Archive for category: Living

Impulsive Skiing

06 Mar
March 6, 2012

Having just settled down to work I heard an sms tick in. A good friend of mine, and tour pal, suggested skiing, and I did not put up much resistance. It was a beautiful day with clear, blue skies and a kindly sun, in spite of all the snow, definitely inclined towards springtime. The dog did need its walk, as did I, so work would have to be put on hold, ski heaven was waiting. 
We did not have a specific goal for our tour, but set out, walking and talking companionably, as we often do, about everything under the sun. After a while we got up on a plateau and looked over to a hill with a ski lift, the slopes teaming with skiers. I got all excited as these were slopes I frequented for many years in my youth, and burst out: “Look, the lift is open, how fun!”. My friend looked at me, and replied jokingly: “Well, why don’t we have a go!”. “Great idea!”, I said, not getting the joke at all, and set off down the knoll on which we were standing, towards the bottom of the lift. After a short while my companion followed and caught up with me, laughing and shaking his head.
Kids were all over, in the lift, on the slopes, and stretched on the snow, enjoying a respite from school, the day and their lunches. All of a sudden my dog took off, nose to the ground and stopped next to a couple of boys, where he eagerly gobbled down a couple of hotdogs and some other discards from an obviously too substantial lunchpack. I was barely able to get hold of him as there were lots of goodies lying around, all ripe for the picking. I put on his leach and went down to talk to the man in charge of the lift. It turned out that we had belonged to the same ski club, that he now was a fan of randonné or alpine touring and that we of course could ride the lift, for free! Using a T-bar lift with slender cross country skis is not the easiest of endeavors, and having a short legged dog in tow doesn’t exactly make it less difficult…

Read more… Impulsive Skiing

A little time goes a long way

14 Oct
October 14, 2011

The little guy up on the stage was speaking a beautiful, eloquent and almost totally unintelligeble English. 


My whole body was straining to grasp what he was saying, smiling and swaying a little as he was in the dim light.

The only thing I could make out, was him saying “is it not?” at the end of each sentence, which confused me a little at first, but made perfect sense once I realized he meant a retorical “right?”.

After a while my ears tuned in to his way of speaking, and I leaned back, relaxed my tensed muscles and listened.

The former world class technological scientist, now dedicated to “the inner sciences”, practicing and teaching holistic and energetic living, is not a man of big words, expansive gestures or elaborate explanations. His slides are easy-to-follow and uncomplicated, as is his line of reasoning and his approach to yoga and meditation. 

His message is clear and simple: We need to change our attitude, from overuse of ourselves and the world at large, to a more balanced, holistic and deeper way of living, providing for and considering both body, mind and spirit.

His focus is on creating inner peace through meditation. We need to deactivate our body to deactivate our mind. We must find a way to go into our “cave”, where nothing, neither external or internal “noise”  disturb us. And the main means of achieving some “cave time” or meditiative state, are 

– a stable and comfortable body posture
– deep breathing
– creating space and time for ourselves, by leaving our daily chores and worries behind, outside of the cave.

I have come across different forms of meditation and a various range of yoga pracitces, many of which make huge demands on our time, our body, our mind. Demands that not many of us feel we can meet.

The beauty and simplicity of his philosophy is that yoga, or meditation, should not be an effort. A little investment in time goes a long way, and is manyfold reimbursed you.

Just 10-15 minutes a day will  reduce your need for sleep by an hour a night, energize your system, increase efficiency and productivity, relieve stress and tension, improve mind control and in general yield better health and well being.

Meditation will hopefully also bring about a self awareness enabling us to see the necessity of change, in ourselves and in the world.

It this way of thinking is of interest to you, or you just want to learn more about the man, small in posture, but big in thought, you may go to http://www.centerforinnersciences.org/

Upset

14 Sep
September 14, 2011
Do you count yourself among those people who very rarely get upset, who are not easily moved or rocked? Well stop reading, and go play with the other robots!
Even though, as mentioned in a previous blog, I don’t think I’ll ever be fully “grown up” (I don’t drink coffee, I don’t have all, if any, answers to the big questions in life, I am easily moved, touched, rocked etc. etc.), I am old enough to take responsibility for my own feelings. No matter what other people have said or done, I should be master of my own emotions. But this is not always easy!
Today I am upset, a little angry, but mostly upset.
When I find myself in that situation I make use of a combination of several strategies. Brooding is fortunately not an inherent quality of mine, nor is passivity. Action is.
My first course of action is trying to shift focus, from me, myself, I, to the world outside me, and in the process touch bases with what makes me “tick”.
So I started the day bytexting some people, just to tell them that I care. Just doing that made me feel better; I had found a small piece of purpose to hold on to. Positive response (from those who were not too shocked:-) did of course not diminish the effect:-) Then I sent a few mails and made a call I’d be meaning to make for a long time.
But peace of mind was not restored that easily, so I endeavoured on the next measure on my list, tidying up. The house is never as clean and orderly as after an anger, upset- or frustration spell of mine. The kids’ and spouse’s belongings cluttering the common living areas are promptly collected and literally thrown into the rooms in which they belong, and the doors are not locked, but slammed shut. Nice! Laundry is quickly disposed of, so is garbage and other objects which happen to be in my way, and that should have been “dealt” with by other occupants of the house ages ago. The Salvation Army usually benefits greatly from these occasions. If later prompted as to these things’ whereabouts, I usually feign ignorance (silently giving my self absolution, claiming Non compos mentis, Of unsound mind at the time of the crime..).
Next I became more physical. That always makes me feel better, both about myself and other people. On the agenda was swimming. In the pool with me was only one other person, a what seemed to be a pretty proficient swimmer, and that was perfect; my competition instinct clicked in, and I set off to overtake him. The other guy never knew what hit him, how could he know what all the fuss was about:-), but it got my adrenalin racing, in turn giving me a nice dose of much needed endorphins.
A nice, warm shower added to the balancing effect, and I went about more practical business, preparing for a two days’ biking trip with a friend the coming weekend. When upset and a little angry, I can manage anything, even technicalities that usually leave me baffled. And if I need help, I seek it, and things get fixed! So there!
And speaking about friends: When the going gets, if not tough seen in a bigger perspective, but at least frustrating, good friends come in handy. You don’t necessarily need to tell them about your upset, just being with them makes you feel better.  Fortunately, conveniently prescheduled, I have a dinner appointment with several good friends this evening, so that should be good.
But peace is not yet restored, so right now I am down to one of my last strategies, writing, a process that enables me to vent my feelings and helps me put everything into perspective.
My upset barometer is still indicating High Pressure, but, I think, pointing towards calmer weather. Low pressure, or as it is also called in meteorology, “depression”, is not what I am looking for, in either of the word’s connotations:-), because that’s not who I am, but some reduction in voltage would not be a bad thing.
What do you do, to cope with your upsets? I am wide open to suggestions:-) Have a good day, maybe not without upsets, but with strategies to deal with them…

