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Meditation by Mind Map: Meditation

1. What Is Spirituality? - A No-Bullshit Intro To Spirituality

1.1. What Is Spirituality? Actualized

1.1.1. Spirituality = Metaphysics = Philosophy

1.1.2. Spirituality is: developing a deep metaphysical connection to reality. It is a connection to the wonders of nature. Some definition from multiple angles of spirituality is: -Developing a metaphysical connection with reality Answering questions about the nature of existence -Seeking of Truth -Having a personal union with the Truth Some benefits from spiritual work: -The raising of consciousness, experiencing reality from a radical different way -The realization that reality is a mind and not a physical system, The realization that reality is fundamentally mystical. -Escaping the matrix, it is waking up, it feels like you are breaking physical reality, deconstructing it until you are completely free of it. -Alining your life with the Truth and consciousness, embodying the truth, changing all your habits and addictions, deconstruct all your nasty programing that you got from your culture, all your false beliefs. Spiritual purifications needs to happen, your ego need to be broken down, break all resistance to the Truth -Dissolving of the ego, the separate sense of self, it’s a conquering of your inner-demons and your shadows. -Expanding of your circle of concern, you defend less the the thing you think you are, you keep on expanding it until it becomes universal, your passion and your love extends. -It’s a profound state of connectedness to everything in the universe. It’s not an idea, it’s a physical fact just by removing the idea of separation. -Attaining and exploring altered states of consciousness It’s non symbolic science. Science is the pursuit of understanding reality, using quantitative measures and formulas, quantifying reality. In that sense spirituality is not science. But science is an elastic notion Spirituality is not: -Dogma, religion, an ideology or a belief system. -Blind faith: You are being asked to do practices, to actually experience the things that are being talked about. Such as I wouldn’t want you to believe in sex but to actually try it. -Worshiping of gurus, icons, people, images, holy books, preachers, priests nor God -Obedience to authority or following rules, religious costums or ceremonies like going to church -Acting morally. Being a nice person doesn’t develop a spiritual connection, morality becomes an obstacle. -Irrational, illogical or unscientific thinking, it is trans-rational, trans-logical, trans-scientific. A spiritual person’s understanding of science and use of logic and reason will be enhanced. It builds on top of science and rationality. -Wishful thinking in fear of death, inventing a story so life goes on after death. Praying for material things Crusading against other people’s beliefs Joining a cult Politics, transforming the world into a better place, to save the wales and the polar bears and to save the world from racism and evil. First do spirituality then do save what you want once you know what the world is. Preparing for the afterlife, existence is right now It is not proving things, it’s a trap. Truth cannot be proven, all proof is indirect. Truth is a vaster domain than proof, study “Gödel’s Completeness Theorem” saying that you cannot prove the entire Truth Constructing elaborate theories A subjective romantic experience -Spirituality is not “just” a chemical brain state There are different kinds of spirituality: Nature mysticism, shamanism, voodoo, orthodox religions (but very problematic method), meditative state and yoga, visualization, psychedelics, non-duality and enlightenment. Spirituality is different depending at what level of development you are at and where your culture is at. Spirituality in spiral dynamics can be found at all color levels. At stage yellow you have some visionary scientist like the father’s of quantum mechanics, Niels Bohr, Einstein, Schröedinger, Max Born, Eddington…. are actually metaphysicians, not just academics, they were all idealists and mystics and all believed reality was a mind, not a physical system. But perhaps by putting everything into forms and numbers and by rationalizing everything, they couldn’t reach the deepest spiritual insight. -Turquoise: Buddha, Jesus, Yogis, Sages How is spirituality practice? Meditation, concentration, self-inquiry, contemplations, yoga, meditative yoga, breathing techniques, holotropic breathwork, psychedelics, chanting, mantras, astral projection, visualization, dark room retreats, auditory driving (found in most shamanism), vision quest, sweat lodges, fasting, lucid dreaming, solo retreats, Vipassana retreats and meditation, reading spiritual texts, tantra, shadow work, journaling, workshops, apprenticeship programs, suffering… Why is there an absolute truth and people interpret it differently? Why is there so much confusion about it? Why is spirituality important and how is it useful beyond the feelings that you are getting?

1.2. What is Spirituality — A Guide To Spiritual Paths and Practices

1.2.1. Spirituality Definition spirituality is a worldview and a way of life based on the belief that there is more to life than what meets the senses, more to the universe than just purposeless mechanics, more to consciousness than electrical impulses in the brain, and more to our existence than the body and its needs. Spirituality usually involves the belief in a higher form of inteligence or Consciousness running the universe, as well as life after death. It exists to satisfy the deeper human thirst for meaning, peace, mystery, and truth.

1.2.2. Spiritual Traditions These traditions share many common practices, principles, and goals – and yet there are profound differences in approaches, beliefs, and worldviews.

1.2.3. Why Is Spirituality Important PURPOSE / DIRECTION. Whether you are on the top of the wheel of material life or on the bottom, there is an underlying sense of dissatisfaction, limitation, and emptiness. There is some form of existential anxiety. Some people are sensitive to this, others aren’t, or they try to fill this up by chasing external goals endlessly. Spirituality is a search for meaning, for purpose and direction in life. It fulfils our need to have a foundation for living, a path or way of life in the light of a larger context. It speaks to the need to be “aligned” with something bigger than our ego and individual life. ONENESS / LOVE / CONNECTION This speaks to our sense of separation and incompleteness. Because it is painful, we seek connection and love – either in a community, or in being one with the universe, or connecting with the Divine (whatever shape this may take). To feel complete, we crave to receive and give unconditional love, which brings a sense of total acceptance and of happiness in being alive. This search can also manifest as returning to the source, to God, or to a sense of sacredness. GROWTH There is an innate drive in many of us to evolve, to improve, to push the boundaries, reach our full potential. The drive to continuously grow and learn, live a life authentic to our truth, develop our mind, cultivate virtues, and expand our consciousness. ANSWERS / TRUTH Questions like “Who am I?”, “Why are we here?”, and “What else is there?” together with a drive to understand how life works and to learn about ourselves. For some this takes the form of understanding, absorbing, and becoming one with the absolute Truth. HAPPINESS / PEACE / OVERCOME SUFFERING Suffering is the initial door of spirituality for many people (usually in the form of anxiety, grief, or fear). When our mind depends on external things for happiness, its experience of happiness will be unreliable, impermanent—just like external causes are. It has been rightly coined as “stock market happiness”. Since suffering is a mental phenomenon, and spiritual practices are a means to transform one’s mind, it is a wise way of seeking a better life. Hence, there is a drive to seek happiness and peace internally. Or to at least to diminish the suffering that we are experiencing. Spirituality helps us gain balance, independence from external cases, and a greater appreciation of life. TRANSCENDENCE / ENLIGHTENMENT Different traditions describe enlightenment differently. But the common theme is that it is a state of transcendence from the human condition, beyond all possibility of further suffering. There is a radical and permanent shift in our perception and experience of the world, and a moving beyond the sense of being an individual, or a person. It’s the urge to experience ultimate peace or freedom, to find the ultimate reality of who we are, transcend the ego, or “merge with God”. EXPLORATION / MYSTERY Diving into one’s own consciousness and exploring other aspects of reality is something that speaks to our thirst for knowledge, experience, and adventure. Learning the mysteries of life and nature, exploring the sacred, and living with a sense of wonder. SERVING. The urge to serve people in a deeper level, making a big difference in their life, and helping the upliftment of humanity.

1.2.4. Different Types of Spirituality Buddhism: achieve the cessation of suffering (enlightenment, nirvana); see reality for what it is; uproot the mental defilements. Yoga: purify the mind so to achieve liberation (moksha); uniting the individual soul with the universal Soul; becoming one with the Absolute Consciousness; be the true Self. Vedanta: realise the true Self; dissolve the knot of the ego, which limits pure Consciousness to a body-mind. Sufism: experience divine revelation; surrender to God; serve God Christian Mysticism: experience union with God; the kingdom of heaven; feel the love of the creator. Daoism/Taoism: live in harmony with the Dao; cultivate body, mind, and spirit; cultivating and sublimating energy. Kabbalah: learn the ultimate laws of the universe; know the creator and oneself, and live accordingly. Jainism: liberation; salvation; karmic purification; become a perfected-being (Siddha). Shamanism: live in harmony and connection with Nature; develop knowledge and power to work with invisible forces; serve the spiritual welfare of the community; heal the soul. pragmatic spirituality

1.2.5. Spiritual Practices pragmatic spirituality Every spiritual practice should serve a definite purpose, according to what drives us to spirituality, and the goal we are seeking. I call this approach pragmatic spirituality. It’s not about continuing a tradition, or doing something because “we feel we should”, but to actively explore our inner world, driven by a specific question, thirst, or goal. Here is an overview of the different types of spiritual practice, across multiple traditions. They seem to fall into three categories: (a) practices of personal cultivation, sublimation, and exploration. (b) practices of learning, understanding, absorbing. (c) practices of external action. CULTIVATION & SUBLIMATION Meditation. Prayer. Breath & Energy Work. Somatic Techniques. Qualities of Mind/Heart. Chanting. Asceticism-tu khổ hạnh LEARNING & ABSORBING Study & Contemplation Community & Teacher Relationship. Belief. EXTERNAL ACTION Ethics. Ritual Service.

