Living a Life of Harmony – Book Excerpt
Here’s the chapter structure and a sample of content from my book Living a Life of Harmony – Seven Guidelines for Cultivating Peace and Kindness.
- Chapter One – Introduction
- Chapter Two – The Process
- Chapter Three – The Guidelines
- Chapter Four – Honor the body
- Chapter Five – Be present, bringing awareness and acceptance into every moment
- Chapter Six – Act with kindness, considering everyone and everything
- Chapter Seven – Understand the truth, communicating it selectively and skillfully
- Chapter Eight – Do only what needs to be done
- Chapter Nine – Harmoniously obtain and retain only what you need
- Chapter Ten – Apply The Guidelines to your digital device usage
- Chapter Eleven – Building & Structuring Your Practice
- Chapter Twelve – Afterword
Have you ever asked yourself why things happen? Why you’re here on earth, and what role you play in it all? How can you remain peaceful, and live a life of harmony? In this book I’ll be guiding you to explore and answer these intriguing questions.
The first thing to get your head around is that there’s one big universal process. What I call “The Process”. Everything’s connected. Through a series of explanations, examples, and techniques, I’ll help you gain a deeper understanding and acceptance of this universal process. You’ll be ultimately placed to observe