Befriending The Inner Critic

The experience of the ‘Inner Critic’ is something we’re all familiar with. We might refer to it by a number of different names, but the experience itself is the same; a frequent and persistent judging about what we do and who we are in our lives. This voice seems to come from within and usually, it feels like it’s in our heads, rarely missing a chance to snipe or remind us ‘what we’re doing is wrong’.

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Peace With Experience (Peace WIth Anxiety)

Very often we have a subtle judgment that can play out when we meditate. It often comes along with the very intention to meditate in the first place. In some form or another, we meditate to alleviate the suffering or unsatisfactoriness in our lives that we already experience. But the irony is, that this ‘in order to’ mindset itself is what often creates the suffering we so desperately seek to cure.

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Transforming Desire

We often have an uneasy relationship to ‘desire’ as a species. We have a tendency to fall into one of two extremes when it comes to how we relate to it. Either way we view desire as a problem that needs to be solved. As is often the case, viewing something as a problem makes it a problem, even if there were no problem to begin with.

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True Calm

Wanting to be calm all the time is an understandable desire. It’s a natural reaction to a world that offers and encourages very little of it. That being said ‘calm’ in the way we are often taught mindfulness, is not the solution, nor the intention of those who originally pioneered mindfulness meditation.

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The Product Is Not The Path

So many times in our emotional and spiritual journey it would seem that we confuse the product with the path. We see someone who is far along the path as ‘calm’ and ‘relaxed’ and assume that this is the path or indeed the goal of the path. But this is a mistake I believe. Relaxation and calm are not the path, but products of the path. Pleasant by-products that come from it but not the intention of the journey itself.

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