Collage of Life 1

“A flower falls even though we love it and a weed grows even though we do not love it.” – Zen quotes by Dogen Zenji


Collage of Life 1


“When the pupil is ready to learn, a teacher will appear.” – Zen Proverb

“If you understand, things are just as they are; if you do not understand, things are just as they are.” – Zen Proverb



Do not speak – unless it improves on silence.” – Buddhist Saying


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Natural Qualities and Acquired Qualities

Source : Gopal Nair via
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Natural Qualities and Acquired Qualities
When we look at ourselves from outside we can only see the surface of what we have become. We can’t see or perhaps cannot even imagine the inner core (center), which, like in the example of the coconut, is the only part that really can nourish us and give us energy. The shell (in the case of the coconut) serves as a protection but we certainly can’t eat it.

In our case, the core (center) consists of natural or inner qualities such as peace, love, power, truth, happiness and so on. The shell is the ego which consists of features or personality characteristics we have acquired through the journey of our lives such as experiences, abilities, memories, learning, habits and beliefs – in short, all that we are referring to when we say: ‘I am so-and-so, from such-and-such family or organization or city’.

While we are limited to these acquired characteristics, our true qualities remain inaccessible. Through deep reflection and meditation we can break the shell and activate our inner qualities from which our values or principles are born.
We all have good qualities, which are our strength. Kindly analysis our good qualities (our strength) and utilize it in the right direction to lead a Peaceful Life! We all came empty handed, we all have to leave empty handed only. This GOD gifted beautiful life is short but precious, so please don’t waste it… live it, live it and live it FULLY.

Taming (Conquering) The Mind

Courtesy to Shri : Gopal Nair via

New Expectations Sprouting….!

In ancient times, the mind was understood to be extremely difficult to control. It was said to be like the wind: you could never catch it, or hold it – it went where it wished and no human being could become its master. In other instances, it was said that the mind was like an elephant: extremely powerful but equally gentle and patient, able to do a lot of work for its master. However, when an elephant turns wild, its gentleness and patience completely disappear and it destroys and damages everything in its path. When the mind is under stress, it resembles a wild elephant; it has no control and cannot be controlled.

Taming the mind is regarded as a great art requiring time, attention, practice and, above all, a sincerity of heart where individuals truly want to change their way of thinking. To relax, to be positive, to be peaceful and kind all require a change in our thought patterns and this can only happen when we look deeply within. However hard they try, other people cannot change us; we must have personal realization and the desire to make changes through our own effort. Permanent and positive change cannot be imposed from outside; it is something that we choose.


Please learn the art of “changing” with the time; to be adjustable / flexible with any situation.

For example, if the management of our company (employer) changes, we have to adjust with the new management’s policies otherwise we will end up with living under tremendous stress / tension and probably (ayyo…) we will be thrown out !


Always be flexible in life to live a Happy Life!

Exercise Makes You Smarter

Exercise not only makes you healthier and

happier, it also makes you smarter, says

new research. An up-and-coming field of

neuroscientific research has linked

smartness to your regular routine of cardio.

The neuroscience researchers have found

that there is more to exercise that just

improving your blood circulation. It helps in

expression of a particular gene that floods your brain with brain derived

neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Mental sharpness, ability to learn and memorise

are aided by the BDNF protein.

The study was carried out in DartmouthCollege in USA by lead researcher

Michael Hopkins and his team. The team divided the participants in four groups

before giving them a memory test and conducting a mental health survey. One

of the groups exercised daily, another exercised daily but not on the day of test

and survey, third group whose participants exercised only on the day of their

test and survey, and the last group who remained sedentary.

The conclusion of the research by Hopkins and his team was that only the

group that exercised throughout, including on the day of the test and survey,

experienced a boost in BDNF. The researchers clarified that only moderate

exercises such as walking were performed by the participants, and there was

no vigorous workout schedule that they went through. They said that for

deriving mental health benefits out of exercise, it is important that you do not

exert your full might when working out. You just need to move all of your body

for more than half the days in a week.

