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Monthly Archives

December 2012

It IS a Wonderful Life, Indeed!

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Here is wishing everyone a wonderful and blessed holiday season. We look forward to rejoining you next year!
Stress Tip for the Day:
Make it a wonderful life! Be grateful. Count your blessings… Take nothing for granted.
Please keep those who are less fortunate than you… and please keep all those in Newtown, CT in your prayers as well.

Photo For the Day: 
A still photo from one of my favorite movies, It’s  a Wonderful Life. Enjoy!
Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 12 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart and Managing Stress (7e) and the newly released, A Beautiful World: The Earth Song Journals. He can be reached through his website: www.brianlukeseaward.net
© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.

Eco-Therapy: The Healing Power of Nature

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Scientists are warning of a second environmental disaster on the horizon (the first being global warming). A general sense of apathy and ignorance combined with our love affair with technology has created a huge disconnect with the natural world with a great many people, much to our detriment. This disconnect includes several aspects including not knowing where your food comes from to low levels of vitamin D (from exposure to sunshine). In Richard Louve’s best selling book, Last Child in the Woods, where he coins the term, Nature Deficit Disorder, one child is quoted as saying, “Why would I want to go outside? There are no electrical outlets out there.” Not long ago (before video games and smart phones) kids were told by their parents to go outside and play. Today, a whole generation, perhaps two, has no idea what this means. Simply stated: we have taken nature for granted, and this is the first step in losing this precious relationship. Moreover, it compromises our health of mind, body and spirit. Scientists are now discovering the importance of our bond with nature, from brain chemistry to the entrainment of earthly rhythms. While sages and wisdom keepers have always touted the benefits of the healing power of nature, a new term has entered the American Lexicon: Eco-therapy. As with all wisdom, it is important to go beyond the theory to the application (all puns intended).
Stress Tip for The Day:
Make a habit to get outside every day. Go for a morning or a noon day walk, regardless of the weather. Get to know nature through all the elements. Familiarize yourself with the phases of the moon, even the ocean tides if you live near the shore. Reacquaint yourself with your local wildlife. Study the rhythms and energies of the planet. Walk softly on the back of the planet. Mother Nature eagerly awaits your return home.
Links and Books of Note:
The December issue of Outside magazine has an excellent article about the healing power of nature. I highly recommend reading it. And If you haven’t read, Richard Louve’s book, Last Child in the Wilderness, I highly recommend this too. There is also this great documentary called Earth Songs… currently playing on PBS affiliates around the country.
Quotes of the Day:
We are part of the natural world, and it is part of us.” — Anonymous
Photograph of the Day
Today’s photo was taken on the north shore of Kauai during a beautiful sunset (no Photoshop was necessary to make it look this good).
Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 12 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart and Managing Stress (7e) and the newly released, A Beautiful World: The Earth Song Journals. He can be reached through his website: www.brianlukeseaward.net
© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.

The Ego and the Soul

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For generations, wisdom keepers the world over have explained that within us are two halves, two equal partners (think of the Taoist symbol); the ego and the soul. In a perfect world, the ego is the bodyguard for the soul; it is the ego that trips the switch for fight or flight to protect the soul. In a perfect world, the ego and soul work together to navigate one’s life journey. As we all know, this is not a perfect world. When the ego steps outside this role of bodyguard (the fall from grace), the dance becomes a body slam and a control drama ensues.  The expression “control dramas” is code for stress, and there is no shortage of stress with a big ego.  In the Eastern culture, there is an expression to promote this balance between the ego and the soul; domesticate the ego.
Stress Tip for The Day:
How does one regain a sense of balance between ego and soul? How does one domesticate the ego? The words surrender, detach, and release come to mind. While there are many ways, the time-tested method is meditation; where one learns to not only observe one’s thoughts, but observe oneself observing one’s thoughts. (If you have ever said, “a year from now this will be funny,” then you have attempted to domesticate your ego). Carl Jung also gave some great advice: learn to embrace the shadow (your dark side) and bring light to it. The expression, Walking in balance, speaks to the nature of ego/soul balance. Make an effort today to walk in balance.
Links and Books of Note:
There are many books on the topic of ego/soul balance, including Care of the Soul by Thomas Moore. There is also a great book called Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water.
Quotes of the Day:
“You don’t have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body.” — C. S. Lewis
“Everything that irritates us about others can lead to an understanding ourselves.” — Carl G. Jung
Photograph of the Day
Today’s photo is a picture of Dunguaire Castle in County Galway, Ireland. Tower Castles such as this were built as a means of protection (much like the ego). Enjoy!
Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 12 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart and Managing Stress (7e) and the newly released, A Beautiful World: The Earth Song Journals. He can be reached through his website: www.brianlukeseaward.net
© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.