Categories
Energy Meditation Inner vision Integral Awareness Life-fullness Meditating on the Self Meditation and Psychology Meditation techniques mind body connection Mindful Breathing Mindful Confidence Mindful Resilience Mindful Self-Leadership Presence and being present

Self-belief (the most powerful creative force in your life)

“Once you get used to it, being creatively powerful in your life feels less and less stressful, and more and more of a pleasure. Rather than ‘life happening to me’ I have the feeling that ‘I am happening to life!’”

Dear Integral Meditators, 

This weeks article explores mindfulness to help you become more powerful, engaged & directed in your life. It’s partly my own response to completing a recent course on mindful self-leadership with some of my students, but thematically it’s fairly central to my overall approach to ‘engaged mindfulness’. 

Classes and workshops for August are out, including the wisdom of awakening series, meditating with animal guides & familiars, and a mindfulness course for teenagers

In the spirit of creativity, 

Toby 


Self-belief (the most powerful creative force in your life)
 
I am the most powerful force in my life, you are the most powerful in yours
I’ve recently completed a series on ‘Mindful self-leadership’ with my public program students. It’s a program that I also run with companies and organizations at least six times a year. Each time I deliver it, slightly different themes energy as important for me. This time around the insight that kept coming back again and again as the course went on was ‘I am the most important creative force in my life’. The simple recognition of this is a tremendously powerful object of mindful attention.
 
The most powerful force in the world?
Of course you aren’t, there are many more powerful forces in the world than you or I.  But, in terms of your life, it is you that sits in the middle of it, your energy & focus, your choices to do or not to do, your thoughts & emotions. What you choose to focus on and do in your life is the most powerful directional force in it!
 
The feeling of helplessness
Sometimes there can be an overriding feeling of helplessness in the face of events in our life. We can feel like a puppet, the strings of which are being pulled by other people and external forces. Sometimes we can convince ourselves that ‘we have no choice’ and allow ourselves to become a victim of circumstances. There is even comfort in being a victim, we can tell ourselves that we had no choice and blame it on others.
 
Sometimes things don’t work out
It is true that sometimes things don’t work out as we had hoped, despite our best efforts. But even then, we are the ones who decide how we approach the fact that things didn’t work out how we had hoped. We are the ones who decide how to mentally frame what has happened, and how we are going to work with it. We are the ‘eye of the storm’, we are still the primary causal factor in our experience.
 
It’s sometimes hard work owning your creative power
If you own your power, then sure, you have to stay alert, think things through, confront difficult choices and people. But all of this is no harder work than not owning your power, and being buffeted mercilessly by the forces of chance and fate. Once you get used to it, being creatively powerful in your life feels less and less stressful, and more and more of a pleasure. Rather than ‘life happening to me’ I have the feeling that ‘I am happening to life!’. We can be calm, collected, and powerful. If we do so we burn less energy, we feel more in control. From this then a stable experience of self-belief starts to emerge, a faith in our ability to work thru and work out our problems, and enjoy doing it!
 
Meditating:
Sit down quietly. As you breathe, breathe your energy and awareness into the centre of your chest and torso area. Feel your creative power gathering in your body as you inhale, relax into it as you exhale. As you breathe, dwell upon the recognition: “I am the most powerful creative force in my life”. Stay with that recognition and feeling for the time you have set aside for meditation, really letting it sink in.
As you go about your daily life, remember the recognition, and act as if you believed it. Play with your power creatively, taking ownership of it. Notice how your experience starts to change.
 
Recent articles related to self-leadership & creative power:
A flower opening to the Sun – Choosing (& making distinctions around) joy
Trusting your inner signals
Empowering (& then dropping) the self
Making yourself big
Pro-activity in the face of life & breathing pro-actively
Becoming a Self-determining entity – Five stages to mindful self-leadership

© Toby Ouvry 2023, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com


Integral Meditation Asia

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

Categories
Awareness and insight Inner vision Insight Meditation Life-fullness meditation and creativity mind body connection Mindful Confidence Mindful Self-Leadership Presence and being present spiritual intelligence

Trusting your inner signals

Dear Integral Meditators,

We are being given information and feedback from different levels of our perception and intelligence all the time. If we can learn to trust the ‘inner signals’ that we are receiving, this makes it much easier to navigate our life with confidence, and make difficult decisions with a degree of assurance. Below are a few distinctions that can be used mindfully to give yourself greater trust in your inner signals.

If you enjoy the article, you are welcome to come to this week’s Tuesday or Wednesday class, where this will be the subject of our meditation. 

In the spirit of inner signals, 

Toby

Trusting your inner signals
 
We are being given information and feedback from different levels of our perception and intelligence all the time. If we can learn to trust the ‘inner signals’ that we are receiving, this makes it much easier to navigate our life with confidence, and make difficult decisions with a degree of assurance. Below are a few distinctions that can be used mindfully to give yourself greater trust in your inner signals.
 
What you want to know and what you do not want to know
Firstly, it’s useful to become aware that there are some things that you don’t want to know, even if your inner signals are very strong. For example, if I have a business partner whose body language changes suddenly around a business deal. If I am very attached to the deal, I may ignore the signals that my perception is giving me. Part of trusting your inner signals is learning to respect them, even when the message you are getting is not what you want to hear.
 
Your conscious and unconscious
Following on from the above point, it may or may not be clear where your inner signals are coming from.

  • Sometimes we can choose to remain unconscious about the things we become conscious of (See the business deal scenario above)
  • Sometimes we can be getting a clear signal from within, but we don’t know where it is coming from. We are, for now, unconscious of where it is coming from. This doesn’t mean we should ignore it, rather acknowledge it and keep it in mind
  • Quite often we ‘know more than we think we know’ about a situation. If we trusted our inner signals, we would be listening for them, and not pushing them back into our unconscious when they come and tap us on the shoulder

 
Some sources of your inner signals
 
What your body and instincts are telling you – This is the information you are getting from your biology, primal instincts, and pre-rational intelligence. As we identify more and more with our thinking and cognitive self, its easy to lose touch with our instincts. This is a shame, because they are offering us direct, useful information all the time!
 