1.2.6. Spiritual Paths Although there are countless paths, teachings, traditions, lineages, schools and masters, ultimately we can say there are 5 types of paths. Here is a brief introduction. Path of KNOWLEDGE. The core practices are study, contemplation, and meditation. Liberation happens through wisdom and insight, by clearly seeing who we are, and understanding reality as it is. Some traditions that fall into this approach are: Jnana Yoga, Vedanta, Buddhism, Kabbalah, Samkhya. Path of DEVOTION The core practices are prayer, chanting, mantras, belief, ritual, and teacher relationship. Liberation happens by surrender of our ego into the higher Power Source/God/Consciousness. Examples are: Bhakti Yoga, Christianity, and Sufism. Path of MEDITATION. The core practices are meditation, breath work, asceticism, and teacher relationship. Liberation happens by stillness and meditative absorption, which burns through the impurities of the mind and heart. Examples are: Raja Yoga, Nada Yoga, Buddhism, Samaya Tantra, Jainism, Kashmir Shaivism. Path of SERVICE. The core practices are prayer, community, ethics and service. Liberation happens by active selflessness, the burning away of impurities that happen by the constant service without wanting anything back, not even recognition. This path is often coupled with that of devotion. Example are: Karma Yoga, Christianity, and the approach of some Buddhist lineages. Path of ENERGY. . The core practices are meditation, breath work, somatic techniques, asceticism, teacher relationship, ritual. Liberation happens by sublimation and purification of our body, mind, and psyche. There is a great variety of paths here; some of them are more ritualistic; some emphasize the development of psychic powers or communication with invisible beings; others are strongly focused on physical health and longevity. Examples of traditions are: Tantra Yoga, Kundalini Yoga, Hatha Yoga, Kriya Yoga, Laya Yoga, Vajrayana Buddhism, Daoism, Shamanism. There are lots of overlaps, but we can say that Knowledge, Surrender, Meditation, Service and Energy are the core elements of all spiritual practice There are lots of overlaps, but we can say that Knowledge, Surrender, Meditation, Service and Energy are the core elements of all spiritual practice There are lots of overlaps, but we can say that Knowledge, Surrender, Meditation, Service and Energy are the core elements of all spiritual practice

1.2.7. What Is Spirituality to You?

1.3. Spirituality vs Religion: An Essay on The Future of Meaning

1.3.1. The fire for spirituality—for deeper meaning, direction and truth—is inherent in all people. . For some of us, it is drowned by cynicism, skepticism, and scientific materialism; for others, it is expressed in limiting ways through a blind religious faith.

1.3.2. Spirituality vs Religion They have a common subject-matter, but their approaches are very different. Both religion and spirituality teach that there is more to the universe than what meets the eye, and more to our life than the physical body. Both agree that there are non-physical elements to the universe, and to our existence, and that unless we consciously connect with them, we will never be truly fulfilled in life. The core difference between religion and spirituality religion presents you a set of beliefs, dogmas and “holy men” as intermediaries between you spirituality promotes your individual autonomy in defining and connecting to Spirit as it fits your heart and mind. some quotes on the difference between spiritual and religious: Religion asks you to believe. Spirituality asks you to look. Religion has dogmas. Spirituality has wisdom teachings. Religion wants obedience. Spirituality wants experimentation. Religion speaks of sin and hell. Spirituality speaks of karma. Religion wants to comfort you. Spirituality wants to liberate you. Religion is external. Spirituality is internal. Religion is the form. Spirituality is the essence. Religion wants to convert you. Spirituality wants to inspire you. Religion is an institution. Spirituality is a journey. Religions says they are the only path. Spirituality says every person has a unique path. Sự khác nhau Religion promotes shame and guilt. Spirituality promotes self-honesty and awareness. Religion asks you to sacrifice your present attachments for a promised future. Spirituality asks you to let go of your present attachments for a better present. Spirituality is the true essence, and the true origin, of every religious movement. So how is it that eventually spirituality gets the back seat, and what we are mostly left with are dogmas and empty rituals? Buddha was not Buddhist; Jesus was not Christian The difference between religion and spirituality is not so much about what you believe—but about how you live, and what is your attitude. In any of the spiritual/religious traditions on Earth, you will find a majority of people who follow it as a religion, and a minority who follows it as a spiritual path.

1.3.3. Why Spirituality Is Important “age of reason” Since the time of the European Enlightenment in the 17th century, the role and dominion of religion seem to be steadily diminishing (at least in the Western world). Since we entered the so-called “age of reason”, with the ability of science to explain and transform reality around us constantly increasing, and the general level of education also rising for everyone, people feel less drawn to seek organized religion as a tool for explaining the world and creating well-being. And yet we humans have this inherent thirst for meaning in life, for a higher purpose, and for strong principles to lead our living—whether individually or socially. Only that can truly quench our existential anxiety. the role of spirituality in the third millennium. We live in an age of overindulgence, of instant gratification. We have more physical comforts, entertainment and knowledge than ever before in history. But why then… . Spirituality fills the gaps left behind both by organized religion and by scientific materialism. spirituality—in its myriad expressions—is the best means to give meaning to human life Therefore, the final difference between religion and spirituality is that spirituality can dialogue with science, while religion can’t.

1.3.4. The Age of Spirituality Without Religion This seems to be the direction we are moving towards: a spirituality informed by science, and a science informed by spirituality Science will clean up spirituality of superstitions; and spirituality will elevate science, making it review some of its materialistic assumptions . The eastern concepts of meditation, karma, reincarnation, and enlightenment will play an important role in this development—a trend that we have seen since the early days of the New Age movement.

1.4. Spiritual Enlightenment – Truths & Paths

1.4.1. Spiritual Enlightenment – Traditional and Modern Definitions Original Definitions Some of the synonymous for enlightenment, given by different schools of thought, are: at their root they all seem to agree on at least three points: Modern Conceptions For 99% of those people, one of the following is true:

1.4.2. Path to Enlightenment: Gradual and Sudden Many of the traditions mentioned above agree that enlightenment is already here and now, and that it is our true nature – or the true nature of reality. . It is not that we have to achieve it or become it, but rather we need to remove the obstacles to its expression. gradual approach. Some teachings regard liberation as a goal, something to be consciously and methodically worked towards. They emphasize the need to transform and purify the mind (or even transcend it altogether) through practices such as meditation, spiritual study, ethics, devotion, etc. We can call this the gradual approach. Gradual Approach (example: Theravada Buddhism, Raja Yoga, etc.) sudden approach. Other traditions prefer to emphasize the “already present” aspect of enlightenment, and then center the teachings more around inquiring into your true nature and simply living in the present with non-attachment. We can call this the sudden approach. Sudden Approach (Zen, Dzogchen, Advaita, etc.) A combination of practices seems more desirable. Or at least being aware of the traps of your particular approach. The seeker in a gradual path can also cultivate the feeling that everything is perfect here and now, and that the true nature is always accessible. Conversely, the seeker on a sudden path can cultivate the practices and mental qualities of the “slow approach”, and contemplate the truth of sudden enlightenment, gradual cultivation.

1.4.3. A Direction, Not a Goal Two Attitudes To look at enlightenment as a direction, rather than a goal. This attitude also prevents the following problems: (a) feeling that you are not good enough, or worthy; (b) feeling frustrated with the slowness of your progress or the size of the road ahead; (c) wanting to give up; (d) watering down the original concept of enlightenment. Once you regard it as a direction, you are much softer about it. You are able to better enjoy the path itself, without anxiety, and to grow towards liberation in a more organic way. It also becomes less likely that your spiritual search will negatively interfere with other aspects of your life. Putting Things in Perspective There are like a thousand important milestones that can happen before full enlightenment, and many of these are truly life-changing. Acknowledging these “mini-awakenings” can help keep the seeker motivated and on track. everyone (you included) can practice a little, and with time enjoy a much happier, more peaceful, and more meaningful life Enjoying the Path of Enlightenment and Growing Organically The spiritual path exists so we can free ourselves from suffering. So we can find true peace, unity, wisdom, meaning. So we can live a deep life, a life of truth. Let us learn to enjoy the path itself. Then there will be no sacrifice. No struggle. Only the natural expansion of consciousness. With time, as our practice deepens, there will be a sense of joy, peace, and freedom that comes from your spiritual practice that is unlike anything you can experience elsewhere. When that starts to happen… then whether it still takes you 5 months, 5 decades, or 5 lifetimes to achieve enlightenment, it won’t matter much. You are happy and well, in your unique place in the universe, and nothing else matters.

1.5. Oneness Spirituality — A Key to Happiness & World Change

1.5.1. What is oneness spirituality? I It is to have a deep understanding and expeirnece that we are all one—all manifestations of the same Consciousness. Due to exaggerated individualism and materialism, most people are driven to pursue their own desires at whatever cost. Needless to say, this causes conflict and suffering to others, and to the planet. And people remain unaware that this is not an intelligent strategy even in the pursuit of their own personal happiness. This situation is like if every cell in your body decided to act on its own, and consume as much nutrients and energy as it could – even more than it needs. Soon parts of your body would get sick, and that would damage the health of the whole body – including that of the greedy cells. The challenge is making the individual cells clearly understand two things: (a) their relationship with each other and the whole; (b) what a good “cell life” is all about. “He who, in pursuit of his own happiness, hurts others that are also seeking happiness, will not find it, either in this world or the next.” (Buddha) What is the principle that we find in basically all spiritual traditions, and that could make a radical difference to the world? Oneness. Oneness. This is like each cell taking care of itself, but also working in cooperation with others, having the health of the whole system as its goal. As a result, the cells get all the food and energy it needs, together with a better environment and longer lifespan.

1.5.2. The Need For Oneness Spirituality oneness spirituality or oneness religion. f we live from an experience of oneness with all life, violent actions like these would be impossible, just like it makes no sense for the left hand to want to hurt the right hand, or for blood-cells to wish the destruction of bone-cells, just so their “way of life” can prevail. Oneness can improve our social, political, and professional environments, helping create a more “enlightened society” – a society where we recognise that, as human beings, we are all cells of a larger organism. This may sound highly utopian-khong tuong , because we will probably never live in a world where everyone understands and behaves in accordance with the truth of oneness. However, this change is possible, and any small progress in this direction has the potential to create much good.

1.5.3. The Philosophy of Oneness Some traditions speak of oneness based on an idea of a common origin For instance, Christianity says we all come from God, and are children of God. In this context we are all brothers, and hurting each other would be less likely. “Love your neighbor as yourself.” (Mark 12:31) In many Eastern traditions, oneness is more based on an idea of common nature, or common being In recent times, some people are coming to the experience of oneness through psychedelics and shamanic rituals. I have heard of 5-MeO-DMT being called the “God molecule”, because people who take it report experiencing visions about the oneness of all things an invitation to conceive of yourself, and your wellness, as being larger than your body-mind.

