The Pleasures and Perils of Competitive Spirit: Doing all the Right Things for all the Wrong Reasons

Competition is negative when we wish to defeat others, to bring them down in order to lift ourselves up. ~ Dalai Lama For as long as I remember, I’ve been troubled by competition.  Even as a small child, I felt bad when someone lost, because I believed that it made him/her feel bad.  I also felt guilt for winning.  Yet, even while I have and do experience these conflicted feelings, I did grow up in a culture that places a high priority on competition, individuality, and winning.  And ultimately, at the bottom of things, I am a competitive person.  This … Continue reading

Stealing from Yourself

During class this morning, Erik, the instructor, focused our attention on the yama of Asteya.  Asteya is the principle of non-stealing.  Now, there are obvious implications to this form of self-restraint.  We should not steal others’ belongings; we should not steal others’ ideas; we should not take more than we need.  But, my thoughts went to the less obvious forms of stealing that we engage in and should avoid.  We should not steal attention or admiration due to jealousy.  We should not steal the self-esteem of others by belittling or degrading them.  We should not steal the good name of … Continue reading

You are Awareness

In my yoga class today, the wonderful Micki quoted from Ramana Maharishi to start and end the class.  I found the quote very moving and have been contemplating it (between some stressful work tasks) today.  So, I thought I would share… You are awareness. Awareness is another name for you. Since you are awareness there is no need to attain or cultivate it. All that you have to do is to give up being aware of other things, that is of the not-Self. If one gives up being aware of them then pure awareness alone remains, and that is the … Continue reading