Mental Health, Mindfulness & No-Self

Mike Kewley Blog Post

Why are you unhappy? Because 99.9% of everything you do is for yourself. And there isn’t one. – Wei Wu Wei I was recently introducing a group of Girl Guides to the basics of Mindfulness practice. We sat quietly tracking the breath as it flowed through our nostrils and then whenever we found ourselves distracted, shifted our focus back into …

FREEDOM THROUGH THE BACK-DOOR (A MEDITATION)

Mike Kewley Blog Post

There are two kinds of thoughts, passive and active. Passive thoughts come and go by themselves, can be good, bad or ugly, visual, audio or both. Active thoughts are “I” thoughts. They are thoughts that feel as though we create them and are responsible for them. Examples of “I’ thoughts are “I need that” “I want that” “I have to …

THE MINDFUL EXPERIENCE

Mike Kewley Blog Post

Why do we practice Mindfulness? This is an important question because it seems that we are still very confused about its real goal. So many of us still believe that the aim of Mindfulness or Meditation is to attain a certain experience. A specific, rare, exotic, other-worldly experience, a spiritual experience, something which will shift us from the mundane to …

THE UNIVERSAL FLUSH

Mike Kewley Blog Post

  “‘All conditioned things are impermanent’ When one sees this with wisdom, One turns away from suffering.” – The Buddha To begin the practice of Mindfulness is to begin a brand new way of relating to life. By paying attention to the raw actuality of each given moment, we can begin to see clearly that the weighty story of my …

THE STAR-DUST BODY

Mike Kewley Blog Post

Stop acting so small. You are the universe in ecstatic motion. – Rumi. Why do we practice Mindfulness? If our aim is to live more fully in the present moment then there is a surprisingly simple way to achieve this: be in your body, because your body has never left the present moment. The mind drags us into an apparent past …

DIG YOURSELF

Mike Kewley Blog Post

How often have I said to you that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth? – Sherlock Holmes in The Sign of the Four. I’ve been digging all my life. One of my first loves was archaeology and I would spend hours in the hedgerows next to our house, trowel in hand, digging down through …

KNOWING THE ELEPHANT

Mike Kewley Blog Post

Today’s enlightenment is tomorrow’s mistake. – Zen Saying. I was 29 years old when I had a spiritual awakening so powerful that it made all previous experiences seem meaningless in comparison. It was an irreversible paradigm shift and a radical falling away of everything I had believed about enlightenment. It was not just another interesting experience which a miserable seeker …

Gurdjieff’s Almond Cake

Mike Kewley Blog Post

There is a story I like about the controversial spiritual teacher George Ivanovitch Gurdjieff. He was sitting in his favourite Parisian Cafe when a rich English aristocrat approached him and offered him £1000 if he could show her the meaning of life. He took up her challenge and invited a local prostitute to join his table. He offered her some …

THE SILENT SERMON

Mike Kewley Blog Post

Amazing grace! How sweet the sound That saved a wretch like me! I once was lost, but now am found; Was blind, but now I see. – John Newton. Grace is not a word we generally hear in relationship to Mindfulness practice, but of course it’s here too and accessed by attending to our present moment experience. Within our Mindfulness …

The Dark Side

Mike Kewley Blog Post

If any help was going to arrive to lift me out of my misery, it would come from the dark side of my personality. – Robert Bly   It is an extraordinary paradox that even after decades of meditation there can still be areas of our inner-life which remain untouched by the power of our practice. Meditation is not a …