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Insight Meditation Integral Awareness Integral Meditation Meditation and Psychology Mindful Resilience Mindful Self-Leadership

Don’t Let Difficult Feelings Become Negative Thoughts

Dear Integral Meditators,

When you are feeling bad, its easy to think negative. The article below explains how to use mindfulness to stop difficult feelings becoming negative thoughts in your mind.

In the spirit of the journey,

Toby


Don’t Let Difficult Feelings Become Negative Thoughts

At the moment I have jet lag, which means that I wake up feeling groggy and dis-oriented, and when I lie down to sleep I have been spending some hours wide awake. The dis-orientation from the jet lag produces a lot of difficult, turgid, feelings which, if I let them could very quickly start to produce negative thoughts, which in turn would start to generate full blown negative emotions. So, here my basic object of mindfulness is to be attentive to the fact that I am experiencing a lot of difficult feelings in my body due to the jetlag, and simply focus on noting them as feelings, and not letting them escalate into something else. This is the basic practice of not letting difficult feelings become negative emotions.

Similarly, if I am with someone who is irritated or upset, and they start to direct it at me, then I experience a difficult or unpleasant feeling as a result. If I don’t watch out, then I’m going to find my mind creating a lot of negative thinking around that feeling and the other person’s action, so I will suffer more than I need to, and may do something that I regret.

There are many other situations where we may find difficult energy around us:

  • On the commute home when there is a lot of ambient irritability in the minds and bodies of the commuters
  • When things aren’t going our way at work or in our relationships
  • When we are ill or fatigued
  • When we are upset or anxious regarding change or uncertainty
  • When we feel disapproved of by ourself or others

The list goes on, but the main thing is that if we can catch difficult feelings and energies within us early enough through mindfulness, then we can save ourself a lot of pain by making a conscious choice not to let difficult energies we face trigger negative thinking.

Awareness of feelings and energies
A lot of progress in this art and discipline involves simply greater awareness of the energies and feelings that you are experiencing in the moment. What you are aware of you can start to exert benevolent control over, what you are not aware of can easily mushroom into a cloud of negativity before you really know it. So a really basic mindfulness exercise is simply to ask yourself regularly ‘How am I feeling?’ and use this question to direct your awareness mindfully to what is there in the present moment.

Difficult feelings need only be that, they don’t need to become negative thoughts.
© Toby Ouvry 2014, 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

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Riding the Waves of the Mind

Dear Integral Meditators,

What does it really mean to be in control of your mind and emotions? The article below explores the image of our emotions as waves, and offers mindful perspective on how we can use this image to relax into and enjoy both the highs and the lows of our inner life. Enjoy!

Last call for this Saturday’s Meditation and Mindfulness for Self-Healing  Workshop, if you are curious about what  mindful self-healing entails, then do have a read of my article Three Levels of Mindful Healing.

In the spirit of waves,

Toby


Riding the Waves of the Mind

Our emotions come from many different sources, sometimes it seems like we are in control of our emotions and feelings; they behave predictably and respond to our efforts to stay in control, but at other times they seem to be completely unpredictable and fly in the face of our efforts at control.

Often our attempt to control our mind and emotions involves trying to hold onto pleasant emotions, thoughts and feelings, and running away from or blocking negative/feelings/thoughts. One slightly more skillful way of learning to navigate the changeability of our mind and feelings is to simply learn to relax into whatever thoughts or feelings that we have, riding them like waves on an ocean. From the point of view of this image and method, our ‘negative’ thoughts/feelings and experiences are like the low troughs of the waves on the ocean. Out ‘positive’ thoughts/feelings/experiences are like the crests or high points of the waves.

We are like a rider on a small boat or surfboard bobbing up and down on the waves of our mind; sometimes we find ourself riding a crest, other times we find ourselves down in a trough. The main thing is to pay attention to the movement, keep balanced and learn to relax into the motion as we go up and down; if you are in a trough, just keep relaxed and balanced and after a while you will find yourself rising up again as the waves move. If you are on the crest of a ‘happy’ wave, ride that and enjoy it, relax into it, keeping balanced so that when it changes again and you start going down, you can do so smoothly and easily.