1.5.4. The Practice of Oneness First, you need to appreciate and experience it within yourself Reflecting about these things, and hearing related teachings, indeed helps. But to understand it at a deeper level, spiritual practice is essential, especially in the form of meditation – which helps move your identity from the ego to a larger consciousness. Once you start experiencing, in deep states of meditation, your oneness with other beings and the Earth, then it’s time to integrate that wisdom into your daily life, and live in integrity with it The second aspect is translating it to action. The ideal of oneness and non-violence unpacks into several other principles. For instance, here are the 5 core Buddhist precepts. Oneness is a good rule of thumb to inform our actions. In a way it is like taking the principle do unto others as you would have them done unto you and living from it, but on a deeper level. Living a life in harmony with the ideal of oneness is highly challenging, and a continuous process of growth. You can do it, little by little!

1.5.5. Oneness The practice of oneness makes our actions congruent with our values and ideals. It makes us live a life that truly matters Whether or not you are involved in activism and philanthropy, realizing oneness and implementing it in your actions is one of the best ways to really effect change in society and the world. It’s an act of love. It can be challenging to know how to “apply” and live this concept with integrity and balance. But if you constantly think about it and have it as a north, it will be a powerful tool in polishing your character and allowing you to contribute more – in ways both big and small – to the welfare of the organism.

1.6. True Nonduality And Neo-Advaita—Moving Beyond A Cognitive Realization

2. The Secret to a Happy Life: 21 Practices of Joy, Growth, and Fulfilment

2.1. Understanding what authentic happiness i

2.1.1. Wikipedia defines happiness as “a mental or emotional state of well-being characterized by positive or pleasant emotions ranging from contentment to intense joy”. There can never be, any objective measurement of happiness based on external achievements. It is an interpretation of reality, and not a result of reality.

2.1.2. Personal happiness. trap of “living as if there is no tomorrow” (the hedonistic blind focus in the present) and “living in hope of a better tomorrow” (putting off happiness to the achievement of a future goal). Most people live by the belief that happiness is simply the result of accumulating as many pleasurable moments as possible, and of fulfilling one’s desires. Money, possessions, food, fun, sex, fame, power. The problem with this is that the pursuit of these pleasures and achievements can often be a painful and frustrating process (that is, an unhappy process). Besides, the happy-feeling resulting from these achievements is short-lived and usually less glorious than the promise (see Havard psychologist Daniel Gilbert on “miswanting” ). Finally, even if we are those rare beings that can always easily get and keep what we want, without much pain associate(d) with it, the inevitable result after a while is boredom and indifference. Not really the definition of a fulfilled life, right? Sounds more like an ocean of trouble, with some islands of happy feelings. The verbs for personal happiness are: “to get”, “to feel”, “to achieve”. The verbs for personal happiness are: “to get”, “to feel”, “to achieve”.

2.1.3. Transpersonal happiness. The verbs for transpersonal happiness are: “to do”, “to grow”, “to impact” a higher “zone” of happiness is to use one’s unique qualities and perspective in the service of something larger than oneself. Scientific research in the field of positive psychology, pioneered by Dr. Martin Seligman, PhD, proposes that a higher “zone” of happiness is to use one’s unique qualities and perspective in the service of something larger than oneself. This “higher cause” can revolve around family, community, science, art, world reform, spiritual transformation, etc.Here, happiness is more of a process, a continuum. A path, rather than an event. And because its cause is larger than one’s ego, so is the resulting joy.

2.1.4. Transcendental happiness. The verbs for transcendental happiness are: “to be”, “to discover”, “to transform” is our natural state of being. Our true self. A more uncommon view of happiness, proposed by many eastern traditions, is that it is our natural state of being. Our true self. If it is natural to us, why then is it not experience always? Just like health is inherent to our body but is disturbed by bad habits and bad food, happiness is inherent to our heart but disturbed by negative mindsets.

2.2. Part 1 – THE ESSENTIAL

2.2.1. 1. Discover your true values The single most important element in living a fulfilling life is understanding your true personal values, and aligning you existence to them those activities & goals that most consume your soul. It is what you are hungry for. Those things that you love to think about, read about, talk about, learn about. Examples of values: family, building your career, athletic performance, art, spirituality, travelling, being a thought leader, developing your business, etc. It’s more of a doing, not a having. How to discover your values? Take some minutes to look deeper into yourself and your life, and it will tell you where you naturally focus your valuable resources (time, energy, money, attention) For now, to learn more about core values, I highly recommend the book The Breakthrough Experience, by Dr. John F. Demartini, an expert in this field. Action step: Give yourself 20~30 minutes to contemplate on those questions and discover your core 3-4 values. If you are busy now, put in some time in your calendar for later.

2.2.2. 2. The secret to a happy life: alignement to your values Your happiness is where your values are. It is what we want to do, what makes us alive. The more your daily thoughts and activities are in harmony with your values, the happier you are. Now put your values in order, with the most important ones on top And examine how much juice they are getting in the different aspects of your life. How much money, time, and energy are you spending on them? Are they actively directing your life, your daily choices? Or are they being suffocated and forgotten in the maze of the practicalities of living and other less important things? How can your authentic self be more in the steering wheel of your life? Action step: Understand how much your core values are directing your life or not. Commit to making 3 simple changes to increase their power.

2.2.3. 3. Leave aside the unessential – the art of saying “no” you might have said yes to many things that are not truly essential, or not in harmony with your personal values Are you feeling overwhelmed with tasks? Maybe lacking peace of mind, or direction in life? Then you might have said yes to many things that are not truly essential, or not in harmony with your personal values. Therefore, there is no space to move, or not enough energy to build what is really meaningful for you. That extra project you took; the extra credit card; the relationship you are keeping and you don’t really care about; the stuff you bought and don’t really need; the old habits that are lurking around but have no meaning anymore. Saying “yes” to anything also demands our commitment of energy and head space (an increasingly rare commodity these days). When making decisions, every “yes” is a commitment to something, and a closure to other things. It is allowing something – an activity, a place, a person, a task – to occupy valuable resources in your life. You can produce more money, but the time spent on something or someone will never come back. Saying “yes” to anything also demands our commitment of energy and head space (an increasingly rare commodity these days). The inability to say no is actually rooted in fear. The inability to say no is actually rooted in fear. Fear of missing out an opportunity; fear of closing a door that we can never again reopen. But we simply cannot have it all. And we fail to see that this fear is actually the very cause that makes us close many other doors. To explore more on this, check out Dan Ariely’s classic Predictably Irrational. The foundation of a “happy life”, therefore, is to discover our core values, align our life and actions to them, and religiously say “no” to all the needless things that are not in service. Trust your heart and your gut if you feel that a person or activity is simply not for you. “Is this thing I`m thinking of saying ‘yes’ to gonna supporting my core values or not?”, “How is this decision affect my present and future self? “Is this thing I`m thinking of saying ‘yes’ to gonna supporting my core values or not?”, “How is this decision affect my present and future self?” Answering these questions, from moment to moment, is the human journey. In simple terms, our life, impact, and well-being, is determined by what we say yes to. It is a collective of yeses and nos. No” is not a negative word. It is not aggressive. It is not rejection. It is not selfish. It is focus. “No” is a powerful word, and can be used powerfully. All geniuses of humanity – in art, sport, politics, literature, science – were saying “yes” to a few things, and “no” to everything else. They were not chasing the next shining object. Action step: Write down 5 things you want to start saying “no” to in life. Take note of what you are losing (time, energy, money, head space) by allowing those things to creep in.

2.2.4. 4. Act based on creative freedom – not conditioning we only find fulfilment and freedom by following our own unique voice – our “personal legend”, as Paulo Coelho would have it Since birth we have been exposed to so much conditioning – from our family, friends, society, media, environment. And still continue to be bombarded by thousands of messages every day. These outside voices have been heard and repeated so many times that they start having an independent life inside of us. No wonder it is hard to find our true voice, as opposed to the voice of other people’s opinions. Yet, we only find fulfilment and freedom by following our own unique voice – our “personal legend”, as Paulo Coelho would have it The key is to discover what our core values are. This process can take time to mature in us. Taking some time alone, apart from all that is familiar from us, can help. Meditation, travel & retreats can give us the space to discover ourselves. A life coach can also be of service. According to Australian nurse Bronnie Ware, who spent many years working with patients on their last weeks of life, the top regret of the dying is “I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.” Your values will be your rule of thumb when deciding what is your voice and what is conditioning. Action step: Next time you feel unsure what path to take, use your core values to discern your true path from your conditioning. Be determined to act based on your higher good, and not based on what you believe you “should do”.

2.2.5. 5. Live the present, but don’t hunt the short-term Being exclusively present-oriented or future oriented are both points of unbalance. To be in the trap that “I`ll be happy when…” is a cause of unhappiness. To be missing or sacrificing the present – the beautiful nature, the human relations, the rest needed, the peace and joy of being here and breath – is a cause of unhappiness. Believing happiness to be “in the future” is not only a risky assumption, but also betrays the concept of happiness as a state of being It is not in the achievement of your goals – it is in the process of living your values. The scholar concluded that “There is perhaps no psychological skill more fundamental than resisting impulse.” Living day by day with a higher direction in mind, yet with our feet on the ground, seems to be the balance point between present and future. A balance between enjoying the now and designing the future. And one great way of enjoying the now better is having the habit of practicing gratitude. habit of practicing gratitude. Action step: Take note of 5 things that you are sacrificing in your present, for the promise of a better future. Then write down 5 places in your life where your focus on short-term goals may be harming the long-term direction you want for your life. You now know what tweaks you can make so you can be both more present, and also focused on the right things.

2.2.6. 6. Don’t chase extrinsic values In his best-selling book on the science of motivation,Why We Do What We Do, Edward Deci tells us: “The researchers found that if any of the three extrinsic aspirations – for money, fame, or beauty – was very high for an individual relative to the three intrinsic aspirations, the individual was also more likely to display poorer mental health. For example, having an unusually strong aspiration for material success was associated with narcissism, anxiety, depression, and poorer social functioning as rated by a trained clinical psychologist…In contrast, strong aspirations for any of the intrinsic goals – meaningful relationships, personal growth, and community contributions – were positively associated with well-being. People who strongly desired to contribute to their community, for example, had more vitality and higher self-esteem. When people organize their behavior in terms of intrinsic strivings (relative to extrinsic strivings) they seem more content – they feel better about who they are and display more evidence of psychological health.” Action step: Review your core values. What is driving you in life? Are these extrinsic values or intrinsic values? If they are extrinsic, what is the bigger value behind them?

