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Einstein’s God: Krista Tippett and Theoretical Cosmologist Janna Levin on Free Will, Science, and the Human Spirit. By Maria Popova “How we ask our questions affects the answers we arrive at… Science and religion… ask different kinds of questions altogether, probing and illuminating in ways neither could alone.” Seven decades after a little girl asked Einstein whether scientists pray, Peabody Award-winning journalist Krista Tippett began interviewing some of the world’s most remarkable scientists, philosophers, and theologians about the relationship between science and spirituality in her superb public radio program On Being — the same trove of wisdom that gave us Sherwin Nuland on what everybody needs and Joanna Macy on how Rilke can help us live more fully. Tippett, who was awarded the National Humanities Medal for her ennobling work, collected the best of these dialogues in Einstein’s God: Conversations About Science and the Human Spirit (public library) — an immeasurably rewarding compendium featuring such contemporary luminaries as Parker Palmer, Freeman Dyson, Andrew Solomon, and Sherwin Nuland.

The Disease of Being Busy. I saw a dear friend a few days ago. I stopped by to ask her how she was doing, how her family was. She looked up, voice lowered, and just whimpered: “I’m so busy… I am so busy… have so much going on.” Almost immediately after, I ran into another friend and asked him how he was. Again, same tone, same response: “I’m just so busy… got so much to do.” The tone was exacerbated, tired, even overwhelmed.

And it’s not just adults. After we settled in, we went to one of the friendly neighbors, asking if their daughter and our daughter could get together and play. Horribly destructive habits start early, really early. How did we end up living like this? Whatever happened to a world in which kids get muddy, get dirty, get messy, and heavens, get bored? How did we create a world in which we have more and more and more to do with less time for leisure, less time for reflection, less time for community, less time to just… be? Somewhere we read, “The unexamined life is not worth living… for a human.” W. 18 Ways Women Disconnect with Themselves. ~ Falan Storm.

Via Falan Stormon Apr 4, 2014 We live in a society where our relationship to things outside of ourselves seems far more important than our relationship to ourselves. We pride ourselves on our families, our jobs, our labels and our outward expressions in the world. Not only do these matter, but they can often be sincere expressions of who we really are. However, for most women our connection with ourselves often comes last, if it even exists at all.

As we wake up each morning and catapult ourselves into the busyness of our days, we carry very little regard for the many ways we disconnect from ourselves. Our connection with ourselves best serves as the foundation of our lives, with all else extending from there. The following are 18 ways many of us dampen, cut off and even destroy a connection with ourselves. 1) Being everywhere but here. Presence is that thing we don’t often use even though it’s always available to us. 2) Our relationship to our body. 3) Being a spinster with sleep. Let go. Girl on Fire: Is Your Meaning System Working for You? And What the Heck Am I Talking About!? They Call Us the "Nones," But We're So Much More. How to Create the Quiet (because it's noisy out there) Mark and I took a walk around Silver Lake (pictured above) recently, and the peace and quiet was as beautiful as the view.

Everything seemed to slow down, and the quieter it was outside, the quieter it became inside. My heart rate slowed down, and the mental chatter disappeared. It’s noisy out there in our big, full lives and while some of the noise can’t be avoided, we do invite some of it in. How can we pay attention to the important and meaningful stuff, or even discern what is important or meaningful if we are attempting to pay attention to all of it? The short answer is that we can’t. What matters most looks different for everyone, but we can use similar methods to figure it out. How to create the quiet Kill your “read later” folder. To avoid saving things to read, stop scanning and skimming the internet. Delete email. Curate your Twitter feed. Say yes to less. Say no for 30 days. Boycott the news. Share less. Stop the gossip and complaining. Do what you love. Declutter. A Helpful Guide to Becoming Unbusy.

“Those who are wise won’t be busy, and those who are too busy can’t be wise.” ― Lin Yutang It was in this video from Jeff Shinabarger that I first heard the phrase, “‘Busy’ has become the new ‘Fine’.” As in, when you ask somebody how they were doing, they used to answer, “Fine.” But nowadays, everybody answers, “Busy.” Seemingly, busy has become the default state for too many of our lives.

But is the state of busy really improving our lives? But it doesn’t have to be this way. Consider this Helpful Guide to Becoming Unbusy: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. Busy does not need to define you. Image: Moyan_Brenn. The Unpleasant Emotion I Feel Most Days. When I was in the last lurch of finishing up my bachelor’s degree and trying to answer the immense, looming question of what do you want to do when you grow up, I had a fantasy.

