Friday, December 22, 2006

Write a letter to the true Santa Claus - try it!

I recently wrote a short letter to God, it was about my relationship with him and what I wanted for myself, (not on a physical level on a spiritual level). I noticed how much power it gave me and also how much power it has given me to act how I really want to act (to say goodbye to excuses!)

I was reflecting on my spirtual journey, and when I have the courage of our my convictions and share that with the One and only, I recieve a lot, I wanted to blog about this because its such a hidden source, when we become aware, life and our self awareness opens up to bring us closer to our potential - this has been my experience. My suggestion is try it and if you would like to share how you get on, I would be a very open and listening ear.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Crossed fingers or an open mind to learning?

I was thinking how most people believe that "everything will be alright in the end". I have held onto this belief all my life. Recently at a retreat in India I became aware of this belief and felt quite attached to it. Another thing that became very apparent whilst I was there was, how it is not just in the end that everything will be alright but that it can be all the time if I am open to embrace the opportunities coming my way. I had to ask myself, am I holding onto anything in this moment: an idea, a belief, a preconceived idea of the response the person I am speaking to will give - I noticed if I think like this that I miss out on the magic of life because I am trying to shape life rather than allow life to bring out the best in me and
give me its gifts along the way.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Could we all be ANGELS?

Not so long ago I drove to Oxford with a friend. On the way back, the traffic was moving smoothly and we were driving pretty fast. Whilst we were overtaking in the fast lane the front tyre punctured and burst into pieces. As I wasn’t sure what was happening I naturally started reducing speed and tried to get into the slow lane. However the traffic in the other lanes was already going much faster than us and they wouldn’t let me pull over. So we ended up having to stop in the fast lane on a major UK motorway- with the hazard lights on. It was quite scary being surrounded by cars passing us by at 90miles/hour.

Then, from nowhere a man appeared and volunteered to drive my car across the motorway. He managed to stop the traffic, move my car to the hard shoulder, get back into his car and disappear with the speed he appeared at in the first place, before we even had a chance to thank him. Incredible! We felt that some kind of an angel saw that we were in trouble, came with no introduction, helped us out of the trouble and left without a trace…(exactly what angels do!) … well, apart from my car having been safely parked on the edge of the motorway.

He could have easily driven by us in the same way as everyone else did… however he decided to behave like an angel and decided to help.

Can you imagine what the world would be like if we all decided to behave like angels right here and right now?

Monday, November 27, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #23

A priest, a minister and a guru sat discussing the best positions for prayer while a telephone repairman worked nearby. "Kneeling is definitely the best way to pray," the priest said.

"No," said the minister. "I get the best results standing with my hands outstretched to Heaven."

"You're both wrong," the guru said. "The most effective prayer position is lying down on the floor."

The repairman could contain himself no longer. "Hey, fellas," he interrupted, "The best prayin' I ever did was when I was hangin' upside down from a telephone pole."

Saturday, November 25, 2006


I have just come back from India. My time was packed with amazing experiences. One such sweet experience happened one day whilst I was having lunch when an Indian family (quite numerous) passed by our table.

Spotting my friend and I sitting at the table they asked us with a lot of enthusiasm if we would mind if they took their photo with us. I am not very much into being photographed, so in my mind my initial reaction was “Oh, not again!”. I mostly tend to agree to this kind of thing but not very willingly. My feelings must have shown on my face as it invoked a comment from the neighbouring table: “This is your opportunity to give happiness, are you going to miss it?” Within a fraction of a second my attitude turned around by 180 degrees. I immediately became enthusiastic about fulfilling their wish and "that" photograph is the evidence for it:-)! The father of the family thanked us and added: “We will remember this until the end of our lives”. I know it might sound over the top, but these were the exact words he spoke.

Very often we can make someone very happy with such little effort. I almost missed my opportunity, just because I don’t like being photographed. I am glad I didn’t miss it though and that was thanks to the person sitting at the neighbouring table. Thank you, I hope we meet again!

Thursday, November 23, 2006

The Difference

I got up early one morning and
rushed into the day.
I had so much to accomplish,
I didn't have time to pray.

Problems just tumbled about me,
heavier came each task.
"Why doesn't God help me?" I wondered.
He answered, "You didn't ask."

I wanted to see joy and beauty, but
the day toiled on, gray and bleak.
I wondered why God didn't show me.
He said, "You didn't seek."

I tried to come into God's presence.
I used all my keys at the lock.
God gently and lovingly chided,
"My child, you didn't knock."

I woke up early this morning and
paused before entering the day.
I had so much to accomplish,
I had to take time to pray.

By A. Grant

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Waiting at the Bus Stop...

The other morning - it was early, but for many it was the end of a long night out! - I was waiting at the bus stop to go to the meditation centre for morning class and there were these two teenagers, well they might even have been in their 20s...One was playing the wise one, he may even have been a bit older, and the other was completely rebelling against the system/the world. I think that both of them had had a few too many drinks but still were having a constructive conversation. The one rebelling looked like he was on his way to work and he was sharing with his friend about how he didn't care about work, and that for him he was there to do the work, get paid and leave and so it didn't matter if his wasn't clear in the mind. The undercurrent was that he felt that the world/system was corrupt and so he was consciously not buying into it. The wiser one suggested to him that there was another option, being that he could also enjoy work...He said: that if you're not clear in the head and 'don't care' how will you be able to offer something of value? I only caught about 5mins of the conversation before my bus came...the beauty of the conversation - even though it was very clear that neither one of them was willing to listen to the other - was how they were trying to express themselves and stand up for something which for them was their truth, and neither one was willing to compromise it.

I wanted to say just one thing to the rebel...'the world needs your clarity'...but the thought came too late - I was already sitting in the bus. I'm sure, in time, he'll come to the same conclusion himself...

Monday Spiritual Joke #22

A man walking along a California beach was deep in prayer. Suddenly the sky clouded above his head and, in a booming voice, the Lord said, "Because you have TRIED to be faithful to me in all ways, I will grant you one wish."

The man said, "Build a bridge to Hawaii so I can drive over anytime I want."The Lord said, "Your request is very materialistic. Think of the enormous challenges for that kind of undertaking. The supports required to reach the bottom of the Pacific! The concrete and steel it would take! It will nearly exhaust several natural resources. I can do it, but it is hard for me to justify your desire for worldly things. Take a little more time and think of something that would honor and glorify me."

The man thought about it for a long time. Finally he said, "Lord, I wish that I could understand my wife. I want to know how she feels inside, what she's thinking when she gives me the silent treatment, why she cries, what she means when she says, "nothing's wrong" and how I can make a woman truly happy."

The Lord replied, "You want two lanes or four on that bridge?"

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Go on - make your day!

I was walking in Central London yesterday and was running late for an appointment. Whilst standing at the traffic light waiting for the 'little green man' to alight, I saw a well-dressed elderly lady on the other side of the road who seemed a little lost. Many people hurrily walked pass her when she approached them including a tall gentleman who had his hand up to indicate he didn't have time for her. However, I continued to watch her maintain the same smile on her face unaffected by the responses of the people (that's what I call wisdom).

When the 'little green man' came alight, I started crossing the road and met her at the side of the road. Our eyes met and there was no way I could have pretended not to see her. She then asked me with a warm and gentle voice whether I knew the way to British Museum. I explained briefly to her how to get there and the roads she needed to look out for. She then thanked me and I felt such genuine gratefulness in her voice. She made my day. As it turned out, the person whom I was meeting was running late anyway. At least I had a good excuse for being late.