What your feelings and emotions are telling you – Our feelings and emotions are telling us about how we are feeling about what is going on, and about the emotional temperature between us and the other people involved in any given situation. Even if they are emotions we don’t like or don’t want to have, we still need to listen to our emotions and honor the messages we are receiving from them if we want to navigate our inner life and relationships effectively.
 
What your thinking mind is telling you – A good distinction here is between your rationality and rationalization. Your rational mind and messages are generally reality oriented and evidence based. Rationalization is when you use thoughts and reasons irrationally to backup what you want to be true. Listening to signals from our inner rationality, not rationalizer is the key here.
 
What your observational intelligence is telling you – Be present (or as present as possible) and look. If you do this your direct perception will offer you plenty of signals around what is going on in the moment.
 
What your intuition is telling you – Beyond your thinking mind lies your higher or post-rational intuition. Your body, instincts and emotions all have an intuitive dimension, but here I am talking about our inner signals that come from a level of our consciousness deeper than the thinking self. If you listen carefully there is a wise one within you offering you insights and perspectives beyond your rational mind. Often these insights prove to be true.
 
So, there are five sources of your inner signals, each one of them can be focused on and listened to in order to become familiar with it, and get to know it. If we do this, then over time we can feel more and more confident around the validity of our own inner signals when they arise.

Related articlePro-activity in the face of life

© Toby Ouvry 2023, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com


All upcoming classes and workshops at IMA:

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)

Ongoing, Tues/Weds evening 7.30-8.30pm– Becoming a self-determining entity – A six-week course in Mindful Self-Leadership

Saturday July 15th, 9.30-11.30am – Monthly Qi Gong & Taoist Breathwork Clinic & Mini-retreat


Integral Meditation Asia

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

Categories
Concentration creative imagery Enlightened Flow Inner vision Integral Awareness Integral Meditation Life-fullness Meditation techniques mind body connection Mindful Confidence Mindful Resilience Mindful Self-Leadership Mindfulness Presence and being present Zen Meditation

Integrating field awareness & single-pointedness in daily life

“The effective integration of field-awareness & single-pointedness enables us to become ‘mindful warriors’ in the face of our life challenges, able to pace ourselves patiently through our victories and defeats with grace and stamina”

Dear <<First Name>>, 

This weeks article looks at how to integrate fundamental meditation methods into your daily life in a way that makes a real difference.. If you enjoy it, then do consider coming along live or online to this Tuesday & Wednesdays Integral Meditation class, where we will be taking it as our object of meditation. 

This Saturday morning is thePsychic & Psychological Self-defence half day workshop . If you want to “Building your personal foundation of psychic positivity, resilience, self-esteem , energy and renewal”, then this is definitely the workshop for you!

In the spirit of the big & the focused picture, 
 
Toby 


Integrating field awareness & single-pointedness in daily life
 
Basic meditation technique has two main types of awareness:
Single-pointedness: When you are trying to narrow your focus onto one single thing, such as the breathing or a visualized object in your minds-eye
Field awareness: Where you are trying to take in the ‘big picture’ of all that is in your field of awareness, you are trying to observe it as a whole.
 
If you think about field awareness as like sitting on a balcony looking at a whole landscape, letting your eyes range across the totality of it. Then single pointedness is like zeroing in on a blade of grass, or a leaf, or a rock in the landscape, and staying with just that one thing.
In formal meditation you can train in one or the other in any given meditation, or you can combine them together. For example, in a 20-minute meditation you could do:

  • Five minutes single-pointedness
  • Five minutes field awareness
  • Five minutes single-pointedness
  • Five minutes field awareness

That would give you a pretty good ‘basic workout’!
 
However, these two practices really start to come into their own when you use them effectively in daily life. During your day you are trying to spend your time mostly either:

  • Focusing on doing one thing or
  • Panning back, taking in the big-picture, assessing and relaxing before you identify and zoom in on the next task single-pointedly

If you spend your day really working on this format, you will find it is very conducive to relaxed effective productivity, a healthy degree of peace of mind. It also helps you tend toward good/better decision-making skills.
 
Lost in the cracks
Much of our anxiety and stress inwardly speaking comes from being ‘lost’ in between focused and observational states. We are not particularly focused, we are thinking in an anxiously about a number of things in a personal, non-objective manner. In this state we are easily unbalanced, easily experience insecurity, and lack confidence in our capacity to guide ourself effectively and reliably through the day. Getting good at daily combining of field-awareness and single-pointedness is a recipe for confidence in getting through the day effectively, even when there are stresses and uncertainties tugging at the edges of our attention. We become ‘mindful warriors’ in the face of our life challenges, able to pace ourselves patiently through our victories and defeats with grace and stamina.

Related readingSingle-pointedness & going with the flow
Working samadhi – The way of the mindful warrior

© Toby Ouvry 2023, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com



Integral Meditation Asia


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

Categories
A Mind of Ease Concentration Integral Awareness Life-fullness Meditating on the Self Meditation and Psychology Meditation techniques Mindful Confidence Mindful Self-Leadership Mindfulness Presence and being present

On meditation & ‘tantric self-esteem’

“Essentially then, to sit in your own company with ‘tantric self-esteem’ means to relate with feeling of warm friendliness (self-respect) toward yourself, and a confidence in your fundamental efficacy or adequacy to life”

Dear Integral Meditators, 

Why is it so difficult to sit in the present? In my previous article on ‘Making it easier to focus deeply‘ I look at one aspect of this. In the article below I continue that exploration. 
If you enjoy the article, do pop down either live or online to the Tuesday or Wednesday evening meditation class, where we shall be exploring this theme experientially. 

