In this thrilling talk Susan Cain, a self-declared introvert, describes her journey into accepting her introversion in the face of societies bias to look more favorably at extroverts. She talks about her love for books and her love for her grandfather who surrounded himself with books. She remembers him as a quiet and graceful presence surrounded by people who loved him and respected him though he was an introvert.
Susan has done many years of research on the phenomenon of introversion and has even written a book on the subject. She differentiates introversion from shyness. She considers shyness as the fear of social judgment, while introversion is merely being more comfortable with less stimulation. She does not think that there is a pure introvert or a pure extrovert. We all fall somewhere in the middle of the spectrum. The extroverts love to be in an over stimulated environment most of the time while the introverts like to tone down the stimulation and be within themselves. Most of us fall somewhere in-between so that there are times where we prefer stimulation and times where we prefer solitude.
What alarms Susan is our societies bias for extroverts and she thinks that this can be dangerous for us as it has the potential to stifle the creative process. While she does not deny the need for collaboration and social skills she feels that all of us must take the time to get away from groupthink by unplugging and spending time in solitude.
From the point of view of those who aspire to be on an yogic journey we must realize the importance of solitude. The price of deeper Self-discovery is solitude. We must learn to live with less and less stimulation as we progress on our yogic journey. The yogic journey is a journey into quietness, solitude, and introversion. Its time we recognized the power of introversion and introverts, and have the courage to speak softly.
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Health is not something that just pours out of our mind-body system over which we have no control. There is an element of choice involved in how our mind-body expresses health. Here are few things that you can do to invite health into your life:
The food we eat has an enormous impact on our health. Careless eating habits can even bring a robustly healthy mind-body system to its knees. Eating over-processed food that is loaded with chemicals, hormones, and sugar will overwhelm your system and force it to express its troubles to you as an illness. Do not mind being labeled as a “health nut” and put only healthy stuff in your mouth.
Sleep is essential for a healthy mind-body system. Cutting short on sleep can build up imbalance in our body that can grow into physical and mental ailments. Be sure to get 8 to 10 hours of good quality sleep every night, and give yourself the chance to catch up on deficiencies in sleep at least once a week.
3. Chronic Stress
Our mind-body is perfectly capable of handling stress. But when stress becomes unrelenting our mind-body has no time to recover. Illness is the result. Sleep and Yoga can help you get out of stress. You can also try meditation and breathing exercise to help reduce chronic stress in your life.
Having strong loving relationships is essential to our health and well being. It is possible to have thousands of Facebook Friends but at the same time have very few quality relationships. It’s not the number of relationships that matters but its quality.
The year 1910 was momentous for Swami Shriyukteshwar. While visiting the city of Kashi he ran into a young lad by the name of Mukunda. The meeting between the two was joyous, as if the two had known each other for ages. Mukunda immediately knew that his search for a guru had ended. He had found his master. Very soon it was decided that Mukunda would become Swami Shriyukteshwar’s disciple and would meet him next at Serampore. Mukunda was reluctant to leave Kashi at that point but Swami Shriyukteshwar was firm in his directive and Mukunda relented.
Within 10 short years Swami Shriyukteshwar whipped the impetuous boy Mukunda into shape. He became a realized master and an initiated monk who was given the name Swami Yogananda. In 1920 Swami Yogananda set out on a historic journey west when he set sail to attend a seminar of world religions in Boston.
In 1932 at the age of 77 Shri Yukteshwar met his youngest prominent disciple. This is how the disciple described the encounter: “Standing at the door of his room I slowly looked in, and what a sight I saw! In a lotus posture this mahayogi was seated in a clam and peaceful state. With unblinking wide-open eyes but not looking at any thing. It was a vacant gaze full of divinity. I could not fathom where he was merged. His deep gaze full of divinity greatly attracted me. I have not come across such a divine personality until then.” This meeting was to transform the life of the young textile engineer called Rabindranath and would set him on the course to become the enlightened guru and teacher later known as Paramahamsa Hariharananda.
What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare?—
No time to stand beneath the boughs,
And stare as long as sheep and cows:
No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass:
No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night:
No time to turn at Beauty’s glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance:
No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began?
A poor life this if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
- W. H. Davies
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Can you cry under water?
How important does a person have to be before they are considered assassinated instead of just murdered?
If money doesn’t grow on trees then why do banks have branches?
Why do you have to “put your two cents in”…but it’s only a “penny for your thoughts”? Where’s that extra penny going to?
Why does a round pizza come in a square box?
How is it that we put man on the moon before we figured out it would be a good idea to put wheels on luggage?
Why is it that people say they “slept like a baby” when babies wake up like every two hours?
If a deaf person has to go to court, is it still called a hearing?
If you drink Pepsi at work in the Coke factory, will they fire you?
Why are you IN a movie, but you are ON TV?
How come we choose from just two people for President and fifty for Miss America?
Why do doctors leave the room while you change? They’re going to see you naked anyway.
If a 911 operator has a heart attack, whom does he/she call?
Why do people pay to go up tall buildings and then put money in binoculars to look at things on the ground?
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