Sometimes I feel I get so caught up in my own affairs and wrapped up in my own little world that I become self-centred, which eventually stops my 'heart' from growing and sharing. So, why can't we stop for a few moments to say hi and acknowledge another human being with a genuine smile - wouldn't it make your day?

Monday Spiritual Joke #21

Patient: My irregular heartbeat is really frightening me.
Doctor: Don't worry, we'll put a stop to it.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Traveling Home

I have just come back from traveling extensively. To travel is always nice. In a way, it served to bring me back home inside, to touch base with who I really am, as my normal reference points were not there. So that was beautiful and allowed me to have many insights. One of them, the most practical of all, was that:

-- I only have 25 days holiday per year
-- one year has 365 days

I can not afford to find inner beauty only on 25 out of 365 days of the year… which means that I need to create some newness and forge ‘inner trips’ whilst sitting here in my office. To find ‘food for thought’ and train my eyes to see the magic of everyday life. To be a guest, a constant traveler… one who is not attached to anything and yet appreciates everything – and has FUN with it all!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


A few days ago I visited a friend who lives outside of london - it's amazing how people who have had many experiences, look to be living the high life tend to lose the sense of simplicity and appreciation - the ego is much more at the forefront. In comparison my friend...she is from an older generation, illiterate and her appreciation of everything was quite mind blowing. We were reflecting on life and at one point I asked the question 'how often do we have a thought that we've never had before? friends eyes opened up wide like a childs' and very enthusiastically said 'I have - right now!' I asked what it was and she said ' where is the mind?' Amazing I was because of appreciation, an open mind and a willingness to learn that this thought came to her for the first time. I thought: this is what awakening's when the ego often do we dare to ask the questions that could shift our reality?...she was and it was beautiful to witness.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Reading Faces

On two occasions within this past week - whilst chatting with people... judging by their expressions I was convinced that I knew what was going on in their minds...but I was completely wrong. On both occasions I was convinced that their expressions were negative but in fact their experiences were overwhelmingly positive. How could I be so wrong in my judgement? It's happening to me more frequently these days that I scan someone's face or I hold a certain impression and find I am thinking 'are they listening', 'is what I am saying making sense to them ', or 'they really aren't interested'...these thoughts come like flashes into my mind but they influence both my experience as well as my responses to them...It's along the same lines as I was sharing in the 'Success Ruler' blog, where I found myself judging too's as though my whole perception is focused outside rather than inside. Is there a time and place to read faces...or should we just get on with the job and simply play our part with 100% confidence? Part of me is convinced that even in a business deal if I maintain my confidence and trust myself - others will adjust to my state of mind (facial expressions!!!) instead of the other way around.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #20

A father was approached by his small son, who told him proudly, "I know what the Bible means!"
His father smiled and
replied, "What do you mean, you 'know' what the Bible means?"

The son replied, "I do know!"

"Okay," said his father. "So, son, what does the Bible mean?"

"That's easy, Daddy. It stands for 'Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth.'"

Monday, October 30, 2006


I recently heard that if there is fear inside of you, it's a sign of some form of dishonesty. Just recently I've been discovering the relationship between the two.

I am lucky as I spend each morning at a meditation centre and so all those who are there - even the atmosphere itself- very quickly become a mirror for what needs changing inside. Related to fear and dishonesty a few years ago, on one of my first trips to a retreat centre in India, one of the meditation teachers shared that fear is connected to ego and the need to 'take' from an individual or situation, it's in fact a selfish motive. This was a very liberating idea for me at the time because when you are in the experience of 'fear' you feel a victim and that it is the other person who is making you feel vulnerable, but the fear in fact is self-created. I realised that the cleaner one becomes, the fuller one feels the more ego falls and humility grows and I can begin to live life free from the subtle fears that often stop us from being who we are. I realised that I needed to work deeply on myself - I need to create that level of honesty inside that makes me clean and clear...transparent. For this I need to start today and there that much integrity and cleanliness inside that whatever I the same as I what I the same as what I do?

Oftentimes to be too predictable is considered to be ordinary but I'm starting to like this idea of being that those who know me can guess what I would think/say/do.

Fear, dishonesty, selfishness - these are the things that make us unpredictable not only to others but to ourselves also.

TRUST - a new perspective

Trust - is the word that has been echoing in my mind for the last few days.

I am beginning to think Trust is a gorgeous word - look how beautiful it is.

I was reflecting on my relationship with this word and how it's beginning to
change. Sometimes it's easy to trust. If we are feeling good inside it's easy and
difficult if there is resistance. Here's a new perspective on TRUST:

The T makes you strong like a tree
The R takes you on an interesting journey
The U is a place to rest, inside
The S lets you flow like a river
The T makes you an embodiment of strength

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Relationships at Work

Today I had a call from a colleague - Alex - who is currently experiencing pressure at work and now in addition I was imposing more. On listening to her I could hear Alex's frustrations bubbling away. From my perspective it wasn't a big change, from her perspective it was a big deal (and I was a possible scape goat). I could appreciate where she was coming from having been in similar situations. I empathised with her, "I can appreciate how you are feeling." I wasn't just saying it, I could. I have felt like that, it was from the heart. However, I needed to share the details and reasons for the situation that were not being considered by Alex. I could see as an observer that the change externally was just emphasising what needed to change inside her. Any stress we experience is a messenger to change something inside ourselves.

I reflected, everyday we have so much to learn from each other and from ourselves. My lesson was to be the listener, to be understanding, loving and open. It was also to be ultimately firm and to not let myself be affected by the frustrations that were being aired. My part was to be someone who could empathise, offer solutions and different perspectives. Ultimately it was not me though who could not make the change for her to feel better about the situation, only Alex has that right.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #19

A Recently Spotted Bumper Sticker:

Witches' parking only. All others will be toad.

Temporary living

It has been almost 3 months now that my husband and I have been staying with his parents due to our "house situation". Before we moved in I said to myself: remember that this is just a temporary arrangement. It seems that carrying this awareness: that it is just TEMPORARY, has helped me tremendously. Knowing that this situation is not permanent and that it would soon change I felt able to say: I am going to make the best out of this situation and take this time to get to know them better. I cannot say that there have been no disagreements whatsoever but knowing this is 'temporary' I'm able to put the negative feelings aside, rekindle the relationship and learn to appreciate them.

When thinking on a deeper level... this may be applied to everything. If I look at every situation, every opportunity and every person as being temporary, then I would see that every situation is a chance to learn something take up every opportunity that I've been given and appreciate the other person I'm with. It is only when I feel that I'm stuck in a situation or with someone do I stop living in the present and start to live in the question box of 'why, what and how'.

However, I have to say the awareness is not always there but at least I have had a glimpse of it and know that I'm now a step closer to opening my perspective to life and learning to see the positivity in every situation.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Success Ruler

The past week has been an interesting one - one that I'm still making sense of or trying to get my head around.

Last week I went to give a presentation to a group of individuals - it was set in a corporate environment, outside of london (both of which I was not used to). In the past, I never imagined that I would be doing 'public speaking' but life has it that it occasionally puts me in 'stretching' situations:)

To make a long story short - the presentation didn't go very well and it's only because I picked up one person's criticism in the room and I allowed it to influence me. On the train ride back, I didn't feel great about the presentation and was reflecting on why it wasn't successful...I was measuring the success of it!

A week later I was speaking to a colleague and she said something quite interesting...she had to do a similar presentation somewhere else and I asked her how it went and she said that it's sometimes good not to measure an experience as good or bad but wherever you go you are simply planting seeds.