In the spirit of presence,
 
Toby 


On meditation & ‘tantric self-esteem’
 
The problem: To be present means to become more self-aware
One of the challenges that we face with meditation is that it makes us more present, which in turn brings us into a more conscious relationship to ourself and what is going on within ourselves. Of course, that is also the benefit and opportunity of meditation. But, if you don’t have a great relationship to yourself, and if there are things about yourself in the moment (body awareness, thoughts, emotions) that make you uncomfortable, then trying to be more present often becomes the last thing that you want to be! Much more attractive to be lost in thought, distracted, not present.
So, in a sense the art of meditation begins with getting comfortable with yourself in the moment.
 
The characteristic of good quality self-esteem
Who feels comfortable with and by themselves in the moment? One answer to this is someone with healthy self-esteem. What does that mean? Here is a working definition of self-esteem from Nat Branden:
“Despite the abundance of books, studies, workshops and committees devoted to the subject of self-esteem, there is little agreement about what it means. Self-esteem has two essential components:

  • Self-efficacy: Confidence in the ability to cope with life’s challenges. Self-efficacy leads to a sense of control over one’s life.
  • Self-respect: Experience oneself as deserving of happiness, achievement and love. Self-respect makes possible a sense of community with others.

Self-esteem is a self-reinforcing characteristic. When we have confidence in our ability to think and act effectively, we can persevere when faced with difficult challenges. We succeed more often than we fail. We form more nourishing relationships. We expect more of life and of ourselves.
If we lack confidence, we give up easily, fail more often and aspire to less. We get less of what we want.
Essentially here then, to sit in your own company with self-esteem means to sit with a feeling of warm friendliness (self-respect) toward yourself, and a confidence in your fundamental efficacy or adequacy to life.
 
Tantric self-esteem: Sitting ‘as if’
Tantric practice in meditation is essentially to act ‘as if’. You use your imagination to bring the desired result into the present. In this case we are concerned with self-esteem, so in meditation we sit down and become present to ourself ‘as if we already had healthy functional self-esteem:

  • As we sit and become present to our body-mind in the moment we extend warm, friendly, respectful feelings to ourself, as if we deserved a healthy degree of basic joy and wellbeing
  • We sit with ourselves as if we were siting with someone we trusted and whose fundamental capability we feel confident in

If we sit in this way, then the present moment, and our awareness of ourselves becomes a comfortable, attractive place to be. It is a place where we feel safe and welcome, as if in the company of a really good friend.
Done in this way, meditation becomes much less effortful because our resistance to the present is much reduced, it’s a place we like to be rather than have a vested interest in avoiding!
 
Practice
You can try it for a few minutes a day, just sitting and breathing with yourself and your tantric self-esteem. If you can familiarize yourself with this feeling and experience, then you will start to notice it becoming a normal part of the way you relate to yourself. This is not just in meditation, but in your daily activities, your way of going, being and interacting with the world.

 © Toby Ouvry 2023, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com


Saturday 11th February, 9am-12.30pm – Wabi-Sabi mindfulness – The art of creative leadership and self-leadership workshop

In a sentence: Learn how to work creatively with uncertainty, imperfection and life’s inherent messiness to realize your leadership and self-leadership potential.  Manage stress and anxiety better using mindfulness in combination with the practical philosophy of Wabi-Sabi.

Wabi-Sabi is one of the definitive aesthetic movements to emerge from Japan. With origins starting in the early 15th Century and influenced from Zen Buddhism, Wabi-Sabi became an aesthetic found in the arts and crafts such as ceramic, flower arranging and interior design. It also became a practical philosophy and approach to life. Principle aspects of Wabi-Sabi include:

  • An appreciation of the beauty of the impermanent, the imperfect and incomplete
  • A recognition of the value of humility
  • A willingness to engage with the unconventional

Mindfulness is the art of attention training and presence….read full workshop details



All upcoming classes and workshops at IMA:

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)

Ongoing – Introduction to Integral Meditation & Mindfulness Practice – An eight-week course

Saturday 11th February, 9am-12.30pm – Wabi-Sabi mindfulness – The art of creative leadership and self-leadership workshop

Saturday February 26th, 9.30-11.30am – Monthly Qi Gong & Taoist Breathwork Clinic & Mini-retreat
 


Integral Meditation Asia

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

Categories
Biographical Enlightened Flow Inner vision Integral Awareness Integral Meditation Life-fullness Meditating on the Self Meditation and Psychology Meditation techniques Mindful Confidence Mindful Resilience Presence and being present

Climbing, not carrying mountains

“When we focus on climbing, not carrying our mountains, we don’t run out of energy so fast because we are not carrying a heavy burden. we can persist over long periods of time without burning out. This in turn gives rise to tremendous self-confidence arising from our sense of resilience”

Dear Integral Meditators,

Wishing everyone all the very best for 2023! Below is an article that I wrote after a day of climbing in the jungle on new year’s eve. If you enjoy it then do come along (live or online) for the  2023 New year ‘Beginners mind’ meditation on the 3rd or 4th of Jan.

Also, if your looking for a way to go renew, deepen or make more complete your meditation practice, then the Introduction to Integral Meditation & Mindfulness Practice – An eight-week course beginning on 10th/11th Jan is a great option to consider!

