Straighten Your Fickle Mind

ArrowTHE MIND
From Dhammapada Citta Vagga

1. The flickering, fickle mind, difficult to guard, difficult to
control – the wise person straightens it as a fletcher straightens
an arrow.

2. Like a fish that is drawn from its watery abode and thrown upon
land, even so does this mind flutter. Hence should the realm of the
passions be shunned.

Source: Metta.lk

Dhammapada Story
The monk Meghiya was overcome by evil thoughts. The Buddha
admonished him to subdue his mind.

Sinhala version:
ධම්මපද චිත්ත වග්ගය

1. සැලෙන්නා වූද, එක අරමුණක නොසිටින්නා වූද, නොරැක්ක හැකි වූද, තුන් දුසිරිතින් වැළකිය හැකි වූද සිත සිත ප්‍රාඥ තෙම ඍජු කරන්නේය. කුමක් මෙන්ද යත් හී වඩුවෙක් හී දණ්ඩක් ඍජු කරන්නාක් මෙනි.

2. කෙලෙස් සහිත මේ සිත දියෙන් ගොඩ ලු මසෙකු මෙන් නොයෙක් අරමුණෙහි කරකැවීම් වශයෙන් සැලෙන්නේය.එහෙයින් කෙලෙස් නැසිය යුතුය.

ප්‍රභවය: ධර්‍මම පදාරථ ව්‍යාඛාව, 1936
Image source: ebay

Mindculture for Kids and Adults – New Facebook Page

Mindculture for Kids and Adults - My New Facebook Page

Mindculture for Kids and Adults – My New Facebook Page

Dear All, I started a new Facebook page, Mindculture for Kids and Adults.

Your mind is your greatest asset.
This page is dedicated to sharing info on the art and science of mind culture from cradle to grave.

If your focus in self improvement is business oriented, you may also want to visit my Business Trainer Sri Lanka Facebook page.

Please visit, like and follow. And share the good news with your friends and family.

Thanks

Nilooka

 

Research on Happiness and Bad Decisions…. from Dan Gilbert

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Research shows that when we (humans) make decisions, we tend to focus on what we’re getting and forget about what we are forgoing.

I was just going to share this interesting article–Buried by bad decisions–by Dan Gilbert with you. But then I happened upon Dan Gilbert’s TED Talks:

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You can access them all at Dan Gilbert’s Ted page.

Enjoy the article. Its really interesting. Enjoy the talks, I am yet to complete all three. But I’ve watched the first one some time ago.

A few thoughts on art…

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Amazing by Mel Bochner, 2011

Let’s put it this way. I am an art fanatic. This is mostly confined to looking, of course, and admiring others’ work. I actually spent my first three days in London inside the National Portrait Gallery (and almost got picked up by a charming old Scotsman) but I’ve not seen the usual London tourist spots like the Tower of London etc. Even my MBA thesis–which one would expect to be as far from art as possible–was based on the management issues of a Scottish art gallery.

I have eclectic tastes in art, as in the books I read. And I think that is great not to be able to be easily stereotyped. I really do not know much about art appreciation. Nor can I tell you much about art, artists, art history or different periods and styles. I just know what I like. Its all to do with emotions and little to do with anything else…

Sometimes I like things that just draw my eye. These are not the kind of things I’d go after, seeking out an exhibition or even visit a website for. But this piece, by Mel Bochner, which I saw in a NY Times slideshow really took my eye. So here I am sharing it with you.
It piqued my interest. This is why I visited the artist’s own website. That is even more interesting. Here are some visuals you will see… But I do recommend a visit, when you have a few minutes to spare.

Mindculture is about giving new experiences to our minds. And imagining what an artist was trying to convey, what was going though their mind, what made them come up with one piece or another is really something I enjoy. Giving flight to imagination is great for anyone’s mind.

Here’s an article from the New York Times about a current exhibition–Mel Bochner: Strong Language–at the Jewish Museum in New York.