Planting seeds is an incognito process - the results may only be visible in a month or even a few years - one needs to plant with the good intention that ultimately a garden will emerge from those seeds. If I plant with hesitation - the wind will just blow the seeds away. So often we go into a situation expecting a certain standard or result or some form of 'praise' - which ultimately is the one thing that prevents us from maintaining our own integrity and dignity. Where there is self doubt (i.e. as a speaker) of any kind your success ruler will always be dependent on what others say or what you think, which is so often based on ego.

Choosing not to measure one's success enables one to stay in control, stay free, enjoy the experience and move on!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Burn or take time out

If you throw a frog into boiling water – what will it do? Jump immediately out. If you throw a frog into cool water and then just continue to increase bit by bit the temperature… what will the frog do? The frog has an amazing capacity to adjust to the temperature of the water. Eventually the frog will die as the water reaches boiling but it is not the boiling water that kills the frog – it is its own temperature that does!

There are a lot of similarities with us. As we are part of a changing world… we continue to find ourselves adjusting and adjusting and adjusting. Adapting ourselves to our surroundings. Where does this so often leave us… burn out!

So, it is important to learn to catch the signs of being stressed (mood swings, irritability, unable to focus the mind, not answering the phone…if I trip over things☺- these are all signs) so that I don’t have burn out. Learning to take time for reflection and set my own pace – where I am not influenced by my external surroundings but where I now can have influence over my surroundings in a positive way.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #18

Grandpa and his grandson were sitting reading when he asked,

"Did God make you, Grandpa?"

"Yes, God made me," the grandfather answered.

A few minutes later, the little boy asked him, "Did God make me too?"

"Yes, He did," the older man answered.

For a few minutes, the little boy seemed to be studying his grandpa, as well as his own reflection in the mirror, while his grandfather wondered what was running through his mind. At last he spoke up.

"You know, Grandpa," he said, "God's doing a lot better job lately."

Monday, October 16, 2006

Arteries of Communication - Successful Organisations

A friend was recently sharing with me the success of an organisation that she works in. She was saying how well it functions because everyone believes and respects the values of the organisation and chooses to live by them. The secret of its' success is that there are very clear and open lines of communication that run to its' hear (i.e. the people at the top). Another interesting aspect to this is, the people in the middle and at the bottom also have good communication, value and respect each other's roles and understand the importance of them in the bigger picture, and so recognise the importance of being transparent about everything with the top. They recognise that they are the ones who keep the arteries open to the heart of the organisation, so that there are no blocks and enable the organisation to function successfully – this leaves 'the heart' free to pump and flow its power around the organisation as there is mutual trust, love and respect. You can guess how successful it is?

Friday, October 13, 2006

Power of Thought

During the past week I've become more and more aware of the power of thought - and of how when you consciously create and choose to sustain that thought how you begin to create a new reality.

This might sound superficial as I am not someone who has ever been interested in I'm not really one to think about earning lots of money (this thought was/is in fact my hindrance) but I decided a few days ago to change my thinking towards money - it was as if I started to just change the feeling I had towards it...I felt my consciousness expanding and that I was ready for a new period of growth and to welcome a new sense of abundance. Today I received a call from my manager, he told me that he would be giving me a raise...I said that the organisation (which is a charity) didn't have enough money to afford to be giving me a pay rise, but he said that this is irrelevant and that I should be paid more for the work that I'm doing. I have to say I was quite stunned by this - it wasn't a big pay rise but it was something...and simply proved to me that when you begin to remove the 'fear' of having too much abundance...realising that it is actually not 'my' money but that money is energy and so must flow - like love.

Money should flow to us as we need it and then flow from us for the greater good. Don't worry I'm not going to fixate on money:-) but I've decided not to reject it but to welcome it as one would welcome love!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #17

How many members of your astrological sign does it take to change a light bulb?

Libra: Er, two. Or maybe one. No - on second thought, make that two. Is that okay with you?

Scorpio: That information is strictly secret and shared only with the Enlightened Ones in the Star Chamber of the Ancient Hierarchical Order.

Sagittarius: The sun is shining, the day is young and we've got our whole lives ahead of us, and you're inside worrying about a stupid light bulb?

You have to understand how the light bulb work first and what we need...

Capricorn: I don't waste my time with these childish jokes.

Aquarius: Well, you have to remember that everything is energy, so...

Everyone watch me change the light bulb.

Pisces: Light bulb? What light bulb?

mini: Changing light bulb is no fun. Can we do something else?

Aries: While you are wasting time asking such question the light bulb has been changed.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Challenge My Beliefs

A few friends recently caught me taking on board other peoples negative beliefs into my life. Ooops! It made me stop and take stock - and I found it quite revealing.

It's very easy to slip into, it can come from just saying, "yes that's true", (notice how often we do this?).

On this occasion someone had come up with a probable theory, but it was still "a theory". Somewhere along the way I had bought into this idea(unconsciously)I must have thought: well they know what they are talking about. They are a trusted source and I have a lot of respect for this person so "it must be true". As I reacted to the thoughts about an event that will be happening in the future the impact of this belief left me feeling bad. (A strong sign of a negative belief at work!). Seeing myself go through this, reminded me of walking on the cracks in the pavement when I was a child. Remember this one? If I do this ......this will happen.......(depending on what I thought sometimes it felt good, sometimes bad.)

This uncomfortable feeling really made me look within myself and ask, "Will I be there for me to face whatever challenges come up in my life in the future? Will I see them as learning opportunities to move on and grow through or will I be scared?" From the heart I said: Yes, I will be there for myself! It's the only thing I can do! As I gave this more thought, I could see and feel the fear drop away from me. This love and commitment towards myself was like a balm, if I hadn't examined that belief it would still be at work today and causing me mischief.

I recognised whatever beliefs I have, at some point in time I will face its' truth or falsehood. If the belief is true I will feel good, if there is any sense of fear and I feel bad it's false!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Letting life unfold

I've been making trips to and fro to hospitals for the past week. It is not a new found hobby of mine but it was how life presented itself. A very good friend's Mum was hospitalised with undiagnosed lung problems; another close friend's Mum was admitted into hospital with a minor heart attack, and another friend is in hospital recovering from back surgery.

So, I sat back the other day to reflect on these scenes and watching these things unfolding in front of me. Sometimes I like to do this, it helps me to understand the significance of my life's journey. At the moment the hospital trips might be there to prepare me for something in the future? They might be preparing me mentally for having to face something similar? - I don't know. However, I do not want to live life waiting for it to pass me by when I can do something about it right now.

It might not be hospitals next time, it might be something else, but it doesn't matter. The main thing is to capture what life is presenting and then learn from it, apply it and move on.

We can be stuck in the same situation again and again... but until I have learnt the lesson I need to learn the situation will never go away. Someone told me, if the situation is no longer there, then it is an indication I have learnt my lesson!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #16

Bible's Financial Wizard

Q. Who was the Bible's first financial wizard?

A. Noah. He floated his stock when the rest of the world was in liquidation.

Monday, October 02, 2006


Two words that have been coming to my mind recently…are ‘hesitation’ and…on a more positive note ‘grace’:)

I received a reply to an email I had written a few days ago…that made me aware of my ‘hesitation’…in fact I was only trying to make sure that I was doing the right thing…I suppose being careful but careful of what? Maybe so not to make a mistake – the reply stated ‘use your discretion!’

