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Monday, November 29, 2010

Like a Merchant Buying Gold

The Buddha emphasized the importance of this path of reasoning, this intelligent examination of what is being taught. He told his students that their level of faith in his teachings and in him should be a product of their own critical analysis of his words. He said that if they analyzed and found his teachings beneficial, they should practice them, and if not, they should leave them aside. In this way, people who listened to his teachings should be like a merchant buying gold: Gold merchants do not merely accept the seller’s praise of his goods; rather, they use a variety of methods to examine the quality of the merchandise before they make their purchase decision. Similarly, the Buddha said, Do not accept my teachings out of faith in me, but rather out of your own confidence in my words—confidence that you have reached as a result of your own intelligent analysis.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Some specifics on Brain Injury

Meeting - Nov. 20, 2010 - Brainstormers II

It's a wonder we can walk and talk at all; it's a miracle we are here now!  Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Edited Page for Voc. Rehab tomorrow, 11/03/2010

  Gold Mind MeditationProject
 (Benefits for fellow head injury survivors)

Head-injury is an invisible disability, not easily seen like wheelchair or crutches, however
Still a disability.  There can be an array of physical, cognitive and emotional effects.  This project exists to offer the possibility of transforming disability into being healthy, present and awake to a bright and abiding wellness – in spite of your injury.  You can learn and establish a self-generating long-term practice, cultivating your mind's inherent strengths, with way more smiles and satisfaction.  Really! 

Let me share my experience.  Returning to college thirty years ago, I was involved in a serious car
wreck. I was in a coma and Jaws-of-Life were required to free me. When I came to I had amnesia, diplopia (double-vision), and TBI (traumatic brain injury). I was not who I used to be.  My life was forever changed.  Since that time I have lived with the challenges of TBI.  I know the devastation of this condition from the inside, and wish to share what I have found to be a powerful healing benefit for me, and possibly for you.

Maladies such as this are often misdiagnosed and thus poorly treated. I struggled to complete my degree at the University and to get on with my life, very unsure of what I could be or do. Within a few years I experienced the frustrating failure of the loss of several jobs before learning that this was the result of my TBI. There is light at the end of this tunnel.

In top-of-the line rehab programs I was taught 'compensatory coping strategies' for the 'cognitive deficits' of my brain injury. These strategies are well-intended rehabilitation but fell short of addressing my inner well-being.  I had to learn that inner transformation for myself.  

I discovered Insight Meditation. This simple practice of sitting mindfully helps me be clear-eyed and capable of sustained attention, knowing that as obstacles arise I will have the capacity to face them directly from a steady place of clear seeing.  The practice is based on intent to relieve suffering and dissatisfaction, to clear the mind of illusions, and ground us in a sense of dignified inner well being and capability, at peace beyond the physical damage.

With practice you can be present and learn exactly what is most needed for you. It's been well documented by neurologists, psychologists, and doctors: mindfulness practice leads to positive brain healing (neuroplasticity). I have chosen to live my life intentionally and more skillfully.  You can too.  This is the start of a new path!

Had C. Walmer