In the spirit of  climbing & not carrying,

Toby


Climbing, not carrying mountains

Today, 31st December I spent the morning with my daughter climbing through the jungle up and down a small mountain in the Cameron highlands, Malaysia. Its always lovely how your mind clears and you really can settle into the rhythm of the moment, almost forgetting the rest of your life when you are in deeper nature. For me it invited the remembrance of really how to put things down and, traveling lightly, to return to a beginner’s mind, moving from step to step between the earth and sky, between the leaves and the breeze.
Once we got down from the peak it got me reflecting. With all the things going on in our life it can feel difficult sometimes to really enjoy our journey joyfully, with a beginner’s mind. This quote from Najwa Zebian is a great object of meditation to hold what you are going thru more lightly:
“These mountains that you are carrying, you were only supposed to climb”
If our challenges and problems are mountains, then the job is to climb them, not carry them. If we make the mistake, as we often do, of carrying around our problem-mountains on our back, its no wonder we feel tired and overwhelmed. So, the first mindful object here is:
“Notice when you are carrying your mountains, and put them down!”
Once you have got a feel for this putting-down manouvre, really notice the contrast in your body-sense as well as your mindset between being a ‘mountain carrier’ and an agile, light ‘mountain-climber’. You want to stay with this second sensibility for most of the time, and let go of the first as much as possible. The second mindful object then becomes:
“Stick to the discipline of climbing (and descending) lightly”

‘Carrying rumination’
When you are trying to carry your mountains, the heaviness can invite rumination and regret:

  • “Why did I get myself into this?”
  • “I should have done this differently”
  • “Why me?”
  • “It’s unbearable, I can’t take it any more…It’s my fault/someone else’s” (there has to be someone to blame!)

‘Climbing solving’
When you are focused on climbing and not carrying, then as well as the feeling of lightness and durability that is gained, it is easier simply to focus, to quote Nat Branden “Not on who’s to blame, but what is to be done?”. Our challenges are problems that require some form of solution, or sometimes simply acceptance. If we aren’t weighted down by the carrying, then we can simply reflect upon what can be done, and do it! If a challenge turns out to be a tricky one, we can simply try and try again. We don’t run out of energy so fast because we are not carrying a heavy burden, we can persist over long periods of time without burning out. This in turn gives rise to tremendous self-confidence arising from our sense of resilience.

Some areas for mindful exploration:
Sitting quietly, breathe and relax into some of the themes in this piece:

  • These mountains that you are carrying, you were only supposed to climb
  • Notice when you are carrying your mountains, and put them down
  • Stick to the discipline of climbing (and descending) lightly
  • Not on who’s to blame, but what is to be done?
  • Return to your beginner’s mind

Happy mountain climbing with your beginner’s mind!

Related readingCombining your Beginners Mind & your Wise Mind

© Toby Ouvry 2022, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com


Starts Tues 10th, Weds 11th January – Introduction to Integral Meditation & Mindfulness Practice – An eight-week course

Integral Meditation Practice (IMP) is a different kind of mind-body training, that aims to provide optimal inner peace, centeredness, energy and insight for the contemporary meditation practitioner. It combines eastern and western forms of practice, as well as ancient and modern ones into a series of integrative practices. The practices enable the meditator to remain resilient, energized and creative in the face of the multi-faceted challenges of modern life. These eight classes give an introduction to IMP, in a simple, accessible manner…see full details


Tues 3rd & Weds 4th January, 7.30-8.30pm – 2023 ‘Beginners mind’ meditation

This meditation session is focused upon setting up the 2022 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
  • Developing a flexible, soft, ‘beginners mind’, renewed and ready to be ‘born again’ with energy and enthusiasm in 2022

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 at IMA:

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 3rd & Weds 4th January, 7.30-8.30pm – 2023 New year ‘Beginners mind’ meditation

Starts Tues 10th, Weds 11th January – Introduction to Integral Meditation & Mindfulness Practice – An eight-week course

Saturday January 28th, 9.30-11.30am – Monthly Qi Gong & Taoist Breathwork Clinic & Mini-retreat


Integral Meditation Asia

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

Categories
A Mind of Ease Inner vision Insight Meditation Integral Awareness Meditating on the Self Meditation and Psychology Meditation techniques Mindful Confidence Mindful Resilience Mindful Self-Leadership

Moving toward or away from reality?

“Good quality rational thinking is not rushed thinking, it is not emotional thinking, or impulsive thinking. You could say that rational thinking is mindful thinking, where we take the time to ‘reason’ things out in an appropriate way, and to really watch and observe”

Dear Integral Meditators,

This weeks article is an exploration of the theme of mindful thinking which, in the context of this article means thinking that takes us toward reality, rather than away from it! I hope you enjoy it.

In the new year starting Jan 10th 2023 I’ll be running the Introduction to Integral Meditation & Mindfulness Practice – An eight-week course . If your looking to really get your teeth into your meditation practice next year, this is a great way to start!

Closer to then, this Wednesday 21st is the Free Winter solstice balancing & renewing meditation (Online only). All are welcome, its a nice way to mindfully wrap up the year and o on an inner winter-time journey!

In the spirit of  the solstice and wishing you a fulfilling and mindful Christmas,

Toby

 


Moving toward or away from reality? – Rational vs rationalization

With regard to the mind, of the main things we are trying to do in integrative mindfulness is to slow it down enough to make it conscious and high-quality in terms of its thinking. Once we have done this, we can then actually speed it up again and it will serve to reduce our stress and increase our effectiveness, rather than getting in the way!

Rationality – Thinking that takes us toward reality

Conscious, high-quality thinking really means rational thinking in the holistic sense of the word. It means thinking that is based around the observable facts that are available to us in any given situation. It means setting aside pre-conceived ideas and biases with regard how we think or want things to be. It is letting the objective evidence inform us as far as possible. Rationality is designed to take us toward reality, to help us understand it as clearly as is possible.

Rational thinking is trustworthy thinking. If we trust our own thinking process, we will gain confidence and trust in our mind and in our intelligence. It means being disciplined and rigorous in our observation of ourself and our world.

Good quality rational thinking is not rushed thinking, it is not emotional thinking, or impulsive thinking. You could say that rational thinking is mindful thinking, where we take the time to ‘reason’ things out in an appropriate way, and to really watch and observe.

Rationalization – Creating the fantasy that you want

Rationalization is the inverse of rationality. If we understand it, it really helps clarify what true rationality is. To ‘rationalize’ means to take an idea that we want to be true, and create reasons why it is true. It takes what we want and then uses the intellect to fabricate ideas to support it.

