Saturday, May 30, 2009
The venerable German-born Buddhist nun Ayya Khema talks about the benefits and reasons to meditate (09:55). This takes body and mind into consideration -- particularly focusing on care of the mind. She follows in the second clip with a single pitfall to sitting, overcoming it, and finding oneself halfway to meditation (02:36). Finally, in the third clip she discusses the Buddha's methods (02:08).
This guided meditation uses a simple mantra to enhance the areas of health, wealth, friendship, love, spiritual experience, and more.
Dattatreya Siva Baba gave the "Ahh" meditation to Wayne Dyer over ten years ago. This is the revised and advanced version. Baba talks about the transformation of procreative energy to become energy to create anything you want.
Light Bridge Media examines permaculture, a system of sustainable gardening developed in Australia. Some permaculturists hold that healing the planet is critical to healing ourselves. This belief has attracted tens of thousands of practitioners around the world. Here it is into practice in Hawaii.
"Frankly, one reason I've remained a die-hard Christian is to cover my behind in the afterlife. But I recently realized I need to worship ALL gods who might possibly exist!" -- Ed Current.
"It's the Day of Judgment for a fool who says there is no God. Christians, get ready to laugh as he learns his fate!" -- Ed Current
Former KORN guitarist Brian "Head" Welch sets the record straight on the timeline of leaving the band and finding god (Artisan News).
Rally in support of former Tamil leader Velupillai Prabhakaran (Time/Babu/Reuters)
Religious Uses of Social Media
There are a number of Buddhist uses of social media that fit within the contemplative/monastic traditions. Probably the most famous is the work at Zen Mountain Monastery, which hosts its own communications center: dharma.net.
They have an online radio station, store, and are working on a "cybermonastery" where, last I heard, they would put up teachings and have a question and answer service.
There is a Buddhist monk on Twitter who sends out daily messages: twitter.com/buddhistmonk
You can also find a list of other Buddhist twitter users here: lodenjinpa.com/buddhists-on-twitter.
I have also observed monastics on Web forums discussing guided meditation practices with other forum members via chat using texts and images from the Web to guide the practice. (There are a great deal of Buddhist texts online in multiple languages).
You've watched "Seinfeld" re-runs, splurged on yourself, and downed pints of Ben and Jerry's. Nothing's helping. Maybe you're one of the 20 million Americans diagnosed with depression, you're bottoming out, or you just want something to improve your day. Here are five ways — some admittedly challenging — to help you get that much-needed mood boost:
1. Pick good parents
In Happy Land, genes trump environmental factors, according to the experts. And a study in the March issue of the journal Psychological Science scores another point for the gene team: Differences in DNA that could explain why some people tend to have an extra bounce in their step might also underlie the tendency to be more emotionally stable and socially and physically active.
It only takes $5 spent on others to make you happier on a given day, according to a 2008 study. And selfless acts can also help your marriage become a more enjoyable experience for you and your spouse. After performing good deeds, people are happier and feel their life has more purpose. But is the act selfless if you expect something in return? Maybe it just depends on how you look at it.
Think of a happy place. And you, too, like Happy Gilmore, might sink that putt and earn back your grandmother's house — or overcome your own hurdle.
Consistently breaking a sweat, along with medication and counseling can help people battling depression by sapping lonely and vulnerable feelings.
If you have the right genes and are selfless, optimistic and active but still find yourself down in the dumps, just give it some time.
Happiness, it seems, takes time. Source
Robin Nixon, Special to LiveScience.com
Socialites and curmudgeons not only have different party demeanors, they may also have different brain structures, a new study suggests. But what came first — the incentive to charm or the bolstered brain anatomy — is still a matter of debate.
Forty-one randomly selected men filled out a questionnaire assessing their own tendency to, say, "make a warm personal connection." Those who reported being sociable and emotionally demonstrative also tended to have denser cell concentration in two brain structures, the orbitofrontal cortex and the ventral striatum, said the study's head researcher Graham Murray of the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom.
Friday, May 29, 2009
Dr. Agnew discusses cataclysms that may occur around 2012. He offers an update on his planned North Pole Inner Earth Expedition. The current timetable is to embark on the expedition in August 2009, traveling to the Arctic region aboard a nuclear powered icebreaker.
A helicopter and ship stored in the icebreaker will be used to scout for a hole that might exist in the curvature of the crust, he details. Dr. Agnew explains that ancient Mesoamericans described visits from the "Shining Ones" [devas] -- possible ETs, who may have given them knowledge of astronomy, architecture, and agriculture.
