Life, an Incredible Opportunity

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Life is an opportunity that over 108 billion people before us have had and then as lost as is the nature of life: there is a beginning and an end. Therefore to be alive is wonderful opportunity to do something!

In addition to biological evolution, there is also the evolution of culture and spirit. Spiritual evolution means becoming more human. As G.K. Chesterton put it: “a dead thing can go with the stream, but only a living thing can go against it.” We are blessed with brains that create the human mind, which allows not only to go with the flow, but to go upstream or any other direction we wish.

“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” ― Mahatma Gandhi

The difference and human blessing of life lies in our brain, which allows us not only to live, but to learn and live better as well. This means we are no longer bound only to progress through the biological evolution, but through cultural evolution.

Other animals certainly are social and therefore have the ability for cultural evolution as well. However, very few of them are able to stop and contemplate on life on such level as humans can. We learn comparatively fast and therefore our culture, way of doing things evolves as well.

On individual level, it’s our own decision to exercise this superpower of choice each day. Well actually thinking and deciding something new for each day would be possible, but not very convenient. Although we have the ability to contemplate, it is rather energy intensive. Therefore it’s useful to use both of the abilities, the ability to contemplate and the ability to do in a harmonious way.

Contemplate and discover your values and goals. Then work on these goals every day habitually.

Do not dream of life without work. Work is the opportunity, ability to create something greater than what you were given. What will then happen? According to the law of karma, if you do good things, good things will happen to you.

Put your priorities straight using the priority category method and then live your purpose and plan.

In life you will get more things done, if you are really good at prioritizing and deciding what is important and where you can add the most value. You will be able to create more value and well-being to your environment, which then again means that you will also receive more and then we all flourish.

* * *

I’ve taken it as my mission to help other people to realize the love for life. This comes from my personal experience with the meaninglessness of life, which led to depression and sickness.

Have a great evening!

Janne

Growth and Truth

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Real growth comes from accepting reality or ‘the truth’.

Yet as powerful adults, we do not necessarily always like the truth. Our capacity to understand and manage it is limited. That’s why human societies have all kinds of quirks to like fools in courts or business consultants in businesses to tell leaders what they need to hear in comical or other narrative fashion, so that they might hear what they need to hear.

While the truth may be our shield, yet truth can also hurt and be dangerous to hurl around. It needs to be wrapped in a nice manner and presented carefully.

To put it shortly: living according to the truth isn’t the simplest or easiest way. In fact it is the middle way, creating the way like Buddha or Gandhi did.

Do what is true and right, and you will be remembered if not by the current generation, then by the generations to come.

Poem: The Change Makers

 

Ignorant we all are, I must admit.

Yet there are those who to this do not submit.

These people are the shapers,

The change makers.

 

Those who are courageous enough to seek truth.

And stand to face the oppressive Brood,

Who do not care where the truth stood,

Or what was for everyone’s good!

 

People like Mandela and Gandhi,

Have become such examples, how handy!

Equipped with truth, love, and courage,

Have built their wisdom and virtue while pulling the carriage.

 

Suffering of the wheel,

Is imaginable and real.

They made no squeal,

Because it was in their interest to heal.

 

With grace they endured,

To the inner work they spurred.

Through work they developed,

And a new kind of thinking enveloped.

 

Wrong they faced,

Pain not only grazed.

They got to taste the pain of living,

And transformed it in their minds into a giving.

 

Yet people were astray.

Not caring what they had to say.

Thus they were sent away.

Only to return; and light the way!

 

They learned to care first,

To quench another one’s thirst.

People do not care how much you know, until they know how much you care, said Teddy.

 

World is not so steady,

You better get ready,

Your ignorance is unstable,

To care you are able!

Thoughts about violence, inspired by a punch to the face

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My reality got upgraded through a shock last night: I got punched in the face and my phone stolen in a confused situation that lasted seconds. Just moments earlier I had walked my girlfriend to catch a night bus to her work and so it all happened just 200 meters from my home.

This makes me choose my thoughts carefully. However, in the end it was easy for me to reflect back on the wisdom of Buddha, Gandhi and Camus about nonviolence and especially the this following phrase:

“Nobody can hurt me without my permission.” – Gandhi

Oh yes, I am fine!

Single encounter like this could happen almost anywhere in Helsinki. It would be interesting to see some more data and start ponder about the root causes in both society and human mind – i.e. why to resort to violence?

To use the context of the Robert L. Moore and Douglas Gillette in King, Warrior, Magician, Lover: Rediscovering the Archetypes of the Mature Masculine, violence would be immature expression of energy.

As definition (Merriam-Webster ) violence is exertion of physical force so as to injure or abuse [1]. Physical force or threat is attempt to create power, which then again due to the violating nature is fleeting and temporary as everything else.

More mature forms of power are more lasting and sustainable, i.e. respect that is earned through work, loving and kind actions. More mature forms do not abuse the power either, they mend and love it in others in order to grow the power of all.

We all want to have power. So in that sense, violence is an attempt – kind of “band aid” to feel that power. Violence based power is always vanishing, because we are hurting people around us, it takes away our collective energy.

Love based power is very different, we give it away to few and when we need it we can have it from many. Love is an investment to the growth of people near us.

Violence is breaking the piggy-bank of love that other people have been filling.

How to stop violence?

Organized and loving civil society. We need to extend love and power to everyone. Meanwhile we can contemplate on the suffering, why people are formed around violence instead of love and learn the art of forgiveness.

Forgiveness is the only way ahead.

“Eye for an eye makes world blind” – Gandhi

 

Sources

[1] Merriam-Webster 2016. Violence.
[*] Image from Pixabay, thank you!

Nonviolent Communication Coupled With Solutions Oriented Attitude

A while ago I stumbled upon a model of Nonviolent Communication. It’s essentially model communication style that focuses on yourself through self-empathy, the other through empathy and authentic expression.

When I first found this book a few weeks back, I instantly connected with the idea. I’ve been longing to find extension on the ideas of Mahatma Gandhi’s Satyagraha and here we have one.

I am still myself, but a student to this model and concept, however I am hoping to make Non Violent Communication tool to improve my life and all those around me. I can clearly see the benefits of combining this communication style with solutions oriented attitude that I’ve been trying to cultivate.

Official website of Center for Nonviolent Communication http://www.cnvc.org/