You Can Grow New Brain Cells – Dr Sandrine Thuret

Can humans develop new brain cells, as adults? Scientists do not generally agree about this, as it is a relatively new field of investigation. However, Dr Sandrine Thuret, a neuroscientist with expertise in cellular, molecular, ageing and behavioral biology, says you can. In her laboratory at King’s College London, Dr. Thuret studies adult neurogenesis – the process of forming new brain cells in specific brain regions in adults.

Thuret’s work concentrates on the hippocampus, which is a gray structure within the middle of the brain. Scientists have long known that the hippocampus is essential for learning, emotion, mood and memory. Recently, researchers learned that the hippocampus is a unique structure within the mammalian brain which is capable of generating new neurons or brain cells.A researcher, Jonas Frisen of the Karolinska Institute, found that the human brain generates approximately seven hundred new neurons each day within the hippocampus. Dr Thuret notes:

“While this may not appear to be much when compared to the several billions of neurons within the human brain, by the time you clock age fifty, you would have exchanged all the neurons you were born with within the brain with adult generated neurons.”

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The Importance Of Adult Neurogenesis

As stated earlier, new neurons produced within the hippocampus are essential for memory and learning. “And within the laboratory,” states Dr Thuret, “we have found that if the adult’s brain capability to generate new neurons within the hippocampus is blocked, then certain memory abilities are also blocked”. Furthermore, according to the scientist, this is particularly new and true for spatial recognition.

Spatial recognition is utilized in everyday activities, including simple tasks such as deciding what size of container is required to hold a particular object or navigating your way within the city. It is also utilized when you look within a mirror and understand which side of the reflection correlates with the left side and which with the right. Also, spatial recognition skills help to keep individuals from getting lost when adjusting to a new apartment or office building.

“A lot are still being discovered”, says Thuret, “and aside from being essential for memory capacity, neurons are also essential for the quality or features of the memory”. Also, they are beneficial for adding time to your memory as well as helping to differentiate memories that are very similar. For example how are you able to locate your bike, which you park every day at the station, within the same area; however in a somewhat different position?

Neurogenesis And Depression

Thuret also says that she and her colleagues at King’s College London have been conducting some research on neurogenesis and depression. “In studies of depression using animal models, we have discovered that there is a lower level of generation of new neurons in the brain”, says the scientist. “And if antidepressants are given, it was discovered that the synthesis of these new neurons increased, and depression symptoms were decreased, thereby establishing a clear connection between depression and neurogenesis.” However, if you merely block the generation of new brain cells, then the antidepressant’s efficacy will be blocked as well.

This finding helps to explain why some patients who have been informed that their cancer is cured still develop depression symptoms. According to Thuret, the medication which doctors give to their patients which stops the multiplication of the cancer cells also impedes or stops the generation of new neurons in the patients’ brains. In addition, it will take some time to produce new neurons that attain normal functions.

“Thus, collectively, now we believe that there is sufficient evidence to assert that neurogenesis is an excellent choice if we wish to enhance mood or memory formation, or even stop the decline connected to stress or connected to ageing” – observed Dr. Thuret.

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Can Neurogenesis Be Controlled?

Thuret says the answer to this question is a definite yes, and she details some activities and behaviors that can influence the generation of new neurons within the adult brain. These activities include:

  • Learning : This will increase the generation of new neurons.
  • Stress: Stress will reduce the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus.
  • Sleep deprivation: This will also reduce neurogenesis.
  • Sex: Sex will boost the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus of the adult brain; however Thuret cautions that balance is important. Excessive sex can actually lead to sleep deprivation and attendant medical disorders.
  • Ageing: Generation of new neurons will reduce as you age, however that does not mean it will stop completely.
  • Running: Running can greatly increase the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus of the adult brain. Thuret offers more explanation about this.

Thuret points to an experiment conducted by Salt Institute’s Rusty Gage, which showed that the environment can influence the generation of new neurons within the brain. In the study, some mice were placed in a cage with a running wheel, while others were placed in another cage with no running wheel.

At the end of the experiment, mice from the cage with a running wheel showed a huge increase in the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus, whilst mice from the cage with no running wheel showed very little increase in the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus of the brain. This shows that activity has a huge impact on neurogenesis.

The neuroscientist also points out that diet can also impact the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus, and also specifies some eating practices that can influence neurogenesis. These practices include:

  • Calorie restriction of about twenty to thirty percent will boost generation of new neurons.
  • Intermittent fasting (abstaining from calories for a brief time period) will boost neurogenesis.
  • Consumption of flavonoids that are contained within blueberries or dark chocolate will boost neurogenesis.
  • Omega 3 fatty acids which are contained in fatty fish such as salmon will boost the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus.
  • High saturated fat diet will negatively impact neurogenesis.
  • Consumption of alcohol will reduce the generation of new neurons in the brain. Nevertheless, everything is not lost. Dr. Thuret points out that resveratrol, which is a component of red wine, has been found to boost the survival of newborn neurons. Thus, when next you are at a get-together, you may want to opt for this potentially “neurogenesis-neutral” drink.
  • A soft diet (diet that avoids or restricts foods which are difficult to chew or swallow) impairs neurogenesis.

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“Even though all of this data has been generated utilising animal models, this diet has been given to human participants as well”, says Dr Sandrine Thuret, “and what we discovered is that the diet moderates mood and memory in the same way as it moderates the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus”.

For example calorie restriction will enhance memory capacity, while a diet high in fat will aggravate depression symptoms. This is in contrast to omega III fatty acids, which boosts the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus, and also aid to reduce depression symptoms.

“Thus we believe that the influence of diet on mood, memory and mental health, is actually regulated by the generation of the new neurons within the hippocampus”, concludes Thuret. “And it is not just what you consume, but the food texture, when you consume the food and the quantity of the food you consume.

With Love,

Your Grace Guru 

xxx

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12 Common Negative Phrases You Need To Stop Saying!

Are you aware that negative thoughts and words can thwart an individual’s growth as well as reduce the chances of achieving success at any undertaking? Therefore, it is an excellent idea to substitute negative words with positive ones and live the life you truly want. Do not allow words to create unnecessary limitations in your life. Here are 12 popular negative phrases that you need to remove from your vocabulary immediately!