2.2.7. 7. Be careful how you feed your senses our mind is fed through ideas and the five senses. The quality of our mind and internal wellbeing is profoundly formed by the things we see, listen to, watch, smell, touch, read, think about, et The music you choose to hear affects your moods. Depending on the genre, it can make you inspired, calm, emotional; or violent, depressed, confused. The same goes with the movies we watch, books we read, and all other types of media, environment, food (here, here and here), and people. Action step: Make a list of the top five things that you are feeding your senses and do not serve your wellbeing. Reflect whether you really need these things in your life or not. Commit to one small change.

2.2.8. 8. Find a place of Flow

2.2.9. 9. Nurture your Spirituality True spirituality is an invitation to look deeper into your life, your values, and discover your true Self. Several studies point out the relationship between spiritual development and personal well-being. A 2012 review of more than 326 studies of mainly adult populations found that out of those 326 studies, 256 (79%) found only positive associations between religiosity/spirituality and well-being. For some people, spirituality come through their religion; but spirituality and religion are different things. You can be spiritual without being religious – that is, without joining any religion or church. Spirituality does not require you do give your power away to some external person or institution, nor to have blind faith; it is not dogmatic nor ritualistic. It is not a cult. It does not limit your freedom and it does not make you close-minded. As a side note, there studies that show benefits of meditation regardless of belief or religious inclination. Action step: Start looking for ways to develop your spirituality, a deeper perspective and values in life.

2.2.10. 10. Master your mind you cannot control the first thought that arises in the mind in any given situation – that is simply a conditioned response. But you can exercise control over the second thought and the ones after For example, I`m sitting in the couch in a Sunday afternoon and the thought arises “I`m lonely”. Whether I “accept” this and continue on this train of thought (“yeah, nobody loves me…”, etc.) or simply let it pass, its my choice. I can also choose to instead think “yes, I`m alone at this moment, but its good, I need some self-space”. One way leads to anxiety, victimization and self-pity – the other doesn’t. Becoming aware of our mind processes and exercising our power to direct our attention is the mastery of the mind. And this is greatly facilitated by practices such as meditation and mindfulness. The habits of happiness Action step: Become aware of your internal dialogs. Be vigilant of your negative thoughts. Next time negative thinking kicks in, exercise your power to redirect your thoughts to something else, to reinterpret the facts, or to simply ignore. In the beginning, you will succeed only for a few seconds. With practice and persistence, however, it becomes natural and easy.


2.3.1. 11. Face everything as an opportunity to grow.

2.3.2. 12. Expectation creates disappointment

2.3.3. 13. Yesterday is graveyard… How to forget the past and reinvent your history

2.3.4. 14. Accept the things you cannot control or change

2.3.5. 15. Move in the direction of your fears

2.3.6. 16. Embrace impermanence

2.3.7. 17. Happy thoughts – choosing optimism, choosing happiness

2.3.8. 18. Be wrong

2.3.9. 19. Have some trust

2.3.10. 20. Dare to disagree

2.3.11. 21. Money matters, but not really

2.3.12. 22. Do your inner work (Bonus)

2.4. The PERMA Model: Your Scientific Theory of Happiness

2.4.1. Seligman’s PERMA Model

2.4.2. P – Positive Emotion Focusing on positive emotions is more than smiling: it is the ability to remain optimistic and view one’s past, present, and future from a constructive perspective. A positive view can help in relationships and work, and inspire others to be more creative and take more chances. In everyone’s life, there are highs and lows; focusing on “the lows” does increase your chances of developing depression, although the equation for depression is very complicated. Pleasure is connected to satisfying bodily needs for survival, such as thirst, hunger, and sleep. Whereas enjoyment comes from intellectual stimulation and creativity.

2.4.3. E – Engagement Activities that meet our need for engagement flood the body with positive neurotransmitters and hormones that elevate one’s sense of well-being. This engagement helps us remain present, as well as synthesize the activities where we find calm, focus, and joy. When time truly “flies by” during an activity, it is likely because the people involved were experiencing this sense of engagement. We all need something in our lives that absorbs us into the current moment, creating a ‘flow’ of blissful immersion into the task or activity

2.4.4. R – Relationships Relationships and social connections are crucial to meaningful lives. We are social animals who are hard-wired to bond and depend on other humans. Hence, the basic need for healthy relationships. We thrive on connections that promote love, intimacy, and a strong emotional and physical interaction with other humans. Positive relationships with one’s parents, siblings, peers, coworkers, and friends is a key ingredient to overall joy. Strong relationships also provide support in difficult times that require resilience. Basically, our pain centers become activated when we are at risk of isolation. From an evolutionary perspective, isolation is the worse thing we could do for survival. These activation centers are like fire alarms in the body, discouraging people to continue feeling this pain, and ideally, reconnect socially with someone or a group. We need, neurologically, to know that we belong to a group; it helps us feel safe and valued, and has for millions of years.

2.4.5. M – Meaning Having an answer as to “why are we on this earth?” is a key ingredient that can drive us towards fulfillment. Religion and spirituality provide many people with meaning, as can working for a good company, raising children, volunteering for a greater cause, and expressing ourselves creatively. Unfortunately, the media worships glamour and the pursuit of material wealth, impacting many people to feel like money is the gateway to happiness. While we do need money to pay for basic needs, once those basic needs are met and financial stress is not an issue, money is not what provides people with happiness.

2.4.6. A – Accomplishments Having goals and ambition in life can help us to achieve things that can give us a sense of accomplishment. You should make realistic goals that can be met and just putting in the effort to achieving those goals can already give you a sense of satisfaction when you finally achieve those goals a sense of pride and fulfillment will be reached. Having accomplishments in life is important to push ourselves to thrive and flourish.

2.4.7. How to Apply the PERMA Model in Your Life As a start, we recommend you refer to the 5 elements of the model often. Find the things that make you happy and can make you fully engaged. You could even put goals on challenging yourself in the activities you enjoy. Focus on your relationships with your family and friends, and find ways to connect with others, even if it does not come naturally to you at first. Find the meaning to your life and what gives you a sense of purpose. It’s different for everyone.

2.4.8. Image Image 2 Image 3

2.4.9. 8 PERMA Model Activities and Worksheets to Apply With Clients Applying the PERMA Model: 1. Map Your Happy (PDF) 2. PERMA Wheel Balance Check (PDF) 3. PERMA Profiler (PDF)

3. Video Summaries!

3.1. 65 Core Principles Of Living The Good Life

3.1.1. Youtube

3.1.2. Evernote

3.1.3. Trello

3.1.4. 65 Core Principles Of Living The Good Life 1. No ideology and no dogma of any kind How Ideology Works 2. Big picture thinking is greater than technical knowledge How I Do Research & Develop Big Picture Understanding 3. Direct experience is king What Is Actuality? - Distinguish Direct Experience vs Concept 4. Self experimentation 5. Radical Open-mindedness Radical Openmindedness - How To Break Free Of Dogma & Beliefs Openmindedness - Why Your Life Is A Cage 6. You do not judge things which you have not experience personally 7. Question everything The Power Of Asking Questions 8. Care about philosophical and metaphysical matters 9. Genuine intent at truth at whatever cost 10. Genuine intent to understand any point of view 11. Integral thinking Integral Theory 12. Everything basically boils down to inner-game 13. Life-long learning and self-education 14. Observation Learning = Observation 15. Plan to meditate for one hour every day 16. Ego is the root of all evil of suffering What's Wrong With Ego? Understanding Ego Backlash 17. Self deception Self-Deception - Part 1 Self Deception - Part 2 - 60+ Self-Deception Mechanisms 18. Self-bias Self-Bias - Why All Worldviews Are So Skewed 19. All fear all judgement all evil all anger all suffering are delusion How Fear Works - Part 1 - The Ultimate Guide To Dealing With Fear 20. Do not demonize any one 21. Reality is perfect What Is Reality? - A Radical Explanation 22. The purpose of life is to raise your consciousness Low Quality vs High Quality Consciousness What Is Consciousness? - All Questions Answered 23. The purpose of life is to raise your capacity to love What Is Love? - Advanced Spiritual Explanation 24. The purpose of life is o take in the beauty of life 25. The purpose of life is to feel alive everyday 26. Build your metaphysical connection to reality 27. Counter intuitiveness The Counter-Intuitive Nature Of Life 28. Non-duality is the ultimate truth Understanding Duality - Part 1 - Master List of 250+ Dualities Aztec Nonduality - Profound Life Lessons From Aztec Philosophy 29. Absolute truth exist but it cannot thought, believed, imagined, spoken, written proven or argued What Is Truth? - The Definitive Answer 30. Reality is not material Reality Is A Strange Loop - The Beauty Of Paradox + GRAPHICS 31. Life is a dream Life Is A Dream 32. Reality is infinite and god is a real thing 33. You are god What Is God? - Leo Becomes Absolute Infinity (Aka God) - All Of Reality Explained 34. God is the devil What Is The Devil? - The Mechanics Of Evil 35. All identity is relative and fluid 36. 99.999% are deluded and asleep 37. Society is still in the dark ages 38. Development and awakening 39. Figure out who you are and what do you want out of life 40. Authenticity 41. You need to develop a life purpose Life Purpose 42. Take 100% responsibility for your life How To Stop Being A Victim - The #1 Reason You Are Stuck In Life How To Stop Being A Victim - Part 2 - What All Victims Fail To Understand Responsibility vs Blame - Why You Are 100% Responsible For Everything 43. Be a leader 44. Be a creator 45. Reason cannot be trusted 46. Embrace paradox confusion and not knowing 47. Emotional mastery How To Master & Control Your Emotions 48. Integrate the masculine and the feminine Masculinity vs Femininity - Psychology Of The Male & Female Mind 49. Non-manipulation 50. Everything is realtive Understanding Relativism - Part 1 51. Context over facts 52. Pull from hundreds of diverse sources 53. Satisfy your base needs so that you stopped craving 54. Master your basic survival and livelihood 55. Mastery the book Mastery, by George Leonard 56. Beware of distractions 57. Systems thinking Intro To Systems Thinking 58. Be a good citizen and be conscious of your ecological footprint 59. Be strategic 60. Happiness is only possible with enlightenment 61. No material possession will ever make you happy 62. Be happy all by yourself 63. Keep your life simple and spartan 64. Without practice, exercises and techniques there will be no results 65. Do not turn into an ideology

