Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Build new habits


Healthy Lifestyle:

The best way to build a habit is consistency, so think "same place, same time"  and try to stick with it.

Be flexible, sometimes you may have to change it up. Return to your schedule when convenient. 


Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Leonard Cohen: Hallelujah


Leonard Cohen Credit Dominique Issermann

  Leonard Cohen: Darkness and Praise

The email from the boy began: “Did anything inspire you to create Hallelujah?"

Later that same winter day the reply arrived: 
“I wanted to stand with those who clearly see God’s holy broken world for what it is, and still find the courage or the heart to praise it. You don’t always get what you want. You’re not always up for the challenge. But in this case — it was given to me. For which I am deeply grateful.”
The question came from the author's son, who was preparing to present the hymn to his fifth-grade class. The boy required a clarification about its meaning. The answer came from the author of the song, Leonard Cohen.
Cohen lived in a weather of wisdom, which he created by seeking it rather than by finding it. He swam in beauty, because in its transience he aspired to discern a glimpse of eternity.
There was always a trace of philosophy in his sensuality.
He managed to combine a sense of absurdity with a sense of significance, a genuine feat.
He was a friend of melancholy but an enemy of gloom, and a renegade enamored of tradition.
Leonard was, above all, in his music and in his poems and in his tone of life, the lyrical advocate of the finite and the flawed.
Leonard sang always as a sinner. He refused to describe sin as a failure or a disqualification. Sin was a condition of life. 

“Even though it all went wrong/ I’ll stand before the Lord of song/ With nothing on my tongue but Hallelujah!”
The singer’s faults do not expel him from the divine presence. Instead they confer a mortal integrity upon his exclamation of praise. 

He is the inadequate man, the lowly man, the hurt man who has given hurt, insisting modestly but stubbornly upon his right to a sacred exaltation.

“There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.”  

He once told an interviewer that those words were the closest he came to a credo.  

The teaching could not be more plain: fix the crack, lose the light.
  
Here is a passage on frivolity by a great rabbi in Prague at the end of the 16th century:

“Man was born for toil, since his perfection is always being actualized but is never actual,” 
he observed in an essay on frivolity.
“And insofar as he attains perfection, something is missing in him.  In such a being, 
perfection is a shortcoming and a lack.”

Leonard Cohen was the poet laureate of the lack, the psalmist of the privation, who made imperfection gorgeous.



Link: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/14/opinion/my-friend-leonard-cohen-darkness-and-praise.html?ribbon-ad-idx=3&src=trending



Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Living with a sense of purpose in life




Conclusion:

A sense of purpose in life also gives you this considerable advantage:
"People with a sense of purpose in life have a lower risk of death and cardiovascular disease."

The conclusions come from over 136,000 people who took part in 10 different studies.

Participants in the studies were mostly from the US and Japan.


The US studies asked people:
  • how useful they felt to others,
  • about their sense of purpose, and
  • the meaning they got out of life.


The Japanese studies asked people about ‘ikigai’ or whether their life was worth living.

The participants, whose average age was 67, were tracked for around 7 years.

During that time almost 20,000 died.
 
But, amongst those with a strong sense of purpose or high ‘ikigai’, the risk of death was one-fifth lower.

Despite the link between sense of purpose and health being so intuitive, scientists are not sure of the mechanism.

Sense of purpose is likely to improve health by strengthening the body against stress.

It is also likely to be linked to healthier behaviours.

Dr. Alan Rozanski, one of the study’s authors, said:
“Of note, having a strong sense of life purpose has long been postulated to be an important dimension of life, providing people with a sense of vitality motivation and resilience.
Nevertheless, the medical implications of living with a high or low sense of life purpose have only recently caught the attention of investigators.
The current findings are important because they may open up new potential interventions for helping people to promote their health and sense of well-being.”

This research on links between sense of purpose in life and longevity is getting stronger all the time:
  • “A 2009 study of 1,238 elderly people found that those with a sense of purpose lived longer.
  • A 2010 study of 900 older adults found that those with a greater sense of purpose were much less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Survey data often links a sense of purpose in life with increased happiness.
No matter what your age, then, it’s worth thinking about what gives your life meaning.”



Read More:

Find out what kinds of things people say give their lives meaning.
Here’s an exercise for increasing meaningfulness
And a study finding that feeling you belong increases the sense of meaning.

The study was published in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine (Cohen et al., 2015).




A sense of purpose in life
Link: http://www.spring.org.uk/2015/12/here-is-why-a-sense-of-purpose-in-life-is-important-for-health

Monday, August 25, 2014

Bringing back a Wandering Attention - William James


 William James was interested in mindfulness and attention:  


 “The faculty of voluntarily bringing back a wandering attention, over and over again, is the very root of judgment, character, and will. No one is compos sui [master of himself] if he have it not. An education which should improve this faculty would be the education par excellence.”



