Health & Fitness Lifestyle Philosophy Spiritual

Meditation: A Guide, Resource, and Encouragement

“The highest form of human intelligence is to observe yourself without judgment.

~ Jiddu Krishnamurti

I think about meditation a lot, and even as I write this, I realize the irony of that statement. Still, even after a long practice, one can become “jaded” and pretty soon even your meditation sessions can come to seem like a “routine.” And that’s very ironic indeed, because if there’s anything I feel that meditation is, it’s a way or tool to break out of monotony and open out to an adventure.

So, whenever I hear or read a fresh way of describing meditation, what it is or how to do it, I thought I’d start keeping a repository in a blog post. These “fresh” ways of putting it tend to break that monotonous hold that sometimes creeps in, and gives me a fresh shot of encouragement.

“I find that I can actually get my mind to stop talking for 30 minutes…and i’m finding that it’s addicting.” – @serenadyer

“There’s only one wrong way to #meditate, and that is if you think there’s any effort involved.” – @DeepakChopra

‘Flow’ is our essential state when it’s not overwhelmed by the mind. – @DeepakChopra  #Meditation

#Meditation is a process where you allow things to happen.” –@DeepakChopra


Health & Fitness Lifestyle Philosophy

On Ego, What it Is, What it Does, and How to Cure It

“Because the conscious mind has to be in control, even though it doesn’t know anything.” – Dolores Cannon [Youtube Link]

I’ve heard Dolores say in other interviews that the Conscious Mind is the Ego. That makes the definition pretty simple. If that is the case then the cure would seem to be spending more time with the sub/unconscious parts of our psyches, paying it more respect, i.e., meditation, having the intent to remember and write down your dreams, and respecting the images and messages coming from that deep well. – Stephen

I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately. This post is definitely under construction. It may be so indefinitely. The main reason is: I have a strong sense that Ego is our main problem in life. Ego has hijacked our Consciousness, and it won’t let us be happy. It doesn’t want us to be happy.

But here’s the rub and the reason I created this post: I don’t know why, nor do I know exactly what it is, or how to get rid of it.

The few times in my life that I’ve really meditated, and carried on a sustained practice, it does seem like that exercise had a positive effect on reducing it, much like working out at the gym burns fat.

But somehow the Ego itself, being still in control, seems to stop me in my tracks from doing such things as meditating, anything that would threaten it’s existence. Since it has hijacked and controls the brain it accomplishes this behaviourial control by releasing negative feelings around anything it doesn’t want you to do. Anything that would help you escape from it.

Still, I don’t know what it, Ego, is, exactly. I’m hoping that writing itself, you know how writing is a way of learning, will help me arrive at an answer. If you have any thoughts on this subject, then I would love to hear them in comments.

It occurred to me today that we weren’t born with Ego. It feels like Society somehow injects us with “Ego” little by little, as we grow older, and we don’t notice it, much like we don’t notice our day to day aging, until one day we wake up and our consciousness has changed. The wonderous feeling we had about life as children has disentegrated.

The myths and fairytales, in their picture language, seem to be saying, in an over arching theme that the cosmic or natural energies can’t get through to our consciousness, that they’re being blocked by something. And that if we were to remove the obstruction, those energies would automatically carry us to our destiny. It certainly feels like the Ego is that blockage. So the question becomes, how do we in our modern lives remove that blockage? Certainly the picture language of Myth and Fairy-Tales seem to have a metaphorical answer. As time goes on and things come to me, either through my meditation practice, or reading Myths and Fairytales, themselves, or people like Joseph Campbell and Deepak Chopra, among others, I’ll add to this post. This post may get really long! So what? I do think the answer to this question is the central realization of our lives: To Be or Not to Be? It seems to almost come down to this binary, “Quantum” type answer: Either you’re living your destiny or you’re not.

Ok, since this post is just about writing down the ideas that come to me, that feel true, I’ll start with this:

  • Ego is the sense, the feeling, the belief, that you are separate from the World, the Universe, Nature, everyone and everything around you.

That statement came out of me a few months ago, seemed to come from my “archetypal” self. It felt true when it came out, and although I’m not “feeling” it now, I do remember it, and I want to write it down, so I can refer back to it. That’s good. That’s a start. But it still doesn’t tell me what to ‘do’ about it, how to cure myself from it. Well, I’m gonna ponder this, and hopefully I’ll come back to this post with some more ideas, if not answers.

Update: June 1, 2013.

