spirituality." Nisha shares more from their journey in this disarming and inspiring piece.
"The small street-level space that had been a pop-up office for fresh Helsinki-based start-ups, transformed perfectly into a gallery. A long table, dozens of colorful post-its, and a bulky arcade game gave way to mixed-media artworks and narratives arranged on the walls, and a 1:1 outline of a solitary confinement cell taped onto the floor. A decal on the window announced: Buddhas on Death Row." Maria Jain writes a follow-up piece about the ripples from a remarkable exhibition of artwork by her pen friend Moyo -- a meditator, artist, and writer who has spent the last 15 years in solitary confinement on Death Row.
Lobsang Phuntsok is a former Tibetan monk who trained with the Dalai Lama and spent years teaching Buddhism in the West. In 2006, he moved back to establish a community in the Himalayan foothills for orphans and impoverished children. Phuntsok remembers, "My birth wasn't something to celebrate. I brought a lot of pain and embarrassment to my family. That's why when I was younger I was always called "the uninvited guest of this universe." The Emmy-winning film Tashi & the Monk dives into the heart of Phuntsok's work, through the story of an endearing and troubled 5-year-old girl named Tashi who joins his school. This week you can watch the stunning short film in its entirety here, and learn more about the soul-stirring work being carried out in a hidden corner of our world.
by Shoshanna French Every time you do a practice to cultivate your inner awareness, make sure that you remove all potential distractions in your physical universe. Turn off your phone. Close your laptop. Even close your door. If you are hungry, eat a snack. If you're thirsty, have some water. It's hard to create a sense of peacefulness with cotton mouth. You may not be able to stop all possible distractions, but if you manage those that you know about, it will help A LOT! Good. Focusing on your breath consciously for 15 minutes will slow your brain down. It will fill your brain with oxygen and energize you. Start with a few cleansing breaths, in through your nose and out through your mouth. Let your body relax and sink into where you are sitting or lying down. Once you feel relaxed, close your eyes and move your awareness to your breath. Follow your inhale and then your exhale. Do three to five of these breaths you follow, or until you can visualize in your mind easily the path of…
by Shoshanna French OUR BODIES are sensitive to the energy around us. They act like a Psychic Antenna. What does that even mean? Well, we pick up impressions like emotions or even physical experiences like headaches, pain, and discomfort as we walk through a crowd or even when we are talking on the phone with someone we know. We sense the mood of people when they hug us. Our body literally has the ability to pick up these impressions. I have come to rely on that sense of feeling. I use my psychic sense of feeling when I go to be with my family and want to know how they are (what mood they are in) before I arrive. I use my connection to my intuitive sense of feeling on days when I feel tired, sad, or annoyed and don't know why. I also use it when I meet new people to have us both feel at ease. Psychic Feeling is the most closely intertwined with our physical bodies. In some ways, it the most widely accepted of the psychic senses. I have heard friends who are not the least bit woo-woo ta…
by Shoshanna French These seven steps, when practiced daily, will have you connecting to your intuition easily! Step 1: Pay attention to your first impressions. With intuition, first impressions are important. When you move to trying to figure things or people out, you move from intuition to logic. Once you move to logic, you can lose the message your intuition was trying to share. Step 2: Keep a daily journal. Keep a little spiral notebook in your pocket or purse. Each time you have an intuitive hit or a strong impression about something or someone, write it down. Over time, you will see that your intuition is communicating to you. Step 3: Engage with the world like a detective. Ask yourself questions and practice listening for answers. Your intuition will respond. Does this agitation belong to me?What should I be paying attention to?How does this feel to me?I wonder which waiter will come to our table?Which elevator will open first?
“Nothing ever goes away until it had taught us what we need to know.”
We have all gone through hard times in life haven’t we? Times when we feel that Fate, Karma, whatever, has singled us out in order to “get us!” That feeling of “it’s just not fair!” I’ve had my fair share believe me! However, looking back, I realize that I actually reached the other side of whatever it was having learned a valuable lesson for the future. Being so caught up in the situation, at the time, I couldn’t see the “bigger picture.” Now, when faced with a “situation” I know there will be a lesson in there somewhere and, although it may not be obvious to me at the time, I will become aware when the time is right. An, “Oh I geddit” moment!
"My colleagues who know about Pet Grief said "Get a paw print from Stella before she dies." Determined to honor her passing exactly right, I vowed "I will get that footprint." So begins this powerful story of a woman, a dog, two compassionate Vet Techs, and love's footprints...not always the ones you want, but the ones you need.
“What day is it, asked Pooh? It’s today, squeaked Piglet. My favorite day, said Pooh.”
Out of the mouths of babes and bears! With the right attitude every day has the propensity to be a favorite day. Just the fact that you’re fortunate enough to have woken up following bedtime the night before is a big plus isn’t it? Of course it is! So, make sure you fully appreciate the rest of your day as the special gift it is, and thoroughly enjoy everything and everybody in it, as who knows what tomorrow will bring……..
Growing up in the US and Finland as one of six children, and big sister to three younger brothers, Anne-Marie donned a care-taking cap and cross-cultural competency from an early age. In her late-teens, she landed in New York City. Migrating between the Big Apple, PA, and NJ, she quickly grew a sense of independence and studied to become a pediatric nurse. Today, she's based in California and spends her time making art out of life amidst 13-hour children's hospital shifts, mentoring summer interns, and touching diverse lives in quietly powerful ways. She shares more about her journey in this interview.