  1. I Can’t…

Any thought or statement that begins with I can’t is false. Usually, when people utilise the term “I can’t” what they actually mean is “I choose not.” The more times you start your statements with I can’t, the more you will experience limitations in your life. So, whenever you find yourself saying I can’t, stop for a moment and get tuned in to what’s happening around you.

You may be scared, feeling unable or incompetent, or thinking of previous experiences where you failed, or thinking of present circumstances and situations that are preventing you from performing a particular task. No matter the reason: ask yourself, “would you like to be able?” If you answered yes, then do the following:

1. Get a sheet of paper and write down all the ways it may be possible to accomplish the task.

2. Write down how you will feel when you have accomplished the task. Doing so will motivate you to perform the task.

Therefore, instead of saying “I can’t”, a more empowering phrase would be “I choose” or “I can.”

  1. I Am Not Good Enough

Who says you’re not good enough? Saying things like this to yourself will only put you down. This will not bring you any benefit whatsoever. Begin to believe in yourself and your capabilities to achieve success at any task. Instead of saying I am not good enough, you should be saying, “I’ve got what it takes” or “I deserve the best!”

  1. Whatever Will Be Will Be

This is another phrase that is masquerading as true but really not. “Whatever will be will be” is a pretext not to take action. What this phrase basically means is that your future is written already and you cannot influence tomorrow, regardless of what you do now. This is actually a big lie. The truth is that irrespective of what has occurred previously in your life, and regardless of what’s happening in your life right now, your future is shaped by what you do today. There are no ifs or buts about that.

Whenever you invoke “whatever will be will be”, you have already relinquished your power and will to the circumstances and individuals around you. Always remember that while circumstances and individuals can influence your actions, they do not decide what you will do. Only you can decide your fate in life. Therefore, instead of saying “whatever will be will be” trying saying, “if it is to be, it is up to me.”

  1. That Is Impossible

Many people say this when they hear something that’s different from what they believe. Individuals who live to maintain the status quo usually believe that any knowledge that does not support the status quo should be disregarded or ignored. What you should understand is that there is nothing that is impossible.

There are lots of possibilities within the universe, that precisely whatever can occur has a good chance of occurring somewhere sometime. The fact that evolution and change takes place continually counteracts the likelihood of exhausting possibilities. Whenever you hear something that is unusual or something that is different, instead of saying “that is impossible”, you can say “I believe in miracles”.

  1. I Am Alone

It is true that no one can make it in this world all alone. You will always require help from someone. Everyone is fighting their own battle in life; however every individual is different and is dealing with different circumstances and problems. It would be good if you can find someone with whom to share your burdens.

If you cannot, do not drown your mind in negative thoughts. Bear in mind that everyone feels depressed sometimes and it is fine to feel that way. Therefore, you should stop saying, “I am alone”, and start saying, “The universe/God is always there”.

  1. What People Say And Think About Me Matters

When did you last do something for yourself without bothering about other people or social standards generally? If you know that no one is judging you, what will you do? People will talk about you regardless of what you do. So why bother? If they do talk about you that means you are interesting! Do not give people the chance to destroy your dreams and aspirations. So, rather than thinking, “what people say and think about me matters”, you should start saying, “I am neither too little or too much, I don’t have to prove myself to anyone”.

 

  1. I Will Take Care Of This Later

It is said that the pain of being disciplined is less than the sting of regret. If you put off doing something you ought to do now, you may never accomplish that task. You should stop procrastinating because tomorrow never comes. Thus, rather than saying, “I will take care of this later”, you should start saying, “I am taking care of it right now”.

  1. I Do Not Deserve To Be Loved

The golden rule says that you should love your neighbor as yourself. But how will you love others if you cannot find it in your heart to love yourself. One good thing regarding love is that it is abundant. Rather than saying, “I do not deserve to be loved”, you should say “I love myself and I deserve to be loved”.

  1. I Cannot Forgive Him/Her

Stop bearing grudges against other people. Do not live life with bitterness in your heart. Holding grudges will only make you ill and sabotage your own happiness. One is not saying you should forgive others because they were wrong or right. Practice forgiveness because you deserve to free yourself from other individual’s insensitive choices. Thus instead of thinking, “I cannot forgive him or her”, you should say “I forgive… I release her/him with love”.

  1. If Only I Had More

Be thankful for the things you have now. Perhaps, you want to buy a pair of designer shoes because you like the way they look. Remember that there are individuals who do not have any shoes at all. So instead of saying, “if only I had more” you should start saying, “I am grateful for everything I have”.

  1. I Am A Failure

If you say you are a failure or a loser then you create the failures. Every blunder that you commit teaches you a lesson. There is a trail of failures behind every success story. Thus, you should learn from your failures and try again. Instead of saying “I’m a failure”, you should be saying “I am a learner”.

  1. What If It Does Not Work?

Fear is the main driver of this damaging phrase. Individuals who fear change often say this because they need a reason not to make progress. This provides them with a way out – someone or something to blame apart from themselves.

One is not saying you should not research as well as crosscheck your facts. However, when you are doing that, you should be looking for explanations to the problems that you come across. Instead of saying, “what if it does not work?” You should start asking, “what if it works?” By so doing, you will have a mindset of possibilities and solutions.

 

With Love,

Your Grace Guru

xxx

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Adult Colouring Books And Why You Need Them!

There is a new craze in town and it has to do with adults behaving like children! Yeah, being childish is in vogue now. I know you’ve heard it on TV, seen it in all the magazines and all the bookshops are overloaded with them. So now is the time you are asking yourself, why not trying it out and why is it actually so popular?!

Let me save you the pain of pestering Google with petty questions. Ladies and gentlemen, show your love for Adult Colouring Books! Put your hands together for the champions of this course – our youngsters!

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Before you begin to insinuate that I am high on something or I am little bit confused, please allow me to confirm that adult colouring books are the above-18 years-old version of the colouring book your son, daughter, nephew, niece and neighbours’ children use at school. Yes, I am talking about the book you bought for your little angel that has many patterns waiting to be filled with a myriad of colours.

I know you are yet to recover from the shock of learning that fathers, mothers, college students and working class men and women are warming up to colouring books. I don’t blame you because some of us did not understand the importance of these books when we were in school. You and I know people (like us) who use this strategy to keep children quiet when we want to concentrate on something else. In essence, colouring books are some form of punishment or method of distracting kids to help you work on something different.Screen Shot 2015-08-26 at 16.26.53

However, people who understand colouring books and what they represent will always find time to engage in some colouring. Far from being a punishment, this is an activity that will bring a lot of benefits into your life. It is important to underscore what I have just said because the only time most adults touch colouring books is when they have to demonstrate to kids how to use the books. Many, therefore, fear that engaging actively in this pastime will make them objects of ridicule. This is a notion you need to discard if you are to become one of the many people who are enjoying the countless benefits of colouring books.

