Tag Archive: Deepak Chopra



Posted on October 3, 2017

Deepak Chopra, M.D: Feeling in control is a critical issue in everyone’s life…
Most people are uncomfortable being out of control—a state that produces anxiety, uncertainty, confusion, panic, and loss of self-confidence, depending on how severe the loss of control is. Let’s see what a natural way of being in control looks like.

Control Starts at the Cellular Level

If you live entirely in the present, you are also in control. This isn’t a connection that seems obvious. But the best example is right in front of you. If you look at your body, each cell exists in a state of natural dynamic balance at every moment. A cell can’t afford to lose control. The multiple functions of a cell’s existence are handled simultaneously, and when the situation calls for a change, the cell responds flexibly. The cell’s multiple functions are reflected in activities familiar in your life: eating, drinking, breathing, reproducing itself, healing, renewing, and resting. But those are just broad outlines. A cell’s actual activities span a vast chemical array of proteins and enzymes managed with exquisite sensitivity by the cell’s DNA.

What does this have to do with you feeling in control? One connection is obvious: your body must be functioning well in order for you to feel that you are in a state of well-being. You can’t be in control without a good night’s sleep, because poor sleep leads to hormonal imbalances and the loss of motor control, among other things. You need a steady flow of energy from regular eating habits and a whole-foods diet. There cannot be constant stress, which steadily erodes the body’s ability to rebalance itself after the last stress response has occurred. Chronic low-grade stress is a major hidden health hazard in modern life.

Yet the issue of control contains a central mystery, because a cell’s ability to balance multiple functions simultaneously has never been adequately explained. It constitutes what could be called a field phenomenon; that is, all the disparate parts are regulated by a single controller that is holistic, the way the Earth’s magnetic field influences every magnet anywhere on the planet. But in the case of cells, no physical field explains how multiple functions can be controlled, as if by an invisible intelligence. Luckily for the cell, it has no choice but to trust in the field effect that keeps it running in perfect balance.

You are also embedded in the field of infinite intelligence that we call consciousness, but unlike a cell, you can lose contact with the field. To be in control requires tuning in to the level of consciousness that isn’t perturbed by external forces. This is actually a natural steady state, but in modern life, with its stress, distractions, and fast pace, remaining steady and centered requires consciously being mindful.

Present-Moment Awareness

Mindful of what? Mindful that you have been thrown out of the present moment. When you are present, you are in control. When you aren’t present, you have lost control. Everything happens inside. It’s not that you are immune to external forces, only that when you notice that you aren’t present, you get back there.

Meditation, if practiced over a period of time, makes it much easier to be mindful and also to return to present-moment awareness. Yet you can also do a quick remedy by finding a quiet place to be alone, close your eyes, take some deep breaths, and find your center again. Doing this several times a day is a good routine, because it alerts you in a mindful way to what it feels like to be steady and present.

If you are present, here and now, you are in control. The ego makes a mistake by always trying to get its own way, putting up resistance, or being right. Countless people think of those things as being in control. In reality, nothing throws you out of yourself like demanding to get what you want, resisting other people, and always having to be right.

How to Stay in Control

To translate this into daily life, all you have to do is to imitate what every cell does:

  • Trust in your existence.
  • See yourself as multi-dimensional, simultaneously merging body, mind, and spirit.
  • Favor cooperation over competition.
  • Take a holistic rather than a fragmented approach.
  • Attend to any need that arises as soon as it appears.
  • Accept other people as your equal, treating them with respect and dignity.
  • Take healing seriously, meaning physical, mental, and spiritual healing all together.
  • Be as self-aware as possible.
  • Realize that the present moment is the only time that’s fully real.

See yourself as constantly growing and evolving, and live according to this vision.Quite a long laundry list, you might say. But it boils down to one thing only: Live with present-moment awareness. That’s the ultimate secret that no amount of self-control exerted by the ego can achieve. By redefining what it means to be in control, you can achieve something invaluable for your personal success and happiness.

Source: Chopra

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Claudia Welss: Welcome, Dr. Chopra. As you know, I’m with the Institute of Noetic Sciences, and we have for many years been investigating the idea that consciousness is primary and causal in the universe, as well as in our personal and shared realities.

