I'm joining Service Space because ... of noble friendship.
A good day to me is when ... I help others.
My hero in life is ...Gandhi's Autobiography.
My favorite book is ...My teachers.
One thing I'm grateful for is ... that I know the value of meditation.
Nov 13, 2020, 1 comments, 11 smiles [In our Sacred Space Pod last month, Mia shared this beautiful reflection below.] Before I go to bed at night, I take out my contacts or take off my glasses. In that moment, the world becomes a blur - I must trust my memory as I walk to the bed or pull the covers down. In the morning, I literally can not see a thing, until I put my glasses on. When I do, there is a moment as my eyes adjust and the world comes into focus; in that moment, I feel such gratitude. What if I did not have the means to see more clearly? When I come to the forest, I do not first see the details of the trees, I see the forest, like a wave of green and brown. As my eyes adjust, I begin to focus more closely. I begin to see the individual trees, then ... Read Full Story
Nov 07, 2019, 3 comments, 11 smiles This lovely poem was written by Mario de Andrade (San Paolo 1893-1945) Poet, novelist, essayist and musicologist. He was one of the founders of Brazilian modernism. I counted my years & realized that I have Less time to live by, Than I have lived so far. I feel like a child who won a pack of candies: at first he ate them with pleasure, But when he realized that there was little left, he began to taste them intensely. I have no time for endless meetings where the statutes, rules, procedures & internal regulations are discussed, knowing that nothing will be done. I no longer have the patience To stand absurd people who, despite their chronological age, have not grown up. My time is too short: I want the essence, my spirit is in a hurry. I do not have much candy In the package anymore. I want to live next to humans, very realistic people who know How to laugh ... Read Full Story
Jun 04, 2019, 9 comments, 31 smiles Staying with Arun Dada at Banyan Grove was like living in a Gurukul. When I shared my experiences with a few friends, they asked me to document it in writing, so here are some highlights. It is an experience, just to witness and soak in a demeanor that is so humble, kind and joyous. Arun Dada's presence was so healing and strengthening, and it continued to show itself in the smallest gestures. Whenever any of us went out, be it 5 in the morning or 2 in the afternoon or late evening, he is always there at the door to say bye and open the gate for the car. And always affectionately there to greet us when we are back. If anyone is out, Arun Dada will always lovingly and gently inquire about their meals time of return etc. -- caring but not attached with expectations. When we are in the kitchen, he will ... Read Full Story
May 03, 2019, 1 comments, 28 smiles Don't know ask me how, but I got to meet one of my heroes -- Rachel Naomi Remen. A whole bunch of us spent 4 hours today, in rapt attention, listening to an "angel on earth" share profound medicine stories. If you don't know about her, read this interview with Krista Tippett. It all started because I had emailed few of you this video about her grandfather that touched me deeply ... And I suppose, what you appreciate, appreciates -- and sometimes comes back to you. :) I bow to all of you in ServiceSpace that make such dreams come to life.