Our emotions, like waves are elemental and wild in their power. In the same way that a skilled sailor can harness the power of the sea by relaxing and working with it, so we can learn to harness the power of our mind and emotions and by relaxing and working with the energy we find there each day.

Mindful Exercise:
You are on a small boat in the open ocean, rising and falling with the waves. It doesn’t matter whether you are on the crest of the wave (emotional high)  or in a trough (emotional low), just keep relaxed, balanced and work with the energy of the waves rather than against it.

Related article: Breaking like a wave
Meditating on the inner weather of our mind

© 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 

Every Wednesday, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation Classes at Basic Essence with Toby

Saturday 29th August, 9.30am-12.30pm – Meditation and Mindfulness for Self-Healing and Creating High Levels of Energy

SEPTEMBER

Saturday 12th September, 9.30am-12.30pm – Mindfulness and Meditation For Creating a Mind of Ease, Relaxed Concentration

Saturday 12th September, 2.30-5.30pm Mindful Dreaming – Meditation Practices for Integrating Conscious Dreaming into Your Daily Life

 


Integral Meditation Asia

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Integral Awareness Meditation and Psychology Mindfulness Motivation and scope Uncategorized

What is Mindfulness? (Hint – you are doing it already!)

Dear Integral Meditators,

If someone asked you ‘what is mindfulness’, how would you reply? The article below offers one working definition of mindfulness and how we can start practically applying it to our daily life.

In the spirit of the art of mindfulness,

Toby


What is Mindfulness? (Hint – you are doing it already!)

A definition of mindfulness
I had a conversation the other day with a lady who felt she did not know what mindfulness is. I responded to her that she was already doing it. She asked my why? I told her “When I was a monk the first definition of mindfulness that I learned was that it is an ‘all accompanying mental factor, who’s function is to remember its object’.”
That sounds like a bit a mouthful right? Actually it is quite simple; when we are doing something, mindfulness is that part of our mind that remembers and recalls what we are doing without forgetting it. For example:

  • If I am cooking an omelette, without mindfulness to help me remember what I am doing, after I have cracked and whisked the eggs I will forget my task, and wonder off to do something else, leaving no omelette!
  • If I am in the middle of a conversation, mindfulness helps me hold and remember what we are talking about. Without mindfulness I would forget mid conversation, which would be both embarrassing and impractical.

So from this we can see that we all have some basic mindfulness, indeed without it we would not be able to function at all.

The Art of Mindfulness
Someone who is a mindfulness practitioner then is someone who is interested in increasing both their quality of life and their personal effectiveness by developing and refining their mindfulness in different areas for example:

  • By being mindful of the good things that happen to me in my life I can enjoy and appreciate them more
  • By being mindful of difficult emotions I can learn to manage them better
  • By communicating mindfully I can help people understand what I want of them more clearly
  • By being mindful of my sport I can learn better how to improve

Mindfulness and meditation
Meditation is ‘a mind that focuses on a positive object – an object that when we focus upon it causes us to become happy, balanced, peaceful or otherwise positively oriented’.
In meditation we use mindfulness to focus; if we keep forgetting what we are doing then our meditation won’t be very effective because we will keep dropping or losing our object!
Mindfulness enables us to place our attention on our meditation and hold it there without forgetting.

The function of mindfulness – Practical learning from life
What is it you want to learn about in your life right now? Once you have selected a subject, formulate a ‘mindful question’ that summarizes your intention. For example:

  • How can I bring more meaning to my work life?
  • What really makes me happy?
  • What would it mean to bring my authentic self into social situations and conversations?

You can see here the list of possible subjects is endless, you just select a topic that is important and meaningful to you.
You then practice holding that question in your daily life, thinking about it, and acting in ways that express the answers that you come up with. If you like you can even sit down for a period of time and practice holding that question in your mind, breathing with it and using it as an object of meditation.
If you do this for a week, you will find that your mindfulness practice using this topic enables you to learn a tremendous amount about yourself and the area you are investigating. And there you have a mindfulness practice all of your own.


