Insight #75 ZEN Shredding…
May 20, 2010

 

[… An excerpt from ZEN Shredding]

TRUTH, LIES AND OBSESSIONS:

It’s about clarity, courage and letting go

 

 

For many years I had been developing a negative view towards my body.  The combination of moving further away from the biology of my youth, and the cumulative diet of morning muffins with lattes and pasta dinners was having its effect.  My first few lessons on the hill were reality checks of just how bad things had become ~ I could barely reach over to strap into my bindings.

There is something vulnerable and paradoxical about some learning experiences.  You show up to learn something new and all of a sudden, the moment is hijacked by memories of your past failures or fears of future catastrophes.  There was a moment during my first lesson of snowboarding where my coach had us practice a side slipping technique, where your board is horizontal to the incline of the mountain with both feet strapped in.  The skill was practiced first, facing up the hill and then looking down the hill.  In both variations we were to hold the hands of the instructor for stability, without looking at the ground or our feet.  This skill practice in particular required complete trust, a letting go and relying on another human being ~ not something I’m so practiced at. 

I will never forget the intense intimacy and security I felt as I held onto my instructor’s hands while gazing directly into his eyes.  For a brief moment it felt like there was no past or future, for a moment it felt like I was completely present and completely vulnerable to another human being. In that moment I did not fall, in that moment I bridged the fears of my mind to be present in the possibilities of the moment.  My choice to surrender to the moment by relying on someone else’s support allowed me to digest the skill at hand and a much deeper learning. It was a reminder of the importance to surround yourself with people who are big enough or skilled enough to support you with the dreams you have for your life.

Mentors are essentially people you can trust, people that can provide you with alternative information and new perspectives or skills. Having another point of view helps to prevent you from falling into the traps of self engendered thinking and conditioning, behavior or action…

To order a copy of ZEN Shredding please visit:

http://www.trafford.com/Bookstore/BookDetail.aspx?BookId=SKU-000161942

OR

Visit my new Blog for daily quotes based on my writings and the book ZEN Shredding:

http://www.michaelseansymonds.wordpress.com

 

Other work:

ZEN Shredding: The Prequel

http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/detail/322380

 

 Soulananda;

The Essentials of a Good Life…

 http://www.soulananda.com

 

(c) Copyright – Michael Sean Symonds.  All Rights Reserved Worldwide. 

 

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Insight #74 ~ ZEN Shredding
April 21, 2010

 

“Shred” the burden of judgment.

 

Your life could be seen as the creative process in action.  Spontaneity is the essence of the creative process; judgment is what comes after it.  When you judge yourself or others you temporarily isolate yourself from the effortless flow of the moment and the energy and information it contains.

Extended commentary:

Who comes first, you or judgment?

The “you” you imagine yourself to be arrives long before judgment.  First “you” arrive and then all the judgments, evaluations and comparisons; all the ideas of “this” and “that”, “up” and “down”, “good” and “not good” arrive.  But where is the “you” that sits in the mechanics of this process; better said, is there a “you” that sits in the mechanics of this process?

First “you” arrive then the “you” with all its ideas and judgment comes.  Before the impulse of the thought is judged; it just is.  A thought just is.  A thought, is a thought, is a thought, and you are.  We could say that no thought is really judged until the “you”, you imagine yourself to be comes along; then the thought is judged; you arrive, the thought comes, then you judge.

Prior to the judgment of a thought, an experience, a memory or a circumstance, that thought, experience, memory or circumstance simply is.  Without “you”, there would be no judgment.  Without the “you”, you imagine yourself to be, there would be no thought, no experience, no memory or circumstance to judge.

If “you” could step back far enough; if “you” could pull “your” attention back from the object that lies in the field of your attention, you would realize that it is only the mind itself that see’s and perceives reality as duality; that judges reality as “good” or “bad”; that even imagines the concept of reality.

If “you” could step back far enough; if “you” could pull “your” attention back from the subtext of your subjective experience that lies in the field of your attention, you would realize that even the self you imagine yourself to be is only a notion, a thought, a memory, an association; a perception of something that is judged or not judged.

The notion of judgment is a notion of the mind. 

It exists because “you” imagine “you” are. You think “you” are, and then “you” identify yourself with those thoughts, those feelings and those emotions; you identify yourself as those thoughts, feelings and emotions that you then call the mind.  You judge those thoughts, feelings and emotions, and you also judge yourself for identifying yourself as the mind that seemingly contains those thoughts, feelings and emotions.

“You” come first; then the story arises. 

With the arising of the story, there arises all content that we call the mind.  The mind is a composite of all the stories you have ever been told: the ones you tell yourself, the ones that you were told, and the ones that you will tell others.  “You” imagine you are the content of the mind, and “you” then judge yourself on the content of THAT mind and all the stories that make up that mind. 

