Increasing to Your Inner Strength – Eight Ways

Dear Integral Meditators,

Want to know how you can go about systematically developing and increasing your inner strength? The article below considers eight ways!

If you are in Singapore and around on Wenesday July 22nd 7.30-9pm  then do consider joining us for the meditation class Integral Meditation Session @ Basic Essence – Meditating with your inner strength of heart & mind. It will be a whole 60-90minute meditation session dedicated to this topic. Click the link for full details!

In the spirit of inner strength,

Toby


Increasing to Your Inner Strength – Eight Ways

Below are eight aspects of inner strength that we all have to a greater or lesser degree, and we can all develop more of through mindful intention. If you like you can pick the one that resonates most for you from the list below and focus on developing it specifically each day in your life for one week. If you enjoy that, then you can pick another and do the same. Do one week for each point below and you have your own two month course on developing your inner strength right there!

1. The strength of relaxation and regeneration – Regularly ensure that you are connecting to your own experience of relaxation and your sources of regeneration. Then no matter how busy life gets you will find yourself able to cope with what arises; you will be able to ‘bend but not break’ as the saying goes. That strength comes from relaxation is a very deep lesson for us all.

2. The strength of intention and clarity – Why are you doing what you are doing? What motivates you in life? What is the most meaningful use to which you can put your time today? The greater the clarity of the ‘whats’ and ‘whys’ you have in your life, the more solid and resilient you mind will be.

3. The strength of willpower and focus – Place your mind on one thing at a time and get it done, then focus on the next thing and do the same, rest where necessary, keep your eye on the prize.
These first three inner strengths are a bit of a holy trinity; the more you integrate them together the more they support each other

4. The strength of economy and pacing – Don’t use more energy than you need to to get things done. Select the right ‘speed’ at which to do any given task. Sometimes going fast is required, other times going slowly is better. Mindfully develop the skill of how to do more with less.

5. The strength of feeling supported – We are all supported and loved by our close family and friends. If you make the effort to KNOW that every day and receive their energy and support (without shifting responsibility to them, your life is your responsibility) then we will feel inwardly stronger and (ironically) more autonomous.

6. The strength of being connected and fed by the limitless – Go to that place within you that is beyond your mind, beyond the thinking state; allow its limitless energy to feed your body, mind and heart. This is the ‘meditation’ aspect of point 1 above.

7. The strength of leveraging on the strengths that you have already – In your life you have already developed inner strengths, resilience and capabilities; what are they? Make a list of them and leverage on these already present inner strengths each day. Often you don’t have to re-invent the wheel; you just need to remember what you are capable of.

8. The strength of creativity and imagination – When you are in a place where you have tried everything you know and you are at the limits of your inner resources, then sometimes you have to imagine your way out, learn to do something that we have never done before. Sometimes what the capable, rational adult in us cannot figure out the playful child can! For best results let the playful child and the rational adult within you get together each day, compare notes and support each other.
A final aspect of inner strength no.8; what symbols, images, figures and metaphors come to mind when you think about the words ‘inner strength’? A picture speaks a thousand words!

© Toby Ouvry 2015, 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


Upcoming Courses at Integral Meditation Asia 1st July-1st August:

Saturday 18th July, 2.30-5.30 pm – Mindful Resilience – Sustaining effectiveness, happiness and clarity under pressure through meditation and mindfulness – A Three Hour Workshop

Wenesday July 22nd 7.30-9pm – Integral Meditation Session @ Basic Essence – Meditating with your inner strength of heart & mind

Wednesday July 29th 7.30-9pm – Integral Meditation Session @ Basic Essence – Meditation for connecting to a positive attitude

Saturday 1st August, 9.30am-12.30pm – Finding Simplicity in the Complexity: An Introduction to Meditation From the Perspective of Zen

Saturday 1st August, 2.30-5.30pm – Meditations for Developing the Language of Your Shadow Self – A Three Hour Workshop

Friday 14th August, 7.30-9pm –  Integral Meditation Session @ the Reiki Centre


Integral Meditation Asia

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Letting Ideas Grow Mindfully Though You

Dear Integral Meditators,

Why meditate? One reason worth thinking about is that it is a way of keeping yourself creatively energized by learning to tap into deeper levels of our collective consciousness. The article below explores this theme…

Two workshops in Singapore this Saturday, details are immediately below!

