Sunday, April 26, 2009


Stony Batter, Waiheke Island, New Zealand

Happiness does not exist without unhappiness.

Even the elation we feel after we obtain a deeply desired object or situation will fade in short order and we will return to a state of frustration. Studies of lottery winners have show that even the biggest wins do not bring lasting happiness. This is because the problem that we think can be solved by satisfaction of our desires, cannot. The relief is only temporary. The realization that obtaining the desired object or situation does not solve our problems can cause even greater frustration and despair. If satisfaction of our desires does not solve our problems, we believe there is no hope.

We can transcend the cycle of desire, frustration, fulfillment, and disappointment. If we surrender our beliefs and desires, we will become one with Universal Energy. We will experience joy when we value and our grateful for what we do have. This gratitude will cause our hunger for more things to subside.

Let's surrender to joy.

Monday, April 20, 2009


Waitete Bay, Coromandel, New Zealand

We swim against the current of life.
We follow our desires, believing that they will lead to fulfillment. We think that if we only had this house or that car, we would be satisfied. We believe that if we achieved success or married the right person, that our lives would be enhanced.

If we instead allow Life to take us where it wants us to go, a greater intelligence takes us over, and our lives will become peaceful and joyful. We cannot learn about allowing. It must be experienced.
We can trust that if we give up our stale and conditioned beliefs, our lives will be peaceful and our fears and frustrations will fade away. That is true faith.

Let's allow Life to take us where It wants us to go.

Sunday, April 19, 2009


Buffalo Lodge, Coromandel, New Zealand

When we see someone with MS in a wheelchair, we are afraid that something similar will happen to us. We are also grateful for our ability to walk and communicate normally. When we see a homeless person, we are grateful that we have a home and friends and family to support us. Our gratitude can run much, much deeper.

It is easy to be grateful when things are going well. It is when we believe that life has turned against us that it becomes much harder. By giving up our notions of what we think are "good" or "bad" we allow Life to take us where it wants to go. We really do not have enough information to determine what events are good or bad. Often following our desires does not take us in a direction which will enhance our lives. Our lives will be enhanced when we embrace gratitude regardless of our outward circumstances

When we are lying in a hospital bed with only a few minutes to live, we can be grateful for having those last few moments of life and for having the opportunity to have lived. That is true gratitude.

Let's be grateful.

Saturday, April 11, 2009


Onetangi Beach, Waiheke Island, New Zealand

We believe that if only things were different than they are, that we would be fine. We think that the only reason that we are unhappy and unsatisfied is because we do not have something that we think is missing from our lives. If we only had more money, a relationship, better health, we would be fulfilled. If we achieve the thing that we desire, the relief from our state of dissatisfaction is only temporary. And we return to a state of restless desire.

We can only bring real change into our lives once we have accepted reality as it is. By wishing that things were different than they are, we play out a constant cycle of regret about the past and desire for something in the future. We are not really living.

There is nothing to fear from accepting what is. Good, bad or indifferent, the present is what it is. We should not close our eyes to it. Once we accept reality, we can take the necessary steps to change it, and begin to live our life as we would like to live it. Once we stop making decisions based on fear, our decisions will enhance our life, not continue our dysfunctional cycles.

Let's live in the present, just as it is.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


Roberton Island, Bay of Islands, New Zealand

Words are inadequate to describe stillness. It must be experienced. We have been conditioned to believe that the layers of thoughts, beliefs and judgments are who we are. Once we strip away those layers and embrace stillness, we will come home.

Our fears keep us from experiencing our true selves. We take comfort in the groups whose ideas we share. It is frightening to give up our beliefs about our socioeconomic class, religion, gender etc. to experience something that is unknown. Some of us have nervous breakdowns or commit suicide when we realize that everything we have built our lives upon is a lie.

There is another way. We can become still. Stillness is being present without judgments.

We are connected to each other in a far more fundamental way than sharing some beliefs and judgments.

If we are ready to surrender our thoughts, beliefs and judgments, we will experience the peace we have been searching for. How do we find stillness? There is nothing to look for. There is nothing to find. It is what we are when we surrender to the present.

Let's surrender to stillness.