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creative imagery Greenworld Meditation Inner vision Integral Meditation Integrating Ego, Soul and Spirit Meditation and Art meditation and creativity Meditation techniques Presence and being present Primal Spirituality Uncategorized

Why Meditate on & with Animals?

I was asked the other day why I continue to guide workshops and classes on meditating with animals, given that to some of my client group it may seem a bit ‘strange’. Here are a few reasons to consider why meditating with animals is of great value, with a short practice at the end to try it out…

We’ve been doing it a long time
Prior to the transcendent spiritual traditions of Buddhism and Hinduism in the ‘east’ and Chrisitianity/Islam in the ‘west’, human beings practiced an earth based spirituality where communion, learning and interaction with animals in the inner world as well as the outer one was a main part of our path to awakening and enlightenment. Our ability to do this type of meditation is long forgotten, but it is in our ‘dna’ so to speak, so most people find they can do it and have significant experiences without too much difficulty.

It re-connects us to parts of ourselves we have lost touch with
Meditating with animals connects us with our animal and instinctive nature in a benevolent way. It encourages us to use our imagination and capacity for inner visioning, and it encourages us to learn in a right brain creative, intuitive and visual way, very different from the way most of us use our minds and brains during the day.

It connects us to environmental awareness
Living in urbanized environment as many of us do it is very easy for us to lose touch with environmental awareness and a love for nature. Meditating with animals helps us recover our relationship to the natural world in an experiential way without literally having to travel outwardly to do so.

It can lead us into deep meditative states
When I lead meditation workshops and classes on meditating with animals, one thing that is always remarkable is the deep states of meditation that people go into during the sessions. People often remark that their sense of time seems to take on a completely different quality. Meditating with animals, landscape and nature can take us into these deep states very quickly and powerfully.

It fun!
Imagining playing and adventuring with animals is the sort of thing children do all the time. Meditating as an adult with animals can have an appropriately rejuvenating effect on our playful and spontaneous side! Meditating with animals helps us to get out of our mind and into a renewed contact with being alive.

How to meditate with animals
A very short but in some ways quite complete methodology for the basics of meditating with animals:
1. Sit down, calm your mind for a short time and set your intention to connect in the spirit of love to animals in the inner world with whom you have a meaningful connection
2. With this intention, imagine yourself in a landscape within nature that you know and love, build it strongly in your inner vision.
3. After a while an animal will come to meet you in this environment. Connect to this animal in whatever way feels appropriate; s/he may want to take you on a journey in the landscape, engage in a communication of some sort, or simply hang out and enjoy the peace and calm with you.
4. When you are ready return back to your body and your outer awareness, seeing the inner environment where you have been fading away.

Related article: Wolf Therapy

© 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 August

Saturday 15th August, 9.30am-12.30pm – Going From Over-whelmed to Over-well: Meditation for Quietening the Mind – a three hour workshop

Saturday 15th August, 2.30-5.30pm – Mindful Self Confidence – Developing your self-confidence, self-belief & self-trust through mindfulness & meditation

August 19th, 7.30-9pm – Integral Meditation Class – Working with our imagination, & the doorway between our inner and outer worlds

August 26th, 7.30-9pm – Integral Meditation Class – Working with subtlety, gracefulness and the inner feminine
Saturday 29th August, 9.30am-12.30pm – Meditation and Mindfulness for Self-Healing and Creating High Levels of Energy

Saturday 29th August, 2.30-5.30pm – Mindful Dreaming – Meditation Practices for Integrating Conscious Dreaming into Your Daily Life


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creative imagery Enlightened Flow Integral Meditation Integrating Ego, Soul and Spirit Life-fullness Motivation and scope Presence and being present Primal Spirituality spiritual intelligence

Deeper Meaning, Meaningless, Deeply Meaningless

Dear Integral Meditors,

What do we mean by ‘spiritual?’ the article below explores the relationship between spirituality as a quest for meaning and spirituality as a discipline that requires going beyond the quest for meaning. You’ll see what i mean when you read it!