Once the content of the mind has arisen; once the story has arisen: those thoughts, feelings, emotions, memories, perceptions and associations; there is a good chance the content of that mind and story will be evaluated and assessed, compared and judged, indiscriminately by the mind that you think you are.

First, you are. 

Then the impulse of that thought or feeling arises.  That thought or feeling is then evaluated as “good” or “bad”, “right” or “wrong”, “healthy” or “unhealthy” by a nervous system that is hardwired for survival.  “Good” thoughts are considered pleasant, and encouraged; “bad” thoughts are considered inappropriate, and need to be denied, avoided or suppressed at all costs.

We demonize the “bad” thoughts and we sanctify the “good” thoughts.  “Good” thoughts are considered spiritual and “bad” thoughts are considered unspiritual.  “Good” thoughts are considered to be closer to your “God”, and “bad” thoughts are considered to be further from your so called “God”.

A thought is a thought, is a thought.  The judging “you” that you imagine yourself to be arises with each thought, which you are not. The thought, the one who is thinking, and the judgment are One.   

 

What parts of yourself do you sit in judgment of the most?

 

A personal note…

ZEN Shredding is  self published work.  For many authors the expression of our work provides the greatest satisfaction and meaning in life.  This Word Press Blog is also a gift for all of us who desire to create a dance in the language of words…

It was always my dream to be picked up by a Publisher/Distributor, something that sort of stalled, until this time…  I’m entered into this little competition that could make a big difference in the publication of my work. 

If you have enjoyed the ZEN Shredding extended posts within this blog, I’m asking you for a small favour, to support me by copying, pasting and voting for ZEN Shredding so that it might be picked up by one of those “Big Boys”…

It would also be very helpful to pass it to your three most important friendships in life

here’s the link!

http://www.nexttopauthor.com/profile.cfm?aid=3042

 

To order a copy of ZEN Shredding please visit:

http://www.trafford.com/Bookstore/BookDetail.aspx?BookId=SKU-000161942

OR

Check out “Living The Dream”, the gift book version of the slideshow/movie that is available to view free on You tube or the ZEN Shredding website; an inspiring read with full color photo’s of Whistler/Blackcomb Alpine…

http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/detail/322380

AND

When you get a chance, please visit the home of my latest work:

 Soulananda;

The Essentials of a Good Life…

 http://www.soulananda.com

 

(c) Copyright – Michael Sean Symonds.  All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

The Next Top Author?
April 9, 2010

On a very personal note…

ZEN Shredding is  self published work.  For many authors the expression of our work provides the greatest satisfaction and meaning in life.  This Word Press Blog is also a gift for all of us who desire to create a dance in the language of words…

It was always my dream to be picked up by a Publisher/Distributor, something that sort of stalled, until this time…  I’m entered into this little competition that could make a big difference in the publication of my work. 

If you have enjoyed the ZEN Shredding extended posts within this blog, I’m asking you for a small favour, to support me by copying, pasting and voting for ZEN Shredding so that it might be picked up by one of those “Big Boys”…

It would also be very helpful to pass it to your three most important friendships in life 🙂

here’s the link!

http://www.nexttopauthor.com/profile.cfm?aid=3042

Insight #72 ~ ZEN Shredding…
March 4, 2010

 

Spend more time in Nature.  

 

There is a rhythm, flow (and chairlift) in Nature that connects us to Harmony. Spending time in the rhythm and flow of Nature allows our minds, bodies and Spirit to recalibrate to the very same power that creates a baby and orchestrates a Universe. 

You can have moments in Nature, when everything dissolves into everything else, where there is no “I”, “me”, or “mine”.  Being in nature can often lead to spontaneous meditative states that can fulfill you on the deepest, most natural levels of your Being. 

Extended commentary:

Everything is always dissolving into everything else, because it’s all really nothing disguised as something.  Without “nothing” you could not have or appreciate something.  Everything is nothing and that nothing sometimes becomes something; eventually it will subside into back into nothing.

There’s more to the experience and beauty of nature than the infinite visual expressions of diversity that dance before our eyes.  The essence of nature’s beauty lies in its naked, direct, unbridled expression; nothing masquerades as something.  A few hours in nature is equivalent to one thousand sessions of therapy; without the necessary understanding or expense.  A few hours spent in nature allows you slip into the rhythm, flow and movement of your own Being; the same Being that is the life throb of divinity itself. 