That’s had us a bit on the scientific fringe because so much of mainstream science still excludes consciousness. Your new book is pivotal because you’ve found a compelling way to introduce consciousness as fundamental to scientific inquiry. This is just in time because, as you write, “if there’s another extinction, it will be because of a science that is incomplete.” You Are the Universe supports the realization that we live in a participatory universe in which each of us has the agency to co-create our experience of reality and where every perception is an act of reality creation. So, for everyone who believes or who would like to believe that our inner landscape can be causal in transforming the outer one, You Are the Universe is a balm, bringing ages of scientific debate about the way the universe works to a credible, inspirational, and practical conclusion: the Universe is responsive to human beings.

The theme of this convergence series (see sidebar) is “Uniting the Tribes,” and reading your book reminds us that even in science there are different tribes. Could a new holistic science that includes consciousness be a uniting force, both within science itself and between science and spirituality? I feel a huge debt of gratitude for what you’re bringing into public awareness by addressing this question.

Deepak Chopra: Thank you, Claudia. It’s always a pleasure to be in conversation with you.

Welss: Thank you so much for being here, Deepak. For the most part, I’d like you to just take us wherever you’d like us to go. But I do have a few questions. To begin, I’d like to ask about the encouraging assertion you make in the book that a holistic science, one that includes consciousness, is inevitable because current scientific theories are completely stuck in their attempts to accurately describe reality and our relationship to it. And this, you say, is our most important and least attended to relationship.

Chopra: Science is struggling to explain what is called Reality. We’ve been through several iterations about what the universe is made of, who made the universe, what made the universe. We’ve been through the divine universe as explained in the book of Genesis. We’ve been through Newtonian classical physics, relativistic physics, both general theory and also special theory of relativity—quantum mechanics, eternal inflation, cosmic inflation, multiverses, on and on. None of these theories of science actually explains what Reality is or how we even know that there is something called Reality. So, the two basic mysteries of existence remain mysterious: (1) What is the true nature of existence? (2) How do we know that we exist or that something exists?

I felt it was incumbent upon me—along with the help of physicists, cosmologists, and quantum physicists including my co-author, Menas Kafatos—to really look at these two very fundamental questions. What is reality? What is existence? And how come we have awareness of that existence? That was the genesis of You Are the Universe: Discovering Your Cosmic Self and Why It Matters.

If you do a search on the Internet asking, “what are the most important or open questions in science today?,” you will find at the very top, the following questions that are open in science: (1) What is the universe made of? (2) What’s the biological basis of consciousness? (3) How did language come into existence? These three questions are intimately related.

What is the Universe Made of?

The reason it’s an open question is that we don’t know what it’s made of. The best thing we can say is that it’s made of nothing. Seventy percent of the universe is a mysterious entity called dark energy, which is a force, an anti-gravity force, that is ripping space apart and moving galaxies away from each other. So, space itself is expanding at lightning speeds. And we don’t know what this invisible force is. It doesn’t seem to be the kind of energy we speak of when we say mass is equal to energy.

Of the remaining 30% of the universe, 26% is something called dark matter, which is an invisible entity. It’s not atomic, so it does not reflect light, absorb light, emit light, or have anything to do with light. We are made of atoms; our interactions with the atomic universe are through light. And since this has nothing to do with light, although there are hypothetical particles called WIMPs, which stand for ‘weakly interactive massive particles,’ nobody knows what dark matter is made of other than it behaves like matter. It is not material. The reason it’s called matter is that it bends space-time in the same way as regular matter. So, it’s responsible for most of the gravity in our galaxy. It holds the galaxy together, including the solar system. If it wasn’t there, everything would fall apart. Planets would spin out of their orbit and the universe would disintegrate; so would we.

That leaves 4% of the universe, which is atomic, out of which 99.99% is invisible interstellar dust—mostly hydrogen and helium. So, the visible universe is .01% of all that exists, which includes hundreds of billions of galaxies, billions and billions and billions and billions of stars, and trillions and trillions and trillions of planets that are made of atoms. But this is .01%. The rest is either unknown or possibly unknowable.

