Alan Watts Reveals the Most Crucial Factor in Achieving Your Goals and Living the Life You Want

We all have big goals that we want achieve, however many of us are unsure about how to actually achieve them.
It’s not easy. Competition is always tough and sometimes it can feel like the world’s against you.
But if you want to make big strides in life then you need to somehow overcome these feelings of self-doubt and take action.
So to inspire you to take action now and give it your all, we’ve shared some words of wisdom from Alan Watts.
We’ve also provided 9 practical steps to achieving your goals, whatever they may be. Enjoy!

Alan Watts on why you need to stop aspiring and start doing

“Advice? I don’t have advice. Stop aspiring and start writing. If you’re writing, you’re a writer. Write like you’re a goddamn death row inmate and the governor is out of the country and there’s no chance for a pardon. Write like you’re clinging to the edge of a cliff, white knuckles, on your last breath, and you’ve got just one last thing to say, like you’re a bird flying over us and you can see everything, and please, for God’s sake, tell us something that will save us from ourselves. Take a deep breath and tell us your deepest, darkest secret, so we can wipe our brow and know that we’re not alone. Write like you have a message from the king. Or don’t. Who knows, maybe you’re one of the lucky ones who doesn’t have to.” – Alan Watts
1) Be specific with what you want to achieve
When people have “big goals” they tend to have something generic like “I want to open a Cafe and sell delicious cakes and coffee.” The problem? It’s not specific enough. Really hone down what you want actually want to achieve. What type of Cafe is it? What location? How big do you want it? How much is it? It’s time to really think about it and write down exactly what you want.
2) Draw up an action plan
Write down absolutely everything you need to achieve your goals, even small things. Take time with this because it’s important for the next step.
3) Make a list of steps
List every single step you need to take. Make sure each step is doable (don’t make one step that will take you 100 days to complete. You have to make it achievable within a day or two). This could be over 100 steps, but that’s okay. Once you have them down, you’ll be able to take action.
4) Act, do not be passive
Now you have steps in place, you need to take action. No excuses.

5) Alternative plans

If something doesn’t work, be flexible and change your steps. Some of the most succesful people achieve failures all the time. The difference? They learn from their mistakes and pivot.
6) Examine your goals periodically.
Your goals may change as you grow through life. That’s okay, just make sure you adjust your end goal so it really is what you want to achieve and it aligns with your values.
7) Repeat affirmations.
You need to believe in yourself. Self-doubt will only thwart you. Practice mindfulness and take a step back from self-limiting beliefs. Focus on your actions.
8) Visualize your goal.
Stay motivated and focused on what you want to achieve.
9) Take action
Don’t just affirm and visualize and do nothing. Take any action required to bring your goal into fruition. Follow your intuition, new ideas and opportunities that present themselves, and accept help from other people.

25 Alan Watts Quotes That Will Blow Your Mind Wide Open

Alan Watts was a British philosopher who spoke about Asian philosophies for a Western audience. He wrote over 25 books and was an excellent orator on topics such as the meaning of life, higher consciousness, the true nature of reality and the pursuit of happiness.
Below we look at some of his most potent quotes on various topics. At the bottom, I’ve also included one of my favorite YouTube videos of Alan Watts discussing “the real you”. Enjoy!

On Suffering

Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.
Your body does not eliminate poisons by knowing their names. To try to control fear or depression or boredom by calling them names is to resort to superstition of trust in curses and invocations. It is so easy to see why this does not work. Obviously, we try to know, name, and define fear in order to make it “objective,” that is, separate from “I.”

On the Mind

Muddy water is best cleared by leaving it alone. 

