Friday, February 10, 2006

Conscious and mindful

I like the phrase, “A Conscious and mindful life.”

Please bear with me as I think out loud. After my "Be Here Now" blog, it seems my dormant touchy-feely inner hippie is re-awakening. I haven’t consciously thought about some of this stuff for awhile so maybe it’s time to take stock.

Thinking out loud/ affirming beliefs: In other words, a mishmash of my accumulated life philosophy – or how I try to live my life:

- Accept who I was in the past, both the good and the bad
- Accept who I am in the present, both the good and the bad
- Consider what I could become in the future, both good and bad
- Choose to be better

- Appreciate where I am
- Appreciate what I have
- Appreciate those around me

- I only have control over my own actions
- I can’t change others - at most I can influence them by my own actions; what they choose to do is beyond my control
- Make positive changes in my own life

And something I read a long time ago that I recently saw again on another site (sorry, I forgot to bookmark it and can't find it now):

Live in Joy

Live in Joy, In love,
Even among those who hate.
Live in joy, In health,
Even among the afflicted.
Live in joy, In peace,
Even among the troubled.
Look within. Be still.
Free from fear and attachment,
Know the sweet joy of living in the way.
-- from the Dhammapada, Words of the Buddha


bryan said...

I like the idea of a "conscious and mindful life", but the words "choice" and "control" seem like red flags to me. it sounds almost like dr. phil or anthony robbins. goal-oriented. goals contain desire. suffering is caused by desire. the only moment is now (a buddha is going nowhere and doing nothing). we are slaves of conditioning. actions we take are borne of conditioning so what action can we possibly take to stop it? there is none. you can ONLY watch, listen, be aware.

confused or frustrated? well, now you're aware of two things.

ell said...

I don't believe in absolutes. Whereas I may say I like much of what Buddha says, it doesn't mean that I strive to be a Buddhist.

As I said, these ramblings are a collection of ideas I've gleaned over my life. Not necessarily true, but helpful, for me. They are observations and gatherings of thoughts that have worked for me, not necessarily for you or anyone else. We all have to find our own path. Dr. Phil and Anthony Robbins, I think not.

You can use the words choice and control in a negative way if you wish. I say you can't control others or make choices for others - only yourself. I'm neither confused or frustrated - at least not at this moment.

Thanks for your thoughtful reply.


bryan said...

I guess it's hard not to get caught up in semantics with stuff like this. the whole attempt to communicate falls short because words just aren't a sufficient vehicle. no matter how well it's put. for example, in the matrix films morpheus gives neo the "choice" between taking the red pill and the blue pill. I thought that was kind of silly at first, until the end when the oracle says, "you can't see beyond a choice you don't understand." that seemed to hit on something deeper. even though we have free will, we're also slaves to our will. I was just confused by the wording. :)

I don't think you're similar to dr. phil or tony robbins, ell. or that you're striving to be like buddha. I just used them to illustrate the difference between trying to control your your actions, and trying to understand them. awareness (intelligence) takes its own action. you don't have to "choose" what to do.

I'm in a hurry right now, so I'm not sure if this is up to par. as always, it's nice to have this discussion with you.

Cate said...

Your post was just what I needed to read. Thank you so much for sharing it!

Simply Coll said...

Definitely words to live by.

Journey Through Life said...

Great post, Ell!


Joy said...

I needed this. This week is stressful, and next week will be sadder.