Monday, March 19, 2018

weekly theme :: INNER TRUTH

inner truth

Author: Sifu Matthew Carver

There are two many good quotes about truth to share in a timely fashion. 

My two favorites are:

There are three sides to every story: yours, mine and the truth.
– Robert Evans, filmmaker

Three things shine before the world and cannot be hidden.
They are the moon, the sun, and the truth.
– usually attributed to the Buddha in a paraphrased version

The sort of “truth” we will be exploring this week will pertain to inner truth. 

The truth about who you are and how you shape your reality based on this inner truth. The Greek word for “truth” is aletheia. This word means literally to “un-hide” or “hiding nothing.” It conveys the thought that truth is always there, always open and available for all to see, with nothing being hidden or obscured.

In Chinese philosophy “Chung Fu” or Inner Truth has three distinct images or ideas associated with it:


One is the wind blowing over the lake stirring the surface. 

When the wind disrupts the surface of the water, we see ripples. These ripples are a physical manifestation of the wind’s effect on the water. This unsettled water expresses the visible effects of the invisible. Inner truth is like the wind in this example. What we feel to be our truth will manifest itself in the “agreed upon” real world.

The second image is of a baby bird being held down by its mother’s foot. 

This expresses the idea of brooding. Brooding in this sense means how a mother bird cares over her young. Some mama birds over-brood their babies and the hatchling grows too large for the nest and falls out before learning to fly. Under-brood and you miss the hints and clues. Correct brooding means actively listening to what another person is expressing. Paying close attention to something or someone is how one broods. The baby chick will give the signals, the mother only need to have the desire to be aware. In order to care for the flightless hatchling, the mother listens closely and reads the signs honestly.

The third idea is listening to others. 

The last image offers clear instructions on how to practice Inner truth. Receiving what others say and do with an open heart. Attacking people with YOUR preconceived plans and opinions is never the path to inner truth. Only paying close attention to the stirrings of others can you find open-heartedness. An open heart allows inner truth to penetrate just like an egg is warmed by the light and heat and “quickened” into a living thing. That empty space in the egg is key. Inner truth is also an empty space in you that is filled by showing interest and compassion in others. The source of a person’s strength lies not in her self but in her relation of that self to other people.

Remember the three sides to every story quote? 

“There are three sides to every story: your side, my side, and the truth.” Well there is more to that quote that always gets left out for some reason.

“And no one is lying. Memories shared serve each differently.”

Life leads the thoughtful man on a path of many windings.

Now the course is checked, now it runs straight again.

Here winged thoughts may pour freely forth in words,

There the heavy burden of knowledge must be shut away in silence.

But when two people are at one in their inmost hearts,

They shatter even the strength of iron or of bronze.

And when two people understand each other in their inmost hearts,

Their words are sweet and strong, like the fragrance of orchids.
- Ta Chuan

Call or contact Zen Recovery Path. Our community welcomes a fresh start. Recovery will be inspired with Clinical and Holistic Therapies such as; Art Projects, Kung Fu Classes, Tai Chi, Music group, EMDR and Movie with Meaning therapies.

126 E. 16th St., Costa Mesa, CA 92627

(800) 759-1930

Monday, March 12, 2018

weekly theme :: Anti Self-Improvement / Self-Improvement

Self-Improvement

Are you searching for what you already have?

Self-Improvement seems like a good idea, at first blush. 

Who doesn’t want to improve? However, have we stopped to think about who or what this “self” is that desires improvement?

This self you call you. 

Are you the sum total of remembered events? Are you a narrative story in which you are the star? Are you the voices in your head? This week I really want us to look closer at what we mean by Self-Improvement. How can we improve upon a self that is really just a construct of our left brain. Look it up. The left brain is notorious for cooking up all kinds of stories about who we are and what we should be. Scientists have referred to the left brain as the Interpreter. Tests have concluded that it is the left brain’s function to create order, meaning and a linear storyline of who we are. What we forgot to mention to everyone is that YOU are not your left brain. In fact, you are not even the voices in your head at all. Ancient mystics and now modern science agree, the essential YOU is the space or venue in which these thoughts and ideas come to play. Look up studies by Dr. Michael Gazzaniga regarding the left brain. Explore the writings of Eckhart Tolle, Ram Dass and Alan Watts. The idea of self is a fascinating topic that we only rarely scratch beyond the surface.

Self-improvement is ungraspable until you let go

What we want to show our students is that self-improvement is ungraspable until you let go. Stopping addictions are impossible to do by trying not to do something: do not drink, do not overeat, do not smoke, do not seek out dysfunctional relationships. There is no quicker way to do something than to promise yourself you will never do it again. It is only by letting go of the obsession that we find freedom.

That which we grasp at, eludes us.

Ironically, that which eludes us will curl up by our feet and surrender if only we would stop chasing our own tails. Instead of self-improvement, seek stillness and silence. Self-improvement is a byproduct of doing that which you enjoy. It happens spontaneously. It never happens by design or because you try desperately to make it so. Go try to fall in love or try to find contentment. Go searching for peace of mind. None will be found because you cannot find what you always had from the start.

Call or contact Zen Recovery Path. Our community welcomes a fresh start. Recovery will be inspired with Clinical and Holistic Therapies such as; Art Projects, Kung Fu Classes, Tai Chi, Music group, EMDR and Movie with Meaning therapies.
126 E. 16th St., Costa Mesa, CA 92627

(800) 759-1930