I’d buy a small cabin near water that either rushed or swirled calmly. The cabin’s walls and floors would be made of unfinished wood. There’d be a small, cozy loft for sleeping, and each night I’d fall asleep there, awash in the peaceful glee of simplicity, a modern day, grown, Heidi. I would hang lanterns everywhere, the soft flames casting warm glowing orbs on the wood. Wildflowers would grow outside, and there’d be no lawn to upkeep. Life would be simple. I’d have few possessions. I can still feel the quiet and peace of the fantasy. But it’s not the path I chose. The sunlit kitchen is littered with dirty dishes and crumbs and small milk-rimmed cups. My mind runs a ticker tape of all my responsibilities: The kids.

There is a particular feeling that settles on me most days since having children. Saying it helps. The Radiant Awareness Living Through Us. Rory Sutherland: Perspective is everything. Kathryn Schulz: Don't regret regret. Shawn Achor: The happy secret to better work. Chip Conley: Measuring what makes life worthwhile. 3 Steps to Learning to Experience Life Fully. “The root cause of non-aggression is gentleness to oneself.” ~ Pema Chodron In 2009, Pema Chodron and Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche co-led a week long meditation retreat at Shambhala Mountain Center in Colorado entitled Cultivating Gentleness and Strength. When Pema Chodron speaks about relating to life in a sane way, people listen. They listen because of her friendly demeanor, her plainspoken and personable manner, and because they know what she is saying is true (though unconventional). By learning to stay awake and open to everything that happens in our lives, we can learn to experience fully, which leads to non-aggression, in ourselves and in our actions.

The choices we make will change our life, and the world, for better or worse, she said. When we acknowledge the onset of a thought that is pulling us around by the nose, or a strong emotion that is making our blood boil or our heart constrict, we can follow these three steps: 1. We really learn to do this during our meditation practice. 2. 3. What We Need Is Here. How to Think Like Sherlock Holmes: Lessons in Mindfulness and Creativity from the Great Detective. By Maria Popova “A man’s brain originally is like a little empty attic, and you have to stock it with such furniture as you choose.”

“The habit of mind which leads to a search for relationships between facts,” wrote James Webb Young in his famous 1939 5-step technique for creative problem-solving, “becomes of the highest importance in the production of ideas.” But just how does one acquire those vital cognitive customs? That’s precisely what science writer Maria Konnikova explores in Mastermind: How to Think Like Sherlock Holmes (UK; public library) — an effort to reverse-engineer Holmes’s methodology into actionable insights that help develop “habits of thought that will allow you to engage mindfully with yourself and your world as a matter of course.”

The idea of mindfulness itself is by no means a new one. It is most difficult to apply Holmes’s logic in those moments that matter the most. Our intuition is shaped by context, and that context is deeply informed by the world we live in. Forget Christopher Hitchens: Atheism in America is undergoing a radical change. It’s surprising just how much media analysis, both mainstream and progressive, continues to take as given the notion that atheism can be defined and discussed solely by looking at the so-called “New Atheists” who emerged roughly between 2004 and 2007. It’s easy to understand the appeal: Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris and Christopher Hitchens became prominent representatives of atheism because they were all erudite, entertaining and unafraid to say what they thought. A lot of people, myself included, were drawn to their works because they were forthright and articulated things we had kept locked away, or simply hadn’t found the words for.

But in 2014, Hitchens is dead, and using Dawkins or Harris to make a case for or against atheism is about as relevant as writing about how Nirvana and Public Enemy are going to change pop music forever. It’s not that these aren’t important issues: separation of church and state is one of the linchpins of American democracy. Dan Gilbert: The surprising science of happiness. 7 Ways To Access Your Body’s Unique “Knowing” | Laura Grace Weldon. Ever notice that the smallest children seem to be one with their bodies? Unlike us, they don’t value their thoughts over their senses. They also don’t get caught up in ruminating about what isn’t directly part of the moment.

Past or future: irrelevant. Other people’s opinions of their appearance: irrelevant. They are tuned to the sensory world around and within them. This state of awareness may be similar to the state that was essential for our earliest ancestors, whose attention to the here-and-now ensured survival. Powerful nerves connect our brains with our digestive system, heart, lungs, and other organs. Our impulses and emotions are influenced (perhaps generated) by the nerves in our gut. Our intuition and reasoning is also influenced by our enteric brain. . We drive ourselves and our children away from this awareness when we emphasize head over body, when we value thoughts but dismiss that knowing in our very cells. So what are some ways to tune ourselves to this bodily knowing? Finding True Refuge - AbbieL. Dalai Lama talks with Jonathan Haidt.