  • If I am angry, I can ignore the clear body-signals that I am angry, and tell myself that I am not angry because I am not the sort of person who gets angry in these situations
  • If I fail in a business venture I don’t want to be at fault, so I blame it all on fate and circumstance, rather than looking for evidence of mistakes I made and what I can learn from them
  • Out of fear I find reasons not to trust others, and use it to justify my own lack of trustworthiness, rather than assessing each person on their individual merits, and make myself accountable for my own trustworthiness.

Rationality takes me towards reality and makes me effective there. Rationalization often takes me away from reality and makes me less effective; my mind is somewhere other than my reality.

A four-question rationality process

This is a variation on a previous four-stage engaged mindfulness process that I created a while back. It is designed to put in place some of the essential thought strictures you need to be rational in a given situation. You can ask these four questions one after the other and they will lead you rationally from awareness to appropriate action, step by step

  • What are the facts that I need to be aware of here?
  • What are the realities here that I need to accept?
  • What do I need to take responsibility for here?
  • What do I need to do next to move toward the best possible result?

Final point here, to be rational really takes presence. You have to be present to what IS, to be rational! Wishing you well in the noble and often-not-easy pursuit of mindful rationality.

© Toby Ouvry 2022, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com


Wednesday Dec 21st, 7.30-8.30pm – Free Winter solstice balancing & renewing meditation (Online only)

In Celtic the name of the winter solstice is ‘Alban Arthan’ or ‘The Light of Arthur’. In this case Arthur refers to the Sun God who, at this time of maximum darkness in the year dies and is reborn in the world of nature and within ourselves. This will be a chance to reflect on the spiritual meaning and power of the winter season. We will look at the different ways our own inner light can ‘die and be re-born once more’….read full details


Starts Tues 10th, Weds 11th January – Introduction to Integral Meditation & Mindfulness Practice – An eight-week course

Integral Meditation Practice (IMP) is a different kind of mind-body training, that aims to provide optimal inner peace, centeredness, energy and insight for the contemporary meditation practitioner. It combines eastern and western forms of practice, as well as ancient and modern ones into a series of integrative practices. The practices enable the meditator to remain resilient, energized and creative in the face of the multi-faceted challenges of modern life. These eight classes give an introduction to IMP, in a simple, accessible manner…see full details


Tues 3rd & Weds 4th January, 7.30-8.30pm – 2023 New year releasing and inviting meditation

This meditation session is focused upon setting up the 2022 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
  • Developing a flexible, soft, ‘beginners mind’, renewed and ready to be ‘born again’ with energy and enthusiasm in 2022

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 at IMA:

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)

Wednesday Dec 21st, 7.30-8.30pm – Free Winter solstice balancing & renewing meditation (Online only)

Tues 3rd & Weds 4th January, 7.30-8.30pm – 2023 New year releasing and inviting meditation

Starts Tues 10th, Weds 11th January – Introduction to Integral Meditation & Mindfulness Practice – An eight-week course

Saturday January 28th, 9.30-11.30am – Monthly Qi Gong & Taoist Breathwork Clinic & Mini-retreat


 

Integral Meditation Asia

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

Categories
creative imagery Energy Meditation Enlightened love and loving Inner vision Life-fullness Meditating on the Self Meditation and Psychology mind body connection Mindful Confidence Mindful Resilience Mindful Self-Leadership Motivation and scope

Cultivating your positive imperfectionist

Even when inactive our positive imperfectionist is a benevolent and supportive feeling/atmosphere in our psyche, encouraging us to get stuck in to the activities that we feel motivated around and not to live in fear of trying”

Dear Integral Meditators,

This weeks article explores some ways to begin freeing yourself from the ‘negative perfectionist, with the help of a new friend, the ‘Positive Imperfectionist’. Quite a lot of my coaching work with people relates to this area. With your PI in place it becomes surprisingly possible to do difficult and very worthwhile things. I hope you enjoy it! If you do, then then this weeks Tuesday & Wednesday class will be focused on this subject. You are welcome to join us, live or online!

Next week sees the beginning of the final class series of the year: Tues /Weds 23/24th November – The Wisdom of Awakening Series: Meditations for bringing integration, depth & vividness to your life , do check it out!

In the spirit of positive-imperfectionism,

Toby


Cultivating your positive imperfectionist

The prevalence of negative perfectionism
If you have been around any kind of inner-development circles; meditation groups, psychotherapy, coaching etc, one of the phenomena that you may have come across will be the ‘negative perfectionist’. This is a part of many people’s psyche that is obsessed with doing things ‘correctly’ or flawlessly. This part of us is also very inclined to judge us quickly and harshly for any perceived failures flaws of mistakes that we make in our life. There are different forms of uncomfortable and sometimes excruciating psychological pain that it subjects us to as it points out the stupidity of our actions, the inappropriate things that we said, the things we could and should have done better. Even when inactive, it lives within our awareness as an ever-present threat, causing us to live in fear and discouraging us from doing things that be ‘risky’, might go wrong or otherwise expose our imperfection and how generally inadequate we are (!)

Some of the narratives of the negative perfectionist:

  • If you can’t do it right first time you may as well give up
  • You are your actions, if you mess one or more up, you are an idiot
  • People around you are judging you just as harshly as I (the negative perfectionist) am judging you, look how stupid you are making us look!
  • You are guilty until proven innocent, I’m expecting you to mess this up somehow
  • Why do you always find something for me to dislike about you
  • Don’t expose yourself to risk, better to hide than to fail
  • No matter what you achieve, it will never be enough for me
  • You are neither likable nor competent
  • You are isolated and alone

Do any of these sound familiar?