Yesterday evening, I went to a talk on ‘Calm Revolution’ and you may have heard of the speaker ‘Sister Jayanti’ – a meditator of 38yrs and I heard someone commenting on her ‘grace’ – why did I like this word so much…the idea of being graceful – I realised that it’s because it is the exact opposite of hesitation – grace is by nature the absence of pain, difficulty or hesitation.

Interestingly enough – the more I think about ‘grace’ the image that comes to my mind is that of a swan. Swan’s are known for their ability to discriminate between a stone and a seed pearl. So it’s using my discrimination power – the ability to discern between right and wrong…firstly I need to be in touch with my own truth…where there is truth – my intention will be clean and I will be confident in the choices I make…in fact when I don’t hesitate, I will less likely make mistakes and others will trust my decision…

Monday, September 25, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #15

A man suffered a serious heart attack and had bypass surgery. He awakened to find himself in the care of nuns at a Catholic hospital.

As he was recovering, a nun asked how he was going to pay the bill. He replied, in a raspy voice, "No health insurance."

The nun asked if he had money in the bank.He replied, "No money in the bank."

The nun asked, "Do you have a relative who could help you?"

He said, "Just a spinster sister, who is a nun."

The nun, slightly perturbed, said, "Nuns are not spinsters! Nuns are married to God."

The patient replied, "Then send the bill to my brother-in-law."

Friday, September 22, 2006

Cooperation is love in action

Some of you may of heard of the event "Just A Minute" – it has been blogged about here. Well, sometime ago a beautiful idea came to my mind, about getting a group of friends together and friends of friends and having brunch before going to the "Just a Minute" launch event by the
Brahma Kumaris. The aim being to share:

good company + good food = love in the heart

A perfect start to a very special day. It’s a simple equation. When I added up the numbers there was going to be around 40 people (have you ever cooked for 40 people?) The reason why I am
telling you this is because I was so struck by what happened when a group of individuals came together all with the same aim in mind. I was amazed every single detail was thought about (not by me!)It was like perfect synchronicity – I came back to the house late the night before the event to find that all of the furniture had been put into the right places - even flowers in a vase. On the day the food that people decided to make for the day and the combinations worked perfectly, gifts for the guests had even been thought of! The right amount of people at the right time were
there to help and get it all ready in the morning, 40 falafel wraps were created on the day! Extra chairs came from people we didn’t know had extra chairs. Then too, people turned up in the evening to finish the food we couldn’t finish earlier on! Help was there to clean everything up – this too really!!! made an impact, as I was tired, seamless??? Even more, the next day the food that was left over was taken for the morning meditation class with a friend and this amazingly provided lunch for everyone that needed lunch that day! All were very happy. What touched me deeply was power of the gesture to cooperate. This little event was something bigger than all of us, with the time we had available to give to it. So the potential of this power was what really boomed for me that day – and so what did the guests experience? The beauty, the thoughtfulness, the love and the care - I was so stunned by it and I think they were too. Just imagine... if every scene of our lives had this quality to it. I was inspired that day, I thought I want to be cooperative all the time (I know how much I appreciated the cooperation that was shared on that day).

Monday, September 11, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #14

A man and his wife were having an argument about who should brew the coffee each morning.

The wife said, "You should do it, because you get up first, and then we don't have to wait as long to get our coffee."

The husband said, "You are in charge of the cooking around here so you should do it, because that is your job, and I can just wait for my coffee."Wife replies, "No, you should do it, and besides it says in the Bible that the man should do the coffee."

Husband replies, "I can't believe that! Show me."

So she fetched the Bible, and opened the New Testament and showed him at the top of several pages, that it indeed says, "HEBREWS."

Having faith paid back

A colleague of mine, Kim, has just come back from Israel. She went there with her family for a short holiday.
They spent a few days in a hotel and then a friend of Kim’s, Sarah, insisted that they should all go and stay with her in the countryside rather than in this big city hotel. Sarah also insisted that she would come by car to pick them all up, because public transport wasn’t very good to where she lived. I don’t remember the exact what Kim said but it was something like: they would have had to have taken a bus to the railway station, then travelled by train to the next town and then waited for a couple of hours to catch another bus to their destination. So all together the journey by public transport would last 6-7 hours as opposed to 1.5 hours by car.
It was all going as planned until Sarah realised that her 4x4 car would not be available for this trip and that she would somehow have to manage with her smaller car. However, squeezing 4 people and their luggage -along with the driver - into this car was not feasible. Kim didn’t think it was fair to ask Sarah to do the journey twice so she decided to let the others go with Sarah and that she would go by public transport however complicated it seemed.

Kim thought that this would also give her some quiet moments by herself and an opportunity to do a few things in town before going to Sarah’s. She was totally relaxed about having to travel separately from the others, even though it meant travelling for a much longer time and going through more hassle. Even though she had never been to this village before or even knew where it was, she had a complete faith that everything would be just right for her. I guess that’s why she was so relaxed about the whole thing.

The soonest train was not for another few hours, so off Kim went shopping, checking e-mails, sightseeing around town. When the time came to catch the bus to the railway station, she asked pass-byers which bus to take and where the bus stop was. Then whilst looking for the stop, right in front of her she saw a coach that had, believe it or not, the name of the village of her destination displayed in front. No one had ever mentioned this possibility to Kim. She stood there for a second in total disbelief that this was for real. However, she had to act fast so she boarded the coach immediately. Once on the coach Kim found out from the driver that this coach went only once a day and that it is not advertised as no tourists go to this village, so not many people knew about it. Two hours later Kim was sitting at the lunch table with the others. She got to Sarah’s 5 hours earlier than planned… with no hassle whatsoever and about 10 times cheaper.

Having faith that everything will be just right paid back for Kim, it paid back much more than she had hoped for! Having faith always pays back for me too, but I keep forgetting… so I wrote this to make myself remember… and share with you, of course:-).

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Overcoming procrastination

There's something I have been putting off for a few weeks. I hadn't even got around to working out why this was, and then a friend asked me how it was going. I just gave a very honest answer about where it was at. I said: I was inactive and also shared my concerns about what was stopping me from moving forward - good old "self doubt." It was great that she asked me about it, if she hadn't it would probably still be clogging up the pathways of my mind and eating away at my self-esteem!

After sharing 'my issue', looking at new possibilities and experiencing the good wishes and encouragement of my friend I was amazed at how quickly I was able to shift and get things moving again.

I now just need to work on having good wishes and encouragement for myself - and to replace the pathways of self doubt. When you think about it there's no such thing as failure if you are always open to learning.

Things you are grateful about

What are the things in life you are grateful about?

Thanks for sharing...

Monday, September 04, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #13

A zealous Christian who was trying to convert a Hindu found himself getting nowhere. "The thing is," argued the frustrated Christian, "you have to be born again!"

"But I have been born again!" insisted the Hindu. "And again and again and again ..."


What inspires you?

Let us know:

1. A book you read which was inspiring.
2. A song you listen to which always bring back feelings of inspiration.
3. A movie you watched which was inspiring.
4. A person who is the source of your inspiration.
5. An event which has altered the course of your life.

We want to hear from you.

Just click on "Comment" to respond to this...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts and inspiring us!

Wrong Number!!!