In the spirit of

Toby


Letting Ideas Grow Mindfully Though You

“If we surrendered to earths intelligence, we would rise up rooted, like trees” – R.M Rilke

A few people have remarked to me recently how substantial my article and blog output seems to be week-in week-out. They wondered how I keep it up, don’t I run out of ideas? The answer to that question is that no, I almost never find myself short of ideas. I normally have to choose what to write on from 4-5 creative ideas that are present in my mind at any given time. In this article I want to put down a few reasons as to why my creative energy doesn’t run out, and how this relates to meditation & mindfulness practice. With this in mind here are a few points and pointers.

The mediators view of the body-mind is the opposite to most conventional ideas. Rather than our mind being in our body, and specifically in our brain, experienced meditators start to realize that in many ways his/her body is in her mind. The mind is not limited to the body, and has access to a vast amount of creative energy and information that is outside of the individual body and brain. More than this, each of our individual minds are networked into what you might think of as a Universal mind or intelligence, in somewhat the same way computers are all linked to the internet.
This Universal or ‘Big’ mind (I’m using a convenient, simplistic term for something obviously deep and complex here) seeks people to grow and express its ideas through; people whose individual minds are open, receptive, balanced and resilient, and who are motivated to make a contribution to the betterment of the world.
In this sense you might think of yourself as an individual as being like the soil and sunlight in which an idea from the Universal Mind can grow like a plant. If you look at it this way you can see that the idea is not ‘yours’, it has a life of its own, you are just the caretaker and gardener for the idea to grow and enter the outer world.

Meditation – Becoming a terminal for the Universal mind
Looking at it this way you might think of meditation as like connecting a computer to the internet; when you sit still and go within you connect your own mind (the computer) with the Universal Mind (the internet) and consciously allow the Universal Mind to start ‘downloading’ creative ideas into your mind. Some of those ideas will be ideas that you have a unique ability to grow in the garden of your own mind (cue analogy shift back to gardens/plants!), for example I get a lot of ideas relating to meditation and mindfulness because I am already an expert in that domain; my ‘small mind’ is ideal soil and light for new ideas about meditation practice to grow through.

What ideas want to grow through you?
Imagine yourself sitting in a beautiful garden; it is the garden of your own mind. Set your intention; what type of creative ideas do you want to open up to? Business? Art? Relationships? With this intention relax and still your mind deeply as you sit in the inner garden of your mind. Stilling your mind with intention is like connecting it to the ‘internet’ of the Universal Mind. Patiently and without hurrying observe what sort of ideas, images, memories and intuitions start to ‘pop out’ of the stillness; what creative inspirations start to weave their way into the quietness of your garden. This stage is a bit like fishing (I know, yet another analogy!), it kind of like you just sit still and wait for a bite. You can’t push for it or try and control it.

Be playful, patient, be confident! – Once some ideas start to grow through you, how will you continue to grow them? How much time are you prepared to commit? What type of sacrifices are you prepared to make? As the ‘gardener’ it’s up to you how much you nurture your plants, but the more you do the more you’ll find that you are never ever short of creative inspiration in your life and work!

© Toby Ouvry 2015, 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


Upcoming Courses at Integral Meditation Asia:

JULY & AUGUST 
Saturday 18th July, 9.30am-12.30pm – Growing Your Mindful Freedom – The Essential Meditation of the Buddha: A Three Hour Meditation Workshop

Saturday 18th July, 2.30-5.30 pm – Mindful Resilience – Sustaining effectiveness, happiness and clarity under pressure through meditation and mindfulness – A Three Hour Workshop

Wenesday July 22nd 7.30-9pm – Integral Meditation Session @ Basic Essence – Meditating with your inner strength of heart & mind

Wednesday July 29th 7.30-9pm – Integral Meditation Session @ Basic Essence – Meditation for connecting to a positive attitude

Saturday 1st August, 9.30am-12.30pm – Finding Simplicity in the Complexity: An Introduction to Meditation From the Perspective of Zen

Saturday 1st August, 2.30-5.30pm – Meditations for Developing the Language of Your Shadow Self – A Three Hour Workshop

Friday 14th August, 7.30-9pm –  Integral Meditation Session @ the Reiki Centre


Integral Meditation Asia

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

 

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Five Ways of Mindfully Cultivating Your Inner Peace

Dear Integral Meditators,

The article below examines five mindful ways in which we can cultivate our inner peace. If you work with them together, then you end up with a practice of inner peace made more resilient by the diversity of its sources. If you enjoy it and are in Singapore then you might consider the Mindful Resilience workshop on the 18th July.
Quick reminder of the Mindful Benevolence online class that remains on offer until the 14th July.