Your positive imperfectionist
For most people then it is well worth cultivating your positive imperfectionist. This is the inner voice within you that is ok with messy and imperfect. It encourages incremental improvement. It urges us to keep going even if we are not very good at something to begin with. It is forgiving and light, and quick to point out progress or improvement we make. It sees the value in failure, and sees mistakes as learning opportunities. Even when inactive it is a benevolent and supportive feeling/atmosphere in our psyche, encouraging us to get stuck in to the activities that we feel motivated around

Working on the narratives of the positive imperfectionist

  • If at first you don’t succeed, try again, having learned from the last attempt
  • You are not your actions, your fundamental value is secure
  • You have friends and encouragers around you, listen to them, feel supported
  • You are innocent until proven guilty! You are accountable for your actions, but don’t think failing sometimes makes you weak!
  • I believe in you
  • Keep trying, no risk no reward
  • You are already enough, try and see how much more you become
  • You are likeable
  • You are not alone

Any one of this last set of sentences can be an object of meditation. Internalizing them one by one will help you recognize and consolidate the voice of your positive imperfectionist. What are you waiting for?

Related articlesMindful Optimism

© Toby Ouvry 2022, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com

 


Starts Tues /Weds 23/24th November – The Wisdom of Awakening Series: Meditations for bringing integration, depth & vividness to your life

Dates and titles:
Tues 23/Weds24th November, Class 1
 – Everyday depth: being in the world but not of the world
Tues 6/Weds 7th November, Class 2 – Going within: The cave of the heart
Tues 13/Weds 14th June, Class 3  The experiential self: Meditation, vividness, charisma, ego
Read full details


Saturday November 26th, 9.30-11.30am – Monthly Qi Gong & Taoist Breathwork Clinic & Mini-retreat
In a sentence: Experience unique Qi gong and Taoist breathing techniques to improve your immune system, energy level, psychological wellness and enhance your meditation…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 at IMA:

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)

Ongoing – An Adventure in Consciousness – The What, Why & How of integral & engaged meditation practice

Saturday November 12th, 9.30-12noon –  Zen deep-dive mini-retreat

Starts Tues /Weds 23/24th November – The Wisdom of Awakening Series: Meditations for bringing integration, depth & vividness to your life

Saturday November 26th, 9.30-11.30am – Monthly Qi Gong & Taoist Breathwork Clinic & Mini-retreat


 

Integral Meditation Asia

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

Categories
Concentration Inner vision Life-fullness meditation and creativity Meditation and Psychology Meditation techniques Mindful Confidence Mindful Self-Leadership Mindfulness Motivation and scope

Mindfulness for enhancing productivity & creativity in your work

“Don’t wait for inspiration. It comes while working.” – Henri Matisse

 

Dear Integral Meditators,

“Productivity” is a word that always needs to be held in context to do well in my opinion. In this weeks article I explore seven mindful positions to improve your work and creative output (for me work and creativity are very closely linked).
The subject of  this weeks Tuesday & Wednesday meditation class, will focus on a practical exploration of meditation and inner healing.  Feel free to join us either online or live!

Quick reminder of this coming Saturdays Full Moon Zen deep-dive mini-retreat, and heads up for Octobers  Shamanic meditation workshop retreat on the 22nd/23rd!

In the spirit of  inspiration while working,

Toby


Mindfulness for enhancing productivity & creativity in your work

As my own work continues to get busier with the business expanding, the combination of this and a relatively full family life and personal growth program means that being effective with my work time continues to be super important. Consequently, I’m aways looking to get batter at the basics in terms of how to be productive with the time that I have. Below are eight ‘mindful positions’ that I find continue to deliver value with regard to my work.
Applying this to yourself, you could think about them in terms of your paid work, but also and equally any type of work or creative activity that you want to do in your life, and make consistent progress with!

Practice 1 – Sitting with warmth, confidence and calm: whenever you begin a work session, just spend a few moments checking your body energy and posture. The more you can ‘sit well in the face of the next task’ the better you will tend to feel about doing it.

Practice 2 – Sitting with appreciation for what’s good at work right now: Good energy creates good energy. The more you can contextualize your present activity in terms of the other things that are currently good in your work, or other positive things that you have done, the easier it is to spring into action with enthusiasm!

Practice 3 – Going a little deeper into your intention for working: The clearer you can be about why you are doing what you are doing, and commit to the choice to work because of that, the stronger your motivation will be. The motivation could be financial, providing for family, or deeper in the sense of this being a part of your contribution to the evolution of the planet (in whatever way it may be). You need to know what your motivations are, and get them behind what you are doing.

Practice 4 – Acknowledging and accepting what you find difficult at work right now/ what are the obstacles to your productivity: Knowing and accepting what you find difficult in your work gives you the best chance of doing the work despite the challenges. Learn to carry your anxieties & apprehensions well.

Practice 5 – Identifying the most important tasks in the day/period ahead, developing focused intention: This is really a ‘bread and butter’ practice, set up clearly what you want to do, and stay with it! As your going thru your list of ‘to do’s’, your object of mindfulness in the moment is simply the task that you are on. Letting your attention rest on that means you can build some peace of mind as you are doing the tasks itself, rather than waiting until you have completed your tasks to do some mindful calming down…

Practice 6 – Imagining what it’s like when you have completed the work well – the ideal scene: If you imagine yourself at the end of your day having worked well and got what you wanted to do done, then you will notice how good it feels, and how charged with enthusiasm that image makes you feel. A short period of time focusing such a future scene can be a real catalyst for your present creative activity

Practice 7 – Sleep!: This one, like practice five is really something to keep tabs on all the time. Its 100% easier to work when you feel well rested. We can’t always feel well rested, and there are all sorts of obstacles that can get in the way, but to take responsibility for being as well rested as you can consistently will hugely improve your creative output.

So there are seven practices there, if you were to take one a day to focus on explicitly, you could go thru all of them in a week, and do four cycles over a month. Doing that would stimulate a lot of incremental improvements in your productivity, which is really what mindfulness is about; incremental improvement over time that is unstoppably consistent!