In the spirit of the journey,

Toby


Deeper Meaning, Meaningless, Deeply Meaningless

The spiritual path – the quest for meaning
What does ‘spiritual’ and to ‘be spiritual’ actually mean? One definition is that to be spiritual means to reflect deeply and consciously about the meaning of your life, and to to bring that meaningful purpose into reality through your actions. So for example:

  • If you feel strongly connected to parenting, you might feel motivated to create a service or resource through which people can become better parents
  • If you are a businessperson, you might feel motivated to redirect your efforts so that the meaning of your activities becomes to benefit others through your business as well as make money
  • If you are an artist you may feel spiritually motivated to keep working despite the financial obstacles because making art gives spiritual meaning and direction to your life
  • If you are a meditator, your motivation for meditating may mature from simply relaxing to pursing the path of enlightenment

There are of course endless examples…

So here spiritual means living one’s life on purpose and with purpose  as opposed to living it unconsciously and without direction in a meaningless way.
The spiritual path then involves a progression from superficial levels of motivation and direction to gradually deeper and more mature expressions of meaning, which works just fine until we get to the second meaning of spiritual, which is the enlightenment experience.

Deeply meaningless – the enlightenment experience
In this context enlightenment means connecting to the formless, timeless, eternal, ever present dimension of consciousness through meditation and learning to rest ones awareness in this ‘already perfect’ state of awareness. Even if you haven’t done a lot of meditation before, if you simply relax your body, mind and heart deeply you will start to feel this open spacious feeling – that is the thing to which I am referring here, just realized on a much deeper level!
From the point of view of the enlightenment experience, everything is perfect already, so there is really no point in holding onto any ‘deeper meaning’ in life;  ultimately the meaning of life is present, right in front of you! When you connect to the enlightenment experience your life becomes ‘deeply meaningless’; there is nothing to realize and nowhere to go, you are already home and you always have been. To look anywhere other than the ‘Now’ for purpose is meaningless!

Integrating meaningful with deeply meaningless
So then to be integrated in a spiritual way means to bring together your experience of deeper meaning with the ‘deep meaninglessness’;

  • On one level you gradually, reflectively and consistently bring deeper purpose to your life through meaningful and creative action
  • On another level you realize you are, ultimately already where you want to be and there is no higher purpose or meaning other than resting in the formless timeless now!

An analogy – The mud city
In the city of Djenne there is the famous ‘mud mosque’; an elaborate and beautiful building build of mud (see picture above). Building spiritual meaning in your life is like building the mosque – you invest time and effort to build something beautiful. The enlightenment experience is like the mud – It does not matter what stage of the building you are at, the mud is always mud.
In a similar way you can work each day to build spiritual meaning in your life whilst recognizing  and resting in the ‘mud’ of the formless timeless present moment; We can meaningfully go somewhere without going anywhere!

Related article: What Does “Spiritual” Really Mean? (And What it Does Not Mean!)
Related service: Life-fullness coaching with Toby

© 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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Energy Meditation Inner vision Integral Awareness Life-fullness Meditating on the Self Meditation and Psychology Mindful Confidence Mindful Resilience Mindful Self-Leadership Motivation and scope

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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creative imagery Enlightened Flow Essential Spirituality Greenworld Meditation Integral Meditation Life-fullness Meditation and Art Meditation techniques Presence and being present Primal Spirituality Using the Energy of Negative Emotions

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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Awareness and insight Biographical Inner vision Insight Meditation Integral Awareness Meditating on the Self Meditation and Psychology Mindful Resilience Mindful Self-Leadership Mindfulness Presence and being present Shadow meditation

What Happens When You Are Not Afraid of Fear?

Dear Integral Meditators,

What happens if you are not afraid of fear? Actually you could just sit down and ask yourself that question like a zen koan and see where it takes you and get some productive results. But I’ve also written an article on it below!

In the spirit of not being afraid,

Toby


What Happens When You Are Not Afraid of Fear?

