RENUNCIATION AND NATURE vs NURTURE

Renunciation: –

Renunciation is not about depriving ourselves of that which brings us joy and happiness – that would be absurd; it is about abandoning what causes us the inexhaustible and relentless distress. It is about having the courage to rid us of the dependency on the root causes of suffering. To do this we first have to identify and recognize these causes and then become mindful of them in our daily life. Renunciation involves simplifying our acts, our speech and our thoughts to rid ourselves of the superfluous.

Being free also means being able to follow the path of inner transformation. To achieve that, we have to overcome not only external adversity but also our inner most enemies. Like laziness, lack of focus, and the habits that constantly distract us from or differ spiritual practice.

Nature and Nurture: –

Are we born with varying genetic predisposition to happiness or unhappiness?

How do our upbringing and our life experiences favor or undermine our subjective well-being?

To what extent is it possible to modify our personality traits and generate a lasting sense of satisfaction?

What mental factors contribute to that transformation?

Many researches and studies have answered above questions in following three ways.

1. About 25 percent of our potential for happiness appears to be deter- mined by Genes. Yet genes act more like a blue print that can be ap- plied or ignored depending upon circumstances.

2. Outward conditions and other general factors, such as wealth, educa- tion, social status, hobbies, sex, age, ethnicity and so on have circum- stantial influence, but account altogether for no more than 10 to 15 percent of the variable satisfaction quotient.

3. We can exert considerable influence on our experience of happiness and unhappiness through the way we live and think. How we perceive our life’s events, and how we react to them.

EMOTIONS

EMOTIONS: –
“One with compassion (positive emotions) is kind even when angry; One without compassion (negative emotions) will kill even as he smiles.”

The goal in dealing with our emotions is not to rid us entirely of our emotions or to transcend it, but to manage our experience of it and the way in which it translates in to action.

Positive emotions broaden our thought-action catalog, widening the array of thoughts and actions that come to mind, including joy, interest, contentment, and love. Some scientists believe that developing such positive thoughts, therefore offers an indisputable evolutionary advantage, in as much as it helps us to broaden our intellectual and affective universe and to open ourselves to new ideas and experiences.

Negative emotions like hatred, jealousy or obsession, at the moment they form, they make us deeply uncomfortable. Moreover the actions and words they inspire are usually intended to hurt others. These disturbing emotions tend to distort our perception of reality and to prevent us from seeing it as it really is.

Short Meditation: –

People say they have no time for meditation. It’s not true! You can meditate walking down the corridor, waiting for the traffic lights to change, at the computer, standing in a queue, in the bathroom, combing your hair, just be there in the present without the mental commentary. I do my meditation for 5 minutes as soon as I wake up in the morning, on the bed, to thank GOD that I have consciousness and ask for his blessings. Same way again I do my meditation for 5 minutes, in the night, on the bed, before lying down, to again Thank GOD for everything (good or bad) that happened that day.

Meditation is not about sitting quietly in the shade of the tree and relaxing in a moment of break from the daily grind; it is about familiarizing yourself with a new vision of things, a new way to manage your thoughts, of perceiving people and experiencing the world. The essential thing is to identify the types of mental activity that lead to well-being and those that lead to suffering, even when the latter afford us brief instances of pleasure. This investigation calls for a subtle assessment of the nature of the emotions.

The first phase of that analysis is to identify the way in which the emotions arise and then sit in a comfortable position. Your body remains in an erect but not tense posture with eyes gently closed. For 5 minutes, breathe calmly, noticing the in and outflow of your breath. Experience the gradual calming of chaotic thoughts. When thoughts arise, neither attempts to neither block them nor let them multiply. Simply continue to watch your breath.

Next instead of paying attention to outer sights, sounds and events, turn your gaze inward and look at the mind itself. Looking here means observing your awareness itself, not the content of your thoughts. Let the mind gently come to rest, as a tired traveler finds a pleasant meadow in which to sit for a while.

