Wearing running shoes and clutching energy gels, David Goggins doesn’t appear like the typical spiritual man.
But like the Buddha and other such types, he has put himself through the toughest of challenges, dived deep into the depths of his mind, and came out the other side to tell the tale.
He completed three Hell Weeks—one of the toughest military trainings in the world—over 60 ultra-endurance events—including a 241-mile race—and held the record for the most pull-ups in 24 hours (4030).
He even has his own mantra:
You could be fooled into thinking Goggins is just another endurance junkie chasing the next high. …
For millennia, shamanistic and nature-based religions have made heavy use of the elements in their spiritual practices.
And the fact is, whether we’re aware of it or not, many of us have also long engaged in such elemental practices — often ritualistically and religiously.
Think bathing in the sun for hours on end. Doing breathing exercises. Going to the sauna. Subjecting the body to intense pressure, strain, and workouts. Or hiking in winter.
Traditionally, such practices as cold and heat exposure were believed to cleanse ourselves of impurities and act as a restorative balancer between mind, body, and spirit.
And in the modern-day, we’re starting to see these claims being backed up by science (apart from the spirit bit). …
A student called Haku asked Zen master Dorin:
What’s the meaning of Buddhism?
Dorin said: “Don’t be a jerk, do the right thing.”
Haku said: “Jeez! Even a three-year-old could say that!”
Dorin said: “Sure, a three-year-old could say it. But even an eighty-year-old has trouble doing it!”
As Haku recognized, don’t be a jerk is far from a revolutionary idea.
But as Dorin rightly responded, putting that advice into practice is a whole other matter.
This little dilemma is, in fact, a fundamental ethical question that’s been grappled with for millennia:
How to do the right thing.
But more specifically, how to know how to do the right thing. …
In the 21st century, mindfulness meditation, a practice that was for millennia reserved for members of a particular tradition and lone spiritual wanderers, has been standardized, digitized, and distributed to the masses.
That’s just super, isn’t it?
Even more than that.
It could be one of the greatest things to happen in recent years, potentially even the whole course of human history, right?
There’s a weird thing that happens when it comes to critically discussing practices like meditation, and in particular mindfulness.
Even though they may offer some benefit, it’s as if, because they involve qualities like being nonjudgemental and acceptance, they’re somehow entitled to a free pass from being looked at critically and rationally. …
The master of Kennin temple was called Mokurai. Mokurai had a little protege named Toyo who was only twelve years old.
Toyo saw the older disciples visit the master’s room each morning and evening to receive instruction in meditation or personal guidance in which they were given koans to chew over.
Toyo wished to meditate also. “Wait a while,” said Mokurai. “You are too young.” But Toyo kept insisting, so the teacher finally consented.
In the evening, young Toyo went at the proper time to the entrance of Mokurai’s meditation room. He struck the gong to announce his presence, bowed respectfully three times outside the door, and went to sit before the master in respectful silence. …
This guide is a collection of tips and learnings that have helped me (and continue to help me) during the quarantine. It’s intended for mere informational and transformational purposes only.
This guide doesn’t provide medical advice. It’s not suitable for the diagnosis and treatment of any condition. Or as a substitute for consulting a medical professional.
This guide is split into three main sections:
You may want to check the table of contents (below) and jump ahead to anything that appears most relevant to you. I’d also recommend bookmarking this page and coming back to it as and when you need it. …
A stonecutter was dissatisfied with himself and his position in life.
One day, he passed a wealthy merchant’s house. Through the open gates, he saw many fine possessions and important visitors. “How powerful that merchant must be!” thought the stonecutter. He became very envious and wished he could be like the merchant.
With hard work and persistence, the stonecutter became the merchant, enjoying more luxuries and power than he had ever imagined.
But soon a high official passed by, carried in a sedan chair, accompanied by attendants and escorted by soldiers beating gongs. Everyone, no matter how wealthy, had to bow low before the procession. “How powerful that official is!” he thought. …
We know peace is free and available to us in any moment.
Yet, we behave as if peace, fulfillment, happiness, satisfaction, contentment, or whatever you want to call it come at an everincreasing cost.
Like somehow these qualities belong to an existential marketplace and must constantly be bought and sold and traded for something else.
Everyone has the means to trade in this marketplace. All you need is the currency of attention.
It may be limited, but billions of trades of attention are made every moment.
Everytime someone interrupts what their relative or partner is saying to check Twitter. Everytime an afternoon walk is missed for a Zoom retreat. Everytime a bus ride is spent doomscrolling instead of enjoying the view. …
In the early 20th century, Shoma Morita, a Japanese psychiatrist and contemporary of Sigmund Freud, was struggling to see the results in patients he wanted.
Ahead of his time, Morita was trying to get to the bottom of what he called shinkeishitsu, “anxiety-based disorders”.
Having little success from he models of psychology of the time, Morita looked to the philosophy he practiced and grew up with, Zen Buddhism, and used it to help create his own.
Whereas most therapies look to diagnose and relieve patients of problematic issues and symptoms, Morita Therapy takes a radically different approach.
Rather than getting rid of problems, its focus is on building character so you can take action regardless of your symptoms, fears, emotions, wishes, or anything else that may be holding you back. …