The positive effect of exercise on mental health was also confirmed by a

research in Canada. Moderate strength training in women aged 70 odd for six

months slowed down the aggravation of dementia. And in young men and

women, the result of exercise was that they became sharper, mentally faster

and smarter. This corroborates the findings of the DartmouthCollege Research

Fulfilling Responsibility

Source :Gopalji []
Responsibility is best fulfilled by the one who is detached. When one is attached to the task that he/she is responsible for it leads to worry, doubt and fear. This can have a negative effect on decision-making and result in difficult situations. On the other hand, the one who is detached is the one who is able to see things clearly and so fulfill all responsibilities with lightness and perform all tasks accurately. When we have to take up some new responsibility we need to tell ourselves that we will do our best in fulfilling the responsibility. When we become detached from the result of the task we will find ourselves doing our best because there are no negative thoughts.

In the process of fulfilling our responsibilities, many of us forget to live ourselves. The best gift we can give to our kids is the best education – then rest everything will follow in their life. My Dear Friends…The GOD gifted wonderful Life is Short, so kindly enjoy this beautiful life yourself too.

Self Empowerment

We do realize inside ourselves that if we expect anything of anyone, one day we will be let down, so we create the emotion of disappointment, turn that into anger, and turn that back into fear (that it may happen again). And it’s all going on in our own minds. The only cure for this cycle of negative thinking is not to expect anything of anyone. But then you say, “how is this possible, you have to have expectations that someone will call you up when you expect him/her to do so, someone will do the job that you have given him/her correctly, that your child will come home safe and sound…don’t you?” Well do you? Expectations are not compulsory. And once we see that they lead to pain maybe we can learn to live without them. But if you cannot be expectation free instantly, a cure for that is as follows – have expectations, but don’t get attached to your expectations. Another way of saying this is don’t let your happiness be dependent on having your expectations met. No one said this was easy, but it is possible. There will always be someone who does not do the given task, or arrive at the right time, or even simply call you as you expected.

Exercise: Who are the two people in your life today from whom you have high expectations? Do you think it is healthy to have these expectations? What will you feel if your expectations are not met? What could you do to make sure that you do not go into disappointment but stay positive when someone does not fulfill their commitments, which are/were your expectations?

Please note that EVERYBODY has importance in life and EVERYBODY is important and has potential. So please do not compare with others and have CONFIDENCE in YOU. Who is the Boss in your life? It is YOU and ONLY YOU!


Some people would rather be right than happy.
You’ll know that when you find yourself defending a position or an opinion in an argument. You find it impossible to climb down, let go, withdraw, give in, because you believe that would be losing. And you cannot accept the thought of being seen as a loser. Winning equals happiness and losing equals sorrow, that’s what you think. But hold on a minute! When you are doing that, how do you feel? You are certainly not at peace with your self, you are not satisfied, there is no joy in your conversation and you are unhappy at the thought of losing this…battle! You’ve forgotten it’s only a conversation, it’s only an exchange of views. And who created all this inner peacelessness anyway? You did.

Is it ever worth it? In fact it just becomes a bad habit, and the absence of happiness becomes almost permanent. Time to change. Winning an argument isn’t winning, it is simply the ego’s way of trying to convince you that you are victorious because you avoided defeat.

Question: With whom and in what situations do we tend to find ourselves defending opinions? (it’s usually with the same people, and with similar issues and situations). How do we feel during the process?

Reflection: How can we see yourself responding differently in these situations so that we don’t lose our inner peace and our satisfaction?

Human activities are directed towards acquiring joy and happiness. The acquisition and enjoyment are the two motivations of human actions. You avoid sorrow by acquiring material objects and court joy by containing the objects of pleasure. You are acquiring this material wealth with the belief that you can enjoy it later. You acquire wealth as a preparation against sorrow and actually contacting the object with a belief that you get pleasure out of it. In this pursuit for happiness, your mistake is that your pursuit for happiness is always in the external world. We are seeking happiness at the wrong end. The quest for happiness in the external world is unending. So long as we are seeking happiness in the external world, we will never find it. Seeking happiness in the world is like seeing mirage thinking that there is water available. Arthur Schopenhaur, a German thinker, crystallized this idea as follows: “It is difficult to find happiness within one’s own self, but it is impossible to find it anywhere else”.

