Friday, April 26, 2013

Maybe, you still can learn something of birds…

When did you hear the birds around you for the last time?

My daughter, who was here on summer holidays, on a morning went with me to the meditation class. At our current Villa-Asia location we do that morning meditation on a plateau in the mountains with a beautiful view on the forest surrounding us. After the class she told me that she had experienced a ‘surround sound show’ of bird sounds. It seems sometimes like you live here in a kind of giant aviary.

As long as I live here now, I never heard the birds sing an unhappy song. Of course, because I can’t talk their language as a human being, I am not sure about that. But if you listen in silence to the sounds of those birds around you, you hear and you experience only a kind of joy.
In the morning we awake in the cheerful bird disco and at night other sounds come instead. In the Western world you can get CDs to calm down with this noises. At the current Villa-Asia place it is the standard and yes, also here you can put the sound 'off '. You only have to shut your windows (and turn the air-conditioning ‘on’. But ... why would you? Safe energy and enjoy!

Those birds are gathering or hunting for their food the whole day. Actually they are busy with the bets on their primary necessities such as Maslow so beautifully described. With ' security ', or 'possession', they have little to do. They always seem to find time to every now and then sing a pleasant song. They live with and in the moment.

Lots of times I hear people say, “I want this. I want that. I ought to have this and have that.” These people have their minds so set on the things they want that they don’t stop to appreciate and enjoy what they have. I don’t know if people like this ever notice the birds singing outside, but if they could stop and listen, they might learn something from these birds.

According me, this is the world of marketing. Craving for more. Often I say therefore that advertising is actually only created for those things that you really don't need. We have to enjoy what we already have. This is one of the little secrets of life. If we don’t have this attitude we are too hard on ourselves.

In the continuous rat-race called ‘western life’ to try to have more to become happy in any case most of the times you do not hear the birds around you. Although, they still go on producing their cheerful tunes. Perhaps as a reminder that you also can be happy with ‘little’ or to teach that you just enjoy everything what you already have.
And if that is difficult for you anyway ... try to give attention to that continuous surround show around you. You'll be surprised what you all didn't hear till that moment but always was there, just for you.

Frans Captijn
Host / Catalyst / Talenteer at Captijn Insight

Captijn Insight“Catalyst in your process to new sustainable flow. Whether you are an individual, couple, team or an organization.”

Friday, April 12, 2013

A celebration again! Happy Songkran!

The Songkran festival is celebrated in Thailand as the traditional New Year's Day from 13 to 16 April. It coincides with the New Year of many calendars Southeast Asia.

The date of the festival was originally set by astrological calculation, but it is now fixed. Songkran falls in the hottest time of the year in Thailand, at the end of the dry season. Songkran has traditionally been celebrated as the New Year for many centuries. It is now observed nationwide, even in the far south. However, the most famous Songkran celebrations are still in the northern city of Chiang Mai, where it continues for six days and even longer. It has also become a party for foreigners and an additional reason for many to visit Thailand for immersion in another culture. 

April 13th Wan Sangkhan Lohng. People clean their houses and prepare for the new year festival on this day. The Chiangmai Songkran parade traditionally takes place on this day involving revered Buddha images from the city's temples, floats, representative groups from the various districts of Chiangmai province, musicians, and traditionally costumed beauties all of whom are liberally drenched all along the parade route by the spectators.

At our place we have / celebrate Rod Nam Dam Hua (During the Songkran festival, the Lanna people will conduct the Su Ma Karawa ceremony in order to apologize to elders for all the bad deeds they have done to them, either intentionally or unintentionally, to show their gratitude and respect. This ceremony is called Rod Nam Dam Hua, which usually begins on the first day of the incoming year.) and Offering food to monks on the morning.

Small molded sand Chedis are build on our location. Please see the attached photo. 

April 14th Wan Nao. On Wan Nao people prepare cooked and preserved food to be used in Buddhist merit making on the next day. On this day people also go down to the Ping River to collect buckets of sand which is used to construct molded sand chedis, decorated with cut paper streamers and flowers, in the temple compound. When demolished, the sand from the chedis raises the level of the temple courtyard.

April 15th Wan Payawan. On this, the first day of the new year, people gathered at the wat in the early morning to offer the food prepared the previous day, fruit, new robes, and other goods to the monks. Traditionally this was the day when subdued water play started, but this has devolved to the exuberant water throwing that stretches over the four days of the festival.

April 16th Wan Park Bpee. On this day people pay respect to their ancestors, elders, or people worthy of respect due to advanced age or position. Scented water is poured over the hands of the individuals being paid respect who in turn bless the participants in the ceremony.

Happy Songkran!

Frans Captijn
Host / Catalyst / Talenteer at Captijn Insight

Captijn Insight“Catalyst in your process to new sustainable flow. Whether you are an individual, couple, team or an organization.”

Friday, April 5, 2013

Don’t fight with yourself.

The Buddhism learns a Path to Peace. In Villa-Asia we also work with it.

One of the things following this path is to be equanimous.

Equanimity refers to the ability to accept what is without resistance. After all, if something’s already so, what’s the benefit of resisting? Equanimity refers to accepting things you can’t control in a given moment. And it refers to not denying or suppressing your thoughts and emotions. You can’t control the financial markets or a company’s market value. Also there are things in your personal life. So being equanimous about these things is a healthy strategy.

Of course, this doesn’t mean you must accept everything as ‘is’ and not make changes. If you’re unhappy with a situation and are in a position to change it, than do so. Do not sit still, work on yourself, do not wait but take the first step and discover your inner voice.

Literally, “equanimity” means balance. In practical terms it means don’t fight with yourself. 
Stop with battling but take life as it appears and enjoy the lessons. What do they say about you? Equanimity refers to an attitude of not interfering with the operation of the six senses (hearing, seeing, smelling, tasting, the thinking mind and the feeling body) or sensory experience.

Just act of compassion.

Frans Captijn
Host / Catalyst / Talenteer at Captijn Insight

Captijn Insight“Catalyst in your process to new sustainable flow. Whether you are an individual, couple, team or an organization.”