In the spirit of inner peace,

Toby


Five Ways of Mindfully Cultivating Your Inner Peace

Much of our efforts in life are directed towards finding peace of mind, to be able to relax and feel at ease. Here are five mindful ways in which we can cultivate our inner peace. If you work with them together, then you end up with a practice of inner peace made more resilient by the diversity of its sources.

The peace of tranquillity – This is the peace of connecting to places and activities that are tranquil, and help us feel calm. Quiet places in our home or working environment or places in nature that we can spend time in regularly. Just by connecting to the tranquil energy of these places and being present to them we can increase our own experience of inner peace.

The peace of awareness – Rather than focusing on the contents of our busy mind, the activity of our environment or our personal challenges we can sit and focus on the experience of awareness itself, which is always open, spacious and possess and abundance of peaceful not-in-a-hurryness.

The peace of accepting what is (& the peace of having done what you can) – “Today, despite both of our best efforts I was not able to meet my friend in town. We both tired our best, and really wanted to, but for one reason or another it just did not come off.” Accepting what is: that we were not able to meet, and that we did all we could, that is we tried to fix it but it did not happen is the peace of accepting what is and that you have done what you could.
Without this type of clarity it is very easy for our peace of mind to be destroyed by the ‘what if’s’ of our life.

The peace of being enough – This is the peace of being happy with who you are, and not having to continually prove your worthiness to yourself or to other people. It does not mean that you are not trying to improve yourself, but it does mean that you are basically secure in your self-image, you are enough, and so there is room to rest at ease.

The peace of self-efficacy – “I don’t know what challenges will come in my business over the next month, but I have confidence in my ability to meet those challenges effectively, and/or learn how to solve the problems that come up.” The peace of self-efficacy ace arises from your faith in yourself and the effectiveness of your abilities. It is the peace that comes from the confidence in your ability to learn and adapt in the way you need to in order to deal with what arises.

The Peace of Playfulness – This is the peace that comes from asserting your right to be playful in life. It is the peace that comes from taking things lightly, flexibly and easily. It’s not that you don’t know how to apply seriousness; it’s just that it is continually balanced by the peace of a playful mindset.

© Toby Ouvry 2015, 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


Upcoming Courses at Integral Meditation Asia 1st July-1st August:

Saturday 18th July, 9.30am-12.30pm – Growing Your Mindful Freedom – The Essential Meditation of the Buddha: A Three Hour Meditation Workshop

Saturday 18th July, 2.30-5.30 pm – Mindful Resilience – Sustaining effectiveness, happiness and clarity under pressure through meditation and mindfulness – A Three Hour Workshop

Wenesday July 22nd 7.30-9pm – Integral Meditation Session @ Basic Essence – Meditating with your inner strength of heart & mind

Wednesday July 29th 7.30-9pm – Integral Meditation Session @ Basic Essence – Meditation for connecting to a positive attitude

Saturday 1st August, 9.30am-12.30pm – Finding Simplicity in the Complexity: An Introduction to Meditation From the Perspective of Zen

Saturday 1st August, 2.30-5.30pm – Meditations for Developing the Language of Your Shadow Self – A Three Hour Workshop

Friday 14th August, 7.30-9pm –  Integral Meditation Session @ the Reiki Centre


Integral Meditation Asia

 

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Online Class & Free 5min Audio: Meditating on Benevolence – Yours Sense of Inner Wealth

Dear Integral Meditators,

I’ve been thinking for a little while now about how to create an inexpensive way in which people can participate in the Integral Meditation Asia meditation & mindfulness experience online from anywhere in the world.

Below is the first of what I am planning will be a series of monthly meditation offerings for people to participate in! Scroll down to read further details & to listen to the free five minute meditation.

Up until July 14th it will be on a special launch offer price of Sing$15.

In the spirit of the journey,

Toby


Online Class: Meditating on Benevolence – Yours Sense of Inner Wealth

Types of class: This is a class available online, upon payment you will be sent the download links for the MP3 recordings and other class materials.