Then with the deep feeling of appreciation, think of value of human existence and of its extraordinary potential for flourishing. Be aware that this precious life will not last forever and that is essential to make the best possible use of it. Sincerely examine what counts more for you in life for you. What do you need to accomplish or discard in order to achieve authentic well-being and live a meaningful existence? When the factors that contribute to true happiness have become clear to you, imagine that they begin to bloom in your mind. Resolve to nurture them day after day.

End you meditation by letting thoughts of pure kindness embrace all living beings.

Finally we can meditate in a non-conceptual way on the very nature of the mind by looking directly at consciousness itself as an open presence, a pure awareness that always lies behind the screen of thoughts, or by contemplating the very nature of the thoughts that cross our mind. Meditation is followed up with action, that is, by being applied in every day life. Of what use is the great session of meditation if it does not translate in to improvement of our whole being, which can then place itself at the service of others? Once the seeds of the patience, inner strength, serenity, love, and compassion have come to maturity, it is to others that we must offer their fruit.

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BIOLOGY OF HAPPINESS 03

EGO & DEPRESSION :-

Ego :-

is a powerful attachment to the self and thus to the notion of “Mine” – my body, my name, my mind, my possession, my friends and so on – which leads either to desire to possess or to the feeling of repulsion for the “Other”. This erroneous sense of a real and independent self is of course based on ego- centricity, which persuades us that our own fate is of greater value than that of others.

The western world holds the self to be the fundamental building block of the personality. Surely, if I eliminate my ego I will cease to exist as a person. But the genuine self-confidence is the natural quality of egolessness. Genuine confidence comes from an awareness of a basic quality of our mind and of our po- tential for transformation and flourishing, what Buddhism calls Buddha Nature, which is present in all of us.

The idea that a powerful ego is necessary to succeed in life undoubtedly stems from the confusion between attachment to our own image and the resolve to achieve our deepest aspirations. The fact is, the less influenced we are by the sense of our self’s importance, the easier it is to acquire lasting inner strength. The reason for this is simple: self importance is a target open to all sorts of mental projectiles – jealousy, fear, greed, repulsion – that perpetually destabilize it.

We are obsessed with our success, our failure, our hopes and our anxieties and thereby give happiness every opportunity to elude us. When the self ceases to be the most important thing in the world, we find it easier to focus our concern on others. The sight of their suffering bolsters our courage and resolve to work on their behalf, instead of crippling us with our own emotional distress.

Depression or unhappy thoughts: –

In depression all that is happening in the present is the anticipation of pain in the future and present no longer exists at all. The inability to manage our thoughts proves to be the principal cause of suffering. Learning to tone down the ceaseless racket of disturbing thoughts is a decisive stage on the road to inner peace.

When a painful emotion strikes us, the most urgent thinking is to look at it head-on and to identify the immediate thoughts that triggered it and are fanning it. Then by fixing our inner gaze on the emotion itself, we can gradually dissolve it like snow in sunshine. Furthermore, once the string of emotions has been sapped, the causes that triggered it will seem less tragic and we will have won ourselves the chance to break free from the vicious circle of nega- tive thoughts.

So we need to take a closer look at mind itself. The first things we notice are the currents of thought that are continuously flowing without our even being aware of them. The countless thoughts born of our sensations, our memories and our imagination are forever streaming through our mind. But also there is a quality of mind that is always present no matter what kind of thoughts we entertain. The quality is the primary consciousness underlying all thought. That faculty, that simple open presence, is what we may call “Pure consciousness”, because it exists even in the absence of mental constructs.

It is not easy to experience “Pure Consciousness”, but it is possible. When a thought arises, try to see where it came from; when it disappears, ask yourself where it went. In that brief moment when your mind is not encumbered by discursive thoughts, contemplate its nature. In that instant when past thoughts have fallen silent and future ones have yet to emerge, you can perceive a pure and luminous consciousness unadulterated by your conceptual constructs.

BIOLOGY OF HAPPINESS 02

Sustainable happiness results from what we do, not from what we have.

Chasing happiness as an aggregate of wealth and pleasure is a vicious spiral. A huge number of empirical studies show that vast amounts of material wealth do not make people happier once they have reached a certain level of financial security. Rather than crushing our spirits, the realization that we exist together for a narrow slice of time and space elevates us to higher plane of humanity and humility: a proud act in the drama of the cosmos.

