Welcome to Canada, but…

Yes, I lived in this country close to 10 years now. While I am doing my best to integrate to the general public also known as the majority, I am still running into barriers. This is not because Canadians are anti-multicultural or despise the values of others, but rather because I am not doing a good job in participating in social events. This article will explain my experience living in Canada with South Asian Buddhist background as a young 14 year old immigrant to current 25 year adult. Continue reading Welcome to Canada, but…

Perseverance for successful life

Have you ever heard “the grass is always greener on the other side”? It is a good phrase to describe the never ending desire for a better life. There is nothing wrong with chasing a dreams(goals). But it is wrong to give up on them. I am not saying that you should follow whatever the dream you come up with because these dreams has to be reasonable. You should be able to evaluate what can be done and your ability to do it and set goals accordingly. This chasing of dreams and “never give up” attitude is known as perseverance.

Most people, with the increase competition in our social life, are disappointed even when a positive event take place. For example, you get a 50% on an exam and you decided to rewrite it because you are unhappy about the outcome. This time you get 90% and you knew how to answer all the questions, but you ran out of time. Now you are sad not about the test score, but rather the fact that you didn’t get enough time to write it. What went wrong here? Why aren’t you happy for your achievement? Why are you underestimating your success? Well, you might say the goal is unreasonable. I disagree because scoring a 100% on an exam most likely a reasonable expectation. What went wrong was that you are under estimating your achievements.

When a child who is learning to walk fell, he/she stand up and try to complete the journey. Yet, when a exam goes bad or a relationships don’t work workout people are quick to given which leads to depression and even suicide. So we are born with natural perseverance, but eventually desire to be lazy diminish our potentials. Never give up attitude is very important to success. If one thing fails, another will prevail to open opportunities for success. When our mind get clouded with future goals and social issues, it often leads to loss of interest. “Oh well, I didn’t do the work right this time. I am a failure.” attitude should never be there at the first place. Instead, “I have failed today, but I learned from my mistakes” should take over your negative mind. Children never evaluate their failure to walk on the first try nor they underestimate their abilities to succeed. The perseverance has taken over the negative impact of failures and that’s the key to successful life.

Another key to success is having reasonable goals. While you should have strong goals, they should be reasonable. For example dreaming to be the first man on sun would be extremely unlikely, but educating to be a scientist is very reasonable. During the process to be science guy, you will come across many obstacles. However, the perseverance along with “never give up attitude” should keep you going. One thing you have to take note is that you should always acknowledge your achievements. Never ever under estimate the value of the work you have done. You cannot accomplish your ambitions if the grass is always greener on the other side, so make sure you enjoy your achievements by comparing them to past events in your life. Do not compare your life with others because it will only leads to never ending cycle of disappointments.

Each and every person is unique. Therefore you may have different ways of improving your abilities. There are several things you can do to improve your skills in perseverance such as;

  • Always set reasonable goals and never give up on them
  • Evaluate yourself reasonably and never underestimate your achievements
  • Do not compare yourself to others
  • Always look for the positive things in a bad outcome
  • Do not chase other people’s dreams, but follow your own
  • Do not dream on future, but rather concentrate on what you can do now to improve your future
  • Always look for the work that needs to be done not the work that already finsihed
  • Learn from your mistakes and turn them into learning experiences

I hope this article boost your morals. If you would like to add something to this or have a feedback, feel free to post a comment.

Instructions for Breathing Meditation

There are many different types of Buddhist meditations. Some can be done while walking, some are great tools to use when you are distract from something and some are exclusively use in a very controlled environment. The environment plays a lager role in breathing mediation than many other types of meditations.

Practice with the loving kindness meditation: helps to maintain peaceful life style under any kind of circumstances.

If a person has prior experience in meditation or has strong skills, there are many meditation methods that can be practice regardless of the distractions in the environment. For example, when you are angry with someone, you can always instantly practice Loving-Kindness meditation. This is because the external environment has very little or no impacts on the out come of the practice. But even if you have strong skills, in able to practice breathing meditation, you must choose a peaceful controlled environment. The following is a set of guideline for ideal environment.

-It should be free from external distractions such as loud sounds, insects, etc, etc.

-It should be a clean place where you can smell nothing but pure air.