3.2. Contemplation - The Most Important Tool Summary

3.2.1. Evernote Youtube

3.3. Understanding Awareness

3.3.1. Evernote Understanding Awareness - The Staggering Depth Of Your Unawareness Revealed

3.4. What Is Perception? - The Metaphysics Of Perception

3.4.1. Youtube

3.4.2. Evernote

3.4.3. Trello

3.5. Life purpose strategies

3.5.1. Evernote

3.6. The Big Picture Of Self-actualization

3.6.1. Evernote

3.6.2. Trello

3.7. How To Get Started With Self Actualization - Over 40 Techniques

3.7.1. Evernote

3.8. Life Unfolds In Chapters & Phases

4. Meditation

4.1. What Is Meditation?

4.1.1. Meditation Definition What is meditation? Meditation is a mental exercise that involves relaxation, focus, and awareness. Meditation is to the mind what physical exercise is to the body. The practice is usually done individually, in a still seated position, and with eyes closed. What is the definition of meditation in Psychology? In Psychology, meditation is defined as “a family of mental training practices that are designed to familiarize the practitioner with specific types of mental processes” (source). Meditation is practiced in one of three modes: Other characteristics of meditation include: Here are some other definitions of meditation. In Christianity, meditation is a type of contemplative prayer that creates a sense of union with God, or the contemplation of religious themes. In Buddhism, meditation is one of the three core practices for the purification of mind and attainment of Nirvana. Besides focus of attention, meditation also involves mental calmness and introspection (“looking within”). Meditation is, thus, somewhat different than other personal development or spiritual exercises, such as:

4.1.2. The Benefits of Meditation Studies confirm the experience of millions of practitioners: meditation will keep you healthy, help prevent multiple diseases, make you emotionally well, and improve your performance in basically any task, physical or mental. Some of the benefits come as soon as with 8 weeks of daily practice; other benefits take longer to mature, and will depend on your intensity of practice. However, it is usually one of these three things that drive people to practice:

4.1.3. How to Meditate? Types of Meditation – An Overview of 23 Meditation Techniques Mantra Meditation Guide Trataka Meditation Guide Walking Meditation Guide Christian Meditation Guide Sufi Meditation Guide Meditation for Kids

4.1.4. Meditation Tips Posture: you can meditate seated on a cushion or on a chair. The essential thing about posture is that the spine is absolutely erect, from the lower back to the neck, and ideally not leaning on anything. (See full posture guide here.) Time: the best time to meditate is first thing in the morning, so you don’t skip it, and the impact on your day is stronger—but any time that works for you is fine! Place: a spot where you can sit uninterrupted. Ideally a place that is quiet, clean and tidy, in order to create a better influence on the mind. Length: you can start with as little as 5minutes, and increase 1 or 2 minutes per week, until you arrive 20min sessions and beyond. Here are six other tips to make sure your practice is optimal. They are not mandatory, but they make your meditation go easier: Your body should not be exhausted. So ideally not right after heavy exercise. Your mind should be awake. So not good when you are sleepy or tired. Your belly should not be full. Wait 2~3 hours after heavy meals. Put your phone on airplane mode during your practice. Relax your body with deep breathing exercises before meditation. If you are meditating at home, wear clothes that are comfortable and loose.

4.1.5. How to Start a Daily Meditation Practice? This process can be greatly facilitated by following this seven steps system: Discover your true values Link meditation to your values (how will it help them?) Commit to a time, place and practice Setup a trigger and a reward Be accountable to others or to yourself (with a journal) Have the right attitude (no expectations + a “never-zero” approach) Hang out with meditators, online or offline (optional) Meditation for Beginners post.- Ảnh

4.1.6. Deepening Your Meditation Improving your practice involves usually three things: Optimal Attitude. Make sure that you are not falling into any of these 9 meditation mistakes; Understanding. Know the mechanics of meditation, and exactly what is the process of meditation; Before & After. Integrate in your meditation practice the 7 key elements summarized below. By integrating these 7 elements in your routine, your meditation can be deeper, more enjoyable and more transformative. Before meditation During meditation After meditation

4.2. 76 Benefits of Meditation and Mindfulness (Scientific Research)

4.2.1. 1. Mental Health Benefits Mindfulness practices decreases depression In a study conducted at five middle schools in Belgium, involving about 400 students (13 ~ 20 years old), Professor Filip Raes concludes that “students who follow an in-class mindfulness program report reduced indications of depression, anxiety and stress up to six months later. Moreover, these students were less likely to develop pronounced depression-like symptoms.” Mindfulness meditation helps treat depression in mothers to be High-risk pregnant women who participated in a ten-week mindfulness yoga training saw significant reductions in depressive symptoms, according to a University of Michigan Health System pilot feasibility study. Meditation practices help regulate mood and anxiety disorders Another research concludes that mindfulness meditation may be effective to treat anxiety to a similar degree as antidepressant drug therapy. Meditation reduces stress and anxiety in general A study from the University of Wisconsin-Madison indicates that the practice of “Open Monitoring Meditation” (such as Vipassana), reduces the grey-matter density in areas of the brain related with anxiety and stress. Meditators were more able to “attend moment-to-moment to the stream of stimuli to which they are exposed and less likely to ‘get stuck’ on any one stimulus. ” “Open Monitoring Meditation” involves non-reactively monitoring the content of experience from moment-to-moment, primarily as a means to recognize the nature of emotional and cognitive patterns. Meditation helps reduce symptoms of panic disorder

4.2.2. 2. Performance Benefits

4.2.3. 3. Physical Benefits

4.2.4. 4. Relationship Benefits

4.2.5. 5. Benefits of Meditation for Kids

4.2.6. 6. Other Benefits

4.3. 23 Meditation Techniques

4.3.1. 1) BUDDHIST MEDITATION TECHNIQUES Zen Meditation (Zazen) Origin & Meaning How to do it Is it for me? Vipassana Meditation Origin & Meaning How to do it Is it for me? Mindfulness Meditation Origin & Meaning How to do it Is it for me? Palouse Mindfulness (MBSR free online course) How to Practice Mindfulness Meditation Loving Kindness Meditation (Metta Meditation) Origin & Meaning How to do it Is it for me? 18 Science-Based Reasons to Try Loving-Kindness Meditation

4.3.2. 3) CHINESE MEDITATION TECHNIQUES Taoist Meditations Origin & Meaning How to do it Is it for me? Qigong (Chi kung) Origin & Meaning How to do it

4.3.3. 2) HINDU MEDITATION TECHNIQUES (Vedic & Yogic) Mantra Meditation (OM Meditation) Origin & Meaning How to do it Is it for me? Transcendental Meditation (TM) Origin & Meaning How to do it Yogic Meditations Self-Enquiry and “I Am” Meditation



4.4. 34 Misconceptions and Myths about Meditation.

4.4.1. (1) MISCONCEPTIONS OF CONTEXT “Meditation is a spiritual/religious practice” you can practice meditation without needing to believe in anything “I need to follow certain rituals, wear certain clothes, burn incense, etc.” “I need to be in a temple, or a special place” To do seated meditation, all you need is a place where you will not be interrupted. Of course, a clean and quiet room is better, but not a requirement. “It takes years to get any benefit” Meditation has many levels of benefits. If you want to attain enlightenment, or be in a fearless state beyond all suffering, then yes, it will take a while. But if all you want is better health, a bit more peace and balance in your life, you can start having that in a few weeks. “Meditation will make me want to abandon my life and become a monk” That is like saying that going to the gym will make you want to become a professional powerlifter. In the world there are probably more people who meditate and lead a “normal life” than people who meditate and live in a monastery or ashram. “Meditation is anti-Christian” Meditation is defined as a mind-exercise of relaxation, awareness, focus and stillness. None of that requires any belief. “I need a master to meditate” If your goal with meditation is simply health improvement and some relaxation, then you don’t need a teacher. Learning from a book, video course, or workshop can be enough. Then you can go on by yourself. “Meditation is selfish” It is an essential daily activity that human beings need to be able to live fully and function effectively. “Meditation is escapism / running away from problems” Is meditation evil?

4.4.2. (2) MISCONCEPTIONS OF METHOD “Meditation is just relaxation” Relaxation is releasing the tensions on the body, and calming the breath. Meditation uses relaxation coupled with regulation of attention (one-pointedness), and introspection (looking inside rather than outside) to drive you to deeper states of consciousness. “Meditation is like self-hypnosis” “Meditation is effortless” “Meditation is all about being in the present moment” “Meditation is all about calming the mind” “Meditation and mindfulness are the same thing” “Meditation is one thing; daily life is another” “I must close my eyes to meditate” “Meditation requires chanting mantras” “Meditation is like sleep” “Technology can put me to meditation” “Psychedelic Drugs are an easy way to arrive at meditation”

4.4.3. (3) MISCONCEPTIONS OF HARDSHIP “Meditation is hard” “Meditation is fighting with thoughts / emptying the mind” “I need a quiet mind in order to meditate” “I need to sit in lotus position to meditate” “I have ADHD/ADD… there is no way I can meditate” “I don’t have time to meditate” “I’m supposed to have visions or develop psychic powers through meditation” “Meditation is boring”

4.4.4. (4) MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT EFFECTS “Meditation will make me ‘zone out’ during my day” “Meditation will make me emotionless” “Meditation is about feeling good” “Meditation is only about _____” “Meditation is all I need”

4.5. The Three Pillars of Meditation

4.5.1. The Three Pillars of Meditation The three pillars are: habit, technique, application. In short, you need to practice meditation daily, with the optimal technique and approach, and then apply the skills you got from meditation into your daily life

4.5.2. Pillar 1: Habit Meditation is not like physical exercise, that you can get away with practicing only two or three times a week. It’s actually the sort of thing that you need to do daily—just like eating, sleeping, and brushing your teeth Làm hàng ngày không bỏ ngày nào cả Why?