The atomic universe is made up of atoms; the atoms themselves are made up of subatomic particles. When these particles are unmeasured, which means they haven’t actually been observed, they remain waves of possibility in a mathematical entity called Hilbert space. And that means they remain possibility waves in mathematical imagination. What’s the universe made of? We don’t know. The best thing we can say is nothing. What is the nothingness from which the whole universe arises, including our own self, everything that we call the body-mind, and everything that we call the physical universe?

What is the Basis of Consciousness?

The number two open question is, what’s the basis of consciousness? How do we know that we exist? How do we know the universe exists? How does the brain produce perception, sound, touch, sight, taste, smell, thoughts, feelings, emotions, memories, drives, images, imagination, introspection, intuition, and intention? Again, science has no idea. In fact, it’s a premise that the brain produces this thing called consciousness—that which makes any experience possible, whether it’s a mental experience, or a perceptual experience, or what we call the experience of physical reality.

We don’t know what consciousness is. Where is it? What is it made of? Again, consciousness doesn’t seem to have any physical form, so it’s made out of nothing as well. So, nothing is observing nothing to experience everything. This is the big conundrum that science is in at the moment. We do not know what creates experience. We do not know how we know what we know. We do not know the nature of the physical universe. And all our scientific models, even though they’re good for making calculations and creating together, they do not give us a clue to the fundamental questions of existence. Who are we? Where did we come from? Is there a God? Are we just a small speck of dust in the mindless void, in the junkyard of infinity? Or is something more meaningful going on? Right now, science is at a crossroads and cannot answer the most basic questions.

How did Language Come into Existence?

The third thing that I want to bring up right now is about language. We have language, so we can communicate our experiences with each other. Otherwise, we wouldn’t have this conversation; we wouldn’t have this discussion. We wouldn’t have a riddle. We wouldn’t have a way to even question the riddle. We wouldn’t have a way to examine the riddle of our existence. Language is very crucial to communication of experiences. Humans have both written language and oral language. But there are other kinds of language—mathematical language, language as symbolic expression and representation, communication of experiences, questions that we have, and riddles that we want to examine.

But if you ask linguists, “How did language come about?” they have no idea. Just like we have no idea how life came about, how the universe came about. Although I address all these questions in the book, about what was there before the Big Bang. How did time come into existence? Why is the universe mathematically fine-tuned to create both life and mind? We address these questions because we have language. Linguists have no idea how language came about, how it is there right now, and how it evolved to describe with words and stories the experiences that we have.

Once we have a little bit of a clue into these three questions, then we have to reexamine everything we know about Reality, everything we know about what we call existence.

Welss: Thank you, Dr. Chopra. In the book, you write about the importance of The Observer Effect in any consideration of Reality. I think it is helpful for us to understand here what The Observer Effect is.

Chopra: Well, according to at least one interpretation of quantum mechanics, which is called the Copenhagen Interpretation, until an observer is there, the universe exists as possibilities. The observer actually causes what are called ‘possibility waves’ to collapse into space-time events that we call physical matter. A quantum, which is a unit of energy and information, actually has something called mass and energy. The waves that give rise to it have neither mass nor energy. They exist in this ephemeral field of possibilities. You need an observer to actually make the world manifest.

Welss: You give a great illustration in the book by asking us to imagine coming downstairs in your house and it’s dark. All of a sudden, there’s a mouse in the corner scurrying across the floor. When he sees you observe him, he stops. That’s a simple but profound example of this effect in which the ordinary act of observing can affect the material world.

Chopra: Now, of course, that then leads into these questions, “Who’s the observer? Where is the observer? What is the observer?”

Welss:
That’s actually related to my next question. Would you please address what visionary quantum pioneer Wolfgang Pauli meant when he said, “The science of the future reality will neither be psychic nor physical, but somehow both and somehow neither.” And, if it fits with your response, please say more about what you mean when you say in the book that the universe is actually a mirror of the human nervous system.