On the Present Moment

This is the real secret of life – to be completely engaged with what you are doing in the here and now. And instead of calling it work, realize it is play.
The art of living… is neither careless drifting on the one hand nor fearful clinging to the past on the other. It consists in being sensitive to each moment, in regarding it as utterly new and unique, in having the mind open and wholly receptive.
We are living in a culture entirely hypnotized by the illusion of time, in which the so-called present moment is felt as nothing but an infintesimal hairline between an all-powerfully causative past and an absorbingly important future. We have no present. Our consciousness is almost completely preoccupied with memory and expectation. We do not realize that there never was, is, nor will be any other experience than present experience. We are therefore out of touch with reality. We confuse the world as talked about, described, and measured with the world which actually is. We are sick with a fascination for the useful tools of names and numbers, of symbols, signs, conceptions and ideas.
No valid plans for the future can be made by those who have no capacity for living now.
I have realized that the past and future are real illusions, that they exist in the present, which is what there is and all there is.
“…tomorrow and plans for tomorrow can have no significance at all unless you are in full contact with the reality of the present, since it is in the present and only in the present that you live.”

On the Meaning of Life

The meaning of life is just to be alive. It is so plain and so obvious and so simple. And yet, everybody rushes around in a great panic as if it were necessary to achieve something beyond themselves.

On Faith

To have faith is to trust yourself to the water. When you swim you don’t grab hold of the water, because if you do you will sink and drown. Instead you relax, and float. 

Words of Wisdom for Aspiring Artists

Advice? I don’t have advice. Stop aspiring and start writing. If you’re writing, you’re a writer. Write like you’re a goddamn death row inmate and the governor is out of the country and there’s no chance for a pardon. Write like you’re clinging to the edge of a cliff, white knuckles, on your last breath, and you’ve got just one last thing to say, like you’re a bird flying over us and you can see everything, and please, for God’s sake, tell us something that will save us from ourselves. Take a deep breath and tell us your deepest, darkest secret, so we can wipe our brow and know that we’re not alone. Write like you have a message from the king. Or don’t. Who knows, maybe you’re one of the lucky ones who doesn’t have to.

On Change

The more a thing tends to be permanent, the more it tends to be lifeless.
The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.
You and I are all as much continuous with the physical universe as a wave is continuous with the ocean.
“No one is more dangerously insane than one who is sane all the time: he is like a steel bridge without flexibility, and the order of his life is rigid and brittle.”
“Without birth and death, and without the perpetual transmutation of all the forms of life, the world would be static, rhythm-less, undancing, mummified.”

On Love

Never pretend to a love which you do not actually feel, for love is not ours to command.

On You

What I am really saying is that you don’t need to do anything, because if you see yourself in the correct way, you are all as much extraordinary phenomenon of nature as trees, clouds, the patterns in running water, the flickering of fire, the arrangement of the stars, and the form of a galaxy. You are all just like that, and there is nothing wrong with you at all.
Trying to define yourself is like trying to bite your own teeth.
But I’ll tell you what hermits realize. If you go off into a far, far forest and get very quiet, you’ll come to understand that you’re connected with everything.

On Technology

Technology is destructive only in the hands of people who do not realize that they are one and the same process as the universe.

On the Universe

“We do not “come into” this world; we come out of it, as leaves from a tree.”
“Only words and conventions can isolate us from the entirely undefinable something which is everything.”

On Problems

“Problems that remain persistently insoluble should always be suspected as questions asked in the wrong way.
source and courtesy: thepowerofideas.ideapod


