Darnell Lamont Walker leading Rituals Writing Workshop
Seven Ways To Mind The Mind
Category:
Mind

Throughout the ages, wisdom teachers near and far have invited humanity to pay attention to thoughts and thought patterns that populate the mind. Buddha said, “When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow.”

To help us find ways in which we can experience that “purity,” this month we turn to Esalen faculty Ramesh Srinivasan, Chris Murchison and Eve Ekman, all of whom have upcoming workshops at Esalen: Ramesh in Conversations on the Edge: Beyond the Valley – How Innovators Around the World Are Overcoming Inequality and Creating the Technologies of Tomorrow; and Chris and Eve in The Science and Practice of a Meaningful Life: Fostering Purpose through Connections and Dedication to the Greater Good.

Together, Ramesh, Chris and Eve share seven ways to mind the mind with a greater sense of intention.

1. Cultivate Loving Awareness “We can all find small gaps of time in which we can cultivate momentary loving awareness,” says Eve. “One example of this, which was suggested by the heartful dharma teacher Howie Cohen, is to practice a stealth, or undercover practice of saying, ‘I love you, may you be happy,’ to everyone you come in contact with, whether you're driving and see somebody through the rear window, or you're taking public transportation, on the elevator or walking down the street.”

Eve adds that this cognitive shift and re-appraisal of everyone we encounter is a whetting stone for our compassion practice and it turns those people who would otherwise be “obstacles” into the subject of our most deep love. “This also allows us to be in love with, or lovers to, the world," Eve goes on, "and it effectively shifts us out of our narrow, stress-related thinking into the broaden-and-build mindset of fostering positive emotions supported by myriad research studies.”

2. Conduct “Mesearch” There’s research and then there’s “mesearch.” Chris says that when we conduct “mesearch,” we become more open to what themes or patterns are apparent within us. “When did you notice your energy rising?” Chris asks. “When did you notice your energy waning? How can you create more conditions where your positive energy can be cultivated?” All of this is “mesearch.” Think of it as a kind of Self-Google.

3. Add Value to the Spaces and People Around You "In the last year, what impact did you have on those around you?" Chris asks. "In the year ahead, how might you become the type of energy that no matter where you are, you contribute something unique?" By intentionally bringing mindfulness into our daily lives, we invite opportunities to create situations that are more unique and memorable.

4. Focus on What Fulfills You “What you put your energy to, you put your attention to, and this is matters,” Ramesh says. When we can make a clear, informed decision to focus our attention on things we find inspiring, it frees up the mind and creates a sense of greater ease.

5. Curate Your Company Wisely “What kind of people do you want to spend your time with or what events do you really want to attend?” Chris asks. “Being around people who have generally positive outlooks is a good thing for me. I think a lot of us get affected by this.” When we practice mindfulness in this arena, we invite our minds to become more positively engaged.

6. Rate Your Relationships Relationships matter, Chris proclaims, citing that research has shown that our connections to others has multifold benefits to our mind and overall well-being.

Chris asks: “On a scale of one to 10, how would you rate the quality of your relationships? What informs your rating? What could you do to move your score up by just one point on the scale? Can you begin that experiment today?” Such mindful inquiries give the mind a wonderful task: taking inventory in a positive way.

7. Engage in Selfless Service "Volunteering, especially in places like hospices, and doing it without needing to get credit for it, takes us out of ourselves and out of our mind,” Ramesh says, adding that there are many outlets for selfless service, from food banks and healthcare centers to community groups and shelters.



