The idea that science has replaced religion has become popular these days. Some put religion to one side as now of date. People are noticing a huge development in research into the working of the human brain which seems to support this view. New imaging technologies allow science to measure blood flow and neural activity … Continue reading Science – Does it invalidate religion?
Spiritual traditions like Buddhism speak of enlightenment as promising a state of wisdom, happiness and freedom from the troubles we usually have to deal with in life. So what actually is enlightenment? How can we understand what the term means? Physical light and well-being The word enlightenment obviously is based on the word ‘light’. So … Continue reading Enlightenment – How to think of it?
A Buddhist makes the claim that the self does not exist. In Sanskrit this is called anâtman. In other words my notion of I or myself is an illusion. When people first hear this, they are astonished. How can anyone deny they exist? Don’t we have our own thoughts and feelings? Don’t we act in … Continue reading Buddhist idea of no self – True or not?
People often equate humility with submissiveness, low self-esteem and low confidence. Not qualities suited to say being a leader or entertainer. However, Jim Kong Kim (President of the World Bank) is a leader who recognises the value of humility. He says it allows him to ask for coaching of new personal skills and request feedback … Continue reading Humility – Where’s the good in it?
“All the gold which is under or upon the earth is not enough to give in exchange for virtue.” (Plato, philosopher) The idea of virtue can feel a little scary. Surely no-one can be such a worthy human being as to do no wrong, show courage at all times, and be full of generosity and … Continue reading Virtue – Is it achievable?
The original 12 steps recovery programme is still used by AA (Alcoholics Anonymous). Many alcoholics have a hard time admitting that they can’t control their alcohol use. If they believe that they are unable to stop on their own, AA say the recovery process can begin. There is a big idea they promote. Most of … Continue reading 12 Steps recovery – What higher power?
“May you live in interesting times” is purported to be a traditional Chinese curse. While seemingly a blessing, the expression is always used ironically, with the clear implication that ‘uninteresting times’, of peace and tranquillity, are more life-enhancing than ‘interesting’ ones, which from historical perspective usually include disorder and conflict. It is more of an … Continue reading Turbulent times around us
Are you in any danger of falling into a trap? There is a risk that commonly held fallacies that exist beneath the surface of the mass media will trap our minds. Could any worldly illusions trap and bind you into an unhealthy state of mind? One from which you might wish to escape? The … Continue reading Trap of contemporary values?
Who wouldn’t be happy to have more money? To pay off the credit card or buy that needed furniture. Yet, the huge wealth of the ‘fat cats’ who run large companies in the UK has astonished us. By October 2011 the pay packages of directors of FTSE 100 companies had increased by 49% in a … Continue reading Happy life – Does this require affluence?
My wife and I have a pet cat. We have got to know him quite well – his eating, relaxing, communication, play, and so on. Animals live on an entirely natural level and I realise it would be a mistake to attribute human emotions to them. But is there anything we can learn from our … Continue reading Pet cats – What can we learn from them?