In a sentence: Combine relaxation and focus with the cultivation of benevolence, or your sense of big-heartedness and inner wealth

More details: The main content of this class is a 45 minute meditation where you will be guided through a process that helps you to

  • Connect to and cultivate the feeling of benevolence within your body, heart & mind
  • Enhance that experience of benevolence by connecting to your own personal symbols, images and role-models of benevolence
  • Further strengthen & grow your benevolence by receiving and giving benevolence to significant others in your life
  • Focus on ways in which you can integrate benevolence into your daily life & actions in a practical way

Listen to a free five minute sample of the class meditation:

Giving and Receiving Benevolence 5 minute sample

In addition to the main recording you will receive:

  • A short 12 minute ‘essential meditation’ on benevolence to help you continue integrating benevolence into your daily life
  • A PDF mindmap summary of the practices in the class & written article on benevolence entitled ‘Benevolence – Your Big Heartedness’.

The cost: Up until July 14th launch price of Sing$15  (US$11, UK£7 equivalent)
At the end of July 14th the price will go up to Sing$20.

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE THE MEDITATION ON BENEVOLENCE CLASS

Note: Please allow 24hours from the purchase date for the class to be sent to you


Upcoming Courses at Integral Meditation Asia:

Click HERE for the July schedule of classes at IMA


Integral Meditation Asia

 

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Calm Excitement

Dear Integral Meditators,

What if you were able to enter into a state of mind where your sense of inner calm enhanced your experience of excitement in life, and your excitement was madfe more enjoyable by combining it with calm? The article below explains how!

Yours in the spirit of calm excitment,

Toby


Calm Excitement

One of the principles of integral meditation and mindfulness  is the bringing together of different, contrasting qualities within ourself into complementary wholes. In this article we will have a look at calmness and excitement.

For many people the experience of being calm or excited is very much an either/or proposition; either I feel excited in a non-calm, non-reflective way or they I feel calm in an inactive way.
What we are going to try and do in the exercise I outline below is to combining our capacity for ease, calm & relaxation with our experience of aliveness, excitement & engagement in life. We will do it in four steps:

1. Mindfully generating calm
Recall a time or a place where you have felt calm, at ease and relaxed. It might be a landscape that when you recall it helps you to connect to that feeling, or a time in your life when you really felt connected to the experience of calm. As you connect to that experience of calm, bring the energy of it into your heart and your body as well as your mind, so that as you breathe all three of these dimensions of your being feel connected to the calm.

2. Mindfully connecting to excitement                                                                               
Now recall a time when you were enjoyably excited or exhilarated. This could be intellectually, emotionally, sexually, spiritually, physically or a combination of these. Connect to the memory, person  or thing, allowing yourself to feel the excitement consciously in your body, mind and heart, noting the different ways in which these different parts of you experience the excitement.

3. Consciously combining the two
Having worked with excitement and calm separately, now work to mindfully combine the two; imagine being excited in a way where a part of you is still connected to a dimension of calm. Then emphasize the experience of being calm whilst at the same time inviting excitement, aliveness and engagement into that space. Become familiar with what it feels like to hold calm and excitement together in your body, mind and heart in a way where they are mutually enhancing and supporting each other rather than contradicting or fighting against  each other.

4. Taking it into your daily life
With the experience of the above three stages you can then go about practicing bringing calm excitement into your daily activities, for example:

  • When you are in an emotionally charged conversation
  • When you are excited and want to prolong the experience in an enjoyable and sustainable way
  • When you feel your excitement is controlling you, you can emphasize calm to bring yourself back into benevolent control of what you are experiencing
  • When you feel your calm is moving toward inertia or boredom you can use your excitement to revitalize your experience

The overall goal of this exercise is to mindfully learn to derive more meaningful fun from our life and the experiences that we come across using this conscious combination of calm and excitment. What situation can you bring your own practice of calm excitement to today?

© Toby Ouvry 2015, 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


Upcoming Courses at Integral Meditation Asia in July:

Click HERE for the July schedule of classes at IMA


New I-Awake Meditation Technology Track: Turning In ~ Ambient Meditations

…relax into deep states of relaxation, de-stressing to the slow drumbeats and nature sounds embedded with binaural frequencies…from Deep Dub composer, Nadja Lind.
On special launch price offer up until 7th July click link to listen to the free demo track and find out more!: goo.gl/jSZTCd

 

 


Integral Meditation Asia

 

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Breaking Like a Wave (plus new ‘Turning-In’ meditation track)

Dear Integral Meditators,
Often we find ourselves struggling in our life to ‘keep it together’, but what if we were to learn how to ‘break apart’ in order to come back together effortlessly and easily? This is one of the main benefits of skillful meditation, and it is what the article below explores.