Chopra: I’m saying that as a preliminary to something much more important. We know that the universe that we experience as human beings somehow has something to do with that which we call the human brain. We’re not experiencing the universe in the way, say, a bat would. A bat would experience the universe as the echo of ultrasound. A chameleon’s eyeballs swivel on two different axes; we can’t even remotely imagine what the universe would look like to a chameleon. A honeybee returns to its hive after visiting a flowering grove and does what is called a waggle dance to communicate where the other bees can go for honey. What we call perceptual reality is a species-specific phenomenon; there is no such thing as the look of the world. It depends on who’s looking and what nervous system they are using to do that looking.

Let’s examine that because we do not know how the brain actually produces the experience. When you’re looking at an object, how does the brain take photons that have no dimensionality or color and are all that are coming towards you and you have the experience of a three-dimensional world in space and time, with color and fragrance and texture and sound? We don’t know that. While we can say that our brain correlates with that experience, correlation does not necessarily mean causation. But we do know that a human brain produces what we call the human universe.

A dolphin brain would produce a dolphin universe. Different species have different perceptual experiences. But one thing they must share as the common ground of all experience is what we call awareness or consciousness. So, if you have a dog or a cat as a pet, or any other animal, and you have a relationship with that animal, that’s not because you’re perceiving the same perceptual reality. It’s like you are both in a virtual arcade using awareness as the interface through which you translate the experiences you’re having in human terms or dog terms or cat terms or any other species’ terms. The dog in the White House has no concept that it’s sitting in something called the White House, in something called the Oval Office, with a person called the President of the United States, who can press a button and cause nuclear warfare. Those are human concepts. And yet, you share awareness.

Awareness and consciousness is the common ground of all experience. And experiences are innumerable. Perceptual experiences are species-specific, but they’re also culture-specific and personal. There’s personal experience. There’s collective experience. There’s species experience. There’s transpersonal experience. And possibly there’s universal experience. So, what I’m saying is that you need awareness or consciousness to have experience. That experience could be a perceptual experience, in which case we call it the physical world, or it could be a mental experience or an image or a thought or an emotion. in which case we call it the mental world. But those are human constructs around experience.

You cannot separate an object from the experience of that object. If I’m looking at a cup of coffee on the mantelpiece, I cannot separate those objects from my perceptions of those objects, from my experience of those objects. So, where are those experiences occurring? They’re occurring in consciousness. Where is consciousness? We can’t find it. It doesn’t have a form. If it doesn’t have a form and you can’t find it, then it must be invisible. And being invisible, it’s not in space-time. If it’s not in space-time, then it’s eternal. It’s non-local. And so right now, we are non-local beings having a local experience where we are translating our experiences and then objectifying them as what we call “the physical body-mind and the physical world.” But the physical body-mind and the physical world are human constructs around experience. And experience is dependent on consciousness. So, if we were to define consciousness, which is not an easy thing, we would say—borrowing from many other experts in this area like Rupert Spira, Dan Siegel, and many others—consciousness is the knowing element in every subjective experience. Consciousness is that in which experience occurs and is known.

Here’s the difficult part. What is that out of which an experience is made? What is a thought made of? It’s a modified form of consciousness. What is an emotion? It’s a modification of consciousness. So, it’s made out of consciousness. Now, we don’t have any problem with this. But somehow we think our perceptions are not made out of consciousness because we call our perceptions ‘the external world.’ But perceptions are as much an activity or modification of consciousness as thoughts and emotions are. So, a sound is a modified form of consciousness. A texture is a modified form of consciousness. Taste, smell, color, form—these are modified forms of consciousness.

When you realize this, then you realize that all the building blocks of subjective experience are nothing other than sensations, images, feelings, thoughts, and sense perceptions. We objectify these as something we call the body-mind and the physical universe. When we normally think of ourselves as being in the universe, we think of ourselves as ‘me’ and the rest of the universe, and the ‘me’ is supposed to be somewhere in the body-mind. But you can’t find that ‘me’ in the body-mind because it’s not there. It’s formless.

