“The recent discovery of mirror neurons has shown that parts of your brain are acutely sensitive to the movements and intentions of others. Mirror neurons allow you to mirror another person, or to feel what he or she feels without even thinking about it. For example, when a friend yawns, have you ever found yourself yawning immediately afterward? Mirror neurons are essentially the brain-based explanation of empathy…
“Mirror neurons give people the capacity to form relationships and to thrive from them. People with autism have few mirror neurons or dysfunctional ones. It has recently been proposed the the mirror neuron system is actively involved in your relationship with yourself as well as with others…
“Some researchers have proposed that experiencing empathy and compassion through the mirror neuron system is equivalent to having compassion for yourself. Thus, “giving is receiving” is a brain-based truth. Insensitivity and selfishness are essentially bad for your brain and your mental health. In contrast, compassion and loving relationships are good for your brain and your mental health.
“The mirror neuron system has also been identified as the part of the brain that is involved in mindfulness meditation and prayer. The calming and focused practice of mindfulness meditation or prayer wires the brain circuitry that promotes better health.”
“Although we don’t know all that much about the tight-lipped Malick, it can be deduced that “The Tree of Life” is his most strikingly personal film to date. Centering on an average family (a whimsical mother [Jessica Chastain], a staunch disciplinarian but loving father [Brad Pitt], and their three young boys - the main one, Jack, played by young Hunter McCracken) based in Texas - not unlike Malick’s own childhood. The boys run and play and fight and goof off and get into trouble as such themes as sin, regret, savagery and the plague of human disconnection are explored through this pastiche of the everyday, the commonplace. (Even the Oedipus complex is addressed.)”
"They (addicts) have about them the air of elsewhere, that they’re looking through you to somewhere else they’d rather be. And of course they are. The priority of any addict is to anaesthetise the pain of living to ease the passage of the day with some purchased relief." (via Instapaper)
“Listen to the MUSN’TS, child,
Listen to the DON’TS
Listen to the SHOULDN’TS
The IMPOSSIBLES, the WON’TS
Listen to the NEVER HAVES
Then listen close to me -
Anything can happen, child,
ANYTHING can be.”—Shel Silverstein
“Observe your own body. It breathes. You breathe when you are asleep, when you are no longer conscious of your own ideas of self-identity. Who, then, is breathing? The collection of information that you mistakenly think is you is not the protagonist in this drama called the breath. In fact, you are not breathing; breath is naturally happening to you. You can purposely end your own life, but you cannot purposely keep your own life going. The expression, ‘my life’ is actually an oxymoron, a result of ignorance and mistaken assumption. You don’t possess life; life expresses itself through you. Your body is a flower that life let bloom, a phenomenon created by life.”—
This has certainly made the rounds, and it’s not the first time I’ve seen it. Dear old whiskey river was the original source of this quote for me. I’m still posting it however, because it’s that good. More on the breath, oh, and this is really good too.
“The Buddha’s teaching before Buddhism?” is the title of a recent talk (60 minutes) given by Gil Fronsdal at the San Francisco Zen Center and addresses the issue of attachment to views primarily. Gil also covered the topic in a talk, “The Book of Eights” (46 minutes) at the Insight Meditation Center, available from Audiodharma.
“I knew New York only filled the bill as a temporary substitute, and I hope you found your haven intact on your return. Of the three of us there was only two of you. I always felt that. Your tears told me that when you heard his voice. The one of me is eternally grateful for the Happiness that the half of you so generously gave.”—Nickolas Muray, a well-known Hungarian photographer who made some of the most beautiful photographs of Frida.
“Self-importance is man’s greatest enemy. What weakens him is feeling offended by the deeds and misdeeds of his fellow men. Self-importance requires that one spend most of one’s life offended by something or someone.”—Carlos Castaneda, from “The Fire From Within”
Every time you interact with others, you have the choice to listen to, acknowledge, and let go of their words, or you can take what they are saying personally. Taking things personally is often the result of perceiving a person’s actions or words as an affront or slight. In order to take something personally, you must read negative intent in an individual’s words or actions. But what people do and say has no bearing upon you and is usually based on their own experiences, emotions, and perceptions. If you attempt to take what they do or say personally, you may end up feeling hurt without reason.
If you are tempted to take a comment or action personally, creating some distance between yourself and the other person can help you. Try to determine what is at the root of your feelings. Ask yourself if the other person’s words or actions are just reinforcing some insecurity within you or if you can really be sure that an offense was intended. You may even want to ask them what they meant. Finally, put yourself in the other person’s shoes. Instead of taking their words as the truth, or as a personal affront, remember that whatever was said or done is based on their opinion and is more reflective of what is going on inside of them, rather than having anything to do with you. You may have been an easy target for someone having a bad day, and their comments may have been offered with no ill intentions.
When you recognize that what anyone says or does doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with you, you will no longer feel hurt or attacked. While it’s easy to take things personally, you should never let anyone’s perceptions or actions affect how you see yourself or your worth. Your life is personal to you, and it is up to you to influence your own value and sense of well-being
Love or Fear. There are the basic two lenses that we can see the world with. And it is impossible to look with the eyes of Love and think a fearful thought and it is impossible to look with the eyes of fear and think a Loving thought.