I was 21 when I learned to meditate. After graduating from college, I moved into an ashram to study and practice the teachings of an Indian guru, Prem Rawat.
Five years later, he invited me to be a meditation instructor. After completing a three-month training program with a dozen other young people, I went on tour for four years throughout North America, Europe, Africa, and Australia, speaking at nightly meetings and helping people from all walks of life learn how to meditate.
After 49 years of practicing meditation as well as teaching, counseling, and observing others, I want to share…
In September 2012, I purchased a portable cassette player. From a dinky thrift store that smelled heavily of cigarette smoke and a sweet, middle-aged woman who questioned why this gangly teenager had cassette tapes in that day and age. The player had served its purpose, was outdated. Perhaps it did and was — thus ending up in her store. The music was worth it though.
A friend once called me a hooligan and a hipster, and I’ve dragged that description onto every website’s “Tell Me About Yourself” bio section. This friend also liked to point out certain habits of mine…
Three weeks ago I wrote
about how “perfect” is so subjective and vague and impossible and stupid and how you are precisely it in so many ways.
and the week after that I said I don’t think I can do this anymore.
My Uncle Mike created a new tagline for Chili’s that goes
“You’re gonna hate the way you feel. I guarantee it.”
and I think it applies here too.
Maybe you’re thinking
When you’re alone in your bed?
Tell me the thoughts that surround you
I want to look inside your head
First, scope out a quiet neighborhood where she can practice driving with minimal distractions. The roads should be wide enough that she doesn’t feel squeezed by oncoming traffic. Make a mental note of potential obstacles like pedestrians, cyclists, off-leash dogs, and trash cans.
Quiet locales with meandering cross streets are perfect. They’ll remind her of where she grew up which may help calm her fragile nerves. It also ensures that she’ll begin to make a positive association with leaving you forever.
Once you’ve settled on the perfect neighborhood, pull over and take a deep slow breath. Gaze at a worn…
A friend of mine posted a picture on Facebook recently, mocking people with different beliefs than his. I was disappointed but not surprised. This happens when you believe you are right — to support your position further, others who differ with you have to be wrong.
And it’s much easier to do when your beliefs are the same as a larger group because you’ve got the majority standing with you—power in numbers. Groupthink. It’s easy to criticize others when you feel little risk of retaliation.
Social bullying is wrong, harmful, and divisive.
But the perpetrator feels justified because they believe…
I sit down to write something about play, and its importance for human life. And as I write, I ask myself: Am I working? Or am I playing? Sometimes, it is hard to tell.
In a previous piece, I wrote about how to think more deeply about work. In that piece, I talked about how philosophy can help us understand our relationship with work more deeply. But the more I think about work, the more I find the boundaries between work and non-work, between work and play, become blurred and fuzzy.
So if we want to understand human activity better…
BTR (before the ‘rona), my beautiful sister, KC and I hosted a girls’ night. She served these two cute little cakes from Whole Foods Market with a warning: “The strawberry shortcake is good, but the Chantilly cake is a problem; be careful.”
All of us laughed, and I playfully rolled my eyes, thinking, “I’ve met very few non-chocolate-related confections worthy of my love and devotion.”
Welp, she didn’t lie. That Chantilly cake was a magical and addictively delicious berry-filled delight. …
People typically shut down when someone talks for more than 40 seconds. I’d recently read that from Mark Goulston, author of Just Listen, and this past weekend I had a firsthand experience of it.
My houseguest, someone I didn’t know very well, turned out to be quite the talker. As we sat together after dinner his verbal stream of consciousness washed over me, and I wondered when he might pause to take a breath. He didn’t.
I felt myself shutting down, losing interest not just in listening to him but also in saying anything. The nonstop talking continued at breakfast…
When we began dating, Tyler and I did a lot of traveling. We started out small: Our first trip was from Boston to the tip of Cape Cod. Soon we ventured further, to California, to Mexico, to Peru. We broke up once in Key West. But I was too broke to change my ticket, and we got back together before our flight home. We got married in Maine but never took a honeymoon — I was pregnant and vomiting six times a day by then. …
No one wants to ruin their life, but some people manage to do it. Ruin, by definition, means to “damage irreparably,” and I’ve seen doctors, attorneys, promising young writers self-destruct as a result of unmanaged bad habits, drug and alcohol abuse, and illegal behavior. When we see it happen, whether it’s a celebrity or someone we know, we’re often surprised, but when we look closer, it’s most often been a slow burn on the way to the wreckage.
That intrigued me, so I asked my friends on Facebook and my contacts on LinkedIn, “What is the best way for someone…
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