Inactivity on a Global Level

Inactivity on a global level is causing as many deaths as smoking.  This world wide challenge is real and has become a public health priority.  One city, Bogota, Columbia has ban vehicles from its' streets on Sundays.

Dr. Michael Pratt said a research has shown that these normally packed streets are quiet now and filled with cyclists and pedestrians who would otherwise be inactive.  This is one way to save lives while improving a dahnting world wide health issue.

The Power of being present

In his extraordinary book The Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle warns about becoming attached to any words "they are stepping stones, to be left behind as quickly as possible."  He is clearly suggesting that there is an intelligence that can be found in the one 1000th of an inch of a cell with enough DNA to fill 1000 books of 800 pages.  In other words, we know so little about how to access our innate human ability to connect with that intelligence.

Tolle suggest that human pain unnecessary and to a large extent self created.  For the most part is created in the unconscious, it is the unobserved mind keeping us attached to the mind forms thinking dualistic notions as in right and wrong, life and death, which all cause fear, anxiety and in extreme cases ultimately war.

On the other hand, being present, observing and in a state of "Wu Wei", doing nothing as in meditation connects us to the complete the undivided, not resisting and being completely transparent moves us beyond the mind and particularly the ego which is infact the real problem.  Beyond ego defenses and false masks one enters into the now, the present, the real and the authentic you.  "Only through being vulnerable can one discover your true individuality."

Alternative Pain Treatments

According to a recent article in the Boston Globe, White River Junction VA Medical Center in Vermont is reducing chronic pain thought multi-disciplined approach that include Yoga, Tai Chi, Acupuncture and other non-opioid treatments.  Dr. Julie Franklin attributes the 42% decline in drugs like Vicodin and OxyContin to be the result of the Pain Center (at White River Junction which she supervises).  

They are providing active strategies instead of looking for pills "and becoming empowered," according to Physical Therapist Baren Tang.  This is a strategy that is being recognized by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs as well as in other states.  A great model that saves lives, reduces costs, and prevents disease through self care.

Forgiveness

xtai-chi-stress-reduction.jpg.pagespeed.ic.GSpb4Sgg9L.jpg

For centuries spiritual leaders and mystics have stated that "Forgiveness in life begins with the acceptance of self."  Unless we can remove the inflexible, unhearing mask of our persona, there is little chance of true relation with self or others.  

Alice Walker, in one of her poems, says,

Looking down into my father’s
dead face
for the last time
my mother said without
tears, without smiles
but with civility
”Goodnight, Willie Lee, I’ll see you
in the morning.”
And it was then I knew that the healing
of all our wounds
is forgiveness
that permits a promise
of our return
at the end.
— Alice Walker
When we care a bit less about our curated self-image, we make way for genuine interaction - and emotional reciprocity.
— Jena Pincott, Psychology Today

Cold Showers

Dr. Geert A. Buijze, of the Netherlands, has conducted a high level study involving 3,000 volunteers, showing high level evidence that cold showers of 30-90 seconds can improve health, reducing absences from work by 29%. Cold showers trigger the neuroendocrine effect of fight or flight, which increases the cortisol before it shifts into the relaxation response, activating the good, or brown, fat in the body. When the brown fat is activated, it keeps the body warm by burning calories, which may help to control blood sugar, thereby reducing the risk of obesity and diabetes. Two-thirds of the participants continued the cold showers after the study was completed.

~Harvard Business Review, March-April 2018

Ireland's 8 Lessons

Never compromise your character to achieve any goal.

Don't think less of yourself, think of yourself less.

It takes years to build respect, but a moment to destroy it.

When someone tells you no, ask why.

IMG_4419.JPG

It's great to have goals, but don't forget to enjoy the journey.

Own money; never let it own you.

Discover, live, and practice your boundaries and beliefs.

Your amazing spirit is strong enough to overcome any obstacle.

How Meditation Helps Mind, Body and Spirit

Physical Benefits

1.  Reduces stress through boosting serotonin, dopamine and endorphins (the happy hormones).
2. Lowers blood pressure.
3. Can reduce pain by as much as 40%.
4. Can reduce inflammation from arthritis and asthma.
5. Helps turn off the fear and flight syndrome by relaxing the parasympathetic nervous system, thereby helping the stomach and lower tract.
6. Reduces cortisol, the stress hormone.

Psychological Benefits

Meditation connects one with the deeper non-personal aspect of the mind, what Dr. Carl Jung called the center of personality. The Soul. This archetypal energetic power is collective and is beyond time, distance, space, history, and takes one beyond the physical, connecting them to the mysterious power of the human mind and beyond logic. This scientific methodology is repeatable and deals with patterns that the human mind is prone to. 

Spiritual Benefits

Meditation is both an art and a science. It is at the core of many ancient beliefs and healing arts. It is the creative genius that is innate in every human being. It connects one to a higher power that has many names; the Tao, the holy spirit, God, universal energy etc.

Pause and Think About It

"We cannot change the direction of the wind, but we can trim our sails." 

This is the first line of defense against the increasingly rapidly changing post modern society that we live in. And the stress is killing us. 

Michael McKee, a psychologist at Cleveland Clinic, tells us that deep, slow breathing connects us to more relaxed states of mind and the activities that accompany them. When we are in high alert so much of the time, cortisol production must be countered through becoming mindful and present to what is happening. Dr. Andrew Weil posits, "I think breath is the only function through which you can influence the involuntary nervous system." 

Sela...

"Walk like an Egyptian"

For the Egyptians and many ancient cultures, balance and beauty were essential for life.  If we look at the majority of Egyptian sculptures the left foot is forward, the spine straight, and the head lifted up with eyes outward.  By contrast particularly in winter many individuals are looking downward at the ground countering serious risk of falling.  So for safely sake, balance, beauty, "Walk like an Egyptian"