“Remembering to be as self compassionate as I can and praying to the divine that we're all a part of.” 
–Aaron

“Prayer, reading, meditation, walking.”
–Karen
“Erratically — which is an ongoing stream of practice to find peace.”
–Charles
“Try on a daily basis to be kind to myself and to realize that making mistakes is a part of the human condition. Learning from our mistakes is a journey. But it starts with compassion and caring. First for oneself.”
–Steve

“Physically: aerobic exercise, volleyball, ice hockey, cycling, sailing. Emotionally: unfortunately I have to work to ‘not care’ about people or situations which may end painfully. Along the lines of ‘attachment is the source of suffering’, so best to avoid it or limit its scope. Sad though because it could also be the source of great joy. Is it worth the risk?“
–Rainer

“It's time for my heart to be nurtured on one level yet contained on another. To go easy on me and to allow my feelings to be validated, not judged harshly. On the other hand, to let the heart rule with equanimity and not lead the mind and body around like a master.”
–Suzanne

“I spend time thinking of everything I am grateful for, and I try to develop my ability to express compassion for myself and others without reservation. I take time to do the things I need to do to keep myself healthy and happy. This includes taking experiential workshops, fostering relationships, and participating within groups which have a similar interest to become a more compassionate and fulfilled being.“
–Peter

“Self-forgiveness for my own judgments. And oh yeah, coming to Esalen.”
–David B.

“Hmm, this is a tough one! I guess I take care of my heart through fostering relationships with people I feel connected to. Spending quality time with them (whether we're on the phone, through messages/letters, on Zoom, or in-person). Being there for them, listening to them, sharing what's going on with me, my struggles and my successes... like we do in the Esalen weekly Friends of Esalen Zoom sessions!”
–Lori

“I remind myself in many ways of the fact that " Love is all there is!" LOVE is the prize and this one precious life is the stage we get to learn our lessons. I get out into nature, hike, camp, river kayak, fly fish, garden, I create, I dance (not enough!), and I remain grateful for each day, each breath, each moment. Being in the moment, awake, and remembering the gift of life and my feeling of gratitude for all of creation.”
–Steven
“My physical heart by limiting stress and eating a heart-healthy diet. My emotional heart by staying in love with the world and by knowing that all disappointment and loss will pass.“
–David Z.


Today, September 29, is World Heart Day. Strike up a conversation with your own heart and as you feel comfortable, encourage others to do the same. As part of our own transformations and self-care, we sometimes ask for others to illuminate and enliven our hearts or speak our love language.

What if we could do this for ourselves too, even if just for today… or to start a heart practice, forever?



About

Esalen Team

Darnell Lamont Walker leading Rituals Writing Workshop
Category:
Mind

Throughout the ages, wisdom teachers near and far have invited humanity to pay attention to thoughts and thought patterns that populate the mind. Buddha said, “When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow.”

To help us find ways in which we can experience that “purity,” this month we turn to Esalen faculty Ramesh Srinivasan, Chris Murchison and Eve Ekman, all of whom have upcoming workshops at Esalen: Ramesh in Conversations on the Edge: Beyond the Valley – How Innovators Around the World Are Overcoming Inequality and Creating the Technologies of Tomorrow; and Chris and Eve in The Science and Practice of a Meaningful Life: Fostering Purpose through Connections and Dedication to the Greater Good.

Together, Ramesh, Chris and Eve share seven ways to mind the mind with a greater sense of intention.

1. Cultivate Loving Awareness “We can all find small gaps of time in which we can cultivate momentary loving awareness,” says Eve. “One example of this, which was suggested by the heartful dharma teacher Howie Cohen, is to practice a stealth, or undercover practice of saying, ‘I love you, may you be happy,’ to everyone you come in contact with, whether you're driving and see somebody through the rear window, or you're taking public transportation, on the elevator or walking down the street.”

Eve adds that this cognitive shift and re-appraisal of everyone we encounter is a whetting stone for our compassion practice and it turns those people who would otherwise be “obstacles” into the subject of our most deep love. “This also allows us to be in love with, or lovers to, the world," Eve goes on, "and it effectively shifts us out of our narrow, stress-related thinking into the broaden-and-build mindset of fostering positive emotions supported by myriad research studies.”

2. Conduct “Mesearch” There’s research and then there’s “mesearch.” Chris says that when we conduct “mesearch,” we become more open to what themes or patterns are apparent within us. “When did you notice your energy rising?” Chris asks. “When did you notice your energy waning? How can you create more conditions where your positive energy can be cultivated?” All of this is “mesearch.” Think of it as a kind of Self-Google.

