All posts tagged: Suffering

Meekness,Wu-wei, and De

Because powerful people lose empathy the longer they have power, some mechanism is needed to counteract this phenomenon if they are to remain responsive to those they lead, and a benefit to the community. Various traditions, including Christianity, Daoism, Zen, and Stoicism, have all discovered ways to foster meekness and related qualities.

Back Pain and TMS

TMS, or Tension Myoneural Syndrome, is a theory that explains the kind of pain that persists for long periods despite the absence of clear physical damage or injury. It is most often associated with back, neck, and intestinal pain, but has been applied to a wide variety of conditions including itching, tinnitus, and fibromyalgia. Even when physical abnormalities such as a bulging disk seems to present a likely cause, the strategies taught by Dr. John Sarno and others are effective at reducing and often eliminating the pain. One of the best explanations of TMS is in this video by Dr. Howard Schubiner: Dr. Schubiner and Dr. Sarno focus on education as a means to help people see the “true” cause of their pain, and then take steps to eliminate it. After first reading Crooked and Everyone has Back Pain, I read Dr. Sarno’s book, The Mindbody Prescription: Healing the Body, Healing the Pain. Towards the end of the book Dr. Sarno lays out the formula for exposing and confounding the brain’s covert plan of distraction-by-pain, by exploring the emotional issues underlying …

Wabi Sabi for Writers

Wabi Sabi For Writers Find Inspiration. Respect Imperfection. Create Peerless Beauty. by Richard R. Powell, published by Adams Media What if deep poetry flowed through your day-to-day life? What if writing that poetry was a path to enlightenment? Basho, the grandfather of haiku poetry, named this path, “the Way of Elegance” because it connects you to grace and fills your life with subtle beauty. I began writing Wabi Sabi for Writers, to communicate the significance of this path for writers, but I ended up with a book for anyone who wants the poetic light inside them to penetrate the darkness that surrounds them. Basho knew the central defining quality of his culture was: “a sensitivity to things,” and he deliberately and thoughtfully crafted practices to support and deepen that sensitivity. These practices allowed the quality to expand his life. Unfortunately he found that while “a sensitivity to things” expanded his awareness of beauty it also expanded his awareness of suffering. This heightened awareness of both beauty and suffering leads some people to despair. This is …