4.5.3. Pillar 2: Technique The second pillar is the right technique, and the right approach. learn more than one style. Experiment with different techniques and philosophies for some time, and see what resonates, and moves the needle for you the most. That will depend on what are your goals with meditation—so starting by clarifying those is a good idea. Right technique means the technique that is most optimal for you, at this moment in your life. The “right technique” doesn’t mean that there is one style of meditation that is superior to all others, and that you should practice that one. That’s just narrow-mindedness and dogmatism—unfortunately a type of nonsense that I see in some meditation groups/teachers out there. Right technique means the technique that is most optimal for you, at this moment in your life. There are many styles of meditation, each of them with its own taste and unique benefits. When most people think of meditation techniques, what comes to mind is either watching the breath, or repeating a mantra. Those techniques are great, and they do work for some people—but not for everyone. Maybe those practices even “work okay” for you, but until you experiment with a variety of styles, you can’t know if there isn’t a more effective technique out there for you. The good news is that meditation is an incredibly vast and flexible practice. There is a great variety of methods developed by different contemplative traditions over more than 3,000 years. They were developed not because the monks were bored, but because different people have different needs and temperament Some techniques… The second aspect is the right approach. This is about having the right attitudes in relation to your practice Purpose. Practice with intention and interest. Don’t let meditation become mechanical and boring, just something you need to “tick off your to-do list”. Pleasantness. Try to enjoy your meditation. Make it easy for you, and pleasant. This includes not criticizing, shaming or blaming yourself for getting distracted during the practice, or for not “doing it right”. Perseverance. Cultivate the commitment to continue meditating every day, no matter what. It also means to continue to learn about the practice, especially when you feel stuck. Patience. Don’t be in a hurry, and don’t expect too much too soon. Self-transformation takes time. Because it is worth it.

4.5.4. Pillar 3: Application / Transformation It is true that if you practice meditation daily, with the right technique for you, that over time some things will automatically start to change. The way you see the world, the way you see yourself, how you react to people around you—all will change. But this process can be greatly accelerated if you do it on purpose. And this is what the third pillar is about: applying the insights and qualities that you experience in meditation to the rest of your life. It’s taking meditation beyond the cushion. let’s get one of them to illustrate the point: the skill of “zooming in, zooming out” (which I call one of the superpowers of meditation). During meditation, we practice zooming in and zooming out with our attention. In most styles, we are told to focus on one object—like the breath, a mantra, a visualisation, a part of your body, etc.—and to keep our attention on that object for as long as we can, going deep into it (zooming in). We are then told that we need to be aware of our mind, so that when our attention wanders into thoughts, we notice it, let those thoughts go (zooming out), and bring our mind back to the meditation object. Like that, we practice the ability to zoom in and zoom out with our attention multiple times (dare I say hundreds of times?) whenever we meditate. That is one of the skills that come with the practice. how do you apply that meditation skill in daily life? The skill of zooming in, zooming out, that we develop in meditation, needs to be applied to our daily life. It needs to be used for the sake of our work, relationships, family, health, and finances. If not, then we are practicing meditation, but not applying it The same happens with many other “skills” we develop through meditation, such as:

4.6. Why Meditate? The Four Meditation Superpowers

4.6.1. Why Is Meditation Important? the quality of your mind determines the quality of your life. You have a mind, but you are not the boss of your mind. Often, your mind is the boss of you. Your mind is your most valuable asset. What’s going on in your mind can make you happy or miserable, successful or broken, energetic or lifeless. In short, the quality of your mind determines the quality of your life. what is the power of meditation? It helps you to know your mind, and master your mind (gradually).

4.6.2. 1. Zooming In The first skill that you gain from meditation is improving your ability to focus. Focusing means that you can zoom in your attention on anything, and sustain it there, ignoring distractions The length of time you can sustain your attention increases with practice. It’s quite evident how the ability to focus is essential in all spheres of life: career, education, finances, and performance (be it in work, sports, or art). We live in times of continuous distraction – our attention span keeps getting shorter. We lack focus because so many things are auditioning for our attention, and as a result our mind easily gets dispersed everywhere. There are also many other expressions of focusing in daily life. Focusing allows you to: Be more present in your daily activities, rather than getting lost in your mind Be a better listener and communicator, because you become more present Not fall into the trap of multitasking, enabling you to become more time and energy efficient Enjoy more deeply the blessings of your life, however small (a good meal, time with your family, your favorite hobby, etc.) When there are competing voices in your head (such as the voice of fear and the voice of confidence) you can zoom in and focus on the voice that is most empowering to you.

4.6.3. 2. Zooming Out If zooming in gives you focus, zooming out gives you perspective. . It’s the ability to not get sucked into mental and emotional stuff. It’s the ability to see with clarity and serenity, to let go and move on. In meditation, we train zooming out every time we realize that we’ve gotten sucked into a stream of thoughts, and reclaim our attention by removing it from that thought-funnel.

4.6.4. 3. Pausing We react, rather than respond When we live in an unconscious, automated way, we become the product of our environment. We react, rather than respond. In this mode, we are acting on the loudest impulse in our heads. We’re reproducing our past conditioning Living a creative and fulfilling life requires just the opposite. It means to be intelligently present in the moment, acting fresh. For that, the ability to pause is essential. Pausing gives you space to: Prevent you from acting on anger or other destructive impulses that ruin relationships and lives. (In a way we can say that when pausing is absent, regret takes its place.) Break bad habits Find clarity about what’s really going on Make wiser decisions based on the needs of the moment Re-align your actions in life to your core values Think less, worry less, and be more Reacting without thinking is easy – it’s the path of least resistance. Pausing is harder – it’s a skill that needs to be trained, a virtue to be developed. In meditation, we train pausing every time we notice that we’re distracted, and we interrupt that stream of thoughts. It’s a condition for you to be able to zoom out.

4.6.5. 4. Changing the Channel The powers of pausing, zooming out, and zooming in come together as the ability to “change channels”. Think of your mental world as a TV with several channels. Some of them are informative, entertaining, or useful. Others are full of bad shows, even though you might find them addictive The problem is that this TV doesn’t obey you all the time. It randomly pops up shows from channels you dislike, and doesn’t even allow you to mute them. Sometimes you try to change the channel, but after five seconds you find yourself back to the old channel. The more you develop the abilities to pause, zoom out, and zoom in, the more you fine tune your remote control. As a result, your favorite channels get more screen time, and the crappy ones end up being discontinued due to lack of attention. The formula for changing the channel is: Notice that a unhelpful channel has come up. It could be fear, anxiety, self-hatred, etc. Sometimes labeling the feeling can be helpful. Pause it. Breathe in and take a step back. Don’t fight with it, but rather realize that you don’t really need to be watching it. Zoom out. See the bigger picture – your consciousness is larger than this thought/emotion. Let the thought be there, but realize that you don’t need to zoom into it. Switch channels, and then powerfully zoom into a more helpful or enjoyable channel.

4.6.6. 5. A New Baseline (Bonus) what are the feelings that are always there in the background of your mind during most of your day? For many people it is anxiety, depression, fear, self-pity, or greed. Or perhaps an intangible sense of dissatisfaction with oneself and one’s life. Meditation helps you become aware of your baseline emotions, and slowly uproot their causes, or at least “change channels” before you get all sucked in.

4.6.7. Ảnh

4.6.8. Bản PDF

4.7. The History of Meditation (A 5,000 Years Timeline)

4.7.1. 1. Cave Yogis and Vedic Sages Meditation originated in India, a very long time ago. The oldest documented evidence of the practice of meditation are wall arts in the Indian subcontinent from approximately 5,000 to 3,500 BCE, showing people seated in meditative postures with half-closed eyes. The oldest written mention of meditation is from 1,500 BCE in the Vedas. During this ancient time, meditation was a practice for religious people and wandering ascetics, who During this ancient time, meditation was a practice for religious people and wandering ascetics, who through it sought to transcend the limitations of human life, connect with universal forces (personified as deities), and union with the transcendental reality (called Brahman in the Vedas).

4.7.2. 2. The Buddha History of Buddhist MeditationIn the 6th century BCE, Siddhartha Gautama abandoned his royal life as a prince and set out to attain Enlightenment. In this process, he learned meditation and philosophy from the best Yogis he could find in his region. After a while, still dissatisfied with what he learned, he diverged from that tradition and created his own methodology. He achieved the Enlightenment he sought and became the Buddha. He then spent the next decades of his life teaching meditation and spiritual awakening to thousands of people. Over the next several centuries, Buddhism spread all over Asia, and many different lineages were formed. Nowadays, the Buddhist styles of meditation (Vipassana, Samatha, Loving-Kindness and Walking Meditation) are perhaps the most widely practiced forms of meditation in the West.