In fact, the body-mind is as much an experience as what we call the physical world. And in raw terms, that experience is nothing but qualia, or qualities of experience, which are S-I-F-T—sensations, images, feelings, thoughts. Period. Now what we do is we create constructs around this. We objectify this experience. We call it the objective physical world. But in fact, that’s a human story. And that’s why I say you are the universe. You don’t exist in the universe. The so-called universe exists in you. You don’t exist in the body. The so-called body exists in you. You don’t exist in the mind. The so-called mind exists in you.

In other words, we are the creators of the human universe, and we’ve been doing it for centuries and millennia, but we don’t realize that we made up the whole thing. You know, we made up chairs and tables and furniture and physical objects like New York City and latitude and longitude. But we also made up stars and galaxies because stars and galaxies are nothing other than sensations, images, feelings, and thoughts, which are perturbations of consciousness.

Welss: Deepak, sometimes when I listen to you, I want to hold onto my chair. But it sounds like that really won’t help very much!

Chopra: (laughs) The chair is a construct. And Claudia is also a construct of the body-mind. The reality is a formless being that is now manifesting as Claudia, the chair, this conversation, and the phone.

Welss: You divide perception into three categories in the book. Can you tell us what those three categories are?

Chopra: The categories are perceptual categories, which we call the physical. But then we have a category called mental. And then we have a whole category called causal or spiritual. But again, these are ways of dividing an undivided wholeness.

Welss: To introduce my next question, I’ll just add three other categories from your book: perceptions we can change, perceptions we can’t change, and perceptions that are sometimes changeable and sometimes not. In your Facebook Live post after the US election, you advised that we have to face Reality. What does that mean, in a universe where Reality is somewhat malleable? And how deep does our agency to co-create Reality really go? Part two of that question would be this: in a universe where, as you just said, the fundamental building blocks of Reality are subjective experience, and in a world where there seems to be no objective truth, where do we find our moral compass?

Chopra: It’s not an easy thing to do, Claudia, because, as you know, we are bamboozled by the hypnosis of what we call social conditioning. And then we are part of that social conditioning. So, most of the thoughts you have are not your own. They’re recycled thoughts of society. And they’ve been recycling for centuries. What we call everyday reality is indeed a social construct, and our thoughts don’t belong to us, just like the molecules of our body don’t belong to us. They’re recycling in the entire ecosystem of what we call existence.

First of all, you have to accept the common reality. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be able to participate in it. There’s a motley group of sages, psychotics, geniuses, and rebels who are not part of this collective hypnosis. And we don’t treat them too kindly. We either crucify them or they’re outcasts of society or they’re considered insane.

We have to accept our common reality, perceptual experience, and the construct around it, if you want to survive in this world. But then having done so, participating in the social constructs so we can engage in conversation and politics and economics and social injustice and economic injustice and face the problems of climate change, we have to expand the conversation from a personal point of view to a more holistic point of view where we don’t have the subject-object split, which is ‘me’ and the universe. Actually, ‘me’ is an activity of the universe. So, we are all one holistic activity.

That realization could give rise to a new science of consciousness, which would look at creating technologies that would not be destructive. We would not mechanize death and atom bombs and nuclear weapons, and we would not cause climate change and eco-disruption and extinction of species. We do need a holistic science.

We need to also address fundamental questions about human suffering and things that humans dread, like old age, infirmity, and death, as well as the meaning and purpose of existence itself. We cannot do that if we buy into the collective construct. The wisdom traditions say that human suffering comes from not knowing the true nature of Reality. It comes from grasping and clinging to things that are in time and therefore impermanent. It comes from being afraid of impermanence. It comes from identifying with another construct called ‘the ego,’ which is a socially induced hallucination, and finally, it comes from the fear of death.

We have to address these and then go deeper into a more fundamental existence where we recognize ourselves as timeless beings, as formless consciousness having the experience of form. We are non-local beings having a local experience or human experience in time and space. The more we can shift our identity from our ego-bound personalities to the source of consciousness in which those are constructed, the more we can question our constructs.

The more we can question our interpretations of what a thought is, what a feeling is, what a sensation means, what a perception means, the more we can move into that collective domain where we can experience ourselves as an expression of divine creative intelligence and the more we will alleviate suffering in the world.

