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7 Potent Ways To Live And Die Without Regret

Add up all the stories told from deathbeds; the regrets, confessions, sorrows, secrets, petitions for forgiveness, and desperate calls to turn back the clock, and we have an infinite library of tragedy.

I must change my life so that I can live it. Not wait for it.
—  Susan Sontag

Death’s Day is coming — today, tomorrow, or it could be decades away.

Good health and youth do not protect anyone from death’s decision.

When death calls your name, you must go.

In my late teens, I almost died in a car accident, but death let me off the hook.

Not long after, death called my best friend, then my father.

I pushed their deaths into the shadow and ran into the light but soon discovered that chasing light created too many fears and even bigger shadows.

Then I found a wise teacher and teachings that led me back to the darkness to befriend death. Since that time I have allowed myself to remain with the awareness of death and this has driven me to interact with life more purposefully and joyfully.

In this essay, I reveal the 7 things I have learned about regret and death:

  1. Take a leaf from the Top 5 Regrets
  2. Explore other cultures
  3. Break the silence around death in daily life
  4. Learn the skill of change and letting go
  5. Meditate on death
  6. Interact with myths, art, and symbols of death
  7. Express your experience of death

1. Take A Leaf From The Top 5 Regrets

What we can learn from those near death, is that regret is the greatest pain.

Nurse Bronnie Ware spent 12 years working in palliative care, caring for patients in the last 12 weeks of their lives. She collected stories and published a book, The Top Five Regrets Of Dying.

My friend Ann Marie is a nurse who worked in palliative care for twenty years. She carries her patient’s stories so deeply that being with her is sometimes heartbreaking.

Together these nurses have thousands of stories, and yet their top 5 regrets are identical.

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Tantra, the Science of Self–Transformation and Self–Realization

Tantra Is A System Of Self Development

Tantra is the ancient empirical philosophy and science of liberating energy in order to expand consciousness and realize one’s inherent spiritual power.

Consciousness and energy are united and made available for health, mental peace, emotional resilience, creativity and spiritual realization.

Tantra is a practical, empirical and experiential science that lights the torch and shows the way to self-transformation through psychological, psychic and spiritual growth and fulfillment.

Tantra and Yoga are intimately related. Many yogic techniques are used as part of tantric practice and ritual. Both yoga and tantra share the common goal of uniting our individual awareness with the highest Self.

Defining yoga-tantra

The word tantra is derived from the Sanskrit roots tan and tra. The root tan means extension, expansion, a stretching and pulling, as you pull rubber. Tra means to liberate, to release, to emancipate, and to make free. Energy is liberated so that it can be united with consciousness.

Yoga means connection or union. In this context, it refers to techniques that enable the union of consciousness and energy, of Shiva and Shakti.

Yoga-tantra, therefore, is the “liberation of energy (trapped in matter and neurotic psychological patterns) in order to expand individual consciousness and unite it with universal consciousness”

Energy is often trapped in tensions, old unconscious habits, and patterns within the body-mind. We may feel small, powerless, and out of touch with our true Self.

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The Definition and Meaning Of Love

Have you wondered about the definition of love? Can you define love?  Do you know the meaning of love? I sure have thought about love. So much so that I invited a few of my brave and emotionally articulate friends to be part of a little experimental video – Love Is. They each do a brilliant job of defining the elusive, wondrous nature and meaning of love.  

This short video, LOVE IS. was made over two decades ago, but love is eternal, as is the wisdom and generosity of those who appear in this video. May it delight and inspire you to contemplate your own definitions and feelings about love…

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The Convenience Virus

Fast And Easy Is The Measure Of Our Time

Are you running urgently from task to task and place to place with a desire to do life faster and easier? Perhaps you’ve caught the convenience virus.

The convenience virus can get under your skin. Like a rash you can’t soothe, it will spread throughout your life if you don’t rein it in.

Fast and easy is the measure of our time

Convenience ideology gained popularity when advertisers and product designers of the 1950s teamed up to create an insatiable desire for labour-saving “mod-cons,” such as kitchen appliances. It surged again in the 90s, capturing our imaginations with rapid progress in electronics, computing, consuming, and communicating. It just keeps on growing and going.

Convenience ideology propels the evolution of design and changes how we live, survive, prosper, fit in and interact.

We all want convenient ways to perform menial tasks, but a lack of discernment around our desire for convenience is a real danger. If we allow our desire for fast and easy to bleed into every aspect of our lives, including our health and wellbeing, creativity, and spirituality, we drain our life force. We lose patience with the most important parts of ourselves.

The growing aversion to experience, learning and creating

From grade schools to universities, teachers are increasingly complaining about their students’ desire to escape the learning process entirely. Thinking is too laborious and slow for many students. They have an urgent need to know, without a willingness to fully experience and explore their subjects.

I recently read an astounding interview with a University philosophy professor who said his students did not want to study. That’s right; his philosophy students reported that they didn’t have time to read books on philosophy. These students had become so used to consuming short bursts of information that they pressured him to cull his reading list down to just a few “essential” books.

The professor reluctantly gave the students his shortlist, which cut his original list by half. A week later, they began to ask exactly which passages they should read. The students said they didn’t have time to read the entire shortlist, or, as it turned out, even a single book.

This story reflects many of our current attitudes:

  • Why should I practice when I can get qualified, anyway?
  • Why get experience when I can have success without it?
  • Why seek knowledge when information is available on the topic? (What is knowledge? Isn’t it just information that you hold in your head? Why bother when I’ve got Google?)
  • Why develop new skills when I learned them at school?
  • Why create something when I can buy it?
  • Why get my hands dirty and sweaty, fumble, and make mistakes?

Here’s why.

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