For some reason my home phone number is listed as a book publisher's phone number. So, on a daily basis, countless phone calls come through. My answering machine now says "this is a private home" - and still they keep ringing. I usually let it go straight to the answering machine, but last Tuesday I was working from home and waiting for a phone call from a colleague so, when the phone rang... A lady called looking for the publishers. I explained that this is a private home number etc. Hung up politely etc. She called again. Again the same story. She apologised.
Again, five minutes later, she called. This time to see if I had their phone number. No, madam, I have no idea. Then, about 10 minutes later the phone rings and sure enough it's the same the lady again. I didn't know what to say anymore. She wanted to check if the publisher's phone was merely being incorrectly directed to my home. So we double-checked the number she had and it was indeed my home number. No, sorry, wrong number. She asked me how long I have had that number. "About six months" -- I replied. She said she had just written a book and was trying to arrange a meeting with the publishers. Then I became curious. "What was the book about?" It was a work of fiction about a girl who finds out she is not human. "Hummmm" I said, not really interested anymore. Until she said "She realises she is made of goodness." I asked "Well, aren't humans good?". Diane said (by then I had asked her her name) "We used to be. Now we have become greedy and selfish and lost our original goodness -- we need to find our super-human selves again. This girl in the book finds it straight away. It is the innocence that children have" she said which allows them to tap into what is best in them immediately." So we chatted a bit longer I wished her good luck and hung up.

That story stuck to my mind... it was interesting to see my own beliefs about the human race, and I was happy to find that 'my ending' was a happy one. That we indeed have the potential to become like children again; to rediscover our goodness, to reaccess our innocence and to live in harmony. Yes, despite the wars, the chaos and the negativity. Indeed, there is no other way. So, when the phone rang again I was hoping it was Diane so I could tell her my reflections as a follow-up to our chat, but it wasn't... It was my colleague from work with a very technical question. I was a different person though, with a different state of mind, no longer 'small'. I had hope for us, for all of us.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Together we shall reach the goal

Have you heard of the event called ‘Just a minute’ that is going to take place at Wembley Arena? One of their slogans is “It takes just a minute to transform your world.” Sounds unbelievable, doesn’t it? It would be great to transform this world into a place where everyone is happy, peaceful and content… no sorrow, no crime, no stress, no fear… and all in just a minute?! Excellent idea! And I guess the best way to achieve such a big goal is to gather many people together, all with the same aim… and whilst writing this, another slogan comes to mind:

“Nobody can do everything, but everybody can do something and together we shall reach the goal!”

I’ll let you know how the event goes… Can’t wait!

Little things mean a lot!

last week i took notice of a few things - small they may be, but these small things actually make a big difference:

  • my neighbour offered to cook me a meal when i had migraine
  • as i was leaving for work in a hurry a friend packed me a sandwich for breakfast
  • someone offered me their seat on a crowded underground train (added bonus: it was rush hour!)
  • i paused to eat a meal outside my workplace in silence
  • i offered my seat in the bus to an elderly man
  • i saved some of my dinner to share with my flatmate
  • from across the atlantic, i received a beautiful letter from an old friend (a real letter, sent by real post!!! yes, they still exist!)
  • i smiled broadly at the bus driver and said 'thank you' at the end of the journey
  • the taxi driver wanted to talk about his life - and i really REALLY listened - and he thanked me from his heart.
for all these little blessings, i am very grateful.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Buying a property or buying a lesson?

Recently someone said to me - "If you are going to attain something, attain something permanent."

This has been playing on my mind for a few days now. I have heard this many times from people and read it in spiritual books but somehow I was unable to put it into context for myself until now.

My husband and I are currently in the process of purchasing
a property in North London. Any of you who have bought or are in the process of buying a property know how tedious and precarious the whole process is. I found myself caught up in a whirlwind of questions - 'why', 'when' and 'how' along with the buying process.

the statement above had been playing in my head for a few days I realised that I had lost sight of our initial reason for buying a property and become too caught up in wanting that so-called-perfect-house. Initially we had agreed to climb onto the property ladder to find a place that we could call home and that would mean not having to keep finding ourselves moving every year, when 'our landlord' decided to raise the rent or sell their property.

I realised a home is a feeling which is created and not something to do with bricks and mortar
. You could have the most beautiful house in the world but if it is filled with sadness, unhappiness or grief no one would call that a home and most of all no one would look forward going back to that house.

It is my presence, my pure feelings, my positive energy which make a home loving, caring and full of hospitality. The house is just the scenery
where this plays out. If we just stopped chasing after our tails for a second, we might just find what we need deep within ourselves...

(That's what I'm doing now. I will let you know how I get on).

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Life Opportunities

Yesterday I left my meditation session feeling really good – we had talked a lot about kindness and I walked to the underground on my way to work thinking about what it really means. I generally walk very fast and on getting to the underground there was an old lady pushing a little cart. I passed by her and proceeded to run down the stairs. When I was at the very bottom I heard a man who had entered the underground with me ask her (he was just then at the top of the staircase): ‘Madam, can I help you going down?’. I then realized that whilst I was thinking about kindness I had just lost the very opportunity to put it into practice! Very much in the same way that many times we proclaim our values with such moral righteousness and yet fail to express them practically when we are “tested on them”. Well, I said to myself: “I hope I learned that lesson, but I lost that opportunity”. Later in the day I was again in the underground and, as I was going up the stairs, there was another old lady trying really hard to carry her luggage down. I rushed up and offered to help her. She accepted with a broad smile on her face. I had a broad smile on mine and felt really good! Not only because I had given something of myself and exchanged a moment of tenderness, but also because of the beauty I could then see in life: when we really want an opportunity to express something positive, life will provide!

Monday, August 28, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #12

An engineer died and ended up in Hell. He was not pleased with the level of comfort in Hell, and began to redesign and build improvements. After awhile, they had toilets that flush, air conditioning, and escalators. Everyone grew very fond of him.

One day God called to Satan to mock him, "So, how's it going down there in Hell?" Satan replied, "Hey, things are great. We've got air conditioning and flush toilets and escalators, and there's no telling what this engineer is going to come up with next."

God was surprised, "What? You've got an engineer? That's a mistake. He should never have gotten down there in the first place. Send him back up here."

"No way," replied Satan. "I like having an engineer, and I'm keeping him." God threatened, "Send him back up here now or I'll sue!"

Satan laughed and answered, "Yeah, right. And just where are YOU going to get a lawyer?"

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Can we turn around time?

I finally made it to the Sports Centre the other day. After all that hard work in the gym and the swimming pool I decided to treat myself with a sauna.
I was thoroughly enjoying sitting in the sauna when someone asked me: “Could you please turn the time around?”
There was a sand timer on the wall next to where I was sitting and the lady was obviously asking me if I could turn the timer over, which I did.
However, sitting in silence made me think whether it was possible to turn the time itself around? To make time work for us rather than against us, to make time
make the effort to catch up with us rather than us making the effort to catch up with time?
I guess this means doing things with love and enjoying them, so that they are done before the time rather than postponing and then rushing to meet a deadline.

Does anyone out there have more thoughts on this?

Monday, August 21, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #11

Sid and Al were sitting in a Chinese restaurant.

"Sid," asked Al, "Are there any Jews in China?"

"I don't know," Sid replied. "Why don't we ask the waiter?" When the waiter came by, Al said, "Are there any Chinese Jews?"

"I don't know sir, let me ask," the waiter replied and he went into the kitchen.

He quickly returned and said, "No, sir. No Chinese Jews."

"Are you sure?" Al asked.

"I will check again, sir." The waiter replied and went back to the kitchen.

While he was still gone, Sid said, "I cannot believe there are no Jews in China. Our people are scattered everywhere."

When the waiter returned he said, "Sir, no Chinese Jews."

