8 Ancient Beliefs

In a recent article in the Huffington Post, Alana Hall reported on 8 Ancient Beliefs Now Backed By Modern Science.

Arianna-thriveThese beliefs are embraced in Arianna Huffington’s new book, Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder, part of which is dedicated to scientific breakthroughs that often confirm the power of ancient psychology and contemplative practices. Many of thes 8 ancient beliefs can be found in articles in Meditation Practices.

Here they are:

  1. Helping others can make you healthier. We saw in Gabrielle Bernstein Awakens Your Authentic Power that ““When you are feeling helpless, help someone.” This is also supported by one of the 7 principles of Mindfulness in Healing: “When you are ready, give back to your community.” In addition to living with cancer for more than 17 years, Mindfulness in Healing has allowed me to help others in wonderfully rewarding ways.
  2. Acupuncture can restore balance to your body. This also fits into one of the principles of Mindfulness in Healing, which states, “Investigate alternatives and complementary healing methods to enhance your healing experience.” Acupuncture is one of these techniques that I’ve been using for the past 17+ years. I’ve mentioned the work of Dr. Martin Rossman, Dr. Sara Gordon, and Michael Broffman on many occasions. All three of them are American-born acupuncturists and experts in Oriental Medicine.
  3. We need the support of a community in order to thrive. Another of the principles of Mindfulness in Healing advises, “Gather your friends and family for support and find an appropriate support group,” which expresses the exact same idea. Also, the there are a large number of references to the Third Jewel – the sangha – within these pages. The sangha is the community of monks, nuns, lay men, and lay women who study, practice and observe the teachings of the Buddha.
  4. Tai chi can help alleviate a variety of health conditions. Tai chi and Qi Gong are often taught together as mindful movements and they each constitute another example of alternative healing. See, for example, Alternative Medicine Reinforces Modern Medicine.
  5. Meditation can help you reduce stress and discover inner peace. Meditation is the focus of almost every article in Meditation Practices, See, for example, Guided Meditations and Meditation Lessons.
  6. Compassion is the key to a meaningful life. Compassion is one of the major subjects addressed in many articles. You can find some good references in Let My Heart Fly Open, The Dalai Lama Speaks On Unbiased Compassion, and Compassion With Thich Nhat Hanh.
  7. Accepting what you can’t change is key to reducing suffering. One of the mantras I use in my daily practice is, “May I (you, they) experience love, joy, wonder, and wisdom in this life, just as it is.” This mantra teaches us to accept life just as it is in order to be truly happy in the present moment. You can read more about it in Change Your Thoughts – Change Your Life.
  8. All you need is love. Love is all you need. See many articles on loving kindness.

These ancient beliefs are not really beliefs in the eyes of the Buddha and Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh, my teacher for more than 30 years. They are practices that have been handed down through the years, first verbally, and then written down in the form of sutras. As you can see, all of these beliefs have been presented as mindfulness practices for over two years now.

Which of these “beliefs” are you willing to adapt to your daily meditation practice? Why? Please share.

Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder

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