10 Things We All Need To Know About Our Blood Type!

Hello everyone, how are you today? We all know that a healthy lifestyle and a proper nutrition, loaded with lots of raw fruits and vegetables, is extremely important for us and our health in general! But, did you know that your blood type has an important role for your health and body as well? I think that we all know that there are four blood types: A, B, AB, O and our blood type forms while we are still in the womb, which means that you can’t change it in any way later in life. You should also know that many experts around the world claim that each blood type has unique characteristics which can affect weight loss, certain diseases, and even the personality. And yes, the most important thing – knowing the characteristics of a specific blood type can aid in planning the adequate nutrition which will improve your health.
BLOOD TYPE AND NUTRITION
Here’s what you need to know – a chemical reaction happens in our bodies (during the entire day) and the blood type can be crucial when it comes to digestion or weight loss. You can take this for example – it’s highly recommended that people with blood type O consume foods high in protein, such as: meat and fish! People with blood type A does not require meal consumption at all, because vegetables are more suitable for them. And, people with blood type B should avoid chicken and consume more red meat! And finally, people with blood type AB will benefit from sea foods and lean meat.
BLOOD TYPE AND DISEASES
Here’s what you need to know – well, mostly because of the different formation of antigens on the surface of red blood cells, every blood type is different. Moreover, this is why every blood group is resistant to one type of disease, while being susceptive to some other type. So, knowing the characteristics of blood types can aid in prevention of specific diseases.
BLOOD TYPE AND PERSONALITY
Can I ask you a simple question – did you know that your blood type can affect your personality? Well, of course and you can take this for example – people with blood type O are considered as extraverts, creative, social, and confident. While, people with blood type A are peaceful, artistically-minded, and trustworthy. People who are dedicated to their goals, strong, and are independent are usually people with blood type B. And finally, people with blood type AB are reliable, shy, responsible, and like to take care of others. What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!
BLOOD TYPE AND PREGNANCY
The medical experts also say that women with a specific blood type group have bigger chances of getting pregnant than other types. Moreover, women with AB blood type produce less follicle stimulating hormone which helps women to conceive more easily.
BLOOD TYPE AND STRESS SUSCEPTIBILITY
Yes, you will be amazed when we tell you that stress tolerance also depends on the blood type. How this works – well, the experts say that blood type A produces more Cortisol-stress hormone. If you have met someone who easily gets furious, it is probably a person with blood type O. Moreover, they have a higher level of adrenalin and need more time to recuperate from stressful situations.

BLOOD ANTIGENS
Did you know that blood antigens are not only present in the blood, but also in the digestive tract, from the mouth to the colon, and even in the nostrils and lungs?
BLOOD TYPE AND ABDOMEN
Yes, you got that right! Some people do not have to worry about their belly fat! Why – because their blood type will help them and this won’t be a problem for them. People with blood type A digest carbohydrates easily, so these people rarely have belly fat. On the other hand, due to more difficult digestion of carbohydrates, people with blood type O are more prone to belly fat.
BLOOD TYPE AND MARRIAGE
Here’s what you need to do – well, before you get married, make sure you check your partner’s blood type group! Why – because, when it comes to having children, some blood types should not get mixed. For example, people with A and B blood type should not mix. According to the RH factor, RH+ and RH- should not be mixed. Due to this reason, a lot of states require couples, who intend to get married, to do a blood test first.
BLOOD TYPE AND EXERCISE
As we said, people with blood type A are more prone to stress, which means that they have to do some relaxing and calming exercises! Yoga and meditation are highly recommended for these people. And, people with blood type B like challenges for their body and spirit, so they tend to perform activities for balance of these two such as tennis, mountain climbing, and martial arts.
BLOOD TYPE AND EMERGENCIES
Many experts around the world say that you should always carry some kind of information on you, such as: your name, surname, address, phone number, and blood type with you. In case of an accident, and you are in a hospital, most probably, you will need a blood transfusion. Considering the fact that blood can only be accepted from those blood types that are compatible with yours, information about your blood type can be crucial in such moments. We really hope you enjoyed this article and don’t forget to share it with you friends and family members. Thank You and take care!
source: Healthy Life Tricks via: superhv

Alan Watts Talks About Nothing is Everything YOU Need To Hear!


They say that the secret lies in the place you never think of looking for. They say that everything we always wanted hides behind our greatest fears, the treasures we seek are inside the cave we fear to enter. They say by becoming nothing you become everything.
They are pretty smart, don’t they… However, rare are the ones who truly understand what these pearls of wisdom really mean.
What are we most afraid of? Nothingness. But could it be, that in the midst of nothingness our greatest treasures can be found? 
source and courtesy: lifecoachcode

15 Profound Awakening Quotes From Alan Watts

In the middle of yoga class the other day, sweaty, exhausted, and holding a pose for what seemed an eternity, my teacher reminded me of the wisdom of Alan Watts with a single quote that would ultimately make me forget about the physical discomfort I was in, and allow me to fully connect to the beauty of the moment at hand.