William James, Psychology: Briefer Course, p. 424 (Harper Torchbooks, 1961)

The Plastic Brain

Read this quote about how Merzenich thinks about his brain's decline.


"I want to put my brain to the best possible use as long as it is possible."

"Science tells us that a key to sustaining and growing our neurological abilities is seriousness of purpose.  I am old enough to have retired, but shall not withdraw to a life of comfort and ease because I know that the brain slowly dies when nothing that it does matters to it. ... understand that what sustains your brain sustains you.  You need to continue to work at things that support your brain's health now, and continue to work in ways that support it out to the end of your time on Earth."

- Dr. Michael Merzenich 
 


Brain Plasticity sites:
 

 





Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Serenity Parayer Adapted for ADD



God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; 

The insight to prioritize wisely what I want to change; 

The patience to resist trying to control everything I could, had I the energy and time; 

The courage and skill to change the things I have chosen to change; 

And the wisdom to know the differences among all these.

- Dr. Edward Hallowell   








Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Bringing back a Wandering Attention - William James


 William James was interested in mindfulness and attention:  



 “The faculty of voluntarily bringing back a wandering attention, over and over again, is the very root of judgment, character, and will. No one is compos sui [master of himself] if he have it not. An education which should improve this faculty would be the education par excellence.”




William James, Psychology: Briefer Course, p. 424 (Harper Torchbooks, 1961)






Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Online Learning






Daphne Koller is enticing top universities to put their most intriguing courses online for free -- not just as a service, but as a way to research how people learn. With Coursera (cofounded by Andrew Ng), each keystroke, quiz, peer-to-peer discussion and self-graded assignment builds an unprecedented pool of data on how knowledge is processed.
With Coursera, Daphne Koller and co-founder Andrew Ng are bringing courses from top colleges online, free, for anyone who wants to take them
Link to Website:
https://www.coursera.org/





Link:
http://www.ted.com/talks/daphne_koller_what_we_re_learning_from_online_education.html




Saturday, June 22, 2013

Becoming Conscious: The Science of Mindfulness


The science of mindfulness has been gaining wide acceptance over the last 5 years. You might say mindfulness has reached its "tipping point"  where the idea acts on society like a virus would.  Suddenly everybody 'gets it'.

Jon K-Z has spent more than 30 years introducing mindfulness to the medical profession. He encouraged skeptical and reactionary medical practitioners to teach patients to use MBSR (mindfulness based stress relief) for managing chronic pain, stress and negative emotions.  His efforts have gained credibility for MBSR and brought mindfulness into mainstream medicine.  

The wide acceptance of mindfulness is illustrated byCongressman, Tim Ryan joining the effort and writing a book:

"A Mindful Nation: How a Simple Practice Can Help Us Reduce Stress, Improve Performance, and Recapture the American Spirit" 

Book Description

"All across America, people are running faster and faster yet falling farther behind. The economy struggles, wars rage on, and every week brings news of another environmental disaster. Despite this bleak outlook, strands of quiet hope and confidence are emerging. 

People are beginning to face challenges in a new way: they are slowing down, paying attention, and becoming aware of their inner resources.

Based on the timeless practice of mindfulness, the natural capabilities of our brains and minds, and the core American values of self-reliance, determination, and getting the job done, 
this new way is affecting every sector of our society. 

In A Mindful Nation, Congressman Tim Ryan connects the dots between what’s happening in the classrooms, hospitals, boardrooms, research labs, and military bases across the country. 

He explores the scientific findings that support the beneficial effects of mindfulness and shares powerful stories from the field, showing how this simple practice is helping schoolchildren improve their ability to learn, veterans heal from trauma, and CEOs become more effective leaders. 

Ryan also provides practical tips for how to incorporate mindfulness into your life today.

A Mindful Nation paints a picture of emerging solutions that benefit both you and society as a whole, showing us that there is something we can do, right here and right now. 

With a hard-nosed understanding of politics, government budgets, and what it takes to get something done,
Ryan combines a practical approach with a hopeful vision for how mindfulness can help reinvigorate the American Dream."





.................

 Published on Feb 12, 2013



 The role of consciousness in mental and physical health



Becoming Conscious: The Science of Mindfulness



Many of us go through daily life on autopilot, without being fully aware of our conscious experience.

Neuroscientists Richard Davidson and Amishi Jha join clinical mindfulness expert Jon Kabat-Zinn to:

1 - explore the role of consciousness in mental and physical health, 

2 - how we can train the mind to become more flexible and adaptable, and 

3 - what cutting-edge neuroscience is revealing about the transformation of consciousness through mindfulness and contemplative practice.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013
The New York Academy of Sciences

This event is part of The Emerging Science of Consciousness Series, which brings together leading experts from various fields to discuss how the latest research is challenging our understanding of the very nature and function of consciousness in our daily lives.


http://www.nourfoundation.com/conscio...


Category--Science and Technology

License - Standard YouTube License