  • “It’s a mode of existing, it’s a way of existing that sets God apart from anything else”

I just saw this in a lecture about Infinity that the World Science Festival produced last night. It’s talking about ‘Qualitative’ infinity as opposed to ‘Quantitative’ Infinity, an idea that apparently came from Aquinas. This idea of ‘Qualitative’ Infinity as a ‘Way’ of existing produces images in my brain of Purity which strikes me as the opposite or even the ‘Antidote’ to the problem mentioned above of some kind of blockage. A “Pure” connection is unblocked. So how does it relate to this article? It almost seems in this sense that ‘God’ is anyone or anything who is existing in ‘pure being.’ Ego is a psychological ‘impurity.’ So it could be that ‘God’ is simply any ‘being’ that is existing without Ego or any other kind of impurity. That’s a fascinating concept. – (That quote and the talk of the Theologian where I heard it starts at about the 13:22 mark of the video on the page of this link.)

Health & Fitness Lifestyle

200lbs – 30lbs Lost in 3 Months

Photo a little "grainy" cause I always have to use the front facing 1megapixel camera on iPhone to take properly positioned 'portraits'. Hate that!

Hey I was so happy to have reached 200lbs! Just a few weeks ago it seemed so far away! Anyway although my rate of loss has decreased, overall I began this program on March 10th, so that’s almost exactly 30lbs in 3 months or 10lbs a month. Going forward I don’t expect to lose at the rate. Actually it makes me kind of stressed to expect it. I think going forward a pound, pound and half a week would be satisfactory. I think losing that first 10 a little faster is normal because you’re so miserable and you want some feedback fast!

OMG, I ate chocolate cake today! But that’s ok, it’s Sunday. Giving yourself one “free” day is a good thing. I’m actually back dating this post because I reached 200 last Friday, but didn’t get around to posting until today. I’d like to do a post comparing the photos from 220, 210, and now to see if I can see a difference.

Now that I think of it, would have been cool to do a photo per day and make a video of to see the changes.

Health & Fitness Lifestyle

210lbs – 20lbs in 7 Weeks

210lbs. Another milestone to document. Do I look thinner?

So that’s 3lbs per week. I guess that’s good. Everything sort of reverts to the mean. It seems like I zoomed from 215 to 211, but then it took a week to get from 211 to 210. I guess that’s how it goes. No rhyme or reason sometimes. But at least if you look at it from a perspective you can see overall progress and feel motivated.

Health & Fitness Lifestyle


215lbs. An important milestone. Next stop 210!

Finally! Seemed like I was stuck on 216 forever, but now that I look at it, I’ve lost 15lbs in about a month. So that makes me feel good. That would get me to my goal in just over two months from now which excites me.

I was talking to my sister yesterday, and we both agreed that when it comes to losing weight, you just gotta go with what works for you. I’m numbers oriented, so counting calories was a good way for me. Others may prefer a more holistic approach. It’s just whatever gets you motivated.

I think the important thing for me, and maybe for everyone is just getting off the dime. The iPhone app and counting, seeing it digitally displayed is what helped get me off the dime, but once I got moving and saw some results I’ve sort of settled into a “coast” mode. I’ve been eating similar things, so I haven’t been entering every calorie as much any more. In other words, once you do a while of “counting” per se, you start getting a “feel” for how much you’ve had and it gets easier. Also, after you’ve made some real progress, you don’t mind relaxing and having a “sweet” now and then. It doesn’t throw you off because you know you’ve made good progress and will continue to do so. You start getting a feel for what works for you, and there’s not so much stress once you’ve got the ball rolling. So that’s why I think getting off the dime, starting, no matter what your strategy is, is the most important thing.

What motivates you to get started?

Health & Fitness Lifestyle

220lbs- 10lbs Lost in Under Three Weeks

An important milestone to record. 10lbs lost. 220lbs. (From 230)

Yeah! Well, I didn’t want to really blog every pound or did I? Maybe if I had something so say at every pound, but I thought 10lbs and 220lbs was an important milestone.

Not really. Just eat less calories than you burn. Which is easy but tricky. The iPhone app helps a lot. Writing it down. Keeping track, but you still have to know how many calories are in a meal.

I’ll probably have to move into the Livestrong app as I start eating at restaurants and such. At least to identify how many calories are in certain meals.

I’ll let you know how that goes. For now I’m still using the Lose It! app, which I feel a certain loyalty to. It got me here!