“The more a thing tends to be permanent, the more it tends to be lifeless,” she said.
The recitation reminded me in that moment that what I was feeling was not permanent, and I was choosing to be there to be enlivened, not lifeless. I wanted to feel, to sweat, to dig deeper mentally and physically. And so I let it happen, and suddenly the moment was exactly what I wanted it to be.

Alan Wilson Watts was a British philosopher, writer, and speaker, best known for his interpretation and popularization of Asian philosophies for the Western minds. His more than 25 books and various articles spanned sensational subjects, including personal identity, higher consciousness, the true nature of reality, the meaning of life, and the pursuit of happiness without the desire for materialism.

Perhaps the most profound part of Watts was that he had the incredible ability of expressing complex thoughts in the simplest of ways.

Here is a glimpse into some of his most awakening quotes:

1. “Things are as they are. Looking out into the universe at night, we make no comparisons between right and wrong stars, nor between well and badly arranged constellations.”

2. “We do not ‘come into’ this world; we come out of it, as leaves from a tree.”

3. “No one is more dangerously insane than one who is sane all the time: he is like a steel bridge without flexibility, and the order of his life is rigid and brittle.”

4. “Without birth and death, and without the perpetual transmutation of all the forms of life, the world would be static, rhythm-less, undancing, mummified.”

5. “What we have forgotten is that thoughts and words are conventions, and that it is fatal to take conventions too seriously. A convention is a social convenience, as, for example, money … but it is absurd to take money too seriously, to confuse it with real wealth … In somewhat the same way, thoughts, ideas and words are ‘coins’ for real things.”

6. “The source of all light is in the eye.”

7. “Just as true humor is laughter at oneself, true humanity is knowledge of oneself.”

8. “Peace can be made only by those who are peaceful, and love can be shown only by those who love. No work of love will flourish out of guilt, fear, or hollowness of heart, just as no valid plans for the future can be made by those who have no capacity for living now.”

9. “This is the real secret of life – to be completely engaged with what you are doing in the here and now. And instead of calling it work, realize it is play.”

10. “The meaning of life is just to be alive. It is so plain and so obvious and so simple. And yet, everybody rushes around in a great panic as if it were necessary to achieve something beyond themselves.”

11. “What I am really saying is that you don’t need to do anything, because if you see yourself in the correct way, you are all as much extraordinary phenomenon of nature as trees, clouds, the patterns in running water, the flickering of fire, the arrangement of the stars, and the form of a galaxy. You are all just like that, and there is nothing wrong with you at all.”

12. “The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.”

13. “There will always be suffering. But we must not suffer over the suffering.”

14. “To put is still more plainly: the desire for security and the feeling of insecurity are the same thing. To hold your breath is to lose your breath. A society based on the quest for security is nothing but a breath-retention contest in which everyone is as taut as a drum and as purple as a beet.”

15. “Faith is a state of openness or trust. To have faith is to trust yourself to the water. When you swim you don’t grab hold of the water, because if you do you will sink and drown. Instead you relax, and float. And the attitude of faith is the very opposite of clinging to belief, of holding on. In other words, a person who is fanatic in matters of religion, and clings to certain ideas about the nature of God and the universe, becomes a person who has no faith at all. Instead they are holding tight. But the attitude of faith is to let go, and become open to truth, whatever it might turn out to be.