There is a new I-Awake track out called ‘Turning In‘ which I’ve been really enjoying over the last few days since it has come out. Scroll down below for more details. If your wondering what meditation technology is all about, then see my page on it here.

In the spirit of the breaking wave,

Toby


Breaking Like a Wave

A wave; breaking and coming together
A wave arises from the ocean, making its way toward the shore. When it breaks it is completely broken apart on the shore, but because it is made of water, after it has been broken it simply comes back together again and absorbs back into the ocean with no harm done.

Resistance to breaking
In our daily life when we feel stressed out and close to breaking, we instinctively resist the feeling of being broken, the feelings of confusion, of fragmentation, of uncertainty. We cling to our mental structures and habits tightly as a way of avoiding being broken.

Meditation and the mind
The way of meditation (or one way of meditation) is to cease resisting this feeling of our mind being being broken apart and instead relax into it; allow mind to break apart temporarily, like a wave breaking apart on the beach. By relaxing our mind and allowing its structures to be broken apart, we allow it to become peaceful and enter into a space of letting go. Then, gradually and without struggle our mind then starts to gather itself together and regenerate itself, like a wave gathering back into the sea in order to be re-formed. Our mind is like water, if you relax and let it break apart for a while, then it will start to come back together again naturally and without a struggle. But this can only happen if you really let go and relax, which is one of the main points of meditation; it allows us to effortlessly and ergonomically recover our sanity amidst the repeated stresses and strains of our wold.

Being a wave
Imagine yourself at a beach that you know, watching the waves rise and be broken upon the shore, then absorbing back into the ocean. Then imagine yourself as one of those waves, rising, breaking apart upon the shore, and then coming back together again as it flows back into the sea. Practise arising, letting go and relaxing as you break and then finally flowing effortlessly back to a state of union with the sea. Now you are meditating.

Related article: A Mind Like Water

© Toby Ouvry 2015, 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


Upcoming Courses at Integral Meditation Asia in May:

Click HERE for the July schedule of classes at IMA



New I-Awake Meditation Technology Track: Turning In
 ~ Ambient Meditations

…relax into deep states of relaxation, de-stressing to the slow drumbeats and nature sounds embedded with binaural frequencies…from Deep Dub composer, Nadja Lind.
On special launch price offer up until 7th July click link to listen to the free demo track and find out more!: goo.gl/jSZTCd


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Humble Self-Assertion

It is important to cultivate the quality of humility, but it is important not to mistake it for negative self-effacement.

Humility is based upon an accurate picture of ourselves as just one human being whose wishes and needs exist within the context of the needs and wishes of others. Based upon a healthy, positive self-image and self concept, humility enables us to act kindly, gently and discreetly, placing the needs and visibility of others before us where appropriate.
Negative self-effacement is when we impulsively place ourself in the lowest position, or give up our wishes and needs in the face of others because we basically have a low self-opinion, or we crave approval from others (and fear their disapproval), or we judge all self-assertion to be egotism,  or we don’t really feel we deserve to be happy and fulfilled.

It is also important to be self-assertive, which is a very different thing from being negatively egotistical.
Self-assertiveness  encourages us to know what we want and why we want it. Healthy self-assertion enables us to communicate clearly and non-ambiguously to others our desires, and to act powerfully and enthusiastically to fulfill them. To be positively self-assertive implies that we are also aware of the needs and wishes of others, and:

  1. Are able to practice genuine consideration for the needs and wishes of others when pursuing our own goals
  2. Will robustly advocate the healthy needs and wishes of others as well as our own

In contrast to positive self-assertion, negative egotism is where the only perspective that we are able to take on our world is ‘me and mine’. For the negative egotist other people are simply not important, the world exists to fulfill their wishes and needs. For the negative egotist their own infantile needs and wishes need to be fulfilled at all costs.

One reason why self-assertiveness has a bad name is that it is only the negative egotists who are really pushing and shouting for what they want; we see negative egotism, mistake it for self-assertion and come to the conclusion that any form of self-assertion is bad.

Assertion with humility
So, what we are aiming for here is to mindfully:

  • Like and enjoy who we are but be humble in our interactions with others, avoiding the trap of negative egotism
  • Whilst being humble be clear about what we want in any given situation, communicating our wishes and aspirations clearly, and acting to fulfill them. Where appropriate we also encourage others to think about what they really want and to assert that wish appropriately.