In the stillness of nature that appears to be something; the impulse of nothing begins to dissolve mind made barriers; distinctions that would normally elevate our personal suffering subside, and the mind that once thought it was something, becomes nothing.  Gently, quietly, we are seduced and intoxicated by nature’s sweetness.  Form becomes Being, Being becomes form.  In these sacred, immersed moments in nature, we are reminded at the deepest level that form is Being and Being is form.  When form is experienced as Being, and Being is experienced as form, we realize there is no form and there is no Being; the personal becomes impersonal. 

Notice with the appreciation of your attention the gift of  nothing as it becomes the something we call nature; notice by spending time in nature that in that something we call nature there is actually nothing, and in that moment of nothing, you will find everything…           

 

 

When was the last time you went for a walk in the park or looked for a shooting star in the night sky?

 

To order a copy of ZEN Shredding please visit:

http://www.trafford.com/Bookstore/BookDetail.aspx?BookId=SKU-000161942

OR

Check out “Living The Dream”, the gift book version of the slideshow/movie that is available to view free on You tube or the ZEN Shredding website; an inspiring read with full color photo’s of Whistler/Blackcomb Alpine…

http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/detail/322380

AND

When you get a chance, please visit the home of my latest work:

 Soulananda;

The Essentials of a Good Life…

 http://www.soulananda.com

 

(c) Copyright – Michael Sean Symonds.  All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

Insight # 71 ~ Zen Shredding…
February 26, 2010

 

Live life with intention and purpose. 

 

When you live life with intention and purpose, merging your desires with practiced clarity you may find you can navigate your life experience in more detached ways independent of ever changing external conditions.

 

Extended commentary:

Living life with intention and purpose is one of the most powerful of strategies for successful living.  We cannot however be dependent upon or imagine for even one second that it will provide salvation ~ a finding out Who You Are, although it may become a significant stepping stone in guiding you towards a realization of Who You Are.

More recently or not, western teachers have furthered the notion and importance of finding meaning and purpose in life.  It has been suggested that we all have contained within us some mystical purpose or quest that needs to be realized.  Nothing could be farther from the truth. 

The spiritualization and sanctification of purpose and its pursuit while innocent, can sometimes lead to innuendo, confusion and potential suffering for those who secretly, unknowingly and clearly are on a journey towards finding out who they are.

What needs to be realized is the Self; all else is illusion; all else is potential distraction.

I was one of those teachers.  For over 20 years I had relentlessly pursued and taught the path and potential trap of this inspiring but distracting illusion.  The path of inspiration can be very seductive, if “you” are not grounded in knowing Who You Are now.  The hypnosis and pull of this journey can lead many “seeker” deeper into the foreground of life, as they desperately seek and never find their so called “mission”, “vision”,  “purpose”, or  Dharma; a reason for being.

There is no reason for Being; Being is. 

Being is enough. 

Permanent fulfillment lies in the realization of Being, independent of all external circumstance.  The expression of thinking, being, having and doing are based on Being; not the other way round.  Clarity and alignment of thinking and doing might lead to the appearance of having and being, but it always directed by the impulse of Being, not a cognition of the mind.   

Only the mind cognizes an idea, belief, reason, or notion for being.  You are not your mind.  The Self has nothing to do with any reason the mind may offer as a justification for existence. 

While those notions may satisfy, while those notions may potentially guide you to a more meaningful and fulfilling life, they are not Who You Are and they are not any more or less sacred or spiritual than being a cashier at a local supermarket, or your favorite server at a local restaurant.

What is the purpose of your life?

What intentions do you have for your life?

 

To order a copy of ZEN Shredding please visit:

http://www.trafford.com/Bookstore/BookDetail.aspx?BookId=SKU-000161942

OR

Check out “Living The Dream”, the gift book version of the slideshow/movie that is available to view free on You tube or the ZEN Shredding website; an inspiring read with full color photo’s of Whistler/Blackcomb Alpine…

http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/detail/322380

AND

When you get a chance, please visit the home of my latest work:

 Soulananda;

The Essentials of a Good Life…

 http://www.soulananda.com

 

(c) Copyright – Michael Sean Symonds.  All Rights Reserved Worldwide. 

ZEN Shredding ~ Insight #70
February 12, 2010

 

Try shredding new trails in life.

 

External change is instigated by first experiencing internal change.  Silence cultivates the space for not only new, inspired ways of thinking and being, but also provides the necessary ingredients to trigger transformation at its most primordial level ~ where all creation arises from and subsides to.  Every dream begins with stillness, every desire ~ quietude. 

Extended commentary:

All “personal change” has the potential to be facilitated by the focus of your attention; as a shift in your attention.  To create the space for a shift in awareness, you need to shift the focus of your attention from the foreground of your life experience to the background of your Being.