What Are These Benefits That I Am Talking About?

Perhaps we should begin by asking why we buy colouring books for children and then use some of the insights to derive lessons for adults. The main reasons for children to engage in book colouring activities are to make sure they are busy ( he he ) , no but the real good ones are to impart drawing skills, develop creativity, develop patients, to inculcate perceptual skills and also for entertainment. If you are a parent, you must realise that colouring books are some of the best gifts you can give to your children, some kids really love it. Kids that engage in this activity tend to be very keen on details since colouring books require one to work within confined patterns.

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Let Us Now Turn To You…

If you visit Amazon today and search for adult colouring books, you will be amazed at how many products pop up. People are realising the need to go back to the basics if only to find joy in life. Unless for a few people who might have gone through very difficult upbringing, childhood remains the best period of life in terms of play and enjoyment as well as being carefree. Psychologists often urge people to try some of the childhood games they played as a way of reconnecting with their inner beings and finding happiness once again. Colouring books are very crucial in cultivating positive nostalgia in adults and bringing the missing spark after days of repetitive work.

Another important reason you should start using colouring books is stress control and relaxation. The average adult is often a person who has to go out in the morning, work or study, and return home in the evening while tired and stressed. Human beings engage in leisure as a way of unwinding. Just as you engage in indoor games, scrabble or any other pastime, you can take up colouring books and find intellectual, physical and emotional rejuvenation. As you trace your way through patterns and fill images with colours, your mind will demand for more creative energy and this will bring out the best in you.

Colouring books are also crucial in training your brain to concentrate. For some understandable reasons, we tend to glorify multitasking. Women are particularly praised for juggling tasks and reducing the time it takes to accomplish chores. However, psychologists are now warning us that multitasking is not all that positive. It interferes with the normal working of the brain. People who engage in many tasks at the same time often end up not doing any of those tasks as efficiently as expected. On the contrary, colouring books train you to focus. There is no way your mind can be thinking of something else or your hands can be engaged in another activity when you are colouring, if you really want to stay inside the lines. At first, concentrating may appear impossible but with time, it will become easier and you will not notice how fast the time flies!

Examples Of Adults Using Colouring Books?

As early as the 1900s, the famous psychologists, Carl Jung, prescribed this activity to his patients to help them calm their minds. I know you are surprised because you thought this is a relatively new invention meant for children. Even today there are doctors who follow in the footsteps of Dr. Jung. In addition, modern professionals are gathering in large cities such as New York to engage in book colouring as teams. I have already mentioned the influx of colouring books on Amazon and book shops, which implies that respective manufacturers are making a kill.

Turn It Into A Collective Activity!

If you think it is hard to do it, bring together a few friends or family members and challenge one another to colour books. You can begin working with your child, wife, husband or workmates. Set aside time after work or during weekends when you can become a child once again. You will discover that youth is found in engaging in youthful activities. Don’t wait until you are hospitalised to begin using colouring books. Begin today.

How And Why To Use Adult Colouring Books:

1. Book colouring will at first appear childish and time-consuming, but as you finish more challenges, you will begin to like doing it.

2. There are many types of colouring books with different patterns. Find the ones that challenge you and begin to master the art. Maybe at the beginning start with the big patterns and then when you have the hand for it, go in to smaller detailed ones!

3. Colouring books are very reasonable is cost. You can purchase one every month without straining your pocket.

4. Determine to colour one pattern every day so that you don’t consume the time you need to perform other chores and tasks. Best is to set even a timer, as when you start coloring time flies very quick!

5. The more people participating in a colouring challenge; the better for your development and enjoyment of the activity.

6. Buy tip pens, markers, water colours and colour pens with high colour intensity to get creative and free with all colours your soul desires.

7. Put nice music in the background and a cup of your favourite tea, when you sit down to colour and just let yourself go!

8. Pay attention when starting a new pattern which colours you like to use “today”, what mood are you in? What colours does your soul and spirit desire?

9. Colouring is like a meditation or yoga practice, that helps you to connect with your inner self and bring more awareness into your everyday life!

10. Colouring books will help you to develop creativity and Patience.

With Love,

Your Grace Guru 

xxx

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How To Be A Conscious Leader

In leadership, every guru has his or her own approach and readers and students often end up confused as to who is telling the truth. The fact is that the best leadership approach is the one that works for the practitioner’s and followers’ situations. I know I am sounding as if I am advancing my own theory too. I have right to do so, don’t I?

Allow me to state my opinion in a different way. In the absence of a clear definition of leadership and above the din of a multiplicity of theories, good leadership can only be defined through the leader’s effectiveness in influencing followers towards a noble and mutually beneficial course. However, unless you are a conscious leader, you will gradually develop into an empty shell that eventually runs of content and inspiration.

Who Is A Conscious Leader?

Have you ever met a motivational speaker who is in dire need of the inspiration he or she purports to offer? For example, do you know a renowned financial teacher who became bankrupt after some time? I know one and I am sure you have another one in mind. How possible is it that one can be the recipient of so much wisdom and be the channel for benefiting many, yet fail to gain from the same wealth of knowledge.

Now I can explain what a conscious leader is. This is leader who is in touch with his or her own life and who does not lose sight of himself or herself in the process of leadership. If you are a conscious leader, you lead by example because of the conviction you hold on the issues you share with your followers. A conscious leader is first a disciple of the philosophy he or she subscribes to before becoming a leader.

You must own your life story and implement the change you want to see in others. Only after taking charge and responsibility over your life do you become a conscious leader who can guide others in a particular direction.

What Do You Need To Do To Become A Conscious Leader?

  1. Have Your Own Philosophy Of Life

Throughout life, we are accustomed and socialised to live according to the dictates of those in authority like our parents, school authority and the government. However, as we grow, and especially if we desire to be effective leaders, we must begin to form our own philosophies and visions about life. Such ideologies spring from what we consider our purposes to be living on earth at this particular moment.