3. Add Value to the Spaces and People Around You "In the last year, what impact did you have on those around you?" Chris asks. "In the year ahead, how might you become the type of energy that no matter where you are, you contribute something unique?" By intentionally bringing mindfulness into our daily lives, we invite opportunities to create situations that are more unique and memorable.

4. Focus on What Fulfills You “What you put your energy to, you put your attention to, and this is matters,” Ramesh says. When we can make a clear, informed decision to focus our attention on things we find inspiring, it frees up the mind and creates a sense of greater ease.

5. Curate Your Company Wisely “What kind of people do you want to spend your time with or what events do you really want to attend?” Chris asks. “Being around people who have generally positive outlooks is a good thing for me. I think a lot of us get affected by this.” When we practice mindfulness in this arena, we invite our minds to become more positively engaged.

6. Rate Your Relationships Relationships matter, Chris proclaims, citing that research has shown that our connections to others has multifold benefits to our mind and overall well-being.

Chris asks: “On a scale of one to 10, how would you rate the quality of your relationships? What informs your rating? What could you do to move your score up by just one point on the scale? Can you begin that experiment today?” Such mindful inquiries give the mind a wonderful task: taking inventory in a positive way.

7. Engage in Selfless Service "Volunteering, especially in places like hospices, and doing it without needing to get credit for it, takes us out of ourselves and out of our mind,” Ramesh says, adding that there are many outlets for selfless service, from food banks and healthcare centers to community groups and shelters.



“Remembering to be as self compassionate as I can and praying to the divine that we're all a part of.” 
–Aaron

“Prayer, reading, meditation, walking.”
–Karen
“Erratically — which is an ongoing stream of practice to find peace.”
–Charles
“Try on a daily basis to be kind to myself and to realize that making mistakes is a part of the human condition. Learning from our mistakes is a journey. But it starts with compassion and caring. First for oneself.”
–Steve

“Physically: aerobic exercise, volleyball, ice hockey, cycling, sailing. Emotionally: unfortunately I have to work to ‘not care’ about people or situations which may end painfully. Along the lines of ‘attachment is the source of suffering’, so best to avoid it or limit its scope. Sad though because it could also be the source of great joy. Is it worth the risk?“
–Rainer

“It's time for my heart to be nurtured on one level yet contained on another. To go easy on me and to allow my feelings to be validated, not judged harshly. On the other hand, to let the heart rule with equanimity and not lead the mind and body around like a master.”
–Suzanne

“I spend time thinking of everything I am grateful for, and I try to develop my ability to express compassion for myself and others without reservation. I take time to do the things I need to do to keep myself healthy and happy. This includes taking experiential workshops, fostering relationships, and participating within groups which have a similar interest to become a more compassionate and fulfilled being.“
–Peter

“Self-forgiveness for my own judgments. And oh yeah, coming to Esalen.”
–David B.

“Hmm, this is a tough one! I guess I take care of my heart through fostering relationships with people I feel connected to. Spending quality time with them (whether we're on the phone, through messages/letters, on Zoom, or in-person). Being there for them, listening to them, sharing what's going on with me, my struggles and my successes... like we do in the Esalen weekly Friends of Esalen Zoom sessions!”
–Lori

“I remind myself in many ways of the fact that " Love is all there is!" LOVE is the prize and this one precious life is the stage we get to learn our lessons. I get out into nature, hike, camp, river kayak, fly fish, garden, I create, I dance (not enough!), and I remain grateful for each day, each breath, each moment. Being in the moment, awake, and remembering the gift of life and my feeling of gratitude for all of creation.”
–Steven
“My physical heart by limiting stress and eating a heart-healthy diet. My emotional heart by staying in love with the world and by knowing that all disappointment and loss will pass.“
–David Z.


Today, September 29, is World Heart Day. Strike up a conversation with your own heart and as you feel comfortable, encourage others to do the same. As part of our own transformations and self-care, we sometimes ask for others to illuminate and enliven our hearts or speak our love language.

What if we could do this for ourselves too, even if just for today… or to start a heart practice, forever?



About

Esalen Team

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