There are two levels of understanding human suffering. One is very practical. Feed the hungry. Work for social justice, economic justice, sustainability, economic upliftment, or for the welfare of all sentient beings. But there’s another level where we have to question the constructs that give us the experience of the everyday world and then become the authors, collectively, of the next stage of evolution of the human species. This would be literally participating in the evolution of the universe because the universe is a projection of our consciousness.

There are four principles that I’ve found very useful to live by. One is that everything that you’re experiencing is a projection of your conditioned mind. So, it’s representing who you are and where you are in your evolution. Number two, the real you was never born because it’s not in time and, therefore, it’s not subject to death. Number three, the fundamental nature of all existence is that it is without ego, and when you can go to that level, you can be free. And number four, if you can name it and you can experience it, it’s not you. You are the one who is doing the naming and the experiencing.

Welss: Thank you, Deepak. I can’t think of a more empowering message. And thank you so much for bringing up freedom. We recognize how important our ability to be free selves is to our capacity to be a healing force on the planet. I feel this is the conversation of our lifetime and could continue for a lifetime. And so I’m glad to hear, Deepak, that you’ll be teaching a course on this book.

The American anthropologist Loren Eiseley said, “He who seeks naively to embrace his own time will accept its masks and illusions.” I want to thank you so much, Deepak, for helping us see through the masks and illusions of our time. And thank you, Kurt, for all your contributions to the same.

Chopra: Thank you, Claudia.

Claudia Welss

Claudia’s projects are at the nexus of consciousness, technology, human-earth energetics, and large-scale social change. She’s board Chair for the Institute of Noetic Sciences and advises the IONS Innovation Lab, is on the steering committee of the Global Coherence Initiative, and is cofounder and Chair of the Invest in Yourself program at Nexus Global Youth Summit and Network, building the awareness that sustainable social change requires personal transformation within a global network of Millennial philanthropists, impact investors, and change agents.

Deepak Chopra, MD, FACP, Founder of The Chopra Foundation and the Chopra Center for Wellbeing, is a world-renowned pioneer in mind-body medicine and personal transformation, and is Board Certified in Internal Medicine, Endocrinology and Metabolism. He is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians and a member of the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists. […]

Source: kosmos journal

Published on Sep 22, 2017

Deepak explains in depth the experience of ‘I’.

The Chopra Well
Published on Sep 16, 2017
Deepak explains the position of science and the problem they face when asked to explain where experience occurs and what science refers to as material is at the source immaterial hence the hard problem.


Deepak describes the next leap in evolution as human beings.

Deepak Chopra: Scientists Are Naive Realists


Published on Aug 27, 2017

You can watch the full interview by becoming a supporter of SAND here: https://www.scienceandnonduality.com

Deepak Chopra is the author of more than 80 books, a quarter of them New York Times bestsellers. His medical training is in internal medicine and endocrinology. In this interview he talks of science’s approach to consciousness, suggests that it is matter, not consciousness, that is the hard problem, and explains why scientists can be described as naive realists.

Published on Aug 12, 2017

Excerpts from the book Magical Mind, Magical Body. A Perfect Balance of Mind, Body, and Spirit Is Your Birthright. The key lies in your mind — which has much more power than you ever realized possible. With Magical Mind, Magical Body, that power will be brought into your life.

After being inspired to expand their awareness and walk the path of higher consciousness, people can lose motivation…

Modern society has so much stress and rush—relieved by endless distractions—that a consciousness-based lifestyle seems out of joint. Meditation retreats may show a stark contrast to all this hustle and bustle, but when you come home, the pull of everyday life can feel inescapable.

Look at yourself today. How much time and effort will you expend on the duties and demands of work and family? How tired will rushing around make you? How much will you long for a distraction to take your mind off everything? In practical terms, this is what the pull of “real life” means. The mind is filled with the noise of constant activity just to keep up with everything. By itself, a meditation session or two isn’t enough to counter the pull away from inner silence and self-awareness.