Words have been the subjects and primary constituents of the enigmatic yet acerbically provocative paintings Mel Bochner has been creating over the past 12 years. “Mel Bochner: Strong Language,” an elegantly produced exhibition at the Jewish Museum, gives them their due and traces their roots back to text-based works that Mr. Bochner created in the ’60s and early ’70s, when he was one of New York’s pre-eminent Conceptual artists.

There is a great slideshow of a few works, including Amazing above.

Here are some other Mel Bochner works from different periods.

No, 2002

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Portrait of Robert Smithson, 1966

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Two Planar Arcs, 1977

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That is all for now. The artist’s website is really worth a visit.

Enjoy the visit!

And if you really enjoyed this feature, please let me know so I can do similar ones in the future.

Rewiring Your Emotions (via Mindful.org)

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Think you’re destined to respond the same way emotionally to the same old triggers?

Not necessarily so, says Sharon Begley. With a little mind training, you can chart new pathways. 

Here’s the full article: Rewiring Your Emotions

 

 

Frustrated?

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I think that is often the case that we are accomplices in our own frustrations. You need proof? You get it from Google, where else!’

According to Google statistics, people search the word “money” four times as often as the word “goal”. This creates a word: “frustration”.
~Tim Fargo, Alphabet Success – Keeping it

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And its not really nice where frustrations can take us. Here’s Lemony Snicket in The Wide Window:

Frustration is an interesting emotional state, because it tends to bring out the worst in whoever is frustrated. Frustrated babies tend to throw food and make a mess. Frustrated citizens tend to execute kings and queens and make a democracy. And frustrated moths tend to bang up against lightbulbs and make light fixtures all dusty.”

People cry, laugh, scream, commit murder and even suicide out of frustration. Here are a few quotations about frustration, its causes and how to deal with it.

 “Forget perfect on the first try. In the face of frustration, your best tool is a few deep breaths, and remembering that you can do anything once you’ve practed two hundred times.”
~Miriam Peskowitz, The Daring Book for Girls

* * *

“The path of my life is strewn with cow pats from the devil’s own satanic herd!”
~Rowan Atkinson, Blackadder II: Complete Series

* * *

“Our frustration is greater when we have much and want more than when we have nothing and want some. We are less dissatisfied when we lack many things than when we seem to lack but one thing.”
~Eric Hoffer

* * *

“Were you born this infuriating?”
“It’s taken me years of practice.”
~Misty Massey, Mad Kestrel

* * *

“Am I ever angry or frustrated? I only feel angry sometimes when I see waste, when things that we waste are what people need, things that would save them from dying. Frustrated? No, never.”
~Mother Teresa, The Joy in Loving: A Guide to Daily Living
* * *

And people have different ways of dealing with it.

“Laughter and tears are both responses to frustration and exhaustion. I myself prefer to laugh, since there is less cleaning do to do afterward.”
~Kurt Vonnegut

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“To conquer frustration, one must remain intensely focused on the outcome, not the obstacles.”
~T.F. Hodge, From Within I Rise

 

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So the next  time you are feeling frustrated remember this:

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RandomLines 2

Here are four more lines from books within easy reach…

When all is said, perhaps their happiest legacy is the ‘Baila’ dance and song; pleasant to think it was the creation of Portuguese slavery.
~Norah Roberts in Galle As Quiet As Asleep

By a process called reverberation, a memory corresponds to the strengthening of connections from an increase of brain activity in a given sector of the brain–the more activity, the stronger the memory.
~Nassim Nicholas Taleb in The Black Swan

As one of my learned friends is fond of commenting – sitting in the top floor of the ivory tower, the sea always looks calm – it is only when you are battling the waves in a dinghy when you realize the actual situation.
~Vivek Sood in The 5 Star Business Network

The beli fruit (Aegle marmellos; vilvam T; bael E) is a rare example of the same medicinal agent serving diametrically opposite ends under different conditions.
~C.G. Uragoda in Traditions of Sri Lanka: A Selection with a Scientific Background