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The Luxury Trap

India Farming

For most of human history, we spent our days hunting and gathering food, wherever we could find them. If a particular area was lacking in nutrient rich supplies, or if it was being made use of by another band whom we didn’t want to war with, then we would simply wander somewhere else and make hay wherever the nutritional sun shone.

About 10,000 years ago, our ancestors stumbled across the seemingly genius idea of domesticating animals and cultivating easy to grow foodstuffs so that we could experience plentiful supplies of essential foodstuffs without having to wander the savannah.

Climatic conditions at the time were ripe for this sort of development, and the Middle East began the trend by domesticating goats and cultivating wheat. Peas and lentils followed in the Levant, and later olives, horses and grapevines added a little variety to our newly sedentary lives. Meanwhile in Central America there were simultaneous movements towards the cultivation of maize, beans, potatoes and llamas and in the Far East, it was rice, millet and pigs.

The immediate effects of their work were greater overall supplies of food. However, the work was hard, and so these newly formed communities took advantage of the surplus food supplies by having more children who could share the load and work the farms. (more…)

12 Tips for Surviving Christmas [Part Three]

tips for surviving christmas

Ninth Day of Christmas- Concentration

We all know how important it is to beat that particularly successful family member (let’s face it, it’s usually Dad) in board games. They sailed through to victory in Risk, Monopoly and Trivial Pursuit throughout your entire childhood and this needs to be avenged. You can achieve this through top-notch performance that will leave observers in silent awe. “What excellent Monopoly strategy”, they will say breathlessly. “Wait until you see them with a Cluedo board”, others will reply. By taking up the practise of meditation you’ll be hearing praise like this constantly, and this year, finally, could be YOUR YEAR. (more…)

12 Tips For Surviving Christmas [Part Two]

surviving christmas

Fifth Day of Christmas – Sleep

Christmas is too exciting for sleep! And you have to practice to stay up and see Santa. Sure, you may be thirty two years old, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get caught up in the spirit of the thing. Except, if you think about it, you do have a week ahead of you so using meditation to help you get as much shut-eye as possible is really a very good idea. (more…)

12 Tips For Surviving Christmas [Part One]

Christmas is indisputably brilliant. It’s the only time where you are officially mandated by your family, peers and possibly even the government to indulge yourself to such an illogical extent that if you did it at any other time of year, people would be legitimately worried about you. But like every party that lasts for two weeks, Christmas is also something of an endurance test. Buying the people you love presents, eating 15 roasts every 48 hours and waking up to Bucks Fizz every day is bloody hard work. So we decided to show you all the ways meditation can help!

By tempering out every aspect of the Christmas emotional roller coaster mentioned below, meditation will help you breeze through the whole thing with as much style and grace that it’s possibly to muster when you are chewing down your sixth mince pie and wearing a sparkly Christmas jumper. (more…)

What Makes City Living So Stressful?

When thinking of nice ways to spend an afternoon, lying in a MRI scanner and solving difficult maths problems while people tut, sarcastically comment and roll their eyes at your responses isn’t at the top of anyone’s list. Dreamed up as a way to ensure that whoever was experiencing it felt pressured and unhappy, this activity (surprisingly not featured in Dante’s Inferno) was the content of a recent scientific study looking into the effect of city living on our brains. (more…)

The Cost of Workplace Stress

The cost of workplace stress

For employers, and the self employed, workplace stress can have significant personal and financial effect. According to the mental health charity Mind, stress costs the UK economy 100 billion every year, and in the US it’s thought to be somewhere between $200 and $300 billion. With the potential for huge savings, as well as ensuring the mental wellbeing of business owners and their workforce, the advantages of reducing work related stress and encouraging corporate wellbeing are becoming increasingly evident. (more…)

What Can We Learn From The World’s Happiest Countries?

the world's happiest countries

It is World Mental Health Awareness week, an event that is particularly pertinent at a time when one in four adults (and one in ten children) are suffering with mental health issues in any given year. The occasion aims to raise awareness, reduce stigma and tackle this global issue. Here at Beeja Meditation we have been looking at the world’s happiest countries to understand what it is they do right, and how we can improve the overall happiness of the population.

It’s probably impossible to ascertain without doubt what country is the happiest in the world. There’s lots of competing information to contend with, struggles around the importance of material wealth in relation to wellbeing, and the massive philosophical headache of trying to define what happiness even is in the first place. This issues haven’t stopped 2015 World Happiness Report from trying though, and they have made the best informed guesstimate possible. (more…)

Success – what does it mean to you?

success and meditation

I’m constantly intrigued by the amount of people who think stress is necessary for success. One day I’ll write a blog, or maybe even a book (to add to my list!) about how and why stress isn’t just unnecessary, but quite often counter-productive to the achievement of the greatest outcomes. However, for this month’s post, I would like to put some attention on the definition of success. (more…)

Knowledge Eliminates Fear

knowledge eliminates fear

We have just returned from our spring retreat and it was an incredibly memorable experience! By the end of the weekend we were getting stuck into some pretty profound knowledge and experiences and it seems many of the participants felt they were peering through the looking glass and realising that there is more to what we can offer than merely an uplifting and life-enhancing tool. (more…)

The Alexandrian Principle

I thought it would be relevant to start this year’s first newsletter with a lesson from another of history’s renowned leaders, this one emanating from the other end of Eurasia in a little territory called Macedon around 2400 years ago.

It was then that a brilliant and precocious child, named Alexander, was born to Philip II, King of the ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon. A student of Aristotle, and an avid reader of Homer, Alexander ascended the throne aged 20 upon his father’s death. He immediately went about securing their small empire, expanding throughout the region, before later conquering Persia and invading India, where he was forced to turn around on the banks of the Ganges (his troops began revolting about the prospect of further wars). (more…)