Happiness isn’t just a vague, overwhelming feeling; it is a physical state of the brain – one that you can induce deliberately. Scientists have discovered that happiness or related mental states like hopefulness, optimism and contentment appear to reduce the risk or limit the severity of cardiovascular disease, pul- monary disease, diabetes, hypertension, colds and upper-respiratory infections.

Doctors have known for years that clinical depression – the extreme opposite of happiness – can worsen heart disease, diabetes and host of other illnesses. But the neurochemistry of depression is much better known than that of happiness, mostly because the former has been studied more intensively and for much longer. A growing number of researchers exploring the physiology and neurology of happiness are starting to answer as to what happiness is in a clinical sense. At this point no one can say with precision. The word happiness is kind of placeholder for a constellation of positive emotional states. It is a state of well being where individuals are typically not motivated to change their state. They are motivated to preserve it. It’s associated with an active embracingof the world, but the precise characteristics and boundaries have really yet to be seriously characterized in scientific research.

Two brain imaging technologies – 1. functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) which maps blood flow to active parts of the brain, and 2. electroen- cephalograms which sense the electrical activity of neuronal circuits- consistently point to the prefrontal cortex as a prime focus of happiness. Scientists are confident that this part of the brain is a proximal cause of at least certain kinds of happiness. That suggests that some people are genetically predisposed to be happy by virtue of their busy prefrontal cortexes and research in infants confirms it. Neuroscientists have also learned over the past decade that the brain is highly plastic. It rewires it self in response to experience and that’s especially true before the age of puberty. One might naively assume that negative experiences might destroy a happy personality.

Optimists may simply feel less stress than pessimists and thereby avoid the noxious biochemical cascades that stress is known to trigger. Another likely factor: optimistic, happy type seems to take better care of themselves than sad sacks do.

Does our happiness depend on that of others: –
(Joy shared is joy doubled; sorrow shared is sorrow halved)

When the selfish happiness is the only goal in life, life soon becomes goalless. We can never be truly happy if we dissociate ourselves from the happiness of others. This in no way requires us to neglect our own happiness. To love oneself is to love life. It is essential to understand that we make ourselves happy in making others happy. The goal of life is a deep state of well-being and wisdom at all moments, accompanied by love for every being. It is love that is always available, without showiness or self-interest.

Looking within, looking without: –

We willingly spend dozen years in school, then go on to college or professional training for several more; we work out at the gym to stay healthy; we spend a lot of time enhancing our comfort, our wealth and our social status. We put a great deal in to all this and yet we do so little to improve the inner condition that determines the very quality of our lives. What strange hesitancy, fear or apathy stops us from looking within ourselves, from trying to grab the true essence of joy and sadness, desire and hatred? Fear of the unknown prevails and the courage to explore that inner world fails at the frontier of our mind. In pinning all our hopes on the external world, however, we can only end up being disappointed.

TRUMP VS. BIDEN

BODY CONSCIOUSNESS (Don Trump)
&
SOUL CONSCIOUSNESS (JOE BIDEN)

TRUMP VS. BIDEN

BODY- CONSCIOUSNE SSSOUL- CONSCIOUSNE SS
TRUMPBIDEN
AwARENES SI am the boss here; I know more than everyone here. After all, that is why I am the boss.I am a spiritual being; I have to play out a role of responsibility. Each of my employees has his/her own specific role.
TRUMPBIDEN
THOUGHTThey should listen to me. After all I am the one who pays their salaries.Let me listen to their suggestions. Perhaps we can improve something.
TRUMPBIDEN
DECISIONI will show them who is the boss here.Let me understand each of their specialties.
TRUMPBIDEN
ACTIONThe boss shouts and argues with them.A two-way dialogue ensues.
TRUMPBIDEN
RESULTIll-feeling between boss and employees.Respect and a climate of trust are maintained.

TRUMP = Body Consciousness –Desire, Anger, Greed, Attachment, Ego, = Sorrow

BIDEN = Soul Consciousness – Peace, Knowledge, Love, Purity, Bliss, = Happiness