One of the Mayans' complex calendar systems ends in 2012, coinciding with the Earth aligning with a black hole in the center of the galaxy, he outlines. This positioning will cause planets to heat up in the solar system and potentially wreak havoc with our climate, he explains.
A pole shift could take place within a short time period, 3 to 5 days, and the reversal of Northern and Southern hemispheric patterns could set up a "global super storm," with 300 mph winds lasting up to a month, Agnew warns.
- Book: Ark of Millions of Years
Peaceful Buddhist monastery in the isolated Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan
On leaving the Danish premier's official residence north of Copenhagen, the Tibetan spiritual leader, who travelled from exile in India, said the 45-minute encounter was not political.
The meeting came despite China warning European nations against welcoming the Dalai Lama. China accuses him of wanting to establish an independent Tibet, despite years of public statements by the Buddhist leader denying the charge. France and Poland will also welcome the Dalai Lama over the next few weeks. Source
(Gamerofall) - This a single segment of "The Ring of Power" which documents various "conspiracies" and secrets of American imperialism: banking, war, and wonder. This documentary searches for the truth behind appearances. The world we see -- the consensual reality -- is manufactured. We have long been asleep, so truths are difficult to process.
But once the entire picture is glimpsed, the mind will not allow one to believe the lies any longer. One begins to recognize what has been going on. More than the symbolism all around in movies, news stories, "myths," there is an actual "awakening" process.
Discomfiting at first, eventually one is healthier and saner and able to understand what is going on. The price of oil, the rise and fall of empires, deteriorating banks, the endless drumbeat of war...only add evidence to fill in the big picture. Investigate, inquire, question reality. The mundane truth of how the world works is at hand.
Paramahamsa Nithyananda is a reputedly enlightened yoga master. In this talk he describes how the outer world is inside the inner. This merging can happen only when one is able to witness and, above all, simply "unclutch" from attachment to body and mind. Until then, one creates a boundary between oneself and the world. Hence one is separated from the whole. Unclutching and witnessing oneself as part of the whole...nothing but consciousness. This talk is from a series of commentaries on the Jain sutras, given in Los Angeles in March 2007.
Path to Freedom presents "A Homegrown Revolution," a collection of clips featuring their urban homestead and farm. The focus is on the need for radical action -- growing food in the city!
This short, self-produced music video was shown at Peter Seller's Cultural Art's class at UCLA followed by a short presentation by urban farmer Jules Dervaes, the founder of Path to Freedom. The focus of the class was on the art of slow food. Among other guests invited were Michael Pollan, Alice Waters, and Eric Schlosser.
Like the victory gardens of yesteryear, start your own homegrown revolution! Grow your food in your own yard. For more information visit the urban homesteaders at PathtoFreedom.com. Read the online journal urbanhomestead.org/journal. Since the early 1980's the Dervaes family has successfully transformed their ordinary city lot into a self sufficient urban homestead.
But in a country as large and diverse as the United States, the concept of liberty is sure to have different definitions for different people. More complicating still is the fact that, beyond the overarching liberties defined by the Constitution, individual states have their own legislation to address individual freedoms that aren't explicitly covered in federal doctrine:
The 12 member countries of the OPEC cartel voted in Vienna on Thursday to maintain output at current levels rather than increase supplies in order to bring some relief to consumers, particularly in the gas-guzzling West. More>>
Drukpa lineage monks: "monastic environmentalists" (drukpa-fr.org)
Led by their spiritual leader, the Gyalwang Drukpa, 600 monks are traveling across the snow-clad Himalayas in the month-long "walkathon." It will culminate in the Hemis Festival in Ladakh, India (Hemis Gompa) later next month.
"The journey (yatra) is a way of embracing the 'walking life,' which is beautiful and stress free. Why should we quit walking for cars and helicopters, when they cause so much damage to nature?" the Gyalwang Drukpa asked reporters here before commencing the walkathon on May 25, 2009.
The walkathon is expected to gather more volunteers and fellow Drukpas along the 400-km stretch. The Drukpa leader says he is expecting up to 1,000 followers to join him en route. They will talk to villagers about the environment and also distribute pamphlets and reusable canvas bags.
"We want to spread the message of environmental protection and are not marching for Buddhism. The aim is to interact with people living in the remotest corners of the Himalayas and get to know nature more intimately," the spiritual leader said.
While 100,000 people and thousands of Buddhist monks took to the streets to protest the countryʼs repressive regime, which has held them hostage for more than 40 years, foreign news crews were banned and the Internet was shut down.
Anders Østergaardʼs award-winning documentary shows a rare look into the Saffron Revolution, the 2007 uprising in Burma through the cameras of the DVB, an independent journalist group.
