Core Practice: Practice Mindfulness

Mindfulness is the process of watching what is passing through your mind and stopping the thoughts that are draining or unhealthy. Most things only need to be thought through once. The rest of the thinking, the mulling over and obsessing, is not only draining, it actually makes it harder to objectively see what is best. When you keep your mind quiet and don’t play your worries, schemes and dreams over and over again, you create space for inner knowledge to bubble up and be heard.

Mindfulness isn’t limited to stopping negative or repetitive thoughts, it also includes not holding conversations in your mind with people you know. A lot of people talk to other people in their minds, explaining their beliefs and defending their positions. Not only is this a waste of energy, again it prevents your mind from being still. When your mind is still you can more clearly see the pointers in the universe. The universe gives us all kinds of information, but you have to be still to see it. When your mind is going round and round defending your ego, you miss these pointers, not to mention the relaxation and brightness that comes from being still.

The good news is that after practicing mindfulness for a while it becomes automatic, so as negative or repetitive thoughts and inner conversations arise, you naturally stop them and redirect your mind to higher, calmer thoughts or no thoughts at all.

Excerpted from the book How to Be Happy NOW…Even if Things Aren’t Going Your Way available on Amazon.com and Amazon UKCAFR and DE or as an iPhone app. © 2013 Sara Weston. A FREE excerpt of the book is available here.

Download on the App Store

Interview with Mu—Author of “Advanced Path” Books

Hi All, I had the lovely opportunity to speak with Mu about her latest book in the “Advanced Path” series—Transcending the Advanced Path. These books are for seekers who are looking to move beyond intermediate practice into advanced practice. If this is something you are interested in doing, I highly encourage you to check out her books!

Sara: This is the third book in the “Advanced Path” series. Tell us a little bit about each book and how they’re different.

Mu: All three books are focused on moving beyond beginning or intermediate practice into advanced practice, where the intent to become spiritually liberated is constant and stronger than any other desire. This shift puts a stop to the endless techniques, strategies, and habits that prevent awakening.

The first book is a sweet collection of lyrical verses about the journey to initial awakening. Each poem is a touchstone for waking up. It emphasizes honesty, openness, and maturity on the spiritual path.

The second book, Walking the Advanced Path, goes deeper into what is required to become enlightened and how to do so with responsibility and grace. It is focused on spiritual sovereignty, avoiding common pitfalls, and describes the stages of awakening in detail.

The latest book, Transcending the Advanced Path, contains the most advanced teachings of all. It is a guide for awakening at the deepest and most subtle levels and a detailed exploration of the shift from realization to full enlightenment.

Sara: In the introduction of Transcending the Advanced Path, you mention that only rare spiritual beings will be drawn to your latest book. If the audience is so limited, why did you write it?

Mu: Only the most sincere beings will truly want enlightenment. Most people will say they want to wake up, but if they’re honest, they just want to feel a little better or be part of a spiritual community. We are now in a unique time where more people are becoming serious about liberation, and they are starting to have awakening experiences. Advanced teachings are usually shared privately from teacher to student and are not always available in written form, especially in a concise guide. I wrote Transcending the Advanced Path for those people who are starting to wake up and want to make sense of their experiences, and particularly for those who want to do the deep work of integrating their realizations into fully embodied enlightenment. It will have been worth writing if this book helps even one person.

Sara: The subtitle is “awakening beyond belief.” What does that mean?

Mu: Awakening beyond belief is to awaken beyond limitation and the mind’s ideas of what enlightenment is or should be. The beliefs we have affect our experiences, limit what we perceive, and create false boundaries for what’s possible. Enlightenment is a radical process that liberates us from the blueprints of this (or any) world. We have to get beyond the perceived structures of being and start operating on a totally different wavelength. To do that, we have to challenge every single thought, belief, story, or restriction that keeps us from Truth.

Awakening beyond belief is also a colloquialism for a profound realization that really can’t be described or understood. It’s pointing to the absolute joy and relief of finally letting go into the field of pure consciousness and the ecstasy of silence.

Sara: In the book, you mention that what worked before liberation will often not work after you wake up. Can you give an example?

Mu: Karma and free will are a great example of this. To wake up, we must go against the flow of our current karmas by using free will to choose to become enlightened. This is a radical act to go against the dream world that most people live in and decide to become free. But to become enlightened, all polarities must be resolved, including the duality of karma and free will. It’s quite a paradox! In the book, I describe how to resolve this duality and break free of personal karma. Ultimately, within enlightenment, there is no longer the concept of karma or free will, and freedom is surrendered to being in the flow of the dharma.

Sara: You talk about perception quite a bit and the journey to breaking the prism of perception. Nirvikalpa samadhi, the doorway to liberation, breaks this prism. But you describe that process as the evolution to full enlightenment.

Mu: First of all, I make the distinction between liberation, or initial awakening, and the integration of realization as fully embodied enlightenment. It’s my way of pointing to enlightenment as a journey that happens in stages and matures as it deepens and becomes more complete.

As you said, nirvikalpa samadhi is the doorway to liberation, and it creates a permanent break from the world of illusion. It shatters the prism of perception—during the experience of samadhi. But then we come out of samadhi, and the ego and our patterns immediately try to recreate themselves. It’s never the same. We never go back to how we were exactly. But becoming enlightened happens after countless hours in samadhi until we no longer go into or come out of it. There are years of being reconfigured energetically, shedding old patterns, and letting go at the most subtle levels. It is a process of expanding perception until we finally move beyond perception to a direct experience of Reality. When I talk about breaking the prism of perception, I’m talking about a permanent shattering of perception to exist as pure awareness, as unmodified Light.