© Toby Ouvry 2022, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com

Saturday September 10th, 9.30-12noon – Zen deep-dive mini-retreat

Session overview: These 2.5hour Zen ‘mini-retreats’ are a chance to go into much deeper meditation states than you would be able to in your own personal daily practice, or even if you came to a one-hour class. Using sitting meditation methods in combination with breathing techniques and gentle stretching/mobility exercises Toby will guide you into deep meditative flow states that create the experience of a calm, unified, harmonized, resilient body, mind & heart…read full details


Sat & Sun 22nd/23rd October – Shamanic meditation workshop retreatLearn how to practice the fundamentals of the most ancient meditation tradition on the planet in a clear, practical and concise manner, and understand its relevance and value to you and the challenges that you face in your life.

The workshop will give an overview and introduce some simple but profound shamanic practices on day one, with a deeper dive into Shamanic meditation practices on day two…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 at IMA:

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)

Starts Tues 16th /Weds 17th August – An Adventure in Consciousness – The What, Why & How of integral & engaged meditation practice

Saturday September 24th, 9.30-11.30am – Monthly Qi Gong & Taoist Breathwork Clinic & Mini-retreat

Saturday September 10th, 9.30-12noon – Full Moon Zen deep-dive mini-retreat

Sat & Sun 22nd/23rd October – Shamanic meditation workshop retreat


 

Integral Meditation Asia

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

Categories
A Mind of Ease Enlightened Flow Inner vision Integral Meditation Life-fullness Meditation and Psychology Mindful Confidence Mindful Resilience Mindful Self-Leadership

Pre-disposing yourself for enjoyment (& being battle ready)

“To take hold of our enjoyment we need to be conscious enough to direct attention toward our opportunities for enjoyment, and be ready to work our way patiently through the obstacles to that”

Dear Integral Meditators,

Is your happiness and wellbeing an accident, or is it on purpose? The article below looks at how you can pre-dispose yourself to good experiences using meditation, and why you might consider it a worthwhile investment.

If you enjoy the article, the subject is covered in my latest class series, An Adventure in Consciousness – The What, Why & How of integral & engaged meditation practice that starts on 16/17th August, and can be participated in live, online or using the recordings.

Also, this Saturday I will be facilitating the monthly Zen deep-dive mini-retreat where we will be focusing on deep meditative flow states that create the experience of a calm, unified, harmonized, resilient body, mind & heart.

In the spirit of  being battle-ready!

Toby


Pre-disposing yourself for enjoyment (& being battle ready)

Consolidating your inner strengths
One way of thinking about meditation is as an activity where we train our mind systematically to focus on positive-objects. By a ‘positive object’ I mean an object that when we focus upon it causes our awareness to become calm, strong, balanced, warm or otherwise positive and healthy in some way.
A meditator is a person who is committed to systematically developing their inner strengths and wellbeing by growing these strengths daily, perhaps a little bit like an inner gym-rat!

Train when things are going well! The need to be ‘Battle-ready’
One of the key insights a meditator has is that its best to train your mind to be inwardly strong before you start to suffer to much or encounter an emergency. This way when you do hit an emergency or encounter pain, you are ready for it.
When I was in the UK recently, I met an old friend and colleague from my Buddhist monk days. Although both our lives were going well in many ways, we could both enumerate a number of critical challenges that we and our family members were going though. The challenges were laced with various forms of pain and suffering. These sufferings were really in the nature of life itself and were unavoidable; old age, sickness, loneliness, economic challenges. The existence of the challenges was not within our ability to control. All we could could/can control is our mindset and way of being present to them. This in turn relies upon our inner strength, our capacity for things like acceptance, confidence, letting go, perseverance, love and so forth.
So, to be ‘Battle-ready’ for the sufferings that present themselves in our life, we can use meditation as a way of building and consolidating our inner strengths. Challenges in our life can always be opportunities, but if we are not inwardly robust and confident enough when we face them, the pain often shuts that opportunity down. So, we need to arrive prepared.

Pre-disposing ourself for enjoyment
Using meditation as a way of building our inner strengths also pre-disposes us to recognize and take our opportunities for enjoyment. Amidst the difficulty and tribulation of life there are many opportunities each day for fun, pleasure, happiness and fulfilment. If we are pre-occupied with our pain or feeling overwhelmed by life however, we will often not even recognize these opportunities.
So, for example, opportunities for enjoyment for me today include:

  1. Taking pleasure in the presence of my daughters
  2. Enjoying the familiarity of my home after a holiday away
  3. Appreciating that I have enough work set up this month not to have to worry
  4. Taking pleasure in giving (my older daughter’s birthday present)
  5. Appreciating the memories of the trip that I have just returned from
  6. Simple enjoyments in the form of food, coffee and so on
  7. Working on setting up the new projects for the second half of the year
  8. Being grateful for the presence of some childcare in the form of our helper to take the load off my shoulders
  9. The opportunity to exercise and meditate

These are all in my grasp, but I’m also feeling jet-lagged, sleep deprived and, as a result somewhat dis-oriented. To take hold of my enjoyment I need to be conscious enough to direct my attention toward my opportunities for enjoyment, and be ready to work my way patiently through the obstacles to that. My ability to do that relies to a large degree on the capacities that I have previously built up to focus on the positives, and not get thrown off balance by the obstacles. This, in essence is what this dimension of meditation practice is about.

In case you missed my previous article: Adventuring with attention (What is a Meditator?)