  1. Look At Life From A Larger Perspective

In the hustle and bustle of daily life it is possible to lose sight of the larger picture. A conscious leader understands that life is more than the struggle to place food on the table. You need to observe what others take for granted; to see the trends that others don’t, and to make out the connections that are only visible to those who dare to question life itself.

  1. Connect With Your Inner Self

There is no way you are going to be a conscious leader if you don’t know yourself. Understanding what moves and motivates you is essential if you are to help your followers to lead productive lives. Whether you are going to pray or meditate is not the problem. The most important thing is that you have some quiet time with yourself for rejuvenation, inspiration and re- strategising.

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  1. Learn To Listen

A conscious leader is one who listens. Listening entails giving undivided attention to the other person while absorbing what they are telling you. It demands for compassion and sympathy to the plight of your followers. If you have learned to listen to your inner voice, then you can listen to others without judging them, thus becoming a conscious leader.

  1. Accept Criticism

A story is told of a despotic tyrant who used to kill ministers who criticised him even after encouraging them to correct him whenever he went wrong. The mark of a conscious leader is one who is open to criticism and correction by those he or she leads and even opponents. No one is perfect and people will point out to you areas in your life that need to be rectified. Accept genuine criticism and make necessary changes as you go along.

  1. Invest In Your Followers

As a conscious leader you should never forget that you are a leader because you have followers. Whether you are a spiritual leader, politician or manager, when you invest in the personal and professional development of your followers, you gain more credibility. Followers will not remain with you for long if they don’t find anything of value or if they feel the cause is benefiting you only.

What Else Do You Need To Know About Conscious Leadership?

  1. Only conscious leadership is real leadership. The best example you can give to your followers is to live the dream you are championing.
  2. Leadership begins with a clear vision. Never forget your vision and what it entails.
  3. Find a strategy of overcoming stress especially in a manner that entails withdrawing from the larger public for some specific periods on a regular basis.
  4. Believe in your followers just as they believe in you. When you lose confidence in them, you lose confidence in your leadership abilities.
  5. Learn to be thankful for your life, position, people around you and the leadership responsibility you are holding.
  6. There is a reason you are a leader and the rest are followers. Whatever makes them love and follow you, strengthen as a conscious leader.
  7. Be happy. Joy is infectious. If you can bring cheer to your soul, it will be reflected in the lives of your followers too.
  8. Communicate as often as possible. The heart of leadership is constant flow of messages between all parties involved.
  9. Motivate your followers. As a conscious leader, you need to understand each of your followers, where possible, and come up with strategies to lift them up when despondency sets in.
  10. Never forget that your happiness and that of your followers are intertwined.

With Love,

Your Grace Guru

xxx

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Introduction To Acidosis, Diet And Ageing!

Contemporary scientific studies indicate that the ageing process is not as complex as we have always thought. Our bodies produce very poisonous wastes, which contribute immensely to morbidity and ageing. While sweat and urine form part of the acidic wastes expelled from the body, many more wastes remain in the body and infiltrate body organs and blood. The results are clogging of blood vessels, poor circulation of oxygen and essential nutrients and incapacitation of cells.

Balancing Acid And Alkaline Content

Acidosis occurs when the body has abnormal acidity, thus weakening body systems. Many people across cultures are oblivious of this problem. Acidosis creates fecund ground for diseases unlike the ideal neutral pH environment where immunity is high. You need to have enough reserves of alkaline to neutralise acidosis; otherwise your body will be at risk of illnesses. As early as 1933, the idea that self-poisoning or autotoxication was advanced by William Howard Hay, a doctor based in New York, in his text, A New Health Era. While attributing all diseases to acidosis, Dr. Hay observed:

Now we depart from health in just the proportion to which we have allowed our alkalies to be dissipated by introduction of acid-forming food in too great amount.

The concept of acidosis can be traced further to Taoist medicinal traditions of over two millennia ago. Foods were said to be either yang (acidifying the cellular fluids and the bloodstream) or yin (alkalising tissues and body fluids).

It is important to understand that PH balance depends on the acidifying effects of specific foods and not necessarily on the acidity in the items themselves. For example, when you eat oranges, they will alkalize your urine even though the fruits have citric acid.

Another way in which we acidify our bodies and make them vulnerable to diseases is by using antibiotics indiscriminately. Fungi, yeasts, viruses, bacteria and moulds are common complications in our bodies. However, when we turn to antibiotics every time we are affected by these conditions, we create the best environment for the growth of more potently and fatal bacteria and germs. It was Dr. Luis Pasteur who taught germ theory and asserted that germs were the major causes of illnesses. However, shortly before he died, he made this important statement:

“The germ is nothing, the inner terrain is everything”

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Alkaline Diet

The Process Of Acidosis

1. How Acid Waste Accumulates and Causes Ageing

A pregnant woman and the unborn child share nutrients. A mother normally passes alkalinity to the foetus because of consuming alkaline minerals, which cause low appetite in pregnant women. During breastfeeding, the child remains alkaline, but alkalinity levels reduce when infant cereals are introduced. Acidity begins to rise when the child is weaned.

Since ageing is a product of acidosis, eradicating acid waste will lead to longer lives. Consequently, alkaline water should be used to neutralize meals that form acids. This is possible with a lot of vegetables, low meat and vegetarian diets.

2. Cellular Level

Cells are the basic units of the body and are alkaline in nature. However, during respiration and other functions, cells produce acidic wastes. While these wastes are utilised for various functions, their accumulation is dangerous to the body. Your safety lies in maintaining the right pH balance as this will guarantee you immunity.

3. pH

This is the measure of alkalinity or acidity in the body and ranges between 0 and 14. When the pH is lower the body is acidic, while a higher pH implies alkalinity. Neutrality occurs when pH is at 7. Water is the main body fluid constituting about ¾ of the body. Your body works hard to maintain a neutral pH. However, if pH balance of body tissues and fluids is interfered with, the body experiences problems.

4. Measuring Your Body’s Alkalinity Or Acidity

Knowing you pH levels is essential in order to take quick remedial action where necessary. This can be done using pH strips in the confines of your home.

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Alkaline Testing

5. Saliva pH

Create clean saliva in the mouth by repeatedly forming some saliva and swallowing it, preferably two hours after a meal. Put a little saliva on the pH strip. The results will indicate the pH condition of your stomach, liver and digestive system.

6. Urine pH

This is a good measure of the pH conditions in your kidneys, which in turn indicates how your body assimilates minerals. However, urine pH is affected by diet, lifestyle, the air you breath and food preservatives.

