Laughter Really is the Best Medicine

Today I’m re-posting my latest you tube clip in honor of His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s 84th Birthday. I did post it on his 81st Birthday and would you believe it’s been going around all that time? As many will know I qualified as a Laughter Yoga Leader in 2014 and have been running sessions up and down the country. So what is Laughter Yoga? Well it was born in India Mumbai back in 1995 by a medical doctor Madan Kataria. Dr Kataria wanted to look at the connection between joyfulness & good health. After a lot of research and practical work he came up with Laughter Yoga Clubs. I’m not going to talk too much about Dr Kataria’s work but you can find out more on the link below http://laughteryogasalonnyc.com/drkataria.html For now enjoy my video, join in have a good laugh and celebrate life!

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Life – Is it Really All That Bad?

The first teaching of the Buddha was called the four Noble truths’s. The 4 Noble truths’s speaks about suffering, and the cessation of suffering. in other words, how to get rid of it and make a happy life for ourselves and others. According to the 4 Noble truths, nothing in this world that exists without an element of suffering. However, for many people this sounds pretty grim – let’s face it, if everything is all about suffering then how can we ever be happy?
But what actually are the 4 noble truths?

The Four Noble Truths

  1. The truth of suffering (Dukkha) This means that suffering actually exists.
  2. The truth of the origin of suffering (Samudāya) understanding where suffering comes from.
  3. The truth of the cessation of suffering (Nirodha) understanding that because suffering exist, it can also be ended.
  4. The truth of the path to the cessation of suffering (Magga) How to end suffering.

To put it in a nutshell, the Buddha taught, that once we understand the root of our suffering, which according to Buddhism is ‘desire’. Then we can actually move towards ending it.
This is why the Buddha was often compared to a physician because he diagnosed an actual human and universal problem, then prescribed the cure in 4 relatively simple lessons.

But here’s something to debate…..
LifeIf life is just suffering, as Buddhism claims, why is it some of us don’t see it this way? Why do some of us see life as wonderful rather than filled with suffering?

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Rinpoche’s Take on Death & Why it’s Feared So Much in the West.

Yesterday evening I had the great honour & privilege of having Geshe Lama Ahbay Tulku Rinpoche visit my home for the 3rd year running. With a small gathering of spiritually minded people, we ate together, laughed together (what an infectious laugh he has) and shared some great philosophical discussion.

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After supper we all moved to my healing & meditation room for Q & A about Buddhism & life in general before taking part in the dedication prayer.
One of the questions raised during our discussion was this…… Why do you think Westerners have a deep rooted fear of death?

Rinpoche’s response;
Maybe it’s because in the West, the main focus is on materialism. The media is all about materialism, as are the newspapers & Internet. It’s all about products that make you feel and look good giving you the false hope of regaining youthfulness. We know the hope is false because from the moment we’re born, we are physically moving towards eventual death. That’s the cycle of life really – no escaping it. Then when illness & sickness comes it’s a terrible shock because we thought we were invincible. Death is something we Westerners choose not to talk about because it’s considered morbid & dark, but we all want a comfortable death surely? But, if we’re ever going to prepare for the inevitable event of death properly we must discuss it in life.

Rinpoche’s words gave me some great food for thought and so I’d like to put these 2 questions out to the universe…..

1, What are your thoughts on death?
2, Where are you going after death?

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17 DAYS IN COLOUR – Yellow

Well here we are on day 3 of the 17 Days In Colour blog.  I hope you’re enjoying learning about the fantastic  healing benefits of colour. Today is all about the colour YELLOW

12931904 - the solar plexus chakra

12931904 – the solar plexus chakra

Healing properties: Yellow helps strengthen the nerves and the mind. It helps awaken mental inspiration and stimulates higher mentality. If you suffer from agitation or any nervous condition, yellow is a great calmative. Wearing yellow brings a feeling of joy and inner warmth and darker in colour, yellow also soothes pains in the nerves for example (shooting pains)
Soak a yellow coloured crystal such as Citrine in water overnight, then first thing drink the water. This is an amazing cleanser for conditions of the stomach, liver, and intestines. If you wrap a yellow bandage around scarred tissue it will help it heal quicker.
Yellow is also linked with the solar plexus, or psychic center. If you’re feeling burned out or psychically blocked, yellow is an amazing colour for removing obstacles.
The magikal benefits of Yellow: Yellow is governed by the air element. The deities attracted by yellow are around trade, travel, knowledge and magick. So if you own a business it’s definitely beneficial to have lots of yellow around. Yellow is of course associated with the color of the sun, and so it is considered the key colour of life-force, vividity, vitality and energy.

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Chasing the Joy

Do you spend most of your time on autopilot? Welcome to the club. It’s something we all do at some time in life.

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Making plans, thinking about the future, trying to complete our To-Do lists. We’re so busy rushing towards the future and some wonderful event more exciting than the present moment, we forget to really live. Many great experiences in the here and now are missed in the chaos of life the present moment is an obstacle between now, and the best bits of life. We don’t even realise, we could already be there.
How often have you walked or driven somewhere, and not remembered the journey? Or eaten your favourite meal without tasting a single bite or savouring any of its delicious flavours. Mindfulness or being present is the fastest way to live life more fully with happiness and wisdom. It simply involves moment to moment awareness of what is happening now, both inside and outside. Internally we become more aware of our body and our mind, while externally we begin to broaden our awareness so we notice what’s really happening in the external environment.
One way to experience present moment awareness, is to just to STOP for no more than a minute and be totally aware of what is happening right now.

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