In the world’s wisdom traditions this obstacle was fully recognized. As long as the restless mind has existed, it really doesn’t matter if someone lived in ancient India at the time of the Buddha or today in the middle of a noisy city. The traditions of sages and teachers have offered a solution, which can be called the “pull of the self.” When you attune yourself to this inner magnetism, as it were, you can maintain your inspiration to grow and evolve over years, decades, and a lifetime.

The pull of the self means reorienting your attention from external situations, but that doesn’t imply that you ignore the outer world or resist it, either. To ignore is a form of denial. To resist strengthens the hold of what you are trying to push away. Instead, I’m talking about a new relationship between two worlds, the one “in here” and the one “out there.” Think of this relationship as a sliding scale, a line with two end points.

The Pull of the Outer World

At one end point the pull of the outer world totally dominates. Life will then have certain inevitable qualities, as follows:

  • Feeling unsafe and insecure, constantly vigilant to protect yourself from the next threat from outside.
  • A sense of insignificance in the face of titanic natural forces.
  • Pressure to protect yourself by conforming to social norms and behavior.
  • A constant need for outward pleasures, since only they can stimulate a sense of enjoyment from life.
  • Fear of disease, aging, and death.

Since no one actually exists at this extreme, it sounds far removed from daily experience, and yet somewhere along the sliding scale we all feel overwhelmed by the insecurity that comes from being very small in a very big, empty universe.

The pull of the outer world induces us to put physical reality first, and life becomes a struggle to find security and happiness under the threat that everything could collapse at any moment. Besides anxiety, there are other feelings that mask our insecurity, like the rush of thrill-seeking, the hypnosis of entertainment, and the drive to succeed.

The Pull of the Inner World

At the opposite end point the pull of the self is total. Life will then have very different qualities, as follows:

  • Being centered and quiet inside is a constant state that cannot be shaken by external circumstances.This leads to a sense of complete security.
  • One’s own awareness provides the joy and fulfillment that life is meant to bring.
  • Change is no longer threatening, because you see yourself as the still point in a turning world.
  • Experience passes through you without altering your state of being.
  • You live in the eternal now, which makes aging and death irrelevant–they have dropped away as part of the illusion of change.
  • By living from your source, your true self, you are always in touch with the source of creativity and renewed possibilities.
  • You have no conflicts within yourself or with other people, because the wholeness of pure consciousness eradicates the play of opposites, including the play of light versus darkness, good versus evil.

This extreme may sound remote, but any experience that draws your attention in this direction has been caused by the pull of the self. If you pay attention, there are many moments when you feel safe and secure; life looks beautiful; the mind is quiet and calm; you feel free of regret and worries; the past brings no bad memories; you find it easy to accept and appreciate your life and the people in it; an inner joy bubbles up; or you feel somehow that a higher presence exists and enfolds you.

We value such experiences without being told to; they are satisfying by themselves. That’s the hallmark of the pull of the self. Outer circumstances no longer matter, and it doesn’t matter if this feeling persists for two days or two minutes—it is timeless for as long as it lasts. Or to be more precise, you slip out of time into another place that is simply here and now.

If you want to evolve, meditation and leading a life with positive choices are important. But evolution won’t truly take hold unless you pay attention to the pull of the self. Human beings aren’t robots whose wiring can be changed simply by plugging our brains into meditation, prayer, positive thinking, or the influence of wise teachers and mentors. I’m not discounting those things—they have their valued place in the world’s wisdom traditions. But the context of life is always the pull of the outer world, which is noisy and fretful, happy one day and sad the next, and full of pain and pleasure in unpredictable proportion.

The pull of the self is quiet but true, oblivious to the rise and fall of everyday situations. Finding non-change in the midst of change has long been the byword in the evolution of consciousness. The pull of the self, which we can notice every day, is the secret for making non-change a living reality.
Source: Chopra

Published on Jun 1, 2017

Rupert discusses his new book, The Nature of Consciousness:
Essays on the Unity of Mind and Matter, with Deepak Chopra.


Take a comfortable seat and close your eyes. Together, let’s take some long, deep conscious breaths, taking in the love of everyone around us and exhaling that love out into the world. Inhale and exhale, slowly and deeply.