Upset

11 Sep
September 11, 2011
Conversations, heart to heart, can make wonders
Shared thoughts; an insight sought and found
You don’t have to act upon your dreams, thoughts and desires
But you must reflect upon your musings
If you stop thinking, talking,
You’ll start sinking, balking
Till existing  becomes an excuse
 For living! 

Election Time

03 Sep
September 3, 2011
Are you an abstainer? Er du en sofavelger?
 
Get off the coach!
Sorry, English speaking friends. The video below may be difficult to understand for non-Scandinavians…, but the message is this:
Whenever there is an election, in your country, your state, your municipality: VOTE! Or forever hold your tongue…
Be sure to watch the video to the very end. The name of the political party that made it, is not important, the message is.
The video was “brought to us” by a quality “server”/”sharer” of good “stuff” in Denmark.
Godt valg!

Angels?

31 Aug
August 31, 2011
Fortunately, I not only have generous people in my life (see yesterday’s blog), but also people who keep me in check when I, occasionally:-), go a little overboard…
…may be what I was talking about yesterday was angels. And not many people feel they can live up to that standard. (If they do, they should probably have their head examined!) Because, let’s face it, is there really such a phenomena as altruism? A mindset in which one only thinks beautiful, pure and selfless thoughts, always having other people’s happiness in mind? Is the wish for “peace and goodwill to all” an intrinsic, indelible part of humans? I don’t know. The jury is still out, and has been for centuries (poor chaps). God only knows the motives one has for doing and saying the things we do. And God only (thank goodness) knows what goes on in people’s minds.
Me for one, often have problems figuring out what goes on in my own head, so just beginning to guess into the mind of others is daring and risky business!
 But the point is this, and this is irrefutable (I hope!): No matter what thoughts we may have in our heads, it is what eventually comes out  that matters to other people. The thoughts are there. We fight them and surrender, invite them and corrupt them, split them and grind them, crunch them and mix them, blend them and kneed them, and then, if you are dealing with generous people, what comes out, in deed, speech or writing is this:
A beautiful gift, a delightful little package, stuffed with what we need at that precise moment: support, courage, comfort, affection, compassion, love, encouragement, challenges, constructive criticism, you need it, you name it!
And that is what being a generous person is about. Which is good in many respects, because, not being angels, it gives people some slack; Failing and stumbling are parts of being human, even the generous ones among us:-)

Generosity

30 Aug
August 30, 2011

Generosity

One of the traits of character I appreciate most in others is generosity. Some people have an amazing ability to support and lift you. They meet your thoughts and ideas with an open mind, and when criticise do it constructively, affectionately and with respect.
They spur you on, challenge you to step out of your comfort zone to reach goals, both the ones that you knew you had, and ones you were not, until that moment, aware of.
They stay with you, even when you’re not on top of the world, and are rooting for you and your successes, when they themselves might be down in a dump. That is a hard thing to do, but for people who have a truly generous mind, this comes naturally.
These people are not motivated by personal winnings, rewards, in this world or the next. They don’t envy you your good times, winnings, successes, they enjoy them along with you, which makes them (the good things in life) even more precious
They live and breath this generosity, regardless of what relationship they have to you in the first place. You may have them in your immediate “surroundings”, but may also meet them at the other end of a telephone ”line” or in a grocery store, way out of your “neighbourhood”.
I am extremely fortunate to have several such people in my life. With all my heart I wish for you that you have too. However much I strive, I will never reach as high on the generosity scale as these people, but that shouldn’t prevent me from trying, even though I often fail.
This came to me while I was out walking today. Walking clears my mind and makes me realize many things I don’t see sitting down. But although a thought may be new to me, few thoughts are new under the sun; While I was writing this, the song You Raise Me Up, suddenly, but not surprisingly, came to my mind.
If the song is not about generosity, probably along with a heavy dash of love and affection:-), I don’t know what is.
Go ahead and listen, to this or any other recording. I know I just did:-)
Sung by Josh Groban, Westlife and many others, but written by Secret Garden’s Rolf Løvland (melody) and Irish songwriter Brendan Graham (lyrics)