Practice of Receiving Wisdom

“When the ordinary isn’t ordinary anymore and the crisis is upon us, the self can center in this refuge that I am calling “crisis contemplation,” a space that is neither the result of spiritual seeking nor the voluntary entry into meditative spaces.” — Dr. Barbara Holmes, author of Crisis Contemplation

Dr. Holmes is spiritual teacher, activist, scholar, and President Emerita of United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities. She has written Joy Unspeakable: Contemplative Practices of the Black Church and other books. In this video, she talks about receiving wisdom from the ancestors, the community, and the Spirit.

Practice of Contemplative Prayer

Fr. Richard Rohr is a Franciscan friar and ecumenical leader, who bears witness to the deep wisdom of Christian mysticism and traditions of action and contemplation. He is the founder of the Center for Action and Contemplation (CAC) and academic Dean of the Living School in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He is the author of numerous books, including The Universal Christ, The Wisdom Pattern, and Yes, and….Daily Meditations. He offers Daily Meditations and has taught many the wisdom of contemplative prayer. He says prayer is not making announcement to God but in constant communion with God. Contemplation is the rewiring of our mind to seek higher truth.

Practice of Mindfulness

Mindfulness is “the awareness that arises through paying attention in the present moment, on purpose, nonjudgmentally.” — Jon Kabat-Zinn

“Building awareness through mindfulness helps you ‘pop the hood’ on what is going on in your old brain. You can learn to recognize your habit loops while they’re happening, rather than ‘waking up’ at the end of them when you’ve almost crashed the car.” — Dr. Judson Brewer, addiction psychiatrist and neuroscientist at Brown University’s Mindfulness Center

It is good to hear a neuroscientist talks about mindfulness! Judson Brewer’s TED Talk has been viewed more than 10 million times. He says mindfulness can break a bad habit! Learn more about the mechanism of habit development and discover a simple but profound tactic that might help you beat your next urge to smoke, snack or check a text while driving.

Practice of Inner Transformation

Thich Nhat Hanh, Vietnamese Zen Buddhist Master, has taught mindfulness and meditation throughout the world. He was nominated for the Nobel Prize by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr for his work for peace during the Vietnam War. Born in central Vietnam in 1926, he helped to found the “engaged Buddhism” movement.

“Mindfulness is the energy of being aware and awake to the present moment. It is the continuous practice of touching life deeply in every moment of daily life. To be mindful is to be truly alive, present and at one with those around you and with what you are doing.” —Thich Nhat Hanh

Practice of Healthy Eating

Dr. Michael Pollan is Knight’s Professor of Science and Environmental Journalism at University of California, Berkeley. His book The Omnivore’s Dilemma changed our way of looking at where our food comes from. He has a simple rule for healthy eating in 7 words: “eat food, not too much, mostly plants.” You can find helpful guidelines here.

Introducing the China Study on Nutrition and Health

In 2008 I bought the first edition of The China Study because I have not heard about this most comprehensive study of nutrition ever conducted! Dr. T. Colin Campbell from Cornell University with researchers in China and England conducted a large-scale research on nutrition and health in China. The book has been updated and expanded and I have read both versions and learned so much about the implications for diet and long-term health. Dr. Campbell summarizes his research in this video. I notice that Americans consume much more sugar than the Chinese in their diets. You may also want to watch this video: “Sugar: the Bitter Truth” which has been viewed 15 million times!

The Practice of Sleep

Why do we need sufficient sleep? Matthew Walker, neuroscientist at University of California at Berkeley, has written the book Why We Sleep. Here he offers tips to improve our sleep and talks about what happens when we don’t get enough sleep.