"Are you really sure?" Al asked again. "I cannot believe there are no Chinese Jews."

"Sir, I ask everyone," the waiter replied exasperated. "We have orange jews, prune jews, tomato jews and grape jews, but no one ever hear of Chinese jews!"

Monday, August 14, 2006

The LOVE Story

Once upon a time there was an island on which all The Feelings lived. There was Happiness, Sadness, Knowledge and all the others, including Love.

One day it was announced to all of The Feelings that the island was about to s
ink to the bottom of the ocean. So all of The Feelings prepared their boats to leave, apart from Love who decided to stay. She wanted to preserve their island paradise until the very last possible moment. Eventually, when the island was almost totally under water, Love decided it was time for her to also leave. She began looking for someone to ask for help.

Just then Richness was passing by in a grand boat. Love asked, "Richness, can I come with you on your boat?" Richness answered, "I am sorry, but there is a lot of silver and gold on my boat and there would be no room for you anywhere."

Vanity passed by in a beautiful vessel and Love cried out, "Vanity, help me please!", "I can't help you", Vanity said, "You are all wet and will damage my beautiful boat."

Next Love saw Sadness passing by. Love said, "Sadness please let me go with you." Sadness answered, "Love, I'm sorry, but, I just need to be alone now."

Then, Love saw Happiness and cried out, "Happiness, please take me with you."
However Happiness was so overjoyed that he didn't hear Love calling him.

Love began to cry, then she heard a voice say, "Come Love I will take you with me."

It was an elder. Love felt so blessed and overjoyed that she forgot to ask the elder his name. When they arrived on land the elder went on his way.

Love realized how much she owed the elder and when she met Knowledge she asked who it was that had helped her.

"It was Time", Knowledge answered. "But why did Time help me when no one else would?", Love asked. Knowledge smiled and with deep wisdom and sincerity, answered, "Because only Time is capable of understanding how great Love is."

*This story was sent to me by a friend. Thought I share it with you.

Monday Spiritual Joke #10

A clergyman was walking down the street when he came upon a group of about a dozen boys, all of them between 10 and 12 years of age.

The group surrounded a dog. Concerned lest the boys were hurting the dog, he went over and asked "What are you doing with that dog?"

One of the boys replied, "This dog is just an old neighborhood stray. We all want him, but only one of us can take him home. So we've decided that whichever one of us can tell the biggest lie will get to keep the dog."

Of course, the reverend was taken aback. "You boys shouldn't be having a contest telling lies!" he exclaimed. He then launched into a ten minute sermon against lying, beginning, "Don't you boys know it's a sin to lie," and ending with, "Why, when I was your age, I never told a lie."

There was dead silence for about a minute. Just as the reverend was beginning to think he'd gotten through to them, the smallest boy gave a deep sigh and said, "All right, give him the dog."

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Beauty tips:-)

The following was written by Sam Levinson and it somehow found its way to my inbox the other day. I loved it, so I thought you might like it too.

For attractive lips, speak words of kindness.
For lovely eyes, seek out the good in people.
For a slim figure, share your food with the hungry.
For beautiful hair, let a child run his or her fingers through it once a day.
For poise, walk with the knowledge that you never walk alone.
People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone.
Remember, if you ever need a helping hand, you'll find one at the end of each of your arms.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

My responsibility

Last night, arriving home at the same time, my husband JC spotted a car parked on the side of the road with its headlights still turned on. We did not know who the car belonged to. This being London it is quite common not to know your neighbours, you just get on with your day-to-day life and maybe say a 'hi' and 'bye' to your neighbours if you bump into them - that's about it though.

Anyway, if I had been on my own yesterday I would not have taken the initiative to find out who the car's owner was, because it could have been any house on the street. As it was JC, he was quite adamant to look for the owner of the car. After knocking on 5 doors, he found the car's owner, a grey haired man nearing his 60s. He was very grateful because he knew that he would have been in trouble the next day.

When we went back to our flat I asked JC what made him do that? Was it because he wanted to do something nice for someone or was there another reason behind it? He said he felt responsible having seen the car and knowing the despair the person would experience when he/she went to start his/her car the next morning only to find that the engine was dead initiated his action.

I thought to myself (and thinking aloud here), if we all felt such a sense of responsibility towards the world, the world would be a much nicer place to live in. I am not at all innocent in this aspect, I too have been/am negligent and sometimes play ignorant to what is going on around me and to what we are doing to the environment.

This does not mean that I am going to start knocking on the front doors of my neighbours if that's what you think, but I will definitely pay more attention to them when I meet them at their front gates or on my way out, rather than just mumbling 'hi' as I dash in or out of the house.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #9

There was a religious lady that had to do a lot of traveling for her business, so she did a lot of flying. Flying made her very very nervous, so she always took her Bible along with her to read as it helped relax her on the long fights.

One time, she was sitting next to a man. When he saw her pull out her Bible, he gave a little chuckle and smirk and went back to what he was doing.
After awhile, he turned to her and asked, "You don't really believe all that stuff in there do you?"
The lady replied, "Of course I do. It is the Bible."
He said, "Well, what about that guy that was swallowed by that whale?"
She replied, "Oh, Jonah. Yes, I believe that, it is in the Bible."
He asked, "Well, how do you suppose he survived all that time inside the whale?"
The lady said, "Well, I don't really know. I guess when I get to heaven, I will ask him."
"What if he isn't in heaven?" the man asked sarcastically.
"Then you can ask him," replied the lady.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Patience pays back

A set of lights on my car didn’t work properly and not having much time on my hands, I took the car straight to the garage. I arrived there just after 9am, which is the time they normally open. However, the front door was shut. I inquired in the car-wash next door why the garage was still shut and they didn’t know.
Now I had a choice: get irritated and leave (consequences: waste of energy, faulty lights still there) or wait patiently and see what happened.
Having already invested some of my precious time I decided to wait. Whilst I was waiting I decided to see if I could figure out what was wrong with the lights (I am kind of a DIY person at home, but considering that I don’t know anything about cars, this was a brave decision on my part– well, I just couldn’t stay still:-)!

Anyway, I opened the working lights on the other side of the car and checked what they are supposed to look like when working properly, then compared them with the ones that were faulty and managed to fix them. All done in 10 minutes and for free!!!
I am so glad I didn’t get irritated and left earlier. Being patient allowed me to be creative with my time… well it saved me some money too:-).
By the way, the garage was just starting to open as I was leaving…

Friday, August 04, 2006

Do you believe in research?

........... I DO!
Especially in this!

It is believed that certain compounds in chocolate called flavanols may be responsible for producing positive effects on health. In vitro (that means, in the lab) studies found that flavanols in chocolate may actually decrease the oxidation of Low Density Lipoproteins (LDL), or "bad" cholesterol ". When LDLs become oxidized they promote the build up of plaque along the inside lining of blood vessels, this can reduce blood flow which supports the development of high blood pressure and atherosclerosis. Additional in vitro studies found that flavanols may reduce platelet aggregation (these aggregations can cause obstructions in blood flow). Preliminary clinical studies (with real people these times!) have shown that participants consuming flavanol-rich cocoas and chocolates have manifested a number of positive effects relating to cardiovascular health, including decreased blood pressure and improved blood flow through the blood vessels!!

I knew it something that is so tasty and made of a fruit (cocoa!)

should be good!
As not all chocolates have stable amounts of flavanols I would suggest trying different brands!!! Enjoy!!! Be happy!