4.7.3. 3. Jainism, Taoism, Confucianism In the same “golden century” as the Buddha, three other religions were born, all with their own approaches to meditation. Jainism in India (founded by Mahavira) Jainism is a very ascetic tradition that places great emphasis on self-purification, self-discipline, contemplation, and non-violence. The Jain meditation techniques involve mantra repetition, gazing, breath awareness, visualizations, and self-inquiry. Taoism in China (founded by Lao Tze) Taoism emphasizes union with Tao, or cosmic life/nature. You can learn more about Taoistic meditation here, and check the chapters on Zuowang and Neiguan in my book for step-by-step practices from this tradition. Nhấn mạnh về cuộc sống hòa hợp với Tao, cosmic life.nature Confucianism in China (founded by Confucius). Confucianism focuses more on morality and community life. Meditation was developed in this tradition centuries later, with a focus on self-contemplation and self-improvement. It is called Jing Zuo. nhấn mạnh về cuộc sống đức hạnh,

4.7.4. 4. Greek Philosophers The Greek philosophers, partially under the lively influence of sages and yogis of India, developed their own version of meditation. Such cultural influence was enhanced by Alexander the Great’s military exploits of India (327–325 BCE), which brought both cultures in touch. In the words of the scholar George Feuerstein, in his excellent book The Psychology of Yoga: “Plato and Aristotle, as well as the historian Herodotus, freely admitted the influence of the Orient upon Greek thought. (…) For the Greeks, the Indian sages exemplified the highest virtues of the philosophical life that they themselves sought. The Greeks admired the sages’ apparent immunity to pain and discomfort, as well as their disinterest in pleasure and what the Greeks saw as their contempt of death.” Greek philosophers practiced navel-gazing (omphaloskepsis), as an aid to philosophical contemplation. Later on, philosophers Philo of Alexandria and Plotinus also developed meditation techniques, especially involving concentration. The influence of Eastern thought and contemplative traditions on the West was cut once Christianity began to dominate Europe—and for many centuries. It was only in the 20th century that the dialogue East-West began to flourish again.

4.7.5. 5. Christian Mysticism Christian mystics developed their own form of meditation, mostly based on the repetition of a religious word or phrase, and the silent contemplation of God. One form of Christian meditation is called Jesus Prayer, which was developed between the 10th and 14th centuries in Greece, in the Hesychasm Christian tradition. Historians speculate that this group of Christians might have had contact with the Sufis and the Indians, which is where the influence of meditation might have come from. Another form is found in the Eastern Christian sect, also involves repetition of a phrase, and is much older than Hesychasm. Further developments of Christian meditation happened by the work of Benedictine monks, Ignatius of Loyola, Teresa of Avila (16th century), and the Trappist monks.

4.7.6. 6. Zen Buddhism Zen is a popular school of Buddhism founded by the Indian/Persian monk Bodhidharma, who in the 8th century traveled to China to teach meditation. From that point, his teachings developed into the lineage of Chan in China, being later exported into Korean (Seon), Japan (Zen), and Vietnam (Thien). All of these are known collectively as “Zen” In all of these lineages, there is a strong influence of Taoism and Chinese culture, which partially explains the uniqueness of Zen in relation to other Buddhist traditions. Nowadays the many types of Zazen—which is the meditation technique of Japanese Zen—are still popular forms of meditation in the West. Some lineages of Zen also emphasize the practice of Koans as a form of meditation Bồ đề đạt ma, sang trung quốc dạy thiền

4.7.7. 7. Sufism The tradition of the Sufis (the mystics of Islam) goes as far as 1,400 years back. Sufism, under some influence of Indian contemplative traditions, developed meditation practices based on breathing, mantra, and gazin The core of their practices is connecting with God (Allah). They also developed their iconic Sufi whirling, which can be seen in Turkey even today. To learn more, check out my article on Sufi Meditation, and the chapter Sufi Heartbeat Meditation in my book.

4.7.8. 8. Jewish Meditation The Jewish esoteric tradition of Kabbalah, especially under the influence of Abraham Abulafia (1240–1291) and some later contemplatives, also developed its own forms of meditation. These are mostly based on the deep contemplation of philosophical principles, names of God, symbols, prayers, and the Tree of Life.

4.7.9. 9. Modern Western World In the 1700s, several texts of Eastern philosophy began to be translated into European languages—especially the Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita, and Buddhist Sutras. By the 18th century, the study of Buddhism in the West was a topic for intellectuals, with the philosopher Schopenhauer being perhaps one of its most famous admirers. In the US, major figures of the Transcendentalist movement—such as Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau—were also admirers of the ideals of Eastern philosophy and spirituality. Yoga and meditation were introduced to the United States early in the 20th century by a yogi called Swami Vivekananda. His charismatic and rationalist presentation at the Parliament of Religions in Chicago (1893) triggered a big interest in Americans in Eastern philosophy and spirituality. It was also well received by the Transcendentalist movement in the United States, especially by Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau, As a result of his influence, in the 20th Century several famous Indian spiritual teachers migrated to the USA, including: Paramahansa Yogananda (Self-Realization Fellowship), Maharishi Mahesh Yogi (teaching Transcendental Meditation) and Swami Rama (Himalayan Institute). Likewise, representatives of several schools of Buddhism made their way to teach in the West—the main ones being Zen, Theravada, and Tibetan Buddhism. Most of these eastern masters had western disciples as the torch-bearer of their teachings. With this, the practice of meditation began to be taught in a more westernized way, often simplified and decoupled from its spiritual context. Scientific studies began to emerge, and people realized that meditation is not only for those who are seeking spiritual enlightenment.

4.7.10. 10. The Era of Meditation and Science According to the scholar George Feuerstein, the first piece of scientific research on meditation happened in 1936, and the first one using the EEG was in 1955. The first collection of scientific studies on meditation was made in 1977 by James Funderburk, a student of Swami Rama of the Himalayan International Institute of Yoga Science. In fact, Swami Rama was one of the first yogis to be studied by Western scientists. In the 1960s he was examined by scientists at the Menninger Clinic, where he demonstrated his ability to voluntarily control his bodily processes (such as heartbeat, blood pressure, and body temperature) which science had up until then considered being involuntary.

4.7.11. Meditation Today

4.8. Meditation for Beginners – Starting a Daily Practice

4.8.1. Seven Steps to Starting a Meditation Habit STEP 1: Discover your true values Your values in life are those things that you love to think about, read about, talk about, and learn about. Go through the following questions to come up with your top 5 values. STEP 2: Link meditation to your values The task is to write 5 ways that meditation practice will help each one of your values. Let’s go through four examples of values: “Career”, “Parenting”, “Artistic Expression”, and “Spirituality”. Career Parenting Artistic Expression Spirituality The clearer you know how meditation links to your values, the easier it is to stick to the habit and prevent self-sabotage for your reptilian brain. STEP 3: Commit to a time, place, and practice Time of practice Length of the session Place of practice Tools to be used (cushion or chair, guided or unguided) STEP 4: Setup a trigger and a reward So what you need to do now is to set up triggers, to make sure you don’t forget to do it. What to use as a trigger depends on you. You can get pretty creative with this. Basically, you can design your environment in a way that helps you get reminded of your habit. Some call this priming. The second element is the reward. STEP 5: Be accountable Accountability is a power tool to keep you committed to your habits Here are a few ways to bring accountability: Finally, keeping daily a journal of your practice, where you log your sessions and experiences, is another way to hold yourself accountable. The app I mentioned above also allows you to keep a log of your efforts, take notes, and visualize your progress. STEP 6: Have the right attitude make it non-negotiable. “No matter what, I will meditate every morning before starting my day”. The no matter what part is the key. STEP 7: Hang out with meditators (optional)

4.8.2. Dealing with Obstacles Obstacle 1: Getting involved in other things Remove the temptation. Set a clear rule for yourself of no internet until you finish your meditation. You can set your phone on airplane mode when you go to sleep, and put it back to normal after meditation ends Obstacle 2: Meditation is not going well If your meditation itself is not going well, don’t let that stop you. Continue doing your practice to the best of your ability. Obstacle 3: Negative feelings, self-sabotage, self-criticism self-sabotage-Tự phá hoại Obstacle 4: Things are changing in my life Obstacle 5: Feeling unmotivated Obstacle 6: Expectations

4.9. The Process of Meditation – How to Meditate Deeply

4.9.1. Assuming that you have a clear understanding of the meditation technique you are practicing, there are basically three reasons why your meditation practice feels like it’s in a plateau, or is not going deep enough: lack of preparation before practice your daily life habits and attitudes are not supporting your practice not enough intensity of focus during practice

4.9.2. In the beginning of one’s journey into meditation, the most important thing is simply to build up the habit, get used to sitting, and be comfortable with the posture of meditation. Once the habit is already firm, then paying attention to actually improving one’s practice can take place, without the risk of demotivating the person. Which is what we will talk about now.

4.9.3. The Process of Meditation The reason why it feels our meditation doesn’t go deep, or is not clear enough, is due to lack of intensity of focus, which is a result of not fully understanding the process of meditation and “what we should be doing” The mind has two main functions, ‘doing’ and ‘knowing’. The way of meditation is to calm the ‘doing’ to complete tranquility while maintaining the ‘knowing’. Sloth and torpor occur when one carelessly calms both the ‘doing’ and the ‘knowing’, unable to distinguish between them. —Ajahn Brahmavamso Each second of your meditation can only be spent in one of three ways: with the object of focus (in this case, the breath), with another object (for example, a thought or memory), or neither focused nor distracted, in a kind of “blanked out” state. Let’s represent these with colors: For each second your attention is with your breathing, you get a green dot; For each second where it is engaged in mental phenomena (thoughts, sensations, memories, etc.), you get a red dot; For each second where it is neither paying attention to the object of your meditation, nor engaged in the mind, you get a gray dot. Your objective is to fill that square with as many green dots as possible. The more green dots you have, the deeper and clearer your meditation feels; if it is filled with red dots, you would say your meditation was “noisy”, and all you get from it is simply bodily relaxation. If it is filled with gray dots, meditation is “calm but clouded”. Some people confuse this “gray state” with the real quietude of meditation, but it’s not (more about this later). The goals of the practice, for the beginner meditator, is to gently Decrease the number of consecutive reds (meaning the time needed for us to realize that we got distracted gets shorter); Increase the overall number of greens (pure concentration moments); Increase the number of consecutive greens; Decrease the number of gray For those familiar with the Hindu teaching of the three gunas (which are the basic characteristics of building blocks of all existence), we can say that: green is sattva (purity, balance, serenity, openness, clarity, presence, awareness) red is rajas (activity, dynamism, movement, agitation, restlessness) gray is tamas (torpor, sloth, inertia, obfuscation, heaviness, forgetfulness) the key to deepening in meditation is to affirm and reaffirm your object of focus second after second, in a continuous flow of attention. Our attitude during meditation, then, should be to re-focus the attention second after second on the object of your meditation. At the “end” of each green dot you need to be particularly vigilant, because it is easy for the mind to slip to agitation or forgetfulness. Therefore, the key to deepening in meditation is to affirm and reaffirm your object of focus second after second, in a continuous flow of attention. It’s applicable especially in concentrative practices and mindfulness. In focused attention techniques, it is bringing back the attention to the single object of focus—be it the breath, a mantra, a chakra, feelings of loving-kindness, or anything else (external or internal, actual or imagined). In open monitoring types of meditation (like mindfulness), the attention is constantly brought back to the perception of the present moment. The contents of the perception are constantly changing, but not the fact of perceiving itself.