Why You Must Maintain The Right pH Balance

The right pH balance is mandatory for absorption of nutrients and minerals into the body. Acidosis means you lack oxygen and calcium necessary for alkaline balance. Calcium is the glue that holds body cells and organs together.

With Love,

Your Grace Guru

xxx

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Why You Should Burn Incense At Home

I think I need to admit, that I am a bit obsessed with burning incenses at home! I even suspect the whole building smells of it when I burn them in my apartment and the neighbours must think there is a Krishna Temple somewhere inside the house! LOL! But to burn incense, you don’t have to be religious, a Krishna believer or a Buddhist. Just read the real and good benefits that you can get from burning them, from different perspectives…

What is Incense?

Incense is a fragrant biotic substance that emits aromatic smoke as it burns. Substances may also be mixed with essential oils, spices, tree bark and flowers to create certain fragrances and aromas. Different cultures have varied ways of preparing incense and technology has created even more methods!

Who burns Incense?

Ancient Egyptians would burn incense to worship their Gods and for being near them and to their Gods too. Today Christian churches burn them for religious ceremonies and liturgy. In Asia many people burn them not only at the temples but also at their homes to honour their Gods, for rituals and to purify and protection from any bad spirits.

Want to concentrate more?

A famous Chinese healer teaches that – “Monks recognised this benefit of incense long ago and use it during their meditation to clear the air as well as their thoughts.” Craftsmen practice the same to ensure they don’t lose focus when creating artefacts, jewellery and ornaments.

I love meditating when burning the incense at home in front of my Buddha. It connects me into a different place, the atmosphere changes and my thoughts become quiet, I travel into a different time and my mind disappears into my sanctuary!

Need a creativity injection?

If you are a writer, musician or any other creative artist you can spike your imagination and creativity by burning incense! The exciting aroma of incense can work like gorgeous scenery, an inspiring song or a quiet walk in the woods – or even better – in generating ideas and creativity to work on them.

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Feeling low on morale?

We all feel it at times and burning incense can also change all of this. Incense is known to have air-purifying qualities. It destroys or wards off bacteria, fungi and insects. According to some experts, “incense increases positive energy and drives away negative energy.”

Is your confidence tank empty?

Confidence is very crucial for any activity that you undertake and incense can greatly boost your self-assurance. If your burn incense, it can help you to be more confident and successful!

Offering to gods with burning incense aroma sticks - Grace Guru

Need to boost your libido?

If you are looking for an aphrodisiac, look no further! Your sexual appetite is bound to increase, even as your confidence grows exceptionally with every scent of incense you imbibe. An incense guru holds that “If a couple uses incense together, the smells will kick in the pheromone effect and they most likely will have a hard time keeping their hands off each other.” Wow, not bad for an incense…

Other benefits…

You can avert bacterial infections by disinfecting the air with Myrrh and other forms of incense. If your nose is blocked or you have a throbbing head, burning and imbibing incense will bring you fast relief. You also can use incense to fight depression and anxiety and overcome insomnia. Simply burn them at homes to enjoy its pleasant aroma!

Caution!

Despite all this great benefits, remember it is really very, very important to use only organic / natural incense! It is more safer for your health, respiratory system and is non-addictive, the type that has some synthetic substances or is burned using charcoal can harm you! I would recommend Japanese incense, they are generally more refined then others and are the best from my experience. Nippon Kodo Since 1575.

Tibetan incenses are very natural and light. In India the incense tends to be rougher and very strong in aroma. Additionally, incense can have healing effects, but if your condition worsens, consult a doctor. Personally and if I am honest, sometimes I feel the burning smoke aromas are a bit to strong for me even if I do like the fragrance. If you burn it in small rooms, I would recommend opening the windows and letting some fresh air in.

So don’t overuse it to much, you don’t have to burn the incense everyday and every hour! You can burn them few times or even once a week. So when I feel more sensitive to the smells, I just let them burn (in a safe place) when I leave the house, so when I come back I have a nice aroma, clean energy and good spirit at home!

With Love,

Your Grace Guru

xxx

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Spiritual Travel To Amazing Osho Meditation Resort!

One of these days you may come across a donkey hauling luggage, take a good look at it, because that could be mirroring an image of you. Life is an ironic struggle where we often rush to meet deadlines and targets while forgetting to ‘feed the cow that produces the milk’. You work your ass off in the quest for a king’s life only to die a pauper that never enjoyed life!

Losing contact with yourself is the worst mistake you can make in life. Often we search for the solutions to loneliness and lethargy in other places while the real source of these complications is in our detached soul.

What you need is a trip into your inner self and the best way to do this is to take a spiritual journey to the Osho Meditation Resort…

Appreciating Osho Meditation Resort

I know you are likely to dismiss this as yet another boring article by a yoga enthusiast who has nothing more to do but stare into emptiness, but before you do so let me tell you about the Osho Meditation Resort.

First, it is in India. I can see weird thoughts crisscrossing your mind already – tropical sun, saris, robes, rice, onions, spices, monkeys, rickshaws, traffic, monks, vegetarians, imposing temples and so on. I would be lying if I said you will not come across these real and imagined images of India.

However a 15 minute flight from Mumbai to Koregaon Park in Pune will do you good! Yes, rickshaws are not the only means of transport in India – there are airplanes too! The beauty that awaits you will erase all your lopsided impressions about India and its people; more importantly, this camp effortlessly blends nature and modernity.

Walking in marble

Have you ever walked on marble in the midst of elegant buildings and green vegetation, along a swimming pool only fit for Olympic champions? That is the Osho Meditation Resort for you. And the surprise does not end there. This is virtually an international meeting point if the meditators from over 100 countries are to be considered. This resort gives you the opportunity to not only interact with global yoga enthusiasts but also relax, swim, rest, meditate or simply be yourself.

Not for nut-heads and hermits

I often meet people who think that yoga is a dark art; a mystical oriental ritual only fit for nut-heads and hermits who have lost touch with humanity! This resort will help you understand and practice basic Osho Active Meditations, which are designed for the modern person who has to contend with a lot of stress and psychological strain.

Whether you are the neophyte trying to learn how to salute the sun or you are the experienced meditation expert that needs no prompt to fall into a trance, Osho Meditation Resort is designed for you. There are numerous methods of meditation at this centre including traditional approaches such as Vipassana and more modern ones like Osho Kundalini and dance meditation.

