Sunday, November 27, 2016

JOY to the World

by Karen Steinbrecher

Upon reading this newsletter, the Thanksgiving Holidays have passed, and the December Holidays are fast approaching.  No doubt, we live during a challenging period of time.

I would like to share some inspiration with you from a book that reads like a novel, rather than a non-fiction “self-help” book.  Written with Douglas Abrams, by his holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu is “The Book of JOY”.  With chapters such as “Fear, Stress, and Anxiety," "Sadness and Grief", "The Hard Times Knit Us More Closely Together," "Passing through Difficulties", and "Laughter", this book reads like a breath of fresh air.

“What is this thing called joy, and how is it possible that it can evoke such a wide range of feelings?

The Archbishop and the Dalai Lama looked at each other, and the Archbishop gestured to the Dalai Lama.  “Yes, it is true. Joy is something different from happiness. When I use the word happiness, in a sense I mean satisfaction.”  The Archbishop later explained, “When we realize that we are all children of God, and of equal and intrinsic value, then we don’t have to feel better or worse than others. God uses each of us in our own way, and even if you are not the best one, you may be the one who is needed or the one who is there.” 

In the chapter on loneliness, the Dalai Lama said, “When someone is warmhearted, they are always completely relaxed. If you live with fear and consider yourself as something special, then automatically, emotionally, you are distanced from others.“   He continued saying, “When one is thinking about others with kindness and compassion, one is never lonely.  Openheartedness-warmheartedness is the antidote to loneliness.”  The research of social psychologists Zhong and Gabriel have found that when people are feeling lonely or socially rejected, they literally seek warmth, like sipping hot soup.

Warm your hearts, your soul, this season and indulge in the warmth of this extraordinary book.

You must wonder what all of this has to do with QiGong.  As a QiGong practitioner/teacher, I love the flow of QiGong movements.  Qi = the energy that animates all of life and Gong means the work of, the practice of the movements.  Life is challenging, and at times one has to work at letting go of the negative, whether it be physical or mental.  Flowing QiGong movements enable one to work, in a pleasurable way to find that peaceful place within.  Warm Blessings to ALL this Holiday Season with Peace, Love, Compassion, Kindness and JOY.  

Karen Steinbrecher leads QiGong classes at the Resiliency Center on Thursdays at 2:00 pm and 6:20 pm.

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