Archive for March 10th, 2009


There is this 21 day challenge I have heard about where you commit
to no complaining for 21 days.  I like the idea but I decided to put a little
spin on it for myself.  I would like to go 21 days or more being mindful of
the consciousness I offer the world and myself.  The concept is – with my
thoughts, beliefs, actions, deeds, decisions to ask if it meets the following

1) is it friendly? (to me or to the world)
2) is it beautiful? (yum, love that one)
3) does it lend a sense of peace and harmony (again, for me and others)

With this other 21 day challenge you wear a bracelet as a reminder
to not complain and you switch it to the opposite wrist if you do complain.
I took a sparkly bracelet of mine and I am using that as a touchstone
reminder for the questions: is it Friendly, Beautiful, Peaceful.   I’m not going
to switch it to a different wrist if it didn’t meet the criteria.  I don’t plan on
approaching this like the friendship-beautiful-peaceful police because that
would obviously not be very friendly, beautiful or peaceful for me — yet
what a great practice of mindfulness this could develop into.  Along side
of that is the benefits I will reap with unconditional regard for self and others.
I think this could truly be a life changing process.  I can only imagine how
that would trickle down into a beautiful unfolding of daily life.  The idea of
which is just so lovely to contemplate – to live inside a friendly, beautiful
and peaceful universe of my own making.

[props to The Field Center for inspiring this idea]

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1. See the inner nobility and beauty of all human beings.

2. Compassion is our deepest nature. It arises from our interconnection with all things.

3. When we shift attention from experience to the spacious consciousness that knows, wisdom arises.

4. Recognize the mental states that fill consciousness. Shift from unhealthy states to healthy ones.

5. Our ideas of self are created by identification. The less we cling to ideas of self, the freer and happier we will be.

6. Our life has universal and personal nature. Both dimensions must be respected if we are to be happy and free.

7. Mindful attention to any experience is liberating. Mindfulness brings perspective, balance and freedom.

8. Mindfulness of body allows us to live fully. It brings the healing wisdom and freedom.

9. Wisdom knows what feelings are present without being lost in them.

10. Thoughts are often one-sided and untrue. Learn to be mindful of thought instead of being lost in it.

11. There is a personal and a universal unconscious. Turning awareness to the unconscious brings understanding and freedom.

12. The unhealthy patterns of our personality can be recognized and transformed into a healthy expression of our natural temperament.

13. There are both healthy desires and unhealthy desires. Know the difference. Then find freedom in their midst.

14. If we cling to anger or hatred, we will suffer. It is possible to respond strongly, wisely and compassionately without hatred.

15. Delusion misunderstands the world and forgets who we are. Delusion gives rise to all unhealthy states. Free yourself from delusion and see the wisdom.

16. Pain is inevitable. Suffering is not. Suffering arises from grasping. Release grasping and be free of suffering.

17. Be mindful of intention. Intention is the need that creates our future.

18. What we repeatedly visualize changes our body and our consciousness. Visualize freedom and compassion.

19. What we repeatedly think shapes our world. Out of compassion, substitute healthy thoughts for unhealthy ones.

20. The power of concentration can be developed through inner training. Concentration opens consciousness to profound dimensions of healing and understanding.

21. Virtue and integrity are necessary for genuine happiness. Guard your integrity with care.

22. Forgiveness is both necessary and possible. It is never too late to find forgiveness and begin again.

23. There is no separation between inner and outer. Self and other. Tending ourselves, we tend the world. Tending the world, we tend ourselves.

24. The middle way is found between all opposition. Rest in middle and find well-being wherever you are.

25. Release opinions, free yourself from views. Be open to mystery.

26. A peaceful heart gives birth to love. When love meets suffering, it turns to compassion. When love meets happiness, it turns to joy.

Excerpted from The Wise Heart: A Guide to the Universal Teachings of Buddhist Psychology by Jack Kornfield © 2008.

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