A Multiversity

The Osho Multiversity is also open for eager learners. Please don’t develop stomachache because of your fear of exams – there are none here! At least the founders of the centre knew you would visit one day and did not want to scare you away!

The Osho Meditation Centre also has workshops that you can participate in to enable you develop your mental and spiritual capabilities. At the end of each day, a spectacular evening of celebration, dance and even silence awaits you.

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Daily and in-house programs

By the way, you do have the choice of going to the centre daily for meditation or pitching tent at the resort to soak up all the meditation knowledge and benefits available, like a human sponge!

What happens when you visit Osho?

Your wonderful experience at the Osho Meditation Resort begins at the Welcome Center right at the entrance where you register. This helps shield off busy-bodies and I am guessing you are not one. Please don’t visit the Welcome Centre unless it is between 9.00 am to 1.00 pm and 2.00 pm to 4.00 pm daily. It amazes me as to where staff members get their infectious smiles and the resourceful answers they give. Registration takes place up to 12.30 pm for the morning session while afternoon registration activity takes place up to 3.30 pm.

What do you need for registration?

The Osho Meditation Resort is a law abiding entity and requires interested visitors to present valid identification papers. Don’t come with your boutique, supermarket or airline receipts please. Keep them as souvenirs and only present your ID or passport.

Mandatory HIV /Aids Test

This may be scary depending on your sexual history and escapades, but prepare for a HIV test before being admitted into the Osho Meditation Resort. You don’t have to read for the test – it is just 15 minutes of waiting and you know your fate. The resort will reward you with a Meditation Resort pass once you are deemed fine.

Osho Meditation Resort - HIV Test - Grace Guru

Daily Stickers for entrance

After registration, all you will need to exist within the resort are daily stickers which you can purchase when entering. You may also opt for seasonal tickets if you become a fan – or are you a meditation and yoga fanatic?

How about buying items in the park?

Please leave your cash and notes at home – nobody is interested in your poverty or wealth at the Osho Meditation Resort! Grab some vouchers (of course you have to pay for these) at the Welcome Centre as they are the legal tender there.

The Welcome Morning

Avoid the temptation to oversleep and be at the centre by 9.00 am to participate in the Welcome Morning, which introduces you to the campus, the programs of the Osho Multiversity and Osho Meditations. In the unfortunate event that you arrive at 9.01 am, don’t despair because you will listen to a brief introduction audio in your language of choice. But do not be cheated because you still have to arrive at 8.59 am the following day for the Welcome Morning.

What about residents?

You can register and live in the camp. There is a Living in Program for those on a long pilgrimage. Getting to know fellow meditators is an extra incentive for zero grazing yourself. This is a good option if you are allergic to traffic and rickshaws that characterise the life of a day scholar.Screen shot 2015-06-25 at 18.12.16

Can you stay off campus?

You can stay at any of the affordable and comfortable hotels in the vicinity of Osho Meditation Resort. But as one of my friends found out, you may arrive at the resort after some important activities have taken place.

How much will it cost you?

A meditation pass is the guarantee that you can remain in the resort between 5.30 am and late night and also access the OSHO Teerth Garden, the OSHO Auditorium and the evening programs.

Those with entry stickers are allowed into meditation programs for the entire day. They also attend the Buddha Grove open-air classes.

Stickers are available either for 1-10 days’ period or for an entire month. 1-4 days; entry stickers will cost you 1560 INR every day if you are not a resident of India, while citizens and residents have to pay 760 INR for the same package. If you opt for tickets to allow you access for 5 to 6 days, you will get a 13% discount if you are a foreigner, which means you will pay 1,326 INR. For residents and nationals, this package will cost 646 INR.

I almost forgot to tell you that the cost of food, drinks, accommodation and courses and workshops offered by the Osho Multiversity are on the Osho website!

Communicating with the outside world while at the resort?

You can visit the cybercafé within the Osho Meditation Resort and pay a little fee for Wi-Fi internet. You can also make calls but only in designated areas. Nobody wants to be disturbed by long noisy and hysterical calls when they are meditating. And forget about selfies as all sorts of photo taking activities are prohibited.

Who is allowed to visit?

Everyone is welcome! The resort receives people from more than a hundred nations on the planet. Whether you are a businessman, policeman or an artisan, you will find relaxation and fun at the Osho Meditation Centre – And age does not matter, too. Both young and old will realise that their needs are well taken care of at the centre. Don’t be surprised if you find you grandfather walking around the resort in a maroon robe!

Majority of those who visit this centre are university graduates. So if you thought meditation was for lowly-educated and superstitious oriental people think twice. But education is not a requirement for meditation! Don’t be cheated into thinking that you are the odd one out because you see people at the centre greeting each other, half of the people whom you will meet here are first-time visitors just like you.

Why should I go?

Countless people find time to visit this resort for the sake of enjoyment. If you feel you need time to shed off some of your pent-up emotions, visit the centre and relax both in mind and spirit. There are those who come to the park for the purpose of learning at the Osho Multiversity. There is no better place to understand meditation than this resort. You may also want to pop in if you have come to India on a different mission. You will never regret walking through the doors of this resort! The sheer numbers you will find here will convince you that you need to have visited sooner.

What kind of a product is envisioned?

This may sound like rocket science for the uninitiated, but the resort has a vision for the human race in this age. The intention is to come up with a human beings who are well-grounded while simultaneously reaching for greater heights. The Osho product is a jovial person, who interacts readily with others, but also retreats to meditate in silence. It does not matter what values you believe in, your space is preserved in this special garden.

Do you need to be a member?

This is a ridiculous lie propagated from those who have no understanding of what it means to visit this resort!! The centre does not belong to an exclusive club. There are no special people who must be admitted and others rejected. All you need is to be prepared to come to grips with you inner self and to develop a deeper and beneficial understanding of who you really are.

You may have heard that people who come to the resort are initiated into “sannyas”, which is another misconception. It is upon the individual to decide whether to enrol or not. Personally, I find no problem with Smith assuming the name William if only to come to grips with his inner self and begin a new fulfilling life.

When you decide to engage in “sannyas” Osho tells you that you have committed yourself to his guidance and he will not interfere with your life. Just dedicate yourself to transformation – while acting responsibly. Only through courage will you achieve your meditation goals.

Are visitors required to join movements or cults?

