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Welcome To Conscious Friends
March 22, 2009

Hello and welcome to Conscious Friends, a community of The Conscious Living Foundation!

As you know, our site was created to support those interested in spiritual and personal growth. Along the way, many of us have realized that relationships are an important part of creating and maintaining a harmonious and uplifting life.

To that end, The Conscious Living Foundation is pleased to offer these pages on our site in the hope that we all can find new like-minded friends and perhaps develop deeper relationships.

There are several ways to visit these pages.  As a...more

50 Benefits of Meditation
June 17, 2008
Meditation literally means, "thinking process with present moment awareness".

1.) To have healthy heart.
2.) To have normal blood pressure.
3.) To have normal cholesterol.
4.) To prevent stroke / paralysis.
5.) To have perfect digestion.
6.) To have perfect weight.
7.) To have perfect sleep.
8.) To become a perfect choice maker.
9.) To reverse and regress ageing.
10.) To remain young.
11.) To prevent cancer.
12.) To become embodiment of positive emotions.
13.) To get rid of negative emotions. more

Is Consciousness Energy?
June 11, 2008
If you tune into someone's "vibrations," are you picking up some form of energy they are emitting - perhaps something we might call "psychic energy?"

It may be tempting to think so . . . to think of consciousness as a form of energy. But is it?

What might be going on when we say we feel someone's vibrations?

Well, one possibility is that their brain or their body could be sending out waves of energy - something, perhaps, like electricity. If so, it must be far more subtle than any form of energy known to...

100 Ideas for Creating a More Peaceful World
May 20, 2008

Creating world peace takes many forms, but surely it begins with individuals. Here are 100 ideas for creating a more peaceful world. Everyone can play a part in creating peace. It continues to be the most significant challenge of humankind and requires the efforts of each of us.

[The list contains only 97 Ideas because I removed broken links to defunct websites.

You can bring it back to 100 Ideas by adding your own for Creating a More Peaceful World!

When you do, take a moment to post your additions on the Conscious...more

Recipe for Simplicity
May 6, 2008

"Simplify, Simplify…" More than a century after Henry David Thoreau uttered these words, his plea for simplicity has more significance now than ever before.

We work hard and play hard, filling nearly every moment with activity. Most families believe they need two incomes to pay for a standard of living that has doubled in the last 50 years. But do we?

Based on my three-year study of over 200 people who have simplified their lives, I found that we can work less, want less, and spend less, and be happier and more fulfilled in the process.

Here are ten...more

Spiritual Diversity
April 29, 2008

To our pre-Christian spiritual ancestors, spirituality was both contemporary and relevant. In cultures where polytheism (the belief in many gods) was the rule, rather than the exception, individuals were given the ability to find their own beliefs and to choose their own spiritual paths based upon their personal needs and the calling of their own hearts. Households had specific deities that represented the prosperity and protection that the family hoped for their home. Agricultural festivals had gods that watched over the planting, the growing crops, and the harvest. This diverse pantheon of deities created a culture where a person would draw closest to the god...more

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Liberation From Regret and Denial
February 9, 2007

Like probably every fellow human being alive today, I’ve done things in my life that I’ve later regretted. Certain actions will fail to meet our own or others’ standards of behaviour, and when faced with such acts, most of us will opt for one of two reactions:
  1. Regretting our actions, and wishing them undone or,
  2. Denying that they were wrong, or denying that it was our fault by blaming someone else, or denying that there was any lapse in the first place!

Even if we accept to the world and to ourselves that we were wrong, it is very difficult not to regret or to indulge in a spot of denial; as a species we are very adept at justifying ourselves.

I tend to engage in regret, and in the past, this has brought me to my knees, in tears, praying for things to be undone.

But they can’t be undone. Should I go into denial - or blame someone else?

Having read the teachings of Buddha, one of the first things I learnt of was the first Noble Truth, or path to enlightenment: that the nature of life is suffering.

By this, Buddha meant that all human beings wish to experience a lasting happiness, but that no one can live a life without experiencing problems and setbacks that reduce our happiness. Happiness based on improving our external situation is therefore doomed to failure, because we will all suffer setbacks at some point. True happiness must be sought from within, not by seeking more wealth, a bigger car, a nose job, or a new partner.

If we can develop and maintain a calm and happy mind, regardless of our material situation, then we can’t be disappointed by setbacks, and so we will break the cycle of suffering. And that’s where regret and denial come in.

When we regret our past actions, or when we deny responsibility for them, or the outcome of them, we are suffering. When we blame someone else for our woes, like a boomerang the hurt flies back to us. While we are regretting and blaming and denying what has been done, we are trapped in the eternal circle of suffering, or samara, the Buddhist cycle of life and death pervaded by suffering.

I can’t take credit for the solution – but thinking it through, the only real answer to the question "how do we heal ourselves and move on from regret, blame and denial?" is the answer provided by Buddha –to think beyond yourself and your own suffering.

I’m no different from you, and you’re no different from the person down the street. We all experience suffering in one way or another, and we all share certain suffering – beggar or king, we are all born, we all grow old or sicken or suffer an accident, and die. We all lose loved ones. We are all trapped in samsara, in suffering.

But there is an answer, and a way to liberate ourselves, and others, from the pain of suffering. Let go of regret. Let go of blame, and denial. Realise that everyone feels pain, and take some time to lessen, by however small a portion, the suffering of another. You may think your action will go unrewarded, or even unnoticed, but if we practise this enough, it will make a difference.

Think about it. You’ve had an argument with your best friend, and you’re hurt and upset. He said some nasty things, and it hurts. You deny that you started it, but you may also regret harsh words spoken in anger. You’re both suffering. You can both engage in regret, blame and denial, or you can extend forgiveness, bearing in mind that your friend is also suffering. So you say sorry first, and let go of the anger, the pain, and the regret. Your friend will hopefully recognise your compassion, and may be inspired to commit a similar selfless act to someone else in turn.

By letting go of your pain, you liberate yourself and others from suffering. Maybe not the first time. Maybe your altruism will go unrewarded, but stick with it – only you can make you happy, and the first step is to accept this awesome responsibility towards yourself.

By striving to live life in a spirit of responsibility towards yourself and others, your compassion will grow, and your regret and denial will become apparent for the waste of time and energy they are.

Just as no one else can be happy for you, no one else can be responsible for taking away your unhappiness, your regret, your suffering, your samsara.

About this Contributor: Margaret McGoverne is the founder of The Holistic Shop, a new experience in online shopping for gifts and products that promote a holistic approach to health, relaxation and spirituality.

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