Do not forget that it can increase your weight, blood sugar and triglycerides if you over do but, after all, nobody is perfect!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Embracing Diversity

I went to a multifaith event on Sunday the theme was "embracing diversity". I know this is currently one of those hot phrases we hear, especially in the corporate world, but it's actually very important that it is there as a "must have" for the world in general. I stopped to think how this embrace goes beyond race and religion, recognising those times when I don't celebrate these differences. Such as, when I come across someone being rude or sharp in their tone and I keep hold of that image of them, and see that moment as defining who they are. Reflecting on this: when I get caught in these "diverse" moments of the day, that seem to be are ever increasing, and I find myself in conflict it's as if life is pleading with me to embrace diversity. To change my attitude so as to not get caught in differences of behaviour; to let go of expectations and let the good wishes flow like a river; to interact with love; to realise that I cannot change anyone and so instead let them feel the embrace of my good wishes and loving feelings as a gift to help them feel better. I know I will feel a lot more united doing this.

Monday, July 31, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #8

A priest and bus driver lived together and one day thay also together died. They went to St. Peter standing before Heaven's gate. He allowed the bus driver to go to one of the highest Heavens but the priest had to wait.

He waited for long time and finally went to St. Peter and asked: "Why did that bus driver go to the highest Heaven and I, who all my life spoke about God, had to wait for such a long time?" St. Peter said: "When you were speaking to the people at your church everybody was sleeping, but when that bus driver was driving everybody prayed!"

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Power of vibes

As I walked out of Tescos yesterday with my shopping a tourist stopped me in my step to ask me for directions to the National Gallery. It is not unusual to bump into a tourist in Covent Garden, normally I keep my head down and weave my way through the crowd. I presumed he was a tourist because he did not speak any English, only French. My French being limited to two words i.e. 'merci' and 'svp'. I managed to figure out what he wanted though just by the end of his sentence when he said "Galerie Nationale?".

It was 8 in the morning and there were not many people on the street. So it was hard for me to mumble something to him and randomly point him in a direction. I waved my hands and asked him in English whether he had a map and he shook his head. So I gestured for him to follow me. He trailed behind me, we both walked in silence, but somehow naturally there seemed to be an exchange of good energy or vibes (if you prefer to call it that) during that 3 minute walk. I took him to Covent Garden tube station and picked up one of those free magazines that have a map in them and showed him the way to National Gallery. We parted with him just nodding and saying "merci beaucoup" and me saying "you are welcome!".

I realised from this 5 minutes 'epic' that we spend so much time and energy talking, expressing ourselves with words, and yet often so little is accomplished. We still manage to miscommunicate, misinterpret and misunderstood each other despite all those words. I do not deny the power of words, however what about the power of vibrations? We seem to ignore these. My own experience tells me words leave an impression but vibrations leave an imprint on the heart.

War Stories

One day people will stop reading newspapers. On that day newspapers will start writing stories about good things rather than just calamity or entertainment. The former drenches the soul and the latter makes us forget our depth. With either, we remain unfulfilled, empty.

My neighbour was telling me how she was feeling depressed and angry with all the violence she has been watching and reading on the news. Even as we talked, I started to get affected by the conversation. I thought of the many negative messages we are fed every day and which, consciously or unconsciously, we keep in our minds and hearts, like a virus ready to strike at the least failure of our "immune system".

Today, before even opening my daily newspaper, I said to myself: "I am not going to take sides. I will not judge or absorb any negativity". Like a child would, with eyes of innocence and tenderness. You may be wondering "what is the point of that?"

Well, one is that I felt better. I figured that if I did not protect my inner peace and 'joy de vivre' it would affect my relationships, work, home environment, etc. Also, if I had been positive when talking to my neighbour, I could have put things in perspective for both of us, rather than allowing myself to be carried away by her depression or anger.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Heart Warmer

I was walking through one of the shopping districts in central London, and down an infamous street for big issue sellers and homeless people asking for cash. It has recently been very hot here in London and this particular day was extra hot. As I walked by, I noticed a dog lying down cradled in his owners lap and being fanned down, it was a homeless chap, the dog looked so relaxed, and cared for in that moment. It was somebody who appeared to have nothing yet gave everything at a time of need.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Monday Spiritual Joke #7

A Christian, a Muslim and a Buddhist die and arrive at the Gate of Heaven. An angel (or deva) stops them and asks, "Why do you come here? Can you tell me the reasons why you are allowed to enter Heaven?"

The Christian replies, "My ancestors disobeyed God, and I sinned all my life: I killed, I lied, and I was greedy. However, Jesus died for me and all my sins are forgiven. So I deserved to enter Heaven."

"OK," replies the Angel. "Sounds good, but I must give you an entrance examination before you can enter." The Christian promptly agrees and the Angel asks him: "How do you spell God?" It is an easy question, and the Christian passes through the Gate.

Next came the Muslim, who says, "I had not done any good or evil things during my life but I was very devout. I prayed to God five times a day. So, I too should enter Heaven." The Angel replies, "It sounds OK to me, but I have to give you a test also. How do you spell Allah?" The Muslim passed the test.

Finally, it is the Buddhist's turn, who tells the Angel, "I had done all the good things in my life and I followed Buddha's five prescepts: I never killed, I donated to charities, I meditated every day, and I never cheated my boss nor my customers." The Angel replies, "That is very good, but there are no exceptions. You must pass the entrance test also in order to get in." Thinking that the test should be simple, he agrees to take the test.

The Angel then asks him: "How to spell Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva?"

Friday, July 21, 2006

How are YOU?

Today: I went for a walk in Hyde Park at 5.30 this morning (For those who have seen “About A Boy”, this is worth 3 units!). There were some little birds having a shower. They looked so beautiful. All the birds and ducks, and surprisingly quite a number of people, the same as me were enjoying the beauty of a golden morning. But I didn’t feel as great as I was expecting myself to feel.

Then, I had a cold coffee (1 unit). I could hear the zzzzzz in my brain, which I never had before. London was so quiet, you see!!!

Then, I went to my meditation class (2 units). I heard great, encouraging words and things to put into practice. I felt better.

I had breakfast and started to walk to my work place and talked to myself (infinite units) along the way:
- Hey Funky, you should have been flying by now, what’s up?
- Donno!
- You know, use the powers mate. The thoughts. Come on!
Then I started to ask myself:
- How are you?
I took points from the meditation class and turned it into a game:
- I’m full of self-respect, and you? OR
- I’m full of joy, what about you?
- I’m supercalifragilisticexpialidocious! (This is a word that you use when you can’t find the word to describe something, from Mary Poppins, not the meditation class!)

I cannot describe how happy I felt
in just a minute! So I shared it! Now, the receptionist and a colleague are practicing it!!!

Hi guys, how are YOU?

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Cat Guru

I recently went to visit my parents, they live in Manchester and every now and then I pop up from London. Something always strikes me about these visits. It's always quite a reflective time for me. This time it was the cat that struck me. I had never really noticed it before, how he really lives to live life to the full, no compromise. He accepts and moves on, again and again. Every awakened moment is for fun, and even if he is being naughty you cannot help but love him and his playful attitude. I have a lot to learn from that cat. He never lets go of his happiness and that is what it's all about for him, no matter what you do or say to him. The message for me was just be yourself, know your good and play your part uncompromised no matter what happens along the way, and yes you will be loved for it - we all enjoy a clean mirror.