By its very nature, meditation is not a crowd activity. Osho Meditation Resort encourages you to join your inner self in order to grow into a more conscious and happier person. You cannot meditate effectively unless you appreciate and practice some form of solitary living.

Osho methods are transformative – requiring a personal paradigm shift. Osho advocates for are meant to destroy the misconceptions you have about yourself, thus leaving your soul utterly naked and ready for a new experience. He opines that you can only understand the truth by being alone and that truth is you. He believes that no great spiritual teacher can teach you the truth because the truth is found in you – by engaging in meditation. Meditation is not practiced in market places, football stadiums or politically rallies!

However, realising this dream is not like drinking water or eating a favourite meal – it requires courage. At Osho Meditation Resort you have all the tools you need and the concomitant environment to meditate. Interestingly, there are many other people at the centre pursuing the same goal, and being alone with them (if you can comprehend what this means), is not only easy but also enjoyable.

Is there a dress code?

Here is the interesting part, especially for men who cannot wear women’s clothing! At this renowned meditation centre, visitors wear lose-fitting plain maroon robes (I can hear you breathe a sigh of relief that it is not a skirt or dress). This is mandatory for everyone within the resort and especially during meditation. You will wear this robe between 9 am and 4 pm, while performing daytime tasks. It is also the attire that you will wear when performing OSHO Kundalini Meditations and OSHO Dynamic.

Do you want to know why people wear maroon robes at the resort?

  1. Maroon robes act as uniform attire and make people feel part of the resort and of one another.
  2. Unlike wearing different clothes, uniformity enables you to focus on your inner self instead of the outside.
  3. There is mutual meditative energy that emanates from collective wearing of the colour maroon.
  4. If you are a woman (and this also applies to some men) you will not need to worry about matching the colour of your clothes in the morning, hence giving you more time to focus on the more important task of meditation.
  5. Pune is in the tropics and temperature can hit the extreme north and south.
  6. This attire will free your body from the bondage of belts and other constricting body accessory that makes breathing and meditation problematic.
  7. If you are not from India, you can at least boast to your folks back at home that you survived for some time in a robe!

What others are saying about Osho and the Osho Meditation Resort

You are not the first person to discover Osho Meditation Resort! No medal awaits you for that. At least not for now! Osho’s teachings and methodologies have over the years been commended by religious leaders, actors, politicians, musicians and writers among others. These include Tom Cruise, Madonna, The Dalai Lama, Tom Robbins and Dr. Manmohan Singh to name a few. I am not sure whether you can become a clone of Madonna or Tom Cruise at your age, but I am sure meditation and this experience at the resort can give you a new lease of life at any age.

Time to visit

Don’t read history any more – make history now! There are few pilgrimages that can transform you the way a visit to the Osho Meditation Resort can. Make a commitment today and visit the Osho Meditation Resort!

With love,

Your Grace Guru 

xxx

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BOOK REVIEW: “The Power Of Your Subconscious Mind” – Joseph Murphy

The subconscious mind has been the subject or inquiries, research, discussion and debate for many years. Hundreds of books have been written to explain how this part of the brain works. But there is one text that will expound greatly on this topic especially because the writer was an incisive researcher who spent years lecturing and preaching on spiritual matters. It is called The Power of the Subconscious Mind.

It is important to understand the author before we delve into the text. Dr. Joseph Murphy was born and spent his early years in England and Ireland. He later moved to India where he was a research fellow and dedicated his time to the study of Eastern religions. He also studied and became an expert in I-Ching, which is a highly regarded Chinese book on divination. His life would later be dedicated to preaching at the Church of Divine Service in the city of Los Angeles, where he worked for 28 years.

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Apart from ministering to over 1,300 people in his church every weekend, Murphy had a radio program that broadcast teachings daily. This was a very popular program that won him many admirers. In a span of about fifty years, he travelled the world teaching, counselling and lecturing. He created a name for himself as a believer in enlightenment and amassed thousands of followers. The Power of Your Subconscious Mind is his most acclaimed and popular work. Since it was published in 1963, millions of people have bought and read it.

In his own words, Dr. Murphy said he had witnessed miracles in the lives of people who had used the power of their subconscious minds. He believed that he had discovered the unbelievable power of the subconscious mind. His book is meant to present empirical strategies that emanate from the subconscious and which can be used to bring healing to the body. And the miracles are not just restricted to healing of the body. Dr. Murphy claims that you can use the Law of Attraction to get money, win friends, experience peace of mind and meet the dream soul mate.

Numbers Within

Murphy also outlines how you can use your own dreams to find solutions to life’s problems and also to crack complicated issues. He believes that dreams also serve as warnings on a negative events that are about to happen. All these issues take place in the subconscious mind, which one can use to achieve anything they want in life. He opines that when one uses the power of the subconscious mind they can experience perfect wellbeing, joy and success.

According to Murphy, the subconscious mind has powers that transcend culture and time and it contains secrets that everybody should understand. I am sure you know the traditional method of developing photos in a darkroom. This was the approach that Murphy adopted. He believed that the subconscious mind is some kind of a darkroom where the images of the life you will leave are developed. Your conscious mind normally sees something and records it and remembers it when you need it. However, the subconscious perceives things before they happen.

The interesting part about the teachings of Dr. Murphy is that the subconscious mind interacts with and reacts to our patterns of thinking and behaviour. It does not differentiate between good and evil. It adopts the thoughts you feed it with. Do not be surprised when negative events happen to you because you fed them into your subconscious mind and it actualised them. As you read this article, you may be actually creating negative thoughts and actions that may haunt you later.

night dreams

It is important for you to understand how the subconscious mind works so that you replace negative thoughts with good ones thus creating good habits and events. Murphy considers this a very simple act. Your subconscious will pick the positive stimuli and turn it into good fortune.

This book is created for those who want to emancipate themselves from the power of habits and also cultures and religions that enslave people. It holds that whatever you believe is what will happen to you. Whatever happens to you is not accidental because you have attracted it through your thoughts. In this regard, your subconscious mind does not understand when you are joking, which implies you must avoid joking negatively about yourself.Dream big!

The Power of Your Subconscious Mind has two main sections. In the first part, you will read about the subconscious mind and its modus operandi. The second part is the practical area where you learn how you can use this power to change your life. There is no way you will read this book and remain the same. You will realise that your thought patterns are an essential component of your personal success.