-It should be an area with proper ventilation (in North America and Europe, it would be nice if you can avoid indoor environment as much as possible)

-If you would like to practice breathing meditation, consider the time window of the years. Summer would be nice for most of the Europeans.

There is an important concept that you should know before you begin. There are other mediations where you can choose any one from four different types of meditation positions. But the breathing mediation can be practiced in a certain way. You must use sitting position to practice this type of mediation. (I will add more info on this later)

Step I

First of all you have to pay attention to your berating pattern. Everyone has his or her own pattern or rhythm. This pattern plays a major role in breathing mediation. Concentrate your mind on your breathing pattern. Sometimes beginners find it harder to concentrate than the experienced ones. You can get distractions in your mind and it could cause to shift the primary reason, which is concentration away from your breathing pattern. Many practitioners count their inhales and exhales. This way you can control the behaviors of your mind.
In the second step, there are eight sections, which extend the concepts in the first step.

Step II

1. Take a deep breath knowingly that it is a deep breath.

2. Exhale deeply, knowingly that it is a deep exhalation.

3. Take a short breath knowingly that it is short breath.

4. Exhale shortly, knowingly that it is a short exhalation.

5. When inhale, make note of beginning, middle and the end of the breath.

6. Then exhale and make note of beginning, middle and the end of the breath.

7. Inform your entire body and mind that you inhale while you are inhaling.

8. Inform your entire body and mind that you exhale while you are exhaling.

The section one and two set your mind in a proper position for deep breaths while the section three and four set your mind in a proper position for short breaths. The section five and six sets your mind in an advanced position. By dividing inhales and exhales, you perform a complex operation in your mind. This makes your mediation very sensitive and complex. At this point you may have the opportunity to develop the meditation so that you will reach the clairvoyance, clairaudience or high mental power. Let me be honest… This is very rare and chances that some one will experience this, as a beginner is slim to none. The last two sections (sections seven and eight) are the most sensitive and complex of all. This will (or will not) lead to long-term peacefulness (calmness).

Benefits of breathing meditation

  • Helps to build self-confidence and reduce anxiety.
  • Many individuals have positive progress in their character.
  • You will have high attention skills. Can listen to a speech, watch some thing once or analyze something once and understand the concepts behind it. (Very effective for high school and university students.)
  • Practice with the loving kindness meditation: helps to maintain peaceful life style under any kind of circumstances.
  • This is a very good meditation against depression. Not like anti-depression drugs, there are no side effects.
  • As long as you have the right instructions to follow, you can practice this by own.
  • The following is not something that I recommend: some think that this meditation helps them to discover who they really are. (Please keep in mind that Buddhism is not a tool that can be used to escape from the reality.)

10th August 2006

Loving Kindness Meditation for Stress Reduction

There are many people suffering from stress(including myself… yes, I admit it!) which in turn creates both physical and emotional pain such as panic attacks and uncontrollable anger. Meditation has been used in the East as a stress reduction technique for over 2500 years. However, it has received wide publicity after several independent comprehensive studies found too many negative side effects of synthetic chemical based Western medicine. Today most unbiased scientists and doctors recommend the Eastern meditations for patients over pharmaceuticals. Even in extremely biased sectors of the society have integrated Eastern meditations in to their practice. The best example of this would be this so called “Western meditation” promoted by special interest groups in the USA without crediting the Eastern philosophers like Buddha. Most, if not all, meditation methods that can significantly alter the state of mind were originated from the Eastern philosophy/religion known Continue reading Loving Kindness Meditation for Stress Reduction

Identifying, analyzing and controlling our thoughts

If we want to avoid disasters or calamities made by ourselves, we have to stop to put ideas in our head. The moment we stop an idea arising, the moment is called “True Awakening”.

There are all kinds of garbage in our mind, if we want to purify our mind, getting rid of the garbage in our mind might be the first thing we have to do. What are the garbage of mind? Dirty and polluted thoughts, greedy thoughts, hateful thoughts, infatuated thoughts, worried thoughts, suffering thoughts, haughty thoughts, impudent thoughts, envious thoughts, indecent thoughts, heterodox thoughts, dreary thoughts, and hollow thoughts, these can be called garbage of mind. Continue reading Identifying, analyzing and controlling our thoughts