The Art of Non-emergency

“Spending a few minutes each day recognizing and relaxing into safety can really help you take the idea of non-emergency into an actual experience that you can use to change the quality of your life.”


Dear Integral Meditators,

I hope you have been enjoying the Winter Solstice period!

This weeks article is a fundamental integral meditation practice from my point of view, it sets up a whole bunch of good effects in your body mind and heart, and opens up a world of stability and ease.

Next week are the final meditation of the year the 2021 New year releasing and inviting meditationThe Wednesday live class is already full, there are a few live slots for the Tuesday session, and of course online attendance is possible.
Heads up for the latest iteration of the Men’s group starting in January, see details below!

Seasonal blessings and best wishes to all of you!


The Art of Non-emergency

The feeling of emergency
There are many things in our life that can stimulate the feeling within us that we are in a dangerous and ‘emergency’ state:

  • Uncertainty around Covid and the economy
  • Being overwhelmed by the amount of information and choices that we have to make
  • Having difficulties and unresolved conflicts in our relationships
  • Past unresolved emotions and expereinces within ourself
  • Some chemical things like just having too much caffeine in your system

The list goes on, but the essential feeling is similar; our nervous system becomes primed for ‘fight or flight’ mode much of the time, and we spend a lot of our life living as if we were in real danger of immanent disaster!

Reality checking your emergency
Let’s check this against reality:

  • How much of your day yesterday was a real actual emergency?
  • In the next day, what is the likelihood of you being in real, life-threatening danger?
  • If you gave yourself permission to really relax and take it easy for the next half-hour, would this be inviting immanent disaster?

The answers to these questions when you ask them is pretty obvious. We have spent maybe 0.05% of our life in real danger. The rest of the time is a relative non-emergency. There is very rarely a time, if ever when it is appropriate to say, ‘I have no room for any relaxation in this moment, I cannot relax!’

The discipline of non-emergency
So, our paranoid mind is saying our life is a dangerous trap, and emergency. We check this against reality and find that life is almost all a non-emergency. As a mindfulness practice we can then practice the discipline of recognizing the state of non-emergency and enjoy relaxing into it for substantial periods of our day. We can relax into non-emergency at the same time as being productive and trouble shooting problems. Non-emergency can be an active or passive state. Either way it is restorative, enjoyable and keeps us in touch with our basic sanity!

Non-emergency gives you space to deal with difficult things
Being firmly grounded in state of non-emergency gives us resilience and intelligence when navigating difficult and tense problems. Because we aren’t panicking, we don’t burn out and we don’t waste energy. We can hold uncertainty, intense emotion, volatility and so forth without being knocked off balance.

Calm under pressure – Non-emergency helps you recognize a real emergency
If your good at non-emergency, this will also help you recognize a real emergency and deal with it well. Last week my wife and I went to a first-aid for infants workshop. The essential message of the facilitator was that, in an emergency the impulse is to panic, but the best thing to do is remain calm and act systematically and rationally. Being solidly familiar with the non-emergency state will give you the presence of mind to stay calm under pressure and deal with real emergencies calmly and effectively.

Formal practice
Spending a few minutes each day recognizing and relaxing into safety can really help you take the idea of non-emergency into an actual experience that you can use to change the quality of your life. Just breathe in and recognize the non-emergency, breathe out relax into it. There you go, you’ve already begun the journey!

Article content © Toby Ouvry & Integral Meditation Asia 2020. you are welcome to share, but please cite the source, thanks! Contact


Tues 29th & Weds 30th Dec, 7.30-8.30pm – 2021 New year releasing and inviting meditation
About the class: This meditation session is focused upon  setting up the 2021 new year energies in a way that invites the best possible experience moving forward. We will be:

  • Releasing and letting go of energies, events and experiences from the past year that may hold us back from moving into our full potential, and
  • Developing a flexible, soft, ‘beginners mind’, renewed and ready to be ‘born again’ with energy and enthusiasm in 2019
  • Focusing both consciously and intuitively upon the inviting of new energies, aspirations and goals that we wish to bring in and manifest over the course of the new year

Full details

Re-starts Monday January 11th! – 7-8.30pm – The Men’s Group – The path of conscious manhood

How can you move from coping to thriving in your life as a man?

Much is asked of men in their traditional roles as fathers and sons, partners and husbands, students and teachers, employees and employers. The men’s group is a professionally moderated and confidential forum for men. A forum is a safe place for exploring, learning and sharing the successful perspectives, skills, and strategies needed to address and manage the unique issues, problems, and triumphs in our community.
Read full details

Life-fullness – The Integral Life-Coaching Program with Toby

Are you looking a coach who can help you to:

  • Meet the challenges, stress and changes that you face in a more effective and mindful way
  • Become happier within yourself, in your relationships and at work
  • Be actively accountable for finding a sense of balance/well-being in your life and fulfilling your personal potential?
  • Guide you to find and operate from a deeper sense of meaning, motivation and connectivity in your life?
Read full details


All upcoming classes and workshops for at IMA in December:

Ongoing – Weekly Tuesday, Wednesday Online class schedule

Ongoing on Wednesday’s, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation for stress transformation and positive energy with Toby (Bukit Timah)

Ongoing on Tuesday evenings, 7.30-8.30pm – Tuesday Meditation for stress transformation and positive energy with Toby  (East Coast)

Tues 29th & Weds 30th Dec, 7.30-8.30pm – 2021 New year releasing and inviting meditation

Re-starts Monday January 11th! – 7-8.30pm – The Men’s Group – The path of conscious manhood

Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Books * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology


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