Jan 13, 2019, 15 smiles The following is a description of the Buddha’s teachings on the four qualities of love, from the first chapter of Teachings on Love, written by Thich Nhat Hanh … “Happiness is only possible with true love. True love has the power to heal and transform the situation around us and bring a deep meaning to our lives. There are people who understand the nature of true love and how to generate and nurture it. The teachings on love given by the Buddha are clear, scientific, and applicable. Every one of us can benefit from these teachings. During the lifetime of the Buddha, those of the Brahmanic faith prayed that after death they would go to Heaven to dwell eternally with Brahma, the universal God. One day a Brahman man asked the Buddha, “What can I do to be sure that I will be with Brahma after I die?” and the Buddha replied, ... Read Full Story
Jul 11, 2018, 14 smiles *Meditation kept the Thai boys trapped in a cave astonishingly calm* July 10, 2018 by PAUL RATNER The story of the Thai boys soccer team trapped in a cave for two weeks has captivated millions of people around the world. Lost since June 23rd, the group spent ten days without any contact with the outside world. It was finally discovered on July 2nd and rescued on July 10th. It turned out that Ekapol Chanthawong, the 25-year-old coach of the 12-player Wild Boars soccer team, is a former Buddhist monk. He spent a decade living as a monk and is a practitioner of meditation. It is that skill that has been credited with keeping the boys calm during this ordeal. In fact, when the British divers discovered them after ten days, the group was meditating. Aisha Wiboonrungrueng, the mother of the 11-year-old Chanin, who was trapped in the cave, thinks the coach’s background definitely helped ... Read Full Story
Nov 29, 2016, 1 comments, 8 smiles During our recent NGO retreat, I was very touched by Gautam-dada's remarks. Below are some of the tidbits I remember: When I was in school, Vinoba-ji asked me, "What is your school passing marks?" I said, "33%." Vinobaji replied, "So the education system is implying that 67% of what they teach is not relevant and meaningful?" There's a danger for NGOs to become driven by donors and an impulse to scale up. There is nothing wrong with scaling up, but first we must check if we are doing our core work with quality. Best not to short-change quality for growth. If we do not need funds, there is no need to take the donations. We can refuse them with the trust that when we need the money, it will come. When we give a lot of money to disaster-affected areas, we can end up making people dependent on handouts, and dismantle ... Read Full Story
Nov 28, 2016, 5 smiles I received this description on "Four Principles of Spirituality" from folks at Vaidyagram, an "Ayurveda Healing Village" in the Tamil Nadu, India, and found them very insightful. Here they are below, in case others in this ecosystem may enjoy as well: "The Four Principles of Spirituality” The First Principle states: “Whomsoever you encounter is the right one” This means that no one comes into our life by chance. Everyone who is around us, anyone with whom we interact, represents something, whether to teach us something or to help us improve a current situation. The Second Principle states: “Whatever happened is the only thing that could have happened” Nothing, absolutely nothing of that which we experienced could have been any other way. Not even in the least important detail. There is no “If only I had done that differently…, then it would have been different…”. No. What happened is the only thing that could have taken place and must ... Read Full Story
May 03, 2016, 7 smiles Ran across a great HBR article on how Mindfulness Can Improve Strategy Too ... Over the course of a couple of decades, meditation has migrated from Himalayan hilltops and Japanese Zendos to corporate boardrooms and corridors of power, including Google, Apple, Aetna, the Pentagon, and the U.S. House of Representatives. On a personal level, leaders are taking note of empirical research documenting meditation’s potential for reducing stress, lowering blood pressure, and improving emotional regulation. Mindfulness meditation — the practice of cultivating deliberate focused attention on the present moment – has caught on as a way to bring focus, authenticity, and intention to the practice of leadership. Harvard Business Review contributors Daniel Goleman and Bill George have described mindfulness as a means to listen more deeply and guide actions through clear intention rather than emotional whims or reactive patterns. [...] As UCLA’s Richard Rumelt, a leading expert on strategic planning, writes in his book Good ... Read Full Story
Jan 03, 2016, 1 comments, 15 smiles Ran across this beautiful excerept from a Tibetan monk named Gyelsay (Bodhisattva) Togmay Zangpo ... "The main hindrance to joyous effort for liberation is laziness. There are three types of laziness. The first is what is commonly called laziness -- lounging around, sleeping, doing nothing. The second is being busy with worldly activities. While from an ordinary viewpoint, a person like this is seen as energetic and successful, from a [moral] viewpoint he is lazy because he has no energy to practice. Having an active social life, working a sixty-hour week, spending hours thinking about the stock market, playing politics in our workplace, and engaging in other such activities are considered being lazy. In other words, just being busy is not joyous effort. It depends what you are busy doing. The third type of laziness is discouragement. This is the mind that thinks, "I’m incapable of practicing [virtue]. The path is too hard. Enlightenment is too high a goal.” This type of thinking which underestimates our capability and puts ourselves down is very detrimental."