Sara: You outline an approach for removing patterns that cause us to react on autopilot, but you also caution against trying to “fix” or “perfect” yourself. Where is the balance between these two approaches?

Mu: That’s a great question! Many people get trapped in a never-ending loop of trying to fix all of their perceived limitations and achieve some fictional version of perfection. This is often the work of ego and is a distraction from the intention to become enlightened. You do not have to “perfect” yourself to wake up!

In advanced practice, a tremendous amount of change comes from spending time in silence and Light. Spiritual energy is very powerful and will clear away many rough edges without any special effort on your part.

That said, any attitudes, beliefs, or behaviors that block the flow of Light must be addressed directly and quickly. For example, the first two books discuss the trap of spiritual mastery. This is a spiritual superiority complex based in the false belief that someone is better than everyone else because they are more evolved or knowledgeable. This type of arrogance will cause you to stagnate and prevent further spiritual evolution. It’s important to actively clear these types of patterns to return to a condition of openness and receptivity to Light.

Sara: Do you have any advice for someone who wants to become enlightened?

Mu: I’ve already mentioned this, but I really want to reinforce that becoming enlightened is a choice. It doesn’t happen by accident. Decide if you are really committed to awakening, and if you are, keep choosing Truth every moment of every day as your most important priority.

The “Advanced Path” books are available on Amazon (click on the images below). For more information on Mu and the books, visit advancedpathbook.com.

Small Happiness Tip & App Sale Tie-in

dsc_0101Keep on hand at all times great audio books, podcasts, music, books or magazines. It’s helpful to have something entertaining to do when you are waiting in line at the DMV or at the doctor’s office or when you’re caught in traffic or on the subway. There are so many draining situations that become the opposite when you have something interesting to occupy your mind. (Excerpted from the book How to Be Happy NOW…Even if Things Aren’t Going Your Way)

The How To Be Happy NOW app is a great aid for this tip. When you’re in some draining or boring situation, you can pull out your phone and read through the app. Each tip is imbued with light and will give you a refreshing burst of bright energy (for reals 🙂!), which is especially helpful in heavy environments.

Download on the App Store

Buy the print version of How to Be Happy NOW…Even if Things Aren’t Going Your Way on Amazon.com, Amazon UKCAFR or DE.

A FREE excerpt of the book is available here.

App Notifications as Oracle

One common method spiritual practitioners use to get insight into their life and practice is to use a spiritual book as an oracle. They’ll open a spiritual book at random and read what’s on the page, frequently finding information that provides insight into their current situation or state of mind.

Similarly, I’ve noticed that the How to Be Happy NOW app notifications (that are delivered to your iPhone/iPad home screen each morning) have the same ability to appear just when you need to hear a certain piece of information. While on many days the notifications will be interesting, on days when you really need to hear that particular info, the notification will have a slight jolt as you recognize that it is exactly what you needed to hear. How fun is that?!

Take advantage of this week’s app sale to get your own oracular notifications 🙂! The How to Be Happy NOW app is only 99¢ through this Friday!

On sale this week for 99¢!Download on the App Store

Buy the print version of How to Be Happy NOW…Even if Things Aren’t Going Your Way on Amazon.com, Amazon UKCAFR or DE.

A FREE excerpt of the book is available here.

Spring Equinox SALE – 99¢ App

5-5-inch-iphone-7-plus_screen__6To celebrate the spring equinox, the How to Be Happy NOW app is on sale this week for 99¢!

  • The app contains the full text of the book, and is reformatted for your iPhone or iPad. (The print edition retails for $12.99, so this is a great deal.)
  • Each tip or topic is on it’s own screen, so you can easily swipe through the screens, or use the Contents page to jump to different sections.
  • Receive daily or weekly notifications on your home screen to remind you of the book’s concepts. In our daily life where we are bombarded with so many noisy, crazy messages, it’s nice to receive a bright, quiet, sane missive.

On sale this week for 99¢!Download on the App Store

Buy the print version of How to Be Happy NOW…Even if Things Aren’t Going Your Way on Amazon.com, Amazon UKCAFR or DE.

A FREE excerpt of the book is available here.

NEW – the How to Be Happy NOW App!

5-5-inch-iphone-7-plus_screen__6 5-5-inch-iphone-7-plus_screen__7 5-5-inch-iphone-7-plus_screen__9

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m excited to announce the new How to Be Happy NOW app for iPhone/iPad!

The app contains the full text of the book PLUS:

  • Daily tips delivered to your home screen – they have the uncanny ability to arrive just when you need that info! (Tips can also be delivered weekly or turned off entirely.)

  • Beautiful photos and a bright transmission of happiness and light on each screen!

The introductory price is only $1.99 through the end of this month!

Download on the App Store

Reminder: Take a break from the news!

dsc_0032This post is relevant for us all, but is particularly aimed at those in the United States.

There is a spiritual principle that what you focus on, you become*.  In other words, your mind takes on the vibration of the things you focus on. Right now the news in the U.S. has a very strong undertone of anger. Even when the anchors, journalists, pundits, or experts aren’t seemingly angry, there are waves of anger coming from the news. So when you consume the news (in any format), you are taking on a lot of angry energy. Sensitive people need to take a break from this barrage of toxic energy or it will build up and make you feel angry (at best) or sick (at worst). I’m not advocating putting your head in the sand, but rather to give yourself a break now and then so you can maintain equilibrium.

* A fun post on the principle of what you focus on you become, can be found here.

© 2017 Sara Weston. Sara is the author of the book How to Be Happy NOW…Even if Things Aren’t Going Your Way, available on Amazon.com and Amazon UKCAFR and DEA FREE excerpt of the book is available here.