A while ago I sat on the back porch and witnessed an amazing sunset. The trees framed vibrant colors in a select location, almost as if it were done on purpose just as a special gift to me. I could sense the difference of coming from the place of being a part of everything, intimately connected in every way, versus perceiving oneself as separate from everything and continually being acted upon by the environment. The former brings a sense of peace and joy while the latter brings a sense of pain and suffering. The difference is quite profound.
Many people have heard about the riddle of the Sphinx, a ferocious creature with the head of a human and the body of a lion. The riddle reads:
“What is the creature that walks on four legs in the morning, two legs at noon and three in the evening?”
According to legend, the Sphinx was the guardian of the temple and anyone who could not answer it would be killed and devoured by the monstrous beast. No one was able to answer it, until finally the hero Oedipus gave the answer, “Man.” As the legend has it, the answer caused the death of the Sphinx.
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In this book series I have described a path to total self-awareness. For me, it all started with reading inspirational literature, contemplative walking, introspective reflecting and journaling. In the first book of the series, Peace: The Art of Mindfulness to Eliminate Stress, I wrote about mindfulness and how we can program the mind to change our default progressively from constant mind chatter, to less inner dialog, to mindful chatter, to mostly silent with intentionally directed internal dialog.