Tag Archives: spiritual

#48_July 2016 – Play as a Spiritual Practice

Play as a Spiritual Practice

When I first heard in a teaching that play could be incorporated into a spiritual practice, I was not only relieved but really happy that the spiritual practice was not all work. After all, that’s why there is this proverb ‘all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy’ right?

Summer time seems to be the perfect time to take a break from work – half the year has gone by, there is another half more to go. Some of us could already be feeling disinterested at work or our bodies could be yearning for a sunny vacation – beach, sun, sea or just hanging out with people we want to spend more time with.

When I am on vacation, I try to watch what is it about the vacation that I like? This often gives me a clue to what is missing from my work….. Is it doing the things I don’t feel like I have to do? Is it having time and space to laugh and be silly? Is it the carefreeness feeling of doing the things I like without having to watch the clock? Is it spending time on creative projects, allowing myself to make mistakes along the way?

The older I get, the more I realize the importance of relaxing into the practice – for long-term progress and sustainability of what we do. If we could learn from our vacations and incorporate the elements of play – the innocence, the wonder, humor, light heartedness, openness, playfulness, creativity, not taking ourselves too seriously….. etc., into our daily life, our life could be one big holiday !

The ASC team

Final thoughts

A teacher asked her students to use the word “beans” in a sentence. “My father grows beans,” said one girl. “My mother cooks beans,” said a boy. A third student spoke up, “We are all human beans.”

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#44_February 2016 – The one you Feed

feeding wolf

The one you Feed

One evening an old Cherokee Indian told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, ‘My son, the battle is between two ‘wolves’ inside us all. One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority. The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.’

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: ‘Which wolf wins?’

The old Cherokee simply replied, ‘The one you feed.’
Warmest wishes,
The ASC Team

Final thoughts

“Love is so exquisitely elusive. It cannot be bought, cannot be badgered, cannot be hijacked. It is available only in one rare form: as the natural response of a healthy mind and healthy heart.”
~ Eknath Easwaran

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#40 October 2015 – Register today for Lama Marut and Cindy Lee’s classes

marut and cindy

“Get Unbusy”
This is set of 4 classes where we learn how to regain true peace in our modern era of constant activity and busy-ness. Lama Marut and Cindy Lee will teach us what it means to “get unbusy” and feel a greater sense of calm while fulfilling our responsibilities and living our daily lives.
Date: Friday 23rd October 7pm-9pm
Saturday 24th October 3pm-5pm | 7pm to 9pm
Sunday 25th October 3pm-5pm
Venue: Oasis Holistic
Blk 10 Oasis Holistic #01-50 Selegie House Selegie Road S(180010)
Cost: Free, by donation

Click here to register  info@asc-sg.org
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“From Victimhood to Mastery”
Join us for this teaching on the ways we can apply insight to our personal stories, narratives and self-image. Learn techniques for changing our perception of ourselves and the world so that we can live happier, more contented lives.
Date: Tuesday 27th October 7pm-9pm
Venue: Cocoon Studio
315 Outram Road #02-07 Tan Boon Liat Building S(169074)
Cost: Free, by donation

Click here to register info@asc-sg.org
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“Meditations to Discover the Divine in Everyday Life”
The Relationship between Shiva and Shakti in the Vijnana Bhairava Tantra
Join Lama Marut and Cindy Lee for this weekend workshop to learn simple meditation techniques, taken from a classic Sanskrit text, to discover your inner Divine nature. In each session we will practise easy but profound mindfulness methods to instantly drop into your true nature any time and anywhere during the day. We will also offer instruction on formal seated meditation in order to consolidate the blissful experience of communing with the Divine within in order to make it stable and long-lasting.

Session I: Encountering the Divine, Here and Now
30 Oct (Fri): 7:00pm – 9:00pm
Session II: Meeting the Divine Directly: Yoga and the Discovery of Your True Nature
31 Oct (Sat)10:00am-12:00pm
Session III: The Yoga of Sound: Finding the Divine in Mantra, Music, and Speech
31 Oct (Sat): 2:00pm-4:00pm
Session IV: Freeing Yourself from Conceptual Thinking: Locating the Divine in Emptiness
1 Nov (Sun): 10:00am-12:00pm
Session V: The Divine is Always Everywhere: Realising the Sacred in Everyday Activities
1 Nov (Sun): 2:00pm4:00pm
Click here Pure Yoga website for registration and cost details.
(Early Bird prices end today, register now!)