4.9.4. Guidelines for Intense Meditation Energy, intensity and focus follow interest. Wherever we have a deep sense of interest, for that thing there is natural focus and intensity in our mind. Sloth and torpor is overcome by rousing energy. Energy is always available but few know how to turn on the switch, as it were. Setting a goal, a reasonable goal, is a wise and effective way to generate energy, as is deliberately developing interest in the task at hand. A young child has a natural interest, and consequent energy, because its world is so new. Thus, if one can learn to look at one’s life, or one’s meditation, with a ‘beginner’s mind’ one can see ever new angles and fresh possibilities which keep one distant from sloth and torpor, alive and energetic. […] Sloth and torpor is a common problem which can creep up and smother one slowly. A skilful meditator keeps a sharp look-out for the first signs of sloth and torpor and is thus able to spot its approach and take evasive action before it’s too late. – Ajahn Brahmavamso (Wikipedia) If your meditation is focusing on the breathing, you need to generate deep interest for the breath, with a mind of curiosity, of love for the breath. You need to want to know your breath deeply, in detail and depth; to experience it in many levels, again and again. Keeping the interest alive and intense, in the object of meditation, is the whole secret. You need to be more interested in exploring your breath than in rehearsing thoughts and memories in your mind. As a metaphor that can help us get a better experience of this feeling of intensity of focus, imagine you are walking on a rope, suspended over a cliff. You need your full attention every step of the way – every second of each step. A single moment of distraction, and your body loses balance and you fall.

4.9.5. Balancing Intensity With Gentleness

4.9.6. Stages of Meditation In the first stage of practice, you are simply getting used to sitting in the meditation posture, getting familiar with the meditation technique, and establishing your daily habit. In the second stage, you are stabilizing your attention, and learning to stay with the object for longer periods of time, even if the attention may not be so sharp and deep yet. In the third stage, you are deepening your attention. Your awareness becomes more subtle, nuanced and powerful. Here is where the traditional stages of advanced meditation, taught by the monks, actually start. They are known as Jhannas or Samadhi.

4.10. Search Into Yourself

4.10.1. Introduction: Searching Inside Yourself Search Inside Yourself works in three steps: 1. Attention training 2. Self-knowledge and self-mastery 3. Creating useful mental habits

4.10.2. One: Even an Engineer Can Thrive on Emotional Intelligence What Emotional Intelligence Is and How to Develop It The best definition of emotional intelligence Benefits of Emotional Intelligence Stellar Work Performance Outstanding Leadership The Ability to Create the Conditions for Happiness Optimize Thyself Cultivating Emotional Intelligence Emotional intelligence is trainable, even in adults. This claim is based on a fairly new branch of science known as “neuroplasticity.” Train Attention We begin by training attention. The way to train this quality of attention is something known as “mindfulness meditation.” Train at the Level of Physiology Once we develop strong, stable, and perceptive attention, what do we do with it? We focus it on our bodies, From Mindfulness to Emotional Intelligence We use mindfulness to train a quality of attention that is strong both in clarity and stability. We then direct this power-charged attention to the physiological aspects of emotion so we can perceive emotion with high vividness and resolution. The ability to perceive the emotional experience at a high level of clarity and resolution builds the foundation for emotional intelligence. Mindfulness in Two Minutes Most evenings, before we sleep, my young daughter and I sit in mindfulness together for two minutes. Two minutes a day, we quietly enjoy being alive and being together. More fundamentally, for two minutes a day, we enjoy being. Just being. To just be is simultaneously the most ordinary and the most precious experience in life. Just being. To just be is simultaneously the most ordinary and the most precious experience in life. Jon Kabat-Zinn skillfully defined mindfulness as “paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmen tally.” Put most simply, I think mindfulness is the mind of just being. All you really need to do is to pay attention moment-to-moment without judging. It is that simple. two ways to experience a taste of mindfulness: the Easy Way and the Easier Way.

4.10.3. Two: Breathing as if Your Life Depends on It The Theory and Practice of Mindfulness Meditation The scientific definition of meditation, as suggested by Julie Brefczynski-Lewis Mindfulness trains two important faculties, attention and meta-attention. Relaxed and Alert at the Same Time Happiness Is the Default State of Mind Meditation Is like Exercise Practice of Mindfulness Meditation

4.10.4. Three: Mindfulness Without Butt on Cushion

4.10.5. Four: All-Natural, Organic Self-Confidence

4.10.6. Five: Riding Your Emotions like a Horse

4.10.7. Six: Making Profits, Rowing Across Oceans, and Changing the World

4.10.8. Seven: Empathy and the Monkey Business of Brain Tangos

4.10.9. Eight: Being Effective and Loved at the Same Time

4.10.10. Nine: Three Easy Steps to World Peace

5. Integral Theory

6. AgileLeanLife

6.1. The only goal setting strategy that really works in the 21st century

6.1.1. THE NEW WAY TO SETTING GOALS IN LIFE Define your vision list To define your life vision, you should answer three simple questions: you should have 50 – 150 items on your vision list. #Article: Start with a life vision My life vision AgileLeanLife – Vision Template Prioritize your vision list When you decide for priority items to go after, you have to take several factors into consideration. You prioritize items on your vision list based on the following factors: When you’re prioritizing your life vision items, you should have 3 – 7 items that you plan to realize and meet in the next 3 – 12 months. #Vision list prioritization or which goals to pursue first Develop life stories for 5 – 7 items on the top of your list – specify what exactly and why The goal of this step is to describe more clearly what exactly you want to achieve, discuss it with all the important parties involved and even more, to clarify why exactly you want to achieve it. A powerful why will give you a sense of mission, excitement and value By writing life stories based on your vision item list, you achieve the following: From all the benefits listed above, a strong why deserves a special emphasis. Only a life vision is never enough, you also need a powerful why. Only life vision is not enough, you also need to start with why Build a Goal Journey Map to build a superior strategy and define the process Life story – The final goal you want to achieve and why (as we’ve discussed) Process phases – Different phases you have to go through, like educating yourself, searching, finding your fit, executing etc. Process with milestones – Repeating actions that lead to micro-goals and then to the final goal Supporting environment – Key relationships, trends, motivational installations and other changes People – All the people that are involved in achieving your goals (influencers, blockers, mentors) Insights and Minimum Viable Experience – Experiments you will perform for validated learning Metrics – How you will measure your progress in different process phases Feedback mechanism – System for gathering feedback from yourself and your environment Risk-reward factor – Potential barriers, risks, fears and unanswered questions Branches and forks – Potential small and big adjustments to the strategy Goal journey mapping – The superior strategy to achieve any goal Use branching and forking to stay flexible with alternative paths A pivot in personal life is a fundamental change in your life strategy There are two types of pivots: Organize the superior execution with a 100-day plan and bi-weekly sprints 100-days backlog – Milestones you will achieve in the next 3 months Bi-weekly sprints – Tasks you will complete in 14-days sprints Daily 3T – The three most important tasks for a specific day #Organize your life and yourself with to-do lists Considering all the principles of the AgileLeanLife Manifesto CONSIDERING THE MAIN PRINCIPLES FROM THE AGILELEANLIFE MANIFESTO

6.1.2. Your life strategy YOUR PERSONAL POWER IS THE KEY IN CONSCIOUSLY SHAPING YOUR LIFE STRATEGY The more personal power you develop over the years (mastering yourself), the greater the influence you have on how your life will turn out. The most important thing you have to be aware of is that you always have a choice. THE ELEMENTS OF YOUR LIFE STRATEGY Your mindset and your personality Taking care of your physical body and physical appearance Formal education Informal education and developing competences and skills Information intake and communicating strategy Your past and relationships with your primary family Intimate relationships and your secondary family Your sex life Relationship with your kids Money and investment strategy Career strategy Your social strategy Hobbies and having fun strategy Travel and transportation strategy Home and your surroundings strategy Strategy toward animals and nature Art and culture Using technology and your digital trail strategy Your nation, country and political system Spirituality, religion and asking for help Taking care of your emotional body Dealing with enemies, bad and evil in the world Your legacy and social engagement strategy When do you want to give up?

6.2. Upgrade your mindset to the superhuman version

6.2.1. Part 1: The core ways to update your mindset that will make your thinking superhuman THE CORE UPGRADES YOU NEED FOR YOUR NEW SUPERHUMAN MINDSET From the fixed mindset to the growth mindset From the scarcity mindset to the abundance mindset From negative thinking to positive thinking From the problem-oriented mindset to the solution-oriented mindset From reactive thinking to proactive thinking From suboptimal thinking to optimal thinking From egotistical thinking to agile thinking Regret Minimization Framework (for bigger life decisions) Shutting down your mind

6.2.2. Part 2: How to update your mindset – cognitive and behavioral conditioning and other mind hacks UPGRADING YOUR MINDSET IS A PROCESS Updating or upgrading your mindset is a carefully orchestrated process, not a one-time event like pressing a button Every process you follow goes through certain process stages, and upgrading your mindset is no different in this regard FIRST YOU NEED EMPATHY TO UNDERSTAND WHAT IS GOING ON WITH YOU WHEN NEW THOUGHTS SLOWLY BECOME STICKY POSITIVITY VIRUS SCALING NEW THINKING ALL THE WAY TO THE LAST THOUGHT TOOLBOX FOR UPGRADING YOUR MINDSET There are two general approaches – cognitive and behavioral. Paying more attention to your emotions and thoughts Emotional accounting Cognitive reframing Other cognitive exercises to accelerate your mindset updates Behavioral conditioning and accounting The final updates – increasing your competence level

7. Biz Standard Setup

8. Mental Models