Human beings go through different developmental patterns as a part of our natural evolution. For instance, we begin in the ontogenetic process where our body goes through many developmental patterns from the embryonic stage to the adulthood. There is also the phylogenetic evolution of the human species from one-celled animal to a human being. These patterns are natural which flow with life.
However, there are also certain patterns that are anti-life such as the wrong mental patterns which can be very dangerous to our existence. In my life, I realized I have been ruled by one great enemy – my own mental patterns which constantly pull me back to similar pains & suffering. Patterns like anger, restlessness, laziness and lacking intensity are just some of my mental patterns which I am aware and are continuously working on myself. When working with people, I notice that many people are able to understand intellectually the benefits of health and prevention through practice of yoga. But they are not willing to give time and attention to themselves to work on their body due to the pattern of laziness which resists change. In the initial period when I first started to teach yoga, I used to get affected by students who are not committed in their practice despite experiencing the benefits of the yoga practice. There were times I thought I was the problem. After having understood about the nature of mental patterns, I only have compassion for them for they are stuck in their own mental patterns which require deeper understanding, courage and inspirations.
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Two weeks ago, I started introducing the topic of pain to the eN-Vidyalaya children (age from 4 to 14 y.o), a programme which I volunteer every Sunday as a part of my mission work. In the first lesson, we did an experiment by getting the kids to touch a hot water bag filled with hot water. Basically they were asked to focus on the pain and made it go away. The children initially felt the intense pain from the heat of hot water and withdrew from it immediately. When they were told to bring awareness to their fingers in contact with hot water bag without removing their fingers, they were able to feel the heat at first, then slowly they realised that the pain actually went from intense to rather unnoticeable or enjoyable. From this simple yet powerful exercise, the children learned that their mind could actually change the perception of any physical pain just by bringing in awareness.
Pain is such an interesting topic because it is a subject that everyone can relate to in life regardless of age. Do you know that the most frightening thing in the world is PAIN? People don’t fear death as much as they fear the pain and agony at the time of death. We may be afraid of poverty, relationship problems or diseases, but if we look deeply the root cause of all these fears, it is the pain that happens while going through these experiences. All these fears are because of the fear of pain.
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Senior Woman Laughing — Image by © Steve Prezant/Corbis
If you observe the body language and expression of the so-called serious people, they are really dull and dead because the very seriousness closes their mind to the openness and freedom of life. Seriousness kills creativity and spontaneity which are the 2 great qualities of life. It curbs our creative thinking and makes us stick to the familiar mental patterns. In short, seriousness is anti-life.
Seriousness is not our true nature, it is something that we acquire by and by as we grow up. So what’s the root cause of seriousness?
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