Buy Your Copy Here Today!

With Love,

Your Grace Guru

xxx 

 

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Is Your Soul A Mature One?

The spiritual world is full of surprises particularly in relation to how our souls measure up to expectations. I must admit that it took me time to understand that there can be mature and immature souls. I am sure you have heard the expression of an “Old Soul” before? So like me at the beginning, you may also be wondering how an unseen entity, like a soul, can be considered mature or immature. However, it takes a critical personal examination to understand exactly what it means to be regarded as an old soul.

The spiritual journey is a long and complex one. It involves growing from one level to another during all your lifetime and most of the time it is replete with challenges. Along the way you must pose important questions to assess your progress and remain committed to your goals. Chief among the crucial questions you must ask yourself, what is it you really expect from life. The importance of this question cannot be overstated.

The moment you decide to ask yourself what your expectations in life are, the answer you receive will indicate how mature your soul is.

Before we go deeper into the issue of soul maturity, we need to emphasize that you must be honest in your answers. The problem with us as human being is that we have become so vain that we can lie to ourselves! We are used to lying all the time so much so that lying has become our second nature. However, the worst form of lying is to deceive yourself. This means that while you know your weaknesses, strengths and potential, you deny these facts and decide to live like other people. You must have heard that a lie can be told so many times that it begins to sound like a fact.

Who am I philosophical question

After all nobody is there to check whether you are right or not. Moreover, is not a matter for discussion. You also must bear in mind that you don’t have to publicise your answers. Similarly, you have always told people not to judge you because they have never lived your experience. Now you have the opportunity to be your own judge.

Now that we have settled the question of honesty, let us delve into the answers that you give when you ask yourself about your expectations in life as you seek to know whether your soul is mature. Your response to this important question has a direct correlation with the maturity of your soul. Human expectations are significant because they reveal what is in a person’s heart and why they live the way they do. I like to deviate by saying that if you want to know the essence of a person, ask them their expectations in life. One can only expect to achieve that which is tandem with their deeply-held beliefs.

Let us now compare and contrasts the maturity and immaturity of souls using the concept of human expectations. If you are the kind of person that has innumerable desires, aspirations and goals that you are keen to achieve, you are an immature soul. Wow! That definition categorises you as an immature soul already – right? By the way, it does not matter whether these desires are of a lower order, like power and money, or more complex ones like being more devoted to your spiritual life. In essence, as an immature soul, you are always striving to achieve what can be seen and felt. You obsess about becoming richer and famous. Success becomes your mantra.

In this regard, mature souls operate within timelines. The future holds a lot of significance for them. I am sure you cannot argue about this because you are always saying that you will achieve this or that in some days, weeks, months or years to come. Immature souls have to achieve certain material objectives at certain times and this is the driving force behind their thoughts and actions. They always feel that they are pressed for time since time is a limited resource. People with immature souls dedicate a lot of time to the achievement of material goals at the expense of spiritual ones.

However, do not imagine that an immature soul does not have spiritual objectives – it does, in some cases. The only difference is that those spiritual goals are supposed to be achieved today or in the present dispensation. The present is only a launching ground for achieving the pleasures of tomorrow. You may have met people whose only motive for helping others is because this will result in a better to qualify for a blissful afterlife. You probably know someone who lives well today simply because they want to escape future apocalyptic judgment. Their desires may seem to have a spiritual angle, but in real sense, if the possibility of damnation or future good was removed withdrawn, these people would be the worst crooks you have ever met.

Let us now turn our attention to mature souls. From the onset, you need to understand that a mature soul has ambitions and desires, but that does not becloud the need to embrace nobler ideals. This soul is closely linked to forms and shapes. If you have such a soul, you don’t just think about the present; you have the cosmic good at heart. You are not bound by what is seen but your eye is fixed on what the immature soul cannot see. You are conscious of your role as a catalyst for good in the world and not just a conduit for material gratification.

Retro key and opened book

Mature souls take cognisance of the fact that material achievement and satiation of physical needs is not the only objective in life. In fact, a mature soul feels empty and unhappy if its only success is linked with material needs. When you have an immature soul, you feel happiest when you are surrounded by wealth and success. To a mature soul, physical success does not even come close to defining the essence of life. Life has more meaning than parading your achievements before people. Soul maturity means transcending current definitions of prosperity and embracing a cosmic view of the interrelations between different elements that make up the universe. Being happy temporarily is the domain of the immature soul.

It is essential to realise that the old soul does not become ripe directly. No. A mature soul begins as an immature one. It experiences multiplicities of desires just like the immature one. The mature soul can attest, through experience, of the variability of life. It understands that the world has forms and shapes that are always in flux. Nothing in the material world lasts for long. The mature soul knows the futility of life and the apparent lack of sustainability. The immature soul also knows these things. However, the mature soul refuses to remain within the bounds of materialism and variability.

By leaving behind its finite desires and ambitions, the mature soul is willing to become poor. By poverty, I mean even material lack in order to achieve higher human good. In the spiritual world, sacrifice is very significant. The idea of denying oneself material possession to give cheer to another person is at the centre of every religion. Similarly, leaving behind one’s physical belongings to pursue spiritual good is a key dogma in many spiritual teachings. On the other hand, an immature souls is always seeking for more wealth, even when in human eyes, it has attained what it needs to live well. Even when an immature soul appears to embrace spirituality, the fact is that material desires are just suppressed and will soon arise. Religion and spirituality, as we observed before, are just conduits to material wealth.

The difference between maturity and immaturity of souls is found in the way the two express their egos. The goal of an immature soul is to satisfy the ego. Contrastively, the mature soul seeks to find the authentic center of life and to attain eternal happiness according to universal forms and shapes. The mature soul subjugates its desires and ceases to identify itself using the ego. It considers itself a formless Consciousness. The immature soul may want to attain higher levels of existence but only for personal gratification.

To change your soul form being immature to mature, learn to look at life from the real centre in a spiritual way. Your ideals must transcend the aspects of the conscious mind. You must live with people in a manner that does not accentuate the ego above everything else. Gradually, you will learn how to invite divine presence into your life even as you worry less about material sacrifices that you need to make.

Now you can tell whether your soul is mature or not. If you are immature (and many of us operate in this realm), remember it will take time to grow olds. Most importantly, learn to subjugate your ego to spiritual ideals if you want your soul to mature.

With love,

Your Grace Guru 

xxx

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