© Toby Ouvry 2022, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com

Starts Tues 16th /Weds 17th August – An Adventure in Consciousness – The What, Why & How of integral & engaged meditation practiceOverview: Life is an adventure in the experience of being conscious. To meditate and to be a meditator is to engage in this experience full-bloodedly, with the intention to get the very most out of the opportunity that we have been given, both in terms of enjoyment, and in terms of our potential to achieve worthwhile goals that are congruent with our inner values. This is a dynamic meditation course that covers…read full details


Saturday August 13th, 9.30-12noon – Zen deep-dive mini-retreat

Session overview: These 2.5hour Zen ‘mini-retreats’ are a chance to go into much deeper meditation states than you would be able to in your own personal daily practice, or even if you came to a one-hour class. Using sitting meditation methods in combination with breathing techniques and gentle stretching/mobility exercises Toby will guide you into deep meditative flow states that create the experience of a calm, unified, harmonized, resilient body, mind & heart…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 at IMA:

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)

Saturday August 13th, 9.30-12noon – Zen deep-dive mini-retreat

Starts Tues 16th /Weds 17th August – An Adventure in Consciousness – The What, Why & How of integral & engaged meditation practice

Saturday August 27th, 9.30-11.30am – Monthly Qi Gong & Taoist Breathwork Clinic & Mini-retreat


 

Integral Meditation Asia

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

Categories
creative imagery Integral Meditation Life-fullness Meditation techniques mind body connection Mindful Confidence

Adventuring with attention (What is a Meditator?)

 

“Life is an adventure in the experience of being conscious. To meditate and to be a meditator is to engage in this experience full-bloodedly, with the intention to get the very most out of the opportunity”

Dear Integral Meditators,

To be a meditator can be considered in a number of different ways, in the article below I outline two ways of thinking about being a meditator that I hope you will find enlightening!

If you enjoy the article, then do consider joining in my latest class series, An Adventure in Consciousness – The What, Why & How of integral & engaged meditation practice that starts on 16/17th August, and can be participated in live, online or using the recordings.

In the spirit of adventuring,

Toby


Adventuring with attention (What is a Meditator?)

What is a meditator? Why do you meditate? Here are two definitions of what a meditator is or can be, and some simple practices relating to them.

Definition 1: An adventurer in consciousness – Life is an adventure in the experience of being conscious. To meditate and to be a meditator is to engage in this experience full-bloodedly, with the intention to get the very most out of the opportunity that we have been given, both in terms of enjoyment, and in terms of our potential to achieve worthwhile goals that are congruent with our inner and outer values.

Definition 2: A practitioner of the primary life-skills of awareness & attention – A meditator is someone dedicated to the practice of conscious, intentional awareness & attention. If you want to get good at anything in your life, the art of being aware and paying attention is a foundational pre-skill that you need. Said another way, if you know how to be aware and pay attention well, you can learn almost anything. Learning a sport, taking care of your health, being a competent professional, looking after relationships all require good quality attention and awareness. Meditation and mindfulness are the art of paying attention and being aware. If you get good at these, your chances of being successful in your chosen endeavours in life increase substantially.

Practices based upon these definitions:

Position 1 – Adventuring with confidence: To be an adventurer in life and in your consciousness is to be fundamentally confident. Adventurers don’t shy away from life; they open themselves to it and to the possibilities that it offers. Experiment with simply sitting in a posture that describes confidence, and that helps you to feel confident. Some features might include:

  • A tall crown, an open chest, shoulders relaxed off the neck
  • Relaxed hands, arms and hands
  • A relaxed face and warm facial expression

Sit with confidence and just hold the experience of it in your body mind. Let it become a part of your fundamental way of engaging life in the moment.
The quote by Dion fortune is quite a good contemplation for this position “Life may be difficult, but it is not bewildering. Meanwhile we have to endure.”* A meditator sits, stands and holds her/himself with confidence that endures in the face of life’s ups and downs.

Position 2 – Heightening awareness & attention: As an illustration for this practice, consider this Anthony De Mello short story entitled ‘Spirituality’:
‘Even though it was the Master’s Day of Silence a traveller begged for a word of
wisdom that would guide him through life’s journey.
The Master nodded affably, took a sheet of paper and wrote a single word on it:
“Awareness.
The visitor was perplexed. “That’s too brief. Would you please expand on it a bit?”
The Master took the paper back and wrote: “Awareness, awareness, awareness.”
“But what do these words mean?” said the stranger helplessly.
The Master reached out for the paper and wrote: “Awareness, awareness, awareness
means AWARENESS.”’

Try simply being 10-15% more aware, either as you sit, or as you go for a walk. You can actually be practising this in any activity you like, but it is good to set some time aside just to sit and be aware as a meditative exercise. Simply notice what is around you, what is going on within you. For the duration of the practice, try to stay merely with awareness and attention, nothing more, nothing less. The proposition would be that, if you start to notice what IS in any given moment, your chances of making effective choices around the situation are increased the more you are paying attention!

I hope you enjoyed these two definitions and their attending practices; this is the first of two (or maybe three) articles covering this subject of what is a meditator, see you next week for the second!

*The Magical Battle of Britain page 8

In case you missed my previous article: Dealing mindfully with worry and anxiety at work – Five positions

© Toby Ouvry 2022, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com

Starts Tues 16th /Weds 17th August – An Adventure in Consciousness – The What, Why & How of integral & engaged meditation practiceOverview: Life is an adventure in the experience of being conscious. To meditate and to be a meditator is to engage in this experience full-bloodedly, with the intention to get the very most out of the opportunity that we have been given, both in terms of enjoyment, and in terms of our potential to achieve worthwhile goals that are congruent with our inner values. This is a dynamic meditation course that covers…read full details


Saturday August 13th, 9.30-12noon – Zen deep-dive mini-retreat

Session overview: These 2.5hour Zen ‘mini-retreats’ are a chance to go into much deeper meditation states than you would be able to in your own personal daily practice, or even if you came to a one-hour class. Using sitting meditation methods in combination with breathing techniques and gentle stretching/mobility exercises Toby will guide you into deep meditative flow states that create the experience of a calm, unified, harmonized, resilient body, mind & heart…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 at IMA:

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)

Saturday August 13th, 9.30-12noon – Zen deep-dive mini-retreat

Starts Tues 16th /Weds 17th August – An Adventure in Consciousness – The What, Why & How of integral & engaged meditation practice

Saturday August 27th, 9.30-11.30am – Monthly Qi Gong & Taoist Breathwork Clinic & Mini-retreat


 

Integral Meditation Asia

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