Usually we are afraid of being afraid. We don’t like the unpleasantness of the experience, and so as soon as we detect fear in our body and mind we start to fight with it, trying to push it away. This approach gives us only two options:

  • We can continue to resist the fear and thus experience an ongoing inner battle between ourselves and our fear or
  • We can become a victim of the fear, simply being afraid and acting impulsively based around our fearful feelings

A third option is that when we feel fear arising within us we can consciously welcome it into our body-mind with awareness. We can practice watching which part of our body the fear is located, we can observe and be curious about the dialogue that fear initiates in our head. We can extend care to it when it comes into our mind, we can choose to look after it. We can learn to simply be with it, rather than trying to solve it, get rid of it or being a victim of it. If we start to approach our fear in this way with mindful curiosity then gradually we will cease to be come intimidated by our fear. We will start to understand it more, and we will then be able to learn from it.

But what can fear teach me?
If I am afraid to say something to my friend because I am afraid that s/he will disapprove or dislike me for it, then it indicates that I care for the friendship. If I am aware of this fear, and not afraid to work with it, it may also show me that I am too reliant upon the approval of my friend, and that with relationships that are worthwhile and genuine, sometimes it is really important to communicate what you believe in, even if it may not be received that well.
If I am afraid to leave my job because of the uncertainty that will result, that fear is right to the extent that our basic financial security is important. If I can become comfortable with that fear, then I can move beyond it and leave my job, but at the same time I can take appropriate steps to mitigate the risk involved.
If I have a life threatening illness, I can use my fear to take action to maximise my chances of recovery, whilst at the same time not having my present moment quality of life destroyed by anxiety over my future.

When you open to your fear it starts to show you things. Useful things.

Becoming comfortable with our fear offers us freedom of choice, and the option to act intelligently and appropriately to the genuine concerns that our fear is pointing out.

Often I find that the things that I have the most fear around are, quite naturally the things I care about the most; my family and friends, my clients, my work, my health. It’s natural to have fears around these things because I care. If I can become comfortable with the fears that arise from caring, if I am not afraid of those fears, then I can use them as a reminder that I care, and to keep caring all the more.

If you made a choice to try and be, say 10% less afraid of your fears today, what difference would that make to your quality of life? Maybe you can try it today and see…

The curve ball: Many of us are so afraid of our fear already that we have pushed our fear into our unconscious – we literally don’t know we are afraid, and we don’t want to know. Accepting the reality that we are afraid is the first step.

Related article: Recognizing Three Types of Fear, Meditating on three Types of Courage

© 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


Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *
Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology
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A Mind of Ease Enlightened Flow Inner vision Integral Meditation Meditation and Psychology Meditation techniques Mindfulness

Letting Come, Letting Go, Going With the Flow

Dear Integral Meditators,

‘Letting go’  is easy to say, more difficult to do well. The article article presents of a few pointers as to how we can deepen our experience of letting go by combining it with the practice of letting come.

In the spirit of letting come & letting go,

Toby


Letting Come, Letting Go, Going With the Flow

Letting go is perhaps an overused word in meditation and mindfulness circles, but besides  the overuse of the word, letting go remains a very profound  practice with many different levels. This article presents of a few pointers as to how we can deepen our experience of letting go by combining it with the practice of letting come.

You can’t let go of something that you haven’t let come
If you can’t acknowledge that you have been hurt by what someone said, how can you let go of that hurt?
If you can’t acknowledge a desire you have, how can you let go of it (and do you really want to?)
If you can’t open to your feelings of inferiority, there isn’t a real chance you are going to be able to let go of them any time soon (though of course you can bury them deep inside!)
You can’t let go of something that you haven’t acknowledged and accepted that you have in the first place. In this context to ‘let come’ is to acknowledge, accept and experience that you have been hurt, that you desire, that you feel inferior (and so on…); to accept the reality of what you experience. This step of self-honesty is not so that we can indulge that difficult experience; it is so that by accepting it we can start to move through it and let it go.
To acknowledge, to accept, to experience something is to let it come, to open our body, heart and mind to it, to receive it, so that we can then, if we wish to, let it go properly.

Letting come – Acknowledging & enjoying the good
Letting come is also an opening to enjoyment of the good things in life, to its richness, to the abundance of it all. Letting come is to open our heart to all that is going on in our life at any time in order to appreciate it and to live it fully. This type of letting come is a benevolent counterweight to letting go

And in reverse; letting go and letting come
We’ve looked at letting come in order to let go, but we can also practice letting go in order to let come. We can consciously practice letting go of something in our life in order to then open to and invite  new energy and possibilities to come into the space we have created. In this way we practice letting go as a way of letting new experiences, enjoyments and abundance come into our life; by letting go we can then let come!