There is nothing wrong with the outside world, let the world remain as it is. You need to bring the light of knowledge within. You will then know how to steer your way though the challenges of life.

Give up your thirst for accumulating wealth. Create in the mind thoughts of the reality, devoid of passion. Satisfy your mind with whatever wealth you get by your actions.

HAppiness is the Key

Keep humming “Don’t Worry Be Happy”. The 1980s New Age-inspired hit got it right. New research shows being happy can add several years to life.

“Happiness does not heal, but happiness protects against falling ill,” says Ruut Veenhoven of Rotterdam’s Erasmus University in a study to be published next month.

After reviewing 30 studies carried out worldwide over periods ranging from one to 60 years, the Dutch professor said the effects of happiness on longevity were “comparable to that of smoking or not”.

That special flair for feeling good, he said, could lengthen life by between 7.5 and 10 years.

The finding brings a vital new piece to a puzzle currently being assembled by researchers worldwide on just what makes us happy — and on the related question of why people blessed with material wealth in developed nations no longer seem satisfied with their lives.

Once the province of poets or philosophers, the notions of happiness and satisfaction have been taken on and dissected, quantified and analysed in the last few years by a growing number of highly serious and respected economists — some of whom dub the new field “hedonics”, or the study of what makes life pleasant, or otherwise.

“The idea that there is a state called happiness, and that we can dependably figure out what it feels like and how to measure it, is extremely subversive,” says Bill McKibben in his 2007 book “Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future”.

“It allows economists to start thinking about life in richer terms, to stop asking ‘What did you buy?’ and to start asking ‘Is your life good?’.”

Growth in material wealth adds little to happiness once buying power hits 10,000 dollars a year per head, according to such research.

But happiness can be bolstered by friendship and human community, as well as larger social factors such as freedom, democracy, effective government institutions and rule of law.

In Veenhoven’s findings, published in the Journal of Happiness Studies, a scientific publication founded in 2000, the strongest effect on longevity was found among a group of US nuns followed through their adult life — perhaps reflecting the feel-good factor from belonging to a close-knit stress-free community with a sense of purpose.

While the lyrics from the Grammy-award 1989 “Be Happy” hit were inspired by popular Indian guru Meher Baba, nowadays, in more than 100 countries, from Bhutan in the Himalayas to the US and Australia, economists are working to put “happiness” indicators (a new kind of quality-of-life index) into the measurement of growth.

Happiness itself, according to the specialists, is generally accepted as “the overall appreciation of one’s life as a whole”, in other words a state of mind best defined by the person questioned.

In his paper, Veenhoven first looked at statistics to see whether good cheer impacted on the sick, but concluded that while happiness had helped some cancer patients suffering from a relapse, in general “happiness does not appear to prolong the deathbed.”

Among healthy populations, on the contrary, happiness appeared to protect against falling ill, thus prolonging life.

Happy people were more inclined to watch their weight, were more perceptive of symptoms of illness, tended to be more moderate with smoking and drinking and generally lived healthier lives.

They were also more active, more open to the world, more self-confident, made better choices and built more social networks.

“For the time being we know that happiness fosters physical health, but not precisely how,” he wrote.

“Chronic unhappiness activates the fight-flight response, which is known to involve harmful effects in the long run such as higher blood pressure and a lower immune response.”

To improve good cheer, he said, there needed to be more research on the impact of residential conditions or on the long-term effects of school on happiness. And studies on job-satisfaction failed to address the question of life-satisfaction at work.

But these findings, he said, opened new vistas for public health.

Governments needed to educate people in the art of “living well”, helping to develop the ability to enjoy life, to make the best choices, to keep developing and to see a meaning in life.

“If we feel unhealthy we go to a medical general practitioner,” he said. “If we feel unhappy there is no such generalist. We have to guess.”

“Professional guidance for a happier life is unavailable as yet. This is a remarkable market failure, given the large number of people who feel they could be happier.”

Happiness is the key