Just Being…No, Really…Just Be


Don’t just do something, sit there!

I mean really, really sit there. No thinking, no judging.  No naming, categorizing.  Just be. Feel the wind, but don’t say “that is the wind.”  Don’t wonder if it is a sea breeze or a land breeze.  Don’t measure…gail, breeze, 10 knots, 4 mph…just feel it.

Feel the warmth of the sun.  No judging….it’s too hot.  Hotter than yesterday (comparing).  I wish it wasn’t so hot. I wish my son could be here with me in the sun.  I wish I had spent more time outdoors with my wife.  I wonder if my daughter gets outside. Don’t do that! Just–feel–the–sun.

Sense your breath. Don’t name it. Feel. Lungs filling with refreshing air.  Expelling CO2. Refreshed.  New Oxygen, refreshed. Wonderful breath. Two working lungs above the Earth’s surface. Someday those lungs will be nothing but carbon below the surface…good to know…now back to just breathing…so content.

CN Tower, Toronto

CN Tower, Toronto



Beautiful Doubt


“Either there is a fatal necessity and invincible order, or a kind Providence, or a confusion without a purpose and without a director. If then there is an invincible necessity, why dost thou resist? But if there is a Providence which allows itself to be propitiated, make thyself worthy of the help of the divinity. But if there is a confusion without governor, be content that in such a tempest thou hast in thyself a certain ruling intelligence. And even if the tempest carry thee away, let it carry away the poor flesh, the poor breath, everything else; for the intelligence at least it will not carry away.” Marcus’ Meditations Final Book.

So many of us want a sure bet, a final answer, a dead ringer for the truth. Continue reading

Happiness is Not Being Surprised


“How ridiculous and what a stranger he is who is surprised at anything which happens in life.” Marcus Aurelius Meditations Book 12

I think once you fully accept the concept of never being surprised by anything in life, the happier you’ll be.  No matter how ridiculous or egregious, it’s probably happened before and it will happen again.  This ranges from all kinds rudeness, violence, abuse, lying, etc.  Also included are personal tragedies, loss, failures.

Chances are, she'll lose the ring at some point.  Hope she isn't surprised.

Chances are, she’ll lose the ring at some point. Hope she isn’t surprised.

Certainly there are things that could pleasantly surprise us as well, but again, these events are part of the rise and fall of life.

Never be surprised.

Not a Guru


Well, duh (see title). I wish I had it all wired. As I read through Marcus Aurelius’ Meditations or Epictetus’ Enchiridion, there’s a tendency for me to think that these guys had it down; like they really had their shit together. Then, I wonder, had they really reached a destination? Were they Stoically enlightened? Did each claim to be Buddha? Were they actually sages? I prefer to think of them as thinkers, writing to help themselves wrestle life…kind of like me.

I write not because Continue reading