The monkey mind and how to concentrate better at work

Nothing revolutionary here, except that more and more, western science is starting to examine, explore and test eastern philosophies. Still a useful article in that it holds some quick tips for helping concentration at work – checking in with the little zen though of

where is my attention

is my favourite, and perhaps the simplest to implement.

Tai Chi increases brain size

Tai Chi

Tai Chi

Yes, you can increase the size of your brain according to a study from the University of South Florida and Fudan University in Shanghai.

Practicing Tai Chi three times a week was found to increase brain volume and brought about improvements in memory.

Divorce your yoga teacher

Every now and then in your yoga practice it’s a good idea to stop and ask yourself “why?”.

Why am I practicing?

Answering this question honestly is a challenge.

One of the most destructive reasons I’ve seen people practice is to please their teacher. The pursuit of recognition for your practice tends to cause people to obsess over their every action. If you find yourself asking “will this make teacher happy or proud?” or you berate yourself when you have an off day thinking something like “teacher will know I haven’t practiced”, then you need to divorce your teacher.

The behavior is bad, both for the teacher and the student. The teacher because it encourages a “guru” mentality that can lead to teachers taking advantage of students. The student because they give up responsibility for themselves and create, often in their own mind, a more perfect than perfect teacher/guru figure, when in fact, teachers are just people. People who have been practicing longer than you, or people who have taken a teacher training course….but people none the less – and they are far from perfect, they have their own baggage and their own weaknesses.

Divorce your teacher. Practice for yourself.

It’s not how many, it’s how much

getting fatter

It seems that in the case of a global food crisis, it’s not how many mouths we feed, but how much each mouth needs to eat. An obvious seeming conclusion I suppose, but interesting none the less. The study looked into the BMI of countries around the world and noted that

Increasing population fatness could have the same implications for world food energy demands as an extra half a billion people living on the earth

Basically, if we keep following North America in getting fatter, we will put undue strain on the the global food supply. It’s a good reminder that we tend to excess and we should eat in moderation. The study has estimated the weight of adults in the world to be 287 million tonnes. That’s a little over 100 million cars worth of weight! 15 million tonnes of that is blamed on being overweight.

Of course relative wealthy western nations top the scales, in part apparently, because we eat a lot and move very little in comparison to poorer countries. Even though actual population will increase more in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa than the USA, the actual amount flesh to feed in these countries will be less than the US.

Dalai Lama received the Templeton prize

The Templeton prize is awarded to a

a living person who has made an exceptional contribution to affirming life’s spiritual dimension

This year, it was given to the Dalai Lama. He immediately gave most of the prize money away to charity. His acceptance speech was, it is reported, full of his usual infectious laughter. He appeared on Radio 4 in his usual good humour with a message of hope for Tibet.

Okinawan Longevity and Health

A nice documentary on health and longevity in Okinawa, the land of the immortals. People in Okinawa have amazing longevity – perhaps because they have discovered ways of dealing with stress and keeping their emotions on an even keel.

Example Article

This is an example article. You probably want to delete it and write your own articles!

The Lost Caves of Tibet

Fascinating documentary about the lost caves of Tibet

Rabbit Island

What an inspiration – two guys buy an island on Craigslist and decide to turn it into a retreat for artists.

It looks stunning:

You are what you eat

I love nothing better than when science really pushes the boundaries. Eventually, I think, a lot of wisdom from traditional medicine and other spiritual practices will become understood scientifically. A small step on the way is this study that suggest that you are what you eat. The study found microRNAs that are normally found in plants circulating in mammalian blood.