With mindfulness we can learn to be humble and charismatic, self-confident and quiet, colourful and considerate, passionate and calm.

What situation in your life can you start practising humble self-assertion today?

© Toby Ouvry 2015, 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


Upcoming Courses at Integral Meditation Asia in June/July/August:

Saturday 27th June, 2.30-5.30pm – The Call of the Wild–Meditations for Deepening Your Inner Connection to the Animal Kingdom and the Green-world

JULY & AUGUST

Saturday 18th July, 9.30am-12.30pm – Growing Your Mindful Freedom – The Essential Meditation of the Buddha: A Three Hour Meditation Workshop
Saturday 18th July, 2.30-5.30 pm – Mindful Resilience – Sustaining effectiveness, happiness and clarity under pressure through meditation and mindfulness – A Three Hour Workshop
Wenesday July 22nd 7.30-9pm – Integral Meditation Session @ Basic Essence – Meditating with your inner strength of heart & mind
Wednesday July 29th 7.30-9pm – Integral Meditation Session @ Basic Essence – Meditation for connecting to a positive attitude

AUGUST

Saturday 1st August, 9.30am-12.30pm – Finding Simplicity in the Complexity: An Introduction to Meditation From the Perspective of Zen
Saturday 1st August, 2.30-5.30pm – Meditations for Developing the Language of Your Shadow Self – A Three Hour Workshop
Friday 14th August, 7.30-9pm –  Integral Meditation Session @ the Reiki Centre


Integral Meditation Asia

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Wolf Therapy – The Subtle Dimensions of Meditation and the Mind

Dear Integral Meditators,

What if there were an endlessly creative and imaginative aspect of your mind that you could learn to tap into at will? The article below explores how you can discover this domain by developing the the subtle dimension of your meditation practice.

The meditation workshop this Saturday afternoon is an exploration of this subtle, imaginal domain of meditation:  The Call of the Wild–Meditations for Deepening Your Inner Connection to the Animal Kingdom and the Green-world

Last calls also for tomorrows  Wednesday Evening Meditation Session on Benevolence, and the Mindful Self-Confidence workshop this Saturday morning.

In the spirit of the imaginal world,

Toby


Wolf Therapy – The Subtle Dimensions of Meditation and the Mind

Normally we think about our mind as being in our body. For many people this is further reduced to our mind being our brain. Whilst it is true that our brain acts as the interface between our mind and our physical body, a meditators perspective is that it is really the body that is in the mind. The mind is not limited by the physical body and can extend itself naturally and easily beyond the physical body.

Three levels of meditation
In meditation we practice three levels of awareness:

  • Outer world awareness – Awareness of the physical-sensory experience we have of our outer world, and the everyday discursive thoughts and human emotions that come with it
  • Inner world awareness – Awareness of the inner worlds of our imagination, and dreams together with the subtle bodies, energies, thoughts and feelings we may experience there
  • Formless awareness – Awareness of the dimension of consciousness that lies beyond form, or time or space; the formless timeless dimension of the mind

The subtle, inner world or imaginal dimension
The second dimension of meditative awareness attunes us to the level of our experience where we dream and imagine. The subtle or dream world it turns out is a series of inner worlds, somewhat like our outer world, where we can explore landscapes, meet other people and creatures, make discoveries, learn and do research and generally enjoy our inner life in a healthy way. To live there and enjoy its riches is something that a child is quite naturally able to do, but adults end to get it whipped out of them by the time they leave school, or have it warped out of shape, which is a shame. Creative forms of meditation enable us to get back in touch with our inner world and begin travelling again.

An example: Wolf Therapy
As a seasoned integral meditator, every day I have numerous experiences in the inner world. Actually, you do to, but you may not be aware of them, or be unable to distinguish them from the ‘everyday noise’ in your head. Some are when I am fully conscious in daily life, others are in dreams, and others are in meditation. Here is one example from my journal:
‘I am lying down in meditation. I detect an imbalanced energy in my sacral area that starts to throb with pain as I become aware of it. I request help, specifically from my inner world animal guides. I almost immediately sense a she-wolf lying on top of me with a male wolf to my right side by my head.
The she wolf has her genital area above my belly button, I feel her healing energy flowing into my sacral area as a gentle warmth. The male wolf next to me is ‘talking’ to me about how to deal with my current challenges, how to be ‘happy foraging and seeking’ as he puts it. It seems he is working with me on my mindset! I arise from the experience feeling energetically balanced in my sacral area, and with a new mental approach to my circumstances.’