Final Thoughts

“Know well what leads you forward and what holds you back, and choose the path that leads to wisdom”.

~ The Buddha

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#37_July 2015 – Wisdom 0.15

calm-ocean

Wisdom 0.15

Nearly two weeks ago, I attended the Wisdom Asia 2.0 conference here in Singapore, organised by the effervescent Tan Chade Meng, who is Google’s Jollygoodfellow (it’s his real job title). He believes that through teaching mindfulness, businesses can become more ethical, more compassionate and wiser. And he enticed a lot of the big names of mindfulness such as Jack Kornfield and Dan Siegel to share their vision and ideas here. Over and over again at the conference, we heard that all the beautiful ideas they presented will just remain words unless people try them out, practice them and experience a difference in their lives. And of course, we all nodded sagely and with conviction.Cut to last night, when I had a splitting  headache and had already taken quite a bit of pain medication. I was fully caught up in the ‘poor me-ness’ of the situation and sulking about how I was going to put up with my throbbing head until I remembered that I actually had other tools at my disposal – mindfulness! Oh yes, that thing I spent 3 days hearing about. Rather reluctantly, I tried a practice where instead of focusing on the pain, with gentle curiosity, you search the rest of your body for places where there isn’t pain and take time to explore what they feel like. My left thigh felt ok, so I decided to focus on that for a while, until low and behold, I woke up two hours later with my headache gone! So perhaps in my case, this is more like wisdom 0.15 rather than 2.0 but I can say with conviction that even reluctant mindfulness is better than none at all! May all be happy, healthy and wise!

Jaki

 

A Final Thought

Seeing reality for what it is, is what we call discernment.  The work of discernment is very hard.

~ Lewis B. Smedes

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#34 April 2015 – Sacred Space

sacred space

Sacred Space

“[Sacred Space] is an absolute necessity for anybody today You must have a room, or a certain hour or so a day, where you don’t know what was in the newspapers that morning, you don’t know who your friends are, you don’t know what you owe anybody, you don’t know what anybody owes to you. This is a place where you can simply experience and bring forth what you are and what you might be. This is the place of creative incubation. At first you may find that nothing happens there. But if you have a sacred place and use it, something eventually will happen.” Joseph Campbell.

What and where is your sacred space?

Susan


A Final Thought…

“ We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.

~ Joseph Campbell

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#32 February 2015 – It’s Time to Reboot

 

buddha looking at mountain

It’s Time to Reboot

I not sure about you but I’m long overdue for a personal reboot.  The last few months have been an absolute blur with work deadlines and loads of extra activities during the festive season.  Where did that two week Christmas holiday go?  Then – wham bam – it’s straight into the new year with business plans, projections, budgets…etc…etc.  And now we have Lunar New Year celebrations going into full bloom!

During this busy period I’ve been going through the motions of my practice… Dharma class on Mondays…. Yoga class on Sun and meditating semi-regularly, but it all seems a bit flat.  So how do I get out of the rut?

Go on retreat.  This doesn’t have to be some far away Himalayan journey or even heading down to the local Ashram, it can be as simple as just staying at home and completely unplugging for 48 hours and spending some time alone.  That’s right,  no phones, no TV’s, no laptops… absolutely nothing electronic.  Sleep early, wake-up early, meditate, eat light (maybe even detox), do a bit of yoga, and read an inspiring book.  Ahhhhhhh… I’m feeling less stressed already just jotting down these thoughts.

If carving out a weekend at home is just too difficult then come to our next ASC retreat with Lama Marut in Borobudur 9th to 13th April.  You’ll have space to do all I’ve mention above while hearing Lama Marut close out the final chapters of Shantideva’s “A Guide to a Bodhisattva’s Way of Life.” Hope to see you there : )

Chuck


Final Thoughts

“ Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”

~ Lao Tzu

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REGISTRATION CLOSING SOON! for April 9 to 13: Borobudur Retreat on Chapters 8-10 of Shantideva’s Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life

REGISTRATIONS FOR RETREAT CLOSING 4TH MARCH!