Awareness will shift naturally and spontaneously, irrespective of the “I” mind and its agendas; however, a little focus of attention; a shift in “your” attention, can prepatorily provide the environment or ingredients necessary for a needed change to occur.  The end result might look like a new or different choice; an actual change, but it’s always preceded by a shift of attention, anchored and nurtured by a deep appreciation and reverence towards stillness. 

You don’t really need to focus on the choices you have to make in life; they are irrelevant.  You don’t need to worry about what decisions that need to be made, or not.  Be still with your attention.  Find the silence.  And in the silence you’ll find a knowing. 

 What more do you really need? 

What more can you ask for than the ability to know the right response to every situation, as it occurs?   

 Prior to a shift of attention there is a silent space or gap.  Spend time in that gap.  Notice that gap with your attention, become familiar with that gap through your attention.  The gap is your connection to eternity, a portal of possibility. It is the doorway to the infinite; a doorway to freedom from the mind and all its delusions.  Don’t waste your attention on this and that; be mindful of where you place your attention.  Notice where you fixate your attention; notice where you seem to lose yourself in that attention.

Most people waste their attention on this and that.  We become addicted to this and that and we lose awareness of the Gap and the ever present connection we always have to the Gap.  To harness your attention is to unleash your freedom; the freedom to place your attention where it calls you, where it whispers or speaks to you.  It is the freedom to focus on something or everything.  It is the freedom to focus on nothing.

When you stabilize your attention to stillness, you’ll realize the paradox of change; you’ll realize that no change was necessary.  You’ll realize that it was only your attention that needed shifting; to become more aware of the ever present stillness; to become aware of the ever present background of Being that is the foundation of your Being. 

 And most of all; most importantly; you’ll become aware of the One who is attentive to all of it and none of it.  You’ll become aware of the nothingness of it all, including the you, you imagined yourself to be; including the you that so desperately wanted and needed the choice, the change and the transformation…  

What choices can you make that will lead to new directions of growth and transformation?

 

To order a copy of ZEN Shredding please visit:

http://www.trafford.com/Bookstore/BookDetail.aspx?BookId=SKU-000161942

OR

Check out “Living The Dream”, the gift book version of the slideshow/movie that is available to view free on You tube or the ZEN Shredding website; an inspiring read with full color photo’s of Whistler/Blackcomb Alpine…

http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/detail/322380

AND

When you get a chance, please visit the home of my latest work:

 Soulananda;

The Essentials of a Good Life…

 http://www.soulananda.com

 

(c) Copyright – Michael Sean Symonds.  All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

ZEN Shredding ~ Insight #69
February 6, 2010

Acknowledge the significance of your smallest achievements.

 

They become the stepping stones of your fondest memories and your greatest legacies.

 

Extended commentary:

It’s very easy to get caught up in the seduction of life achievement.  Most human beings are obsessively focused on the “doing” of life and have little awareness or need of Being.  Our attention is caught up in the foreground of our life experience and the obsession of manipulating, controlling and the gameing of life and the lives of others towards some perceived goal or success that will provide a deeper level of happiness.

The external world, where all the “doing” appears to take place, is an important aspect of our humanity.  We have a body and that is designed to interface in the most beautiful ways with an infinite number of experiences; our senses are perfectly designed to provide a delicious, intimate perception of reality surpassed by none.

It’s very easy to overlook the simplest acts of every day living; the gift that lies in our senses that allows us to navigate and function in multi dimensional living.  Sometimes it is only in the loss of a sense or an activity that allowed us an accentuated appreciation of those senses, that we realize the value and magnificence of its experience and expression.  Sometimes, as the body ages and our mind wanders, we are confronted by the rude awakening of what was once and for so long, taken for granted.

It is only in this moment of now that we can truly value and appreciate the gift we have been given in this experience called life and however painful or joyful that moment may appear to be, there is always the room to notice or develop an alert appreciation of that moment, irrespective of the content that may or may not be occurring.  A moment that is lost is a moment that can never be re-gained; but it is in this now that the expression of eternity can be experienced… 

 

 When you succeed in something do you take the time to acknowledge and celebrate your moment of success?

 

To order a copy of ZEN Shredding please visit:

http://www.trafford.com/Bookstore/BookDetail.aspx?BookId=SKU-000161942

OR

Check out “Living The Dream”, the gift book version of the slideshow/movie that is available to view free on You tube or the ZEN Shredding website; an inspiring read with full color photo’s of Whistler/Blackcomb Alpine…

http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/detail/322380

AND

When you get a chance, please visit the home of my latest work:

 Soulananda;

The Essentials of a Good Life…

 http://www.soulananda.com

 

(c) Copyright – Michael Sean Symonds.  All Rights Reserved Worldwide. 

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