Becoming a conscious daydreamer
There are many ways to get back in touch with the inner world again and start to enjoy it, but one simple way to start is just by becoming more aware of the ideas, images, landscapes and characters that drift in and out of your awareness during the day and pay attention to them; being alert to the significance that they may have. Become a conscious or mindful daydreamer.

Related articles: Three Dimensions of Mindful Daydreaming
From Distraction to Intuitive Imagination (Meditation secrets for running a business)

© Toby Ouvry 2015, 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


Upcoming Courses at Integral Meditation Asia in May:

JUNE 2015

Wednesday, June 24th 7.30-9pm  – Integral Meditation Session @ Basic Essence – Meditating on benevolence & inner wealth

Saturday 27th June 9.30am-12.30pm – Mindful Self Confidence – Developing your self-confidence, self-belief & self-trust through mindfulness & meditation

Saturday 27th June, 2.30-5.30pm – The Call of the Wild–Meditations for Deepening Your Inner Connection to the Animal Kingdom and the Green-world

July schedule coming soon!


Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *
Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology
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When Vulnerability Ceases to be a Problem – Three levels of self-confidence

Dear Integral Meditators,

If you look back at the key times in your life when you really did something that helped your self confidence, you may find that it was a time when you had to confront your own sense of vulnerability. The article below looks at how we can mindfully approach our vulnerability on three levels, each of which enables us to grow our self confidence consistently.

I have a related workshop coming up on Sat 27th June for those in Singapore who may be interested – Mindful Self-Confidence – Developing your self-confidence, self-belief & self-trust through meditation & mindfulness

In the spirit if confident vulnerability,

Toby


When Vulnerability Ceases to be a Problem – Three levels of self-confidence

Vulnerability – The feeling that we are threatened or at risk in some way.

Will people like the work I do? Am I attractive enough? What if I take a chance and the person says no, or even laughs of acts repulsed by what I do? What if I look foolish? What if they think I’m too old? We can feel vulnerable in many and varied ways in our life. What are the times, places and scenarios you meet that tend to trigger it most strongly? (Pause here for a moment if you like and sit with the question).

If we have a bad relationship with our sense of vulnerability, then it can undermine our quality of life and self confidence. If we cultivate a mindfully positive relationship with vulnerability then it can help us develop our self-confidence and playful creativity every time it arises. When vulnerability ceases to be a problem, we start to thrive on the possibilities that it offers us.
We will look at dealing with vulnerability on three levels; coping, accepting and thriving.

Coping
At this fist stage we feel vulnerable, but we ‘shut it out’ temporarily so that it does not sabotage what we are trying to do. Let’s say I am about to give a talk to a group of people, I feel nervous and vulnerable. To cope with this I ‘block’ the feelings of vulnerability and focus on something I can control; my awareness of my body, the lines I have rehearsed and so on. By temporarily blocking in this way I am able to deliver my speech with basic competence without my vulnerability sabotaging me. Like this we learn to cope with our vulnerability.

Accepting
With this second stage we are able to open to and accept our feelings of vulnerability such that they do not sabotage our actions, we can open to and breathe with our vulnerability, relaxing into it. To take the example of giving a speech; as I stand before my audience I am able to accept my vulnerability as I stand there without having to block it out. This then enables me to open to the attention of the audience, gain a sense of where they are at and flow with the experience of giving a speech in a way that offers greater personal enjoyment and self-confidence. It also enables me to extend greater empathy and attention to my audience and perhaps give a better speech than I would have done if I was merely ‘coping’ with my vulnerability.

Thriving
At this third stage we are at a level of working with our vulnerability where the sense of the risk that we are taking is comfortable to us. When we sense our vulnerability we become excited by the creative possibilities in our situation. We are relaxed enough to improvise and thrive off the opportunity of our vulnerability. In the example of the giving the speech, as I stand before my audience I feel excited by the uncertainty of what will happen, I feel confident to enough to speak from the heart and/or to ad-lib as appropriate. I feel open and conscious of the energy and attention of my audience and thrive on working with it consciously. Vulnerability has ceased to be a problem and has become an opportunity to thrive, to grow and to become more self confident within myself.

If we know what these three levels of working with vulnerability are, then a different times and in different situations we can use whatever level feels appropriate. If we are not feeling super confident, then we can focus on coping. When we are more relaxed we can try practice accepting. As we develop our competence and confidence we can gradually set our intention to work with level three – thriving.