Book now @ info@asc-sg.org

Watch Lama Marut invite you personally to the retreat in the video below:

 

About the retreat:Boro-Flyer-email

Lama Marut will lead this retreat on Chapters 8 to 10 of Master Shantideva’s Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life. This retreat will be the third and last in the series of retreats held since 2013 on this wonderful text. The final chapters of the text focus on the Perfections of Meditative Concentration and Wisdom.

We will be at the ancient Buddhist pilgrimage site of Borobudur, Indonesia, as we dive deep into the concluding chapters of the text. The temple of Borobudur, dating from the 9th Century, consists of six square platforms topped by three circular platforms, and is decorated with 2,672 relief panels and 504 Buddha statuesBorobudur is built as a single large stupa and, when viewed from above, takes the form of a giant tantric Buddhist mandala. It is the world’s largest Buddhist temple, as well as one of the greatest Buddhist monuments in the world. (-Wikipedia)

Save the dates and come along for a chance to experience 5 days of mind and heart-opening teachings, as well as daily yoga and meditation classes in this beautiful and sacred place.

 

Practical Information

Dates: Thursday 9th April to Monday 13th April, 2015 (Teachings commence on 9th April evening and end on 12th April evening, we leave very early on 13th April). Every day we will have time for yoga, meditation and personal reflection, and tours of the temple.

Cost: Twin share SGD$1,040/Single occupancy SGD$1,250  

Cost includes air ticket from Singapore to Yogyakarta, 4 nights accommodation, breakfast/lunch/dinner/coffee, tea and teaching materials. Cost does NOT include visa cost, personal expenses and laundry and airport tax.
We have made a group booking for this flight by AIR ASIA:
QZ 659 Thu 9th Apr  SIN-JOG 11:15-12:25
QZ 658  Mon 13 Apr JOG-SIN 07:25-10:45

Hotel: Princess Mahohara Resort (the only hotel next to Borobudur temple)

Spaces can  be secured with a non-refundable deposit of SGD$300, or full payment. With limited space available in Princess Manohara Resort it is advisable to make your booking soon.

For more information and registration, please email: info@asc-sg.org

#28 October 2014 -Yoga and Me

trikonasana

Yoga and Me

One year ago, I decided to take a break from yoga. I didn’t love the practice any more despite developing a solid practice over many years. Of course I knew that yoga was good for me but my relationship with yoga had become one of ‘must’.  I needed to practice; I had to practice.

When I stopped teaching, I didn’t feel compelled to practice. I stopped attending workshops, and didn’t feel the pressure to keep it up. I rested as much as I needed and did only what I felt like. Some days, I felt resistance. Some days, I didn’t want to stop. But rather than telling myself ‘I must’, I asked myself whether I was truly tired or if I was making excuses. Am I as tired as I thought? Can I not do just one asana? Slowly, by challenging my underlying motivations I built up my practice again.

Working from the frame of mind of ‘must’ there was no room for query and for compassion. In letting go of ‘must’, there was room to gauge my feelings and energy levels. And that brought a more mindful and kinder relationship between my practice and myself.

Do I love the practice now? I am enjoying it and committed to it.

Poh Yen


A Final Thought

“If there ever comes a time that you forget where you came from, you’ve gone too far.”
― Comic Strip Mama

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25 Aug 2014 – Playful Joyful Awakening with Nithya Shanti

nithyaNithya Shanti is a spiritual teacher committed to supporting those who wish to awaken their natural wisdom.
He has an MBA from XLRI Jamshedpur and left a career in corporate strategy to follow his dream of living as a Buddhist monk.
For many years he lived and practiced in the remote forest monasteries of South East Asia.  He now shares timeless teachings, and practical wisdom for awakening.

He says “The essence of my work is to create spaces based on awareness and presence where people can recognize, share and question their stories together in a playful and lighthearted way.”

His FB page is : https://www.facebook.com/spreadinghappiness?fref=ts

http://www.nithyashanti.com/

Asian Spiritual Classics warmly welcomes Nithya and you to join us in a short talk entitled “Playful Joyful Awakening”.

Day/ Date: Monday, 25th August 2014, 7.30-9.30pm

Venue: Shaw Tower, 100 Beach Road, #02-45 (nearest MRT: City Hall or Bugis) Singapore 189702

Cost: Free, by donation

All are welcome, please invite your friends and family and see you there !!