Monday, July 17, 2006


Exercise is good - it is said to boost metabolism and help our digestive system. However, if we are out of shape it is no good to start running a marathon straight away, without any preparation. Yes, we all know that. However, recent events prompted me to think whether I was giving the same consideration to the 'spiritual digestive system'.

I have a friend who constantly calls me to complain about the same problem - anxiety, nervousness, stress. No matter how much time I spend sharing with her what I do to have a life which is (almost) free from stress, or suggesting mental and physical exercises to try, she inevitably calls me back with the same problem in a couple of weeks later. I started to feel a bit annoyed -- it was as if all the time I had spent talking things over with her was completely in vain. Never mind, I told myself, I should not have any expectations about changing others if they don't want to (although I do believe she really wants to).

That made me wonder if what I was giving her was too much for her 'spiritual digestive system' - akin to asking someone who has not been exercising at all to go and run a marathon... Should I break it down into smaller chunks, I wondered? Is her metabolism not quite there yet? I decided to run a test: to have a brighter chat, to lighten up my tone and to get rid of my subtle expectation that she would later call me back and tell me she was feeling better.

I thought: "Just accept this friend as she is and give love". So the last time we talked I did not begin to advise or suggest any tips. Instead, mentally I began to send her lots of good wishes and pure feelings for her to find her own path. My words were cool and comforting, but weren't many. Then yesterday she called me to let me know that she was feeling better, although she had not done anything I had recommended! Now she felt ready, it is as if she had just started walking on the treadmill. Maybe one day she will be ready to run the marathon -- in her own time, not in mine!

Superman in us...

The man of steel is back on our screen and yes, it's a bird, it's a plane, no it's Superman!

I grew up watching Superman and dreamt of being Superman himself. When I was younger I easily distinguished between reality and dreams and I always had fun playing any of the characters I dreamt I would like to be I dreamt of hanging off helicopters, deceiving my so-called-enemies and dodging bullets whilst trying to save the world from aliens or evil people. Probably 'some' Hollywood influence here!

Seeing 'Superman Returns' I found myself reliving these childhood dreams again - to save the world! Growing up as a kid, the world seemed black and white to me. You have the good guys on one side and the bad guys on the other. As you enter the adult world of complications, of worries, of too much thinking, somehow the black and white gets all muddled up...

There are many Lex Luthor(s) in the world - one day it could be my boss, the next day my colleague, another day my husband and another time the tube. There are no good or bad in Lex Luthor. The many Lex Luthor(s) who come my way actually come to give me opportunities to learn, to grow and to move me away from my comfort zones. I might not be able to see the bigger picture at that time, when I have had the faith that there is definitely benefit in whatever is happening this has allowed me to grow.

We also carry around with us the 'cryptonites' of negativities, worries, fears and past hurts which deplete our energy and capability to be our very best and eat away at our inner strength.

I truly believe there is a 'Superman' deep within each one of us - we are all born to be 'Superman(s)'. Deep down within all of us there is such goodness, but somewhere back down the line we picked up the wrong beliefs, were taught the wrong values and learnt to accept myths as truth. Even after all that, each of us is still trying to be our very best. I have come to discover that it is I and not anyone or anything else that is the stumbling block to me being the Superman I was born to be - anything else is just an excuse. In my experience, it is much easier to give excuses than to actually make the effort to change, but doing this has led me nowhere and just kept me within my comfort zone.

I sometimes find myself still holding on to my comfort zones dearly - unwilling to let them go, finding comfort in them. However, I know this has to change as I know that I will never be totally happy without personal growth and facing up to new here is to biting that bullet and moving forward!!!

Monday Spiritual Joke #6

Everything I need to know, I learned from Noah's Ark...

ONE: Don't miss the boat.

TWO: Remember that we are all in the same boat.

THREE: Plan ahead. It wasn't raining when Noah built the Ark.

FOUR: Stay fit. When you're 60 years old, someone may ask you to do something really big.

FIVE: Don't listen to critics; just get on with the job that needs to be done.

SIX: Build your future on high ground.

SEVEN: For safety's sake, travel in pairs.

EIGHT: Speed isn't always an advantage. The snails were on board with the cheetahs.

NINE: When you're stressed, float awhile.

TEN: Remember, the Ark was built by amateurs; the Titanic by professionals.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Here comes the sun…

… and I say It is all right!

Yes, everything looks alright in the summer sun! Sun shinning from 4:30 AM until 9:30 PM! People smile more, come out of their “caves” more and get exposed to life, to the breeze, to the sun… To the “gathering” after work with friends, to the walking/ running/ sitting in the parks…
Everything can be transformed when the mood is good for everyone!
Even the traditional strong and boiling coffee becomes flexible in the summer…. It gets refreshing, mixed with ice and cold milk…. Its' name does not matter: ice coffee, frapuccino, gelaccino…the taste is there… even coffee can’t afford to lose the summer! Let us be refreshed by the breeze, by the iced coffee, by the lemonade or simply by being happy! :- )
Come on guys!! It is summer!! …. Be free…. Be free to be!!!

Friday, July 14, 2006

Hey Neo, this is the Matrix, take the RED pill!

I went to a talk last week; it was called ‘The Matrix, What Is Reality?’
It reminded me of when I first started out on my spiritual journey, hearing such great things about my true being. I must have looked like Neo, shocked and not quite understanding what it was all about. Still like Neo I choose to take the RED pill to come out of the Matrix, the illusion!

I learnt that I had all the powers I needed to control my life; that I was responsible for everything in my life; that all these negative thoughts were the dream and these thoughts were controlling me and that I was sleeping. Once we were all divine, great beings. Wow!!
Knowing this gives you the power to live your life as you wish to, with dignity.
What if you think you are not ready to hear and act on that reality (but life never gives you anything unless you are ready). You are standing at the confluence of reality and illusion, and you can feel the truth in your veins. You like the sweetness and comfort of that illusion because that’s the only taste you have in your mouth.
I am telling you, that is exactly what happened to me! Then the tests from my old friends of fear, doubt and disbelief came to shake my faith in myself. Like Morpheus says before they jump off the building: “Let it go, fear, doubt, disbelief!”
I remember thinking similarly to Cypher: “Why oh why didn’t I take the BLUE pill and stay in the Matrix, in my painful but sweet comfort zone?” Now there was no margin for blaming things or others or giving excuses not to be my best! I had to take the reins of my life into my own hands! But oh man, these horses (old friends) have been running sooo fast!
Then, Cypher says: “Ignorance is bliss!” Is it?
Even I can say “No!” after so many struggles with my old friends and it’s an ongoing journey!
Nothing can be as sweet as tasting your original beauty even for one second.
That taste convinces you that you ARE that. It is worth trying. If I can, anyone can!
Meditation is bliss, even when you think you can’t concentrate!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Givers or Takers?

Yesterday on the underground I sat near a blind man. His face was happy, as if in a permanent smile, and his eyes were lively -- actually one would not know that tell he was blind were it not for the white cane going he was holding.

The metro stopped and it was time for him to get off. All of a sudden five people stood up to help him. It was as if we were all competing to see who could get to him first and let him hold our arm. As if we were all thirsty for the opportunity to give this some innocent and unconditional love, stored in some corner of the soul, to this man. I suppose I was not the only one to perceive the nice warm feeling, after that incident, in the whole compartment -- like some magic fragrance being spread into the atmosphere.

He was there, this blind man was the medium to allow this love to be manifest. He was there as a guardian angel to us all, inspiring the benevolence we all have and surely under-use. This was his 'good deed' for the day: to let us give. How funny that we all initially thought we were helping him!