Block, accept or thrive. Which area of your own life could you start mindfully working with the three levels of vulnerability today?

Related Articles: Moving From Anxiety to Excitement
Your Long Term Self-Confidence

© Toby Ouvry 2015, 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


Upcoming Courses at Integral Meditation Asia in May:

JUNE 2015

Wednesday, June 24th 7.30-9pm  – Integral Meditation Session @ Basic Essence – Meditating on benevolence & inner wealth

Saturday 27th June 9.30am-12.30pm – Mindful Self-Confidence – Developing your self-confidence, self-belief & self-trust through meditation & mindfulness

Saturday 27th June, 2.30-5.30pm – The Call of the Wild–Meditations for Deepening Your Inner Connection to the Animal Kingdom and the Green-world

 


Integral Meditation Asia

 

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Benevolence – Your Big-Heartedness

Dear Integral Meditators,

What if, when under the pressure of your daily life your heart was able to remain strong, generous & open? The article below explores benevolence as a way of moving from coping to thriving in your life.

In the spirit of benevolence,

Toby


Benevolence – Your Big-Heartedness

Benevolence, or big heartedness as I’d like to look at it in this article means that you have a sense that you have the inner wealth and resources to give and to be generous, both to yourself and others. To feel benevolence in yourself is to sit down, look within and find a sense of open, comfortable plentiful-ness in your heart.

Struggling to cope, running on empty
The opposite of benevolence is what you might call negative emptiness. You look within yourself and sense a lonely, empty space, a vacuum that cries out to be comforted and healed. Within this empty space it feels like there is nothing that we can give.
Quite often when we are struggling to cope with all the busyness and demands in our life we feel as if we are ‘running on empty’; we want to shut down and cut ourselves off from the incessant demands of our world, and our sense of benevolence disappears under the pressure and the demands that we feel are put upon us.

Consciously cultivating benevolence
To mindfully develop benevolence we need to make an effort to actually feel it experientially in our body, mind and heart each day, and then to practice holding it consciously when we feel under pressure, when we feel tired, when we feel hard done by. To stay benevolent and (wisely) big hearted even when experiencing difficulties sends a very strong message to ourselves ‘I am inwardly strong, I am inwardly wealthy, I am adequate to the challenges of my life, I can even thrive on them.’

Receiving and giving benevolence
Right now you have friends and family members and others close to you who are extending their benevolence and kind heartedness to you. You can strengthen your own benevolence simply by inwardly receiving and giving benevolence to this close circle of connections that you have. You can do it as a simple exercise; visualizing  your loved ones around you, and practising giving and receiving benevolence.

Benevolence and enlightenment
One of the simplest ways of understanding enlightenment is that it is simply the change in the energy flow of a person. An ‘unenlightened’ person feels emptiness inside and seeks to fill that emptiness by taking energy from his/her environment or other people. An enlightened person feels as if he or she has an abundance of energy to give from within, and seeks ways in which s/he can give that in a benevolent way to others and to their environment.

Benevolence and saying ‘no’
Just because you are benevolent does not mean that you allow yourself to be stepped on by other people because you are so kind you don’t know how to say no. Indeed, having a sense of inner benevolence and wellbeing helps us to overcome our compulsive need for the approval of others, and so as and when appropriate we can say no to people, even if it displeases them.

Questions for cultivating your own benevolence:
When have you felt benevolent in the past? What was the experience like?
Which people that you know in your life are benevolence role models whom you can observe and learn from?
What symbols or images embody benevolence for you?
If you were to make benevolence a conscious practice for the rest of your day today, what differences in your quality of life and actions might you notice?

Related articles: Meditating on Enlightened Love the Easy Way
Love as the Journey Towards Wholeness; Three Awareness Perspectives

© Toby Ouvry 2015, 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


Upcoming Courses at Integral Meditation Asia in May:

JUNE 2015

Wednesday, June 24th 7.30-9pm  – Integral Meditation Session @ Basic Essence – Meditating on benevolence & inner wealth

Saturday 27th June 9.30am-12.30pm – Mindful Self Confidence – Developing your self-confidence, self-belief & self-trust through mindfulness & meditation

Saturday 27th June, 2.30-5.30pm – The Call of the Wild–Meditations for Deepening Your Inner Connection to the Animal Kingdom and the Green-world

July schedule coming soon!


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