The Meaning Of Time

Paul Kalanithi savors moments with his daughter, Cady.

Paul Kalanithi with his daughter Cady.

The clock unrelentingly tells us the time. But what does it really mean? Time can have different meanings based on our situation. A neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi explains:

In residency, there’s a saying: The days are long, but the years are short. In neurosurgical training, the day usually began a little before 6 a.m., and lasted until the operating was done, which depended, in part, on how quick you were in the OR.

A resident’s surgical skill is judged by his technique and his speed. You can’t be sloppy and you can’t be slow. From your first wound closure onward, spend too much time being precise and the scrub tech will announce, “Looks like we’ve got a plastic surgeon on our hands!” Or say: “I get your strategy — by the time you finish sewing the top half of the wound, the bottom will have healed on its own. Half the work — smart!” A chief resident will advise a junior: “Learn to be fast now — you can learn to be good later.” Everyone’s eyes are always on the clock. For the patient’s sake: How long has the patient been under anesthesia? During long procedures, nerves can get damaged; muscles can break down, even causing kidney failure. For everyone else’s sake: What time are we getting out of here tonight?

There are two strategies to cutting the time short, like the tortoise and the hare. The hare moves as fast as possible, hands a blur, instruments clattering, falling to the floor; the skin slips open like a curtain, the skull flap is on the tray before the bone dust settles. But the opening might need to be expanded a centimeter here or there because it’s not optimally placed. The tortoise proceeds deliberately, with no wasted movements, measuring twice, cutting once. No step of the operation needs revisiting; everything proceeds in orderly fashion. If the hare makes too many minor missteps and has to keep adjusting, the tortoise wins. If the tortoise spends too much time planning each step, the hare wins.
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I Write Poems To Figure Things Out!

It is rare for a talk filled with poetry to get millions of hits. It is rarer still for any talk to get two standing ovations. But Sarah Kay achieves this in an outstanding talk filled with outstanding spoken word poetry.

In this talk Sarah charts her journey into spoken word poetry and explains to us the power of the medium. We understand how spoken word poetry can help connect by witnessing her incredible performance. Are you ready to take on this awesome medium called spoken word poetry?

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The Light Of God Surrounds Us

The Light Of God

The light of God surrounds us;
The love of God enfolds us;
The power of God protects us;
The presence of God watches over us.
Wherever we are, God is.
And all is well.

Credit: Unity Church – closing prayer for protection

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Three Awesome Yoga Insights

Yoga Insights

Yoga can be puzzling. Even for seasoned practitioners its impact seem mysterious. These three insights will help:

1. Yoga can be everywhere – Laughter yoga? Nature yoga? What’s with this phenomenon of associating “yoga” with common everyday things? The answer lies in understanding that at the root of yoga there is a process. This is the process of reducing or sidestepping the ego. So everything can be done either in a yogic way or a non-yogic way. If your laughter is meant to hurt somebody then it is merely an instrument of your ego. This is non-yogic laughter. But if on the other hand your laughter is a pure expression of joy then it side steps the ego and it is yoga. We can say that it is “laughter yoga”.

So here is this insight in a nutshell: If an activity does not hurt anybody and the ego is sidestepped or reduced then the activity can be considered as Yoga.

So you can walk in a park or a forest and call it “nature yoga”. You can spend time knitting and call it “knitting yoga”. On the same lines you can have “cooking yoga”, “driving yoga”, “work yoga”, “hobby yoga”, and so on.

2. It all adds up – Here is the good news: nothing goes waste when it comes to yoga. It is as if somebody who is lost in the dark finds her way. Now every step is a step in the right direction, no matter how small the step is. Yoga creates an upward spiral where every activity that is Yoga helps us do other activities in a more yogic way. Instead of a push towards yoga, we now find that there is a pull. Yoga becomes more natural to who we are.

3. You can start anywhere – Rather than being boxed in, wondering where to start, you can just jump in from wherever you are at this moment. The right moment for yoga is now! You do not have to wait to be kind, to be generous, or to wish everybody well. Every small act adds up. Soon the journey accelerates and what was formerly forced and deliberate becomes natural. The yoga of postures is also a great starting spot. And if we allow its effects to spread into the rest of our life, we then find that most of our activities can be done in a yogic way. And this in turn flows back into the yoga on the mat and makes it easier and calmer. We enter into a positive feedback loop that lifts our life and transforms it. Our life is soon filled with light and love.

Why wait? With these insights in hand let us straight jump in and start practicing yoga in everything we do!

How Does Yoga Work?
Eight Ways To Make The Most Of Your Yoga Practice
Six Things Not Yoga
Six Surprising Facts About Your Ego

Credits: This has been written by Raj Shah and edited by Ketna Shah.

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Early Adversity Is Dangerous For Our Health!

Doctor Nadine Burke has stumbled on something startling. She has found that early childhood adversity can translate into health outcomes that can shorten our life. What is more important is that this is something that can be measured and interventions can be designed that can beat the problem. We can look to a future where holistic treatment that includes meditation, breathing exercises, and yoga is prescribed for both parent and child in case where a child is facing an adverse environment at home. But first we must look the problem in the eye and not run away from it.

Finding your ACE score
The ACE study findings
The Adverse Childhood Experience study web site
ACE Pyramid Image

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