In your mind’s eye, envision the faces of people around the world, on continents far away, in topography that may be new or different for us, in mountain villages, rainforests, high desert regions, and cities we may have only seen in photos.

Bring into your awareness your highest vision of perfect health. See it infusing your own body; you, perfectly healthy, vibrant, and full of joy.

Take that feeling of perfect health that surrounds you and send it along this network of unity, so that everyone feels the nurturing sensations of your vibrant love.

Let’s form our intention that the vitality and joy we have experienced throughout this journey benefit the entire global community.

Published on Apr 30, 2017

Did you like this meditation? Join our Ananda meditation community and create your own customizable meditation experience at https://www.deepakchopra.com/7DTRS

You are made of love, joy, and powers as mighty as all of creation. You are a radiant spirit, full of light, and worthy of all good things. As we release our day and prepare our bodies to rest and start fresh tomorrow, know that you are loved. You are encouraged to dream big – to let your light shine for all to see.

Each day is a new opportunity to start over, to let go of past mistakes, and to open our arms to new adventures. If you made mistakes today, it’s okay. You can correct them. Don’t be hard on yourself; making missteps is all a part of learning and growing, and tomorrow is a new day. If a test didn’t go well, or if you got into an argument with someone… even if you just felt “off” today, you can gently let it go now.

Each day also brings so many wonderful things to be thankful for – our family and friendships, our home, our warm bed… You probably have many more to add to that list, so let’s stop for a moment and think about three things you are grateful for today. You can say them quietly to yourself.


Forgiveness begins with the recognition that actions perceived as hurtful or wrong are the perception of the ego, not the higher self.

The ego moves us to seek justice or revenge to right a perceived wrong. The higher self, however, knows that the universe will rebalance all actions at the appropriate time, in the appropriate way in accord with the whole cosmos, not just the view of one person’s hurt feelings.

When you forgive, you are allowing that process to unfold instead of holding on to your ego’s point of view. Forgiveness is a courageous act of trust and compassion, one that comes with the bountiful reward of healing, love, light, and liberation for our bodies, minds and spirits.

When we find that we are holding on to pain or resentment connected to a person or situation, we are, in essence, holding onto memories from the past. On this journey we are now choosing to live love in every moment. Love exists, not in the past, but in the present moment.

The beauty of this choice is that as we forgive another we are actually choosing freedom for our own soul. Through forgiveness, we free ourselves from attachments to the past and we clear encumbrances that constrict our heart, helping to expand our ability to love and be loved.

As we embrace the practice of forgiveness, we recognize that this natural process brings us closer to our essential nature and is part of our spiritual evolution.


It is important to remind ourselves that we are already complete, created by universal intelligence, to be a divinely loving, lovable and loved being.

We are the total, complete package. Looking outward for our good is a desire of the ego, which craves validation from outside sources, mainly opinions from others.

Going within, and reconnecting with our Higher Self, reaffirms that validation comes from the inside, the home of pure love and acceptance.

Our sense of wholeness must come from self-referral, which is, using our soul as the reference point instead of seeking approval elsewhere.

Sometimes, in order to find love, we believe we have to have a fit body, perfect skin and fashionable clothes. Chasing what we are told is perfection is an exhausting exercise that takes valuable time and energy – energy that could be spent contemplating and living our magnificence.

The love we are looking for is looking for us – inside of ourselves, in the very core of our being.


Getting to the source of any pain, whether it is physical, mental, or emotional, is how healing begins. Often times, our pain is the result of events from long ago, and the hold these memories have on us keep us stuck in life patterns that are no longer serving us. These past events limit our ability to be fully present and at peace with ourselves. Once we can identify these “wound-producing” stories, we can then reframe them so healing can occur.

Recognizing that our pain comes from an unmet need opens the possibility of how we can consciously get our needs met now.

Shifting our awareness, seeing ourselves with new eyes and listening with new ears, is the secret to all healing.

Our inner silence is our greatest teacher, our greatest tool for healing. In the noise and din of the outside world, it is almost impossible to hear the voice of spirit, of the universe, of our Higher Self saying, “You are loved. You are loved.”

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