source and courtesy:collective-evolution

Dalai Lama Shares Hard Hitting Words About War & Mass Brainwashing

In the wake of the brutal London terror attack that left 4 dead and 40 injured, a moment of introspection on the nature of war and violence is due.
Luckily, the Dalai Lama has written extensively on this subject, including the relationship between mass-brainwashing and war.
In one piece titled “The Reality of War,” the renown Buddhist monk elaborates on this deadly phenomenon:
Of course, war and the large military establishments are the greatest sources of violence in the world. Whether their purpose is defensive or offensive, these vast powerful organizations exist solely to kill human beings. We should think carefully about the reality of war.
Most of us have been conditioned to regard military combat as exciting and glamorous – an opportunity for men to prove their competence and courage. Since armies are legal, we feel that war is acceptable; in general, nobody feels that war is criminal or that accepting it is criminal attitude.
In fact, we have been brainwashed. War is neither glamorous nor attractive. It is monstrous. Its very nature is one of tragedy and suffering.
Our misguided cultural perceptions of war help us justify, in our minds, the brutality of this ancient practice.
As the Dalai Lama points out, military combat is often portrayed as glamorous, helping young men justify self-sacrificial acts like terrorism.
Just as Islamic propaganda can convince a terrorist to end his life, governmental propaganda can be used to enlist tens of thousands youths to fight foreign wars on false premises.
No greater example of this exists than the war in Iraq that was started on a lie and ended with thousands of dead American soldiers and over a million Iraqi civilian fatalities.
The Dalai Lama continues:
Modern warfare waged primarily with different forms of fire, but we are so conditioned to see it as thrilling that we talk about this or that marvelous weapon as a remarkable piece of technology without remembering that, if it is actually used, it will burn living people. War also strongly resembles a fire in the way it spreads.
If one area gets weak, the commanding officer sends in reinforcements. This is throwing live people onto a fire. But because we have been brainwashed to think this way, we do not consider the suffering of individual soldiers. No soldiers want to be wounded or die.
None of his loved ones wants any harm to come to him. If one soldier is killed, or maimed for life, at least another five or ten people – his relatives and friends – suffer as well. We should all be horrified by the extent of this tragedy, but we are too confused.
He uses the term “brainwash”, which is an important distinction: it requires a fundamental misdirection of our own mental capacities to overlook the obvious brutality of war.
Indeed, it is this brainwashing that grants dictators the power to organize and use soldiers in the first place:
No matter how malevolent or evil are the many murderous dictators who can currently oppress their nations and cause international problems, it is obvious that they cannot harm others or destroy countless human lives if they don’t have a military organisation accepted and condoned by society.
Those who command armies often do so with the consent of the governed. At what point does following orders take a back seat to following one’s own moral compass?
The value of human life is often taken for granted, but as the Dalai Lama points out:
We should feel fed up with the violence and killing going on around us. If a human being is killed by an animal, it’s sad, but if a human being is killed by another human being it’s unthinkable.
We have to make a special effort to think of each other as fellow human beings, as our brothers and sisters.

10 Profound Quotes From a Zen Buddhist Master on the Secret of Reaching Enlightenment

Do you also find that Zen Buddhist thought holds some fascinating insights that are relevant to the modern age?
You don’t need to be a practicing Buddhist to benefit from many of these insights.
One Zen Buddhist master we’ve written about many times is Thich Nhat Hanh. He is a Vietnamese Buddhist monk and peace activist who lived his life in exile in France before recently being given permission to visit Vietnam again.
Thich Nhat Hanh shares his wisdom with special clarity and poetic flair.
In this article we’ve put together ten of his most profound quotes, ending with what Thich Nhat Hanh says is the secret to Buddhism.

Dwell in the present moment

The step to achieving enlightenment is to calm yourself, connect with your breath and dwell in the present moment with the knowledge that this is all there is.

In this moment, every action is one of reverence

We always have a choice with how we act in the present moment. We can let go and lose ourselves in our imagination, or connect with everything happening around us.
This article is aligned with the perspective of Thich Nhat Hanh on embracing the here and now: 

Find the magic in the present moment

Go for a walk and connect with nature, with the wind and trees and the ocean. If you’re in a city, admire the bustling people all around you. Notice the smells. Feel the energy of the city.
On Ideapod, we have a shaman sharing ideas and who advocates living mindfully in the moment. His name is Ruda Iande and you can connect with him by responding to his ideas.

When someone makes you suffer, offer compassion

This is a profound perspective about finding the other inside yourself. We are all just an extension of the big bang originally, coming from the same atom that split and started expanding. When you let go of prevailing ideas about time and space, you can feel the connection between everyone and everything.
In this way, the suffering of someone else deserves your compassion rather than frustration.