Letting come, letting go, going with the flow; three simple practices
1. As you breathe in acknowledge a difficult feeling or experience, accept it, let it come into your body-heart and mind. As you breathe out, let it go. Let the experience come, let it go, go with the flow.
2. As you breathe in acknowledge the good, the enjoyment and the richness of your life; let it come in. As you breathe out let yourself go into the flow of this richness and enjoyment; relax into this flow of appreciation. Let it come, let it go, go with the flow.
3. As you breathe out consciously let go of something or someone that you are ready to release and move on from in your life. As you breathe in be aware of the space that your letting go has created, open yourself to the new energy and possibilities that can come into your life as a result of letting go. Let things go, let things come, go with the flow.

Related articles: Wake, up, Grow up, Clean up, Flow         Finding Your Spiritual Flow
Are You Going With the Flow or Just Drifting With the Current?
When You Have to Go Against the Flow          Single-pointedness and going with the flow

© 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

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Integral Meditation Asia

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A Mind of Ease Biographical Enlightened Flow Enlightened love and loving Integral Meditation Life-fullness Meditation and Psychology Meditation techniques Mindful Breathing Mindful Confidence Mindfulness Presence and being present

Natural Happiness

Dear Integral Meditators,

To be a meditator means to get in touch with your natural happiness. The article below explains something of what I mean by this.

Yours in the spirit of natural happiness,

Toby


Natural Happiness

I feel happy because…

A common tactic and one that I use myself for becoming happier is simply to reflect mindfully upon reasons why my life is good, on what I have achieved, on what I am enjoying, on what has gone right. If you keep a log of these types of things, either written or in just regularly in your head, then you are connecting to a form of happiness based upon the power of your rational, thinking, analytical mind.

I feel happy and so…

In meditation, one of the things we are aiming to develop the ability to do is to move our body-mind into a state of open relaxation that feels so good that, even if we had many reasons in the day to not be happy we would still naturally feel connected to happiness anyway.

This meditative form of happiness is a state of happiness that does not depend upon rational reasons, or the ticking of mental boxes. Rather it is a feeling that arises simply from sitting quietly, letting go and enjoying the process of enjoying relaxing deeply into a state of conscious awareness.

Relaxing into natural happiness

The other day I was travelling back from work with my head full of the troubles of the world; relationship doubts, money issues, business uncertainty, dissatisfaction with my circumstances and so on, you know what I mean right?

So instead of going directly home I went into the library, and sat down in the reading room. I determined just to sit down and relax for 30mins. For the first few minutes I paid attention to the physical fatigue in my muscles and the emotional turbulence that I was experiencing, just acknowledging them, giving them a bit of love and letting them go. Then I just sat still and relaxed, doing as little as possible, switching off my brain and mind and opening my heart space.

After 10minutes I started to feel ok. After 15 minutes I felt good. By the time I finished, technically I could still remember all the reasons that my life was difficult and challenging, but to be honest I didn’t care so much. I just felt good in my body, mind and heart, for no ‘reason’ other than sitting still in a state of relaxed meditation for a while. Technically I had not ‘solved’ any of my issues, but my world felt completely different, just because I had spent a little while connecting to my natural happiness in meditation.

When you meditate you discover that you don’t have to ‘do’ anything to be happy, other than learn how to connect to your natural happiness; the happiness that is there under the surface of our body-mind all the time.

If you meditate skilfully it won’t solve your problems or alleviate you of your responsibilities, but it will make you naturally happy.

© 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:

Friday 29th May 7.30-9.30pm –  Integral Meditation Session @ the Reiki Centre – Travelling deeper into the present moment through integral meditation

Saturday 30th May2.30-5.30pm – Enlightened Flow: Finding the Ultimate Relaxation and Release from Stress

JUNE CLASSES COMING SOON!

 


Integral Meditation Asia

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