Chakras are energy centers spread across the body from the base of your spine to the top of your head. “Energy” here refers to your life force, the bodily and spiritual power that keeps you alive. Interestingly, the Sanskrit word for this is prana, which means breath.
Chakra is Sanskrit for “wheel” or “circle.” Your life force energy gets caught up in certain patterns, or wheels, like being, feeling, doing, accepting and loving, communicating, seeing, and knowing.
When balanced, your chakras allow your life force energy to flow and pass through each one fully and effortlessly. …
Rarely, someone like the Buddha can just sit under a tree and meditate for a few days and then suddenly become enlightened and stay that way for the rest of their life. But that’s not something you can really control. That kind of enlightenment comes to you on its own.
What’s easier and more likely to be meaningful is to treat spirituality like hygiene, and have a daily practice. Your teeth aren’t ever permanently clean. You can’t brush your teeth under a Bodhi tree once and have them clean forever. It’s something that naturally needs to be cleaned every day.
I’ve always been more than a little suspicious about the things society tells us to value. The “successful” life is painted as one with lots of money and influence that comes from our having produced enough and served enough people to get there.
And that’s fine — to be materially successful, those activities are definitely important. But if money is our only goal, if constant productivity and service is our only activity, we will burn ourselves out. Without knowing the higher meaning of our activities, we still feel lost and empty. …
Carl Jung, born in 1875 in Switzerland, was a psychiatrist who founded analytical psychology. In 1895, Jung began to study psychiatry and medicine at the University of Basel, inspired by its combination of the biological and spiritual.
He eventually left academia and began a clinical practice out of his own home. It was around that time that Sigmund Freud got wind of some of Jung’s publications, and their professional relationship bloomed for about six years.
Jung learned from Freud, and helped propagate Freud’s psychology, psychoanalysis. That is, until Jung published Psychology of The Unconscious: A Study of The Transformations and…
“But peace can be made only by those who are peaceful, and love can be shown only by those who love. No work of love will flourish out of guilt, fear, or hollowness of heart, just as no valid plans for the future can be made by those who have no capacity for living now.”
― Alan Watts, The Book: On the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are
This quote covers a lot in just a couple lines. It refers to the essence of how we manifest things in our life: we project our outer world as a reflection of…
“Nothing, to my way of thinking, is a better proof of a well-ordered mind than a man’s ability to stop just where he is and pass some time in his own company.”
Relaxation is the opposite of, and the antidote to, stress. When we are stressed, our bodies prepare for intense action with increased heart rate and blood pressure, quick shallow breathing, and tense muscles. Evolutionarily speaking, this was helpful to us. When attacked by some monster, it’s usually a good idea to be ready to run or fight. …
“I know my fate. One day my name will be associated with the memory of something tremendous — a crisis without equal on earth, the most profound collision of conscience, a decision that was conjured up against everything that had been believed, demanded, hallowed so far. I am no man, I am dynamite.”
— Friedrich Nietzsche, Ecce Homo
Nietzsche (pronounced knee-chuh) was born on October 15, 1844, in Prussia before it became unified Germany. His father, a Lutheran pastor, died of brain disease in 1849. Nietzsche’s brother died six months later. He hated his sister, who went on to cherry-pick…
A train pulls slowly along its final mile
With a lurch, a creaking sigh, it stops
A worry strikes your bones
The windows were never cleaned
It stopped so early
Are you at your destination?
You exit through a metal door
The other side: blinding light
And soft, cool air
Not like the coal you used to breathe
Your vision settles
You’re in a vast green field
Surrounded by mountains and forests
The track goes on into one distance
But at last, for the first time
You walk forward on your own feet
And embrace the warmth of the sun
The Buddhists say: because everything in the world is impermanent, ever changing, things have no solid identity. One moment, a candle burns tall and bright, and a few moments later, it’s a dark puddle of wax. Nothing about the candle keeps it a candle. The forces of nature (of which, man is a part) assembled it, and then immediately began to wash it away.
In this sense, the candle is “empty” of an inherent essence. It’s empty of an enduring identity. …
“A special transmission outside the scriptures,
Not founded upon words and letters
By pointing directly to one’s mind,
It lets one see into one’s own true nature and thus attain Buddhahood.”
Buddhism began in India, where the original Buddha gave lectures laying out the foundation of a philosophy which promised an end to suffering: if we extinguish our desires and attachments, we will no longer suffer the pain of them going unfulfilled.
That seed of an idea spread across India and into China, where it met and mixed with Taoism, the philosophy of living in accordance and harmony…