Don’t let your suffering stop you from being happy

If the suffering inside you is strong, this is an opportunity to embrace your suffering in order to find your happiness. Here’s an article with more on this perspective: A Zen Master Reveals How Embracing Pain Opens the Door to Joy

Freedom is the condition for happiness

This is a profound maxim for letting go. This is what provides the space for us to feel freedom. When we cling onto anger, anxiety or possessions then there’s no space for freedom to emerge.
Here’s a great article on on destroying the ego, helping you to achieve freedom: A Spiritual Master Reveals How to Destroy Your Ego in Three Simple Steps

Keep your body happy to express gratitude to the cosmos

This is a profound idea reminding you of the importance of looking after yourself. If you’re connected to the whole cosmos, then it makes sense that the part you can control should be as healthy as you’re able to make it.
There’s a wonderful Ideapod community member who shares many ideas on living a healthy live: Dr. Rhea.

The source of love is within you

We’ve written a lot about love lately here at The Power of Ideas. The key insight we’ve continually come across is that love begins from loving oneself. When you truly love yourself, then that love can be shared freely with others.
See this article where Osho shares this idea very eloquently: Incredibly Rare Video Footage Of Buddhist Master Revealing the Secret of Love. Also see the many ideas on Ideapod about love.

hink for yourself

This is a beautiful perspective about how we often think from comparison rather than first principles. Rather than always reacting all of the time, it’s better to search within for the truth that makes sense to you.
Elon Musk thinks from first principles, and you can watch a video of him talking about it here (it’s towards the end of the video): How Elon Musk Learns Faster and Better Than Everyone Else

The secret is to remove all ideas and concepts

Finally we’ve arrived at a key insight from Thich Nhat Hanh. The secret of Buddhism is to let go of all of your ideas and concepts in order for the truth to emerge and reveal itself.
What does this mean about the nature of truth? Where do ideas come from? When we clear our minds, why does inspiration usually strike?
Thanks for sticking with us through this brief guide to the thought of Thich Nhat Hanh. If you still have questions and want explore the nature of ideas and where they come from, join us at Ideapod, a social network for idea sharing.

5 Ways to Create Positive Karma in Your Life!

“What goes around, comes around.” If you believe in karma, you believe that giving out good energy will bring it back to you full circle, and the same goes for negative energy. The way you treat others has a huge impact on the way you will be treated, and the attitude you keep can determine the situations that may arise in your future.

Here are five important ways to create good karma, and circulate positive energy in the world around you.

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1. Be Honest

Telling even the smallest of lies can get you caught up in a cycle of lying. A lie that seems harmless can lead to more lies, which can easily get out of control. Lying can become extremely harmful to your relationships. Once your friends or family members find out that you haven’t been telling the truth, it will be hard for them to trust you. Being honest and open will allow you to attract trustworthy people into your life. You’ll also feel better knowing that you’re living an authentic life, and being true to yourself.

2. Find Your Purpose

Don’t be afraid to try new things. Even if you fail, you are one step closer to finding what you are truly passionate about. Whatever path you decide to take, put your whole heart into it and work hard to reach your goals. Putting forth your best effort and staying true to who you are and what you want will put out a genuine energy that will allow you to meet others with the same passion.

3. Help Others

Being kind to others always creates good Karma, because they will be more likely to help you in your time of need. Use your unique talents and personality traits to help others when they need it most. They will appreciate your help, and you’ll make a lasting positive impact on their lives — something that should never be taken for granted. When you reach out and help others, you are also helping yourself find purpose.
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4. Practice Compassion

You never know what someone else is going through. Looks can be deceiving, so never judge someone else based on the way things appear to be. Whether it’s a rude coworker or a complete stranger in need of some kindness, don’t forget that what you give is what will come back to you. Try to empathize with the struggles of others and spread kindness and compassion wherever you can.

5. Meditate

Remember that spreading positivity requires a positive mindset. The world can often seem crazy, chaotic and uncontrollable, but it’s up to you to stay calm. When you let stress overcome you, you are more prone to bad karma, because you are blocking your mind and in your heart from good energy. If you are feeling frazzled, meditation can be a way to help you relax. Think positive thoughts, reflect on the good things in life and clear your mind of negativity in order to reflect your best self and circulate good karma.
source : powerofpositivity via: davidwolfe

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