The Democratic Voice of Burma is a collective of 30 anonymous, underground video journalists (VJs). They record historic events on camcorders then smuggle the footage out of the country, where it is broadcast worldwide. Risking torture and life imprisonment, the VJs vividly document brutal clashes with the military and undercover police – even as they become targets of the authorities.
WASHINGTON (AFP) — President Barack Obama Thursday ratcheted up what might be America's toughest bargaining position with Israel in a generation, demanding anew that Israel stop oppressing Palestinians by expanding its settlements in the disputed West Bank as a key step toward making peace with its Arab neighbors. Full Story»
- Slideshow: National Spelling Bee
Video of "Buddha Boy," the teenager Ram Bahadur Bomjan meditating with Italian and Nepalese commentary. The footage, set in the jungles of Nepal where he has been practicing austerities (such as severe fasting) while meditating under a Bodhi tree, speaks for itself. A brief overview of his life and bodhisattva-mission are explained in subtitles:
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Meet the Goode family. They're zealous vegans, they drive a hybrid, and they recycle everything possible. But despite their best efforts, something always goes haywire with their politically-correct plans. Now airing Wednesdays @ 9/8:00 pm central on ABC.
David Wilcock (Edgar Cayce) is a professional intuitive consultant who, since reading Richard C. Hoagland's The Monuments of Mars in 1993, has intensively researched ufology, ancient civilizations, consciousness science, and new paradigms for understanding of matter and energy. He is the author of a critically acclaimed trilogy of scientific research works, known as the Convergence series, which gives definitive support to the idea that a change in matter, energy, and consciousness is now occurring on the Earth and throughout the solar system.
Wilcock has appeared on broadcast television, lectured throughout the United States and Japan, published a variety of magazine articles and appeared on numerous radio talk shows. He is the co-author of the book The Reincarnation of Edgar Cayce, now available in bookstores nationwide, and a summary of his latest scientific work appears therein, where a breakthrough case for mass, spontaneous DNA evolution on Earth is unveiled. David is also an accomplished musician and composer within a variety of styles, including jazz-fusion, meditative, and world music.
David returned, sharing his perceptions about 2012 and parallel realities. The 2012 time frame could bring a "golden age" for humanity, with a dimensional shift that leads us into ascended states, and if there is a calamity such as a pole shift around this time, people will warp into a parallel reality and not be affected by it, he outlined.
Wilcock offered details of his conversations with "Daniel," a man who said he took part in the Montauk Project -- a series of experiments in which portals were materialized and people traveled through them. Space and time were completely inverted in the experiments so it appeared as though the subjects were traveling through time rather than space, Wilcock explained.
Wilcock also shared some of his psychic intuitions such as the United States government eventually collapsing and being replaced by nation states. Civilian outrage over the truth about 9-11 will be one of the things that leads to this, he said. Currently he is working on a film project, Convergence which he hopes will be ready for release by the end of 2008.
(Above) Burma's hardline generals form dictatorship that has put Suu Kyi on trial. (Right) the trial has drawn international condemnation leading to worldwide protests.
Speaking at a meeting of EU and South East Asian ministers in Cambodia, the deputy fo-reign minister insisted that her trial was not a human rights issue. US President Obama has called Ms. Suu Kyi's hearing a "show trial."
The regional group ASEAN recently warned Burma that its honor and credibility were at stake. The trial entered its ninth day on Thursday, with more testimony from the American who swam to Ms. Suu Kyi's house. More>>
Interactive map: Life in some of the areas worst-hit by last year's cyclone
In a small community in Western Cambodia, scientists are puzzling over why malaria para-sites seem to be devel-oping a resistance to drugs and fearing the consequences.
Ten days ago, Chhem Bunchhin, a teacher in Battambang Province, became ill with chills, fever, headache, and vomiting. At a nearby health center he was treated with drugs considered a "silver bullet" in the battle against falciparum malaria.
This treatment with artesunate drugs was part of a clinical study being carried out by the US Armed Forces Research Institute of Medical Science (AFRIMS). In the past, artesunates have always cleared malaria parasites from the blood in two or three days. But after four days of monitored treatment, Chhem Bunchhin was still testing positive for parasites.
The anti-malarial drugs worked more slowly in him. Dr. Delia Bethell, an investigator working on the clinical trials (pictured right), said he wasn't alone. More>>
- Doctors welcome malaria microchip
- "Double whammy" malaria drug hope
- Malaria "early warning" test hope
- Technology to eradicate malaria
- Human malaria jab tests nearing
- "Breakthrough" in malaria fight
Everyone dreams of hitting the jackpot, but the windfall may turn into a nightmare. Shattered dreams
Much has been made of video of a "brutal" beating of a Pakistani girl accused of adultery. This has, it is said, galvanized the populations of Pakistan and Afghanistan to side with the West as it invades and destabilizes their governments. Homegrown terrorists are less of a problem than an external armed force imposing its will. WQ decided to investigate.
The act and even the threat of the act is reprehensible. Public floggings are not acceptable. (Private floggings in secret detention camps run by the US Army, the CIA, and even more secretive spy rings are okay -- so long as those extrajudicial punishments are for a good cause, such as Apple Pie, Freedom, and of course Security). And yet far more reprehensible is the invasion by the United States in a false flag operation seeking out Osama bin Laden (a.k.a. Nineteen Eighty-Four's "Emmanuel Goldstein").
Pakistani district fears Swat conflict will spill over.
EXETER, England (BBC) - If you're looking for a new spiritual journey, the path to enlightenment could be right under your nose. Danny Lawrence meets members of the Diamond Way Buddhist Centre in Exeter.
A New Beginning
After growing up in a Christian tradition, Meg Surrey has taken a new direction.
"My parents went to church maybe at Christmas and Easter, but I was christened as a baby.
"In my early teens I became interested in it and I was confirmed.
"But by the time I was about 16, I was beginning to have big questions about an outside creator and nobody seemed to be able to answer these for me.
Members of the centre come from a variety of backgrounds. Mark Brimble's is similar to Meg's.
"Like Meg, I was christened," he said. "My mother wasn't particularly involved in the church -- we'd maybe go to Midnight Mass -- and my father's an Atheist.
"I think most specifically because I consider myself a scientist and the two did not merge. It left me asking a lot of questions.
Meg and Mark share their discoveries.
"I went into a bit of a spiritual wilderness for some time. Then I got involved in Reiki, which is a natural method of healing, and shortly after that I became aware of Tibetan Buddhism."
Buddhism's stronghold may be in Asia, but knowledge and practice of it in the West is increasing.
Cybill Shepherd with daughter Clementine Ford at the LA Gay & Lesbian Center, 4/24/09 (Photo: FayesVision/WENN.com).
Fox News entertainment reporters have a really bad habit of asking utter B-list and C-list celebrities awkward questions about politics and sensitive cultural issues....
“He was killed in my hometown of Memphis, three and a half miles from my high school and I’m a product of the segregated south and I got to see that hatred up close, live that hatred, colored only, whites only, and when he was killed I was stricken with guilt and shame,” Shepherd added.
“I’m a Christian Pagan Buddhist Goddess worshiper, but I’m also a feminist. I think the ultimate glass ceiling is God, in another words, if we think God is a man, then we make man a God, and I studied and learned that there is a whole other history of the worshiping of the great mother,” she explained. “I really think that probably God is a woman, that helped me to break through that celestial glass ceiling.”
Reaction (from Fox News)
I actually don’t really have a problem with any of that, to each her own. Many of us probably have elements of Paganism and Goddess worship in our haphazard faith, whether we know it or not, so no judgment. I suppose my problem with what Cybill is saying is that I know how some people will take it. They’ll look at her and think “whatever, typical whack-job Hollywood,” when Cybill actually had interesting things to say about growing up in Memphis and seeing the civil rights movement up close. Full story
(BBC) It is not clear why Pagan-ism is so popular among young peo-ple in the UK while the Christian Church struggles to raise the num-bers of teenagers in the pews. But the youth-friendly image of Paganism may have something to do with it. There certainly aren't too many cool teenage Christians on TV.
PHOTOS: Paganism as modern ritual (wikipedia.org); pentagram art, Kelly Hampson (elfwood.com); group of teenage witches/Pagans in Oxfordshire, England, left to right: Julia, Candice, Paul, Emily, Sabrina, Catherine ©; "witchdoctor" in Gambia, Africa; tree shrine on Mt. Koya, Japan (openbuddha.com).
Since the 1960s young people have become interested in magic and the spiritual world through popular books, television series, and films.
- Teenage Pagans (3:04 mins) What Paganism means to them
The nominal "Christianity" that usurped original spiritual practices was not an authentic representation. It bears little resemblance to its namesake's revolutionary wish to save people from the path of perdition (to an unfortunate rebirth) and oppressive Roman rule. But story is stronger than fact. And framed in this way, Paganism and teen witchcraft have an uphill public relations battle that is all but futile.
- greed for money or power
- hate of one's tormentors or rivals
- delusion about self, ego, and the world
All of these are karmic issues. If witchcraft gives one an unfair advantage, or if it acts as an outlet for heartfully/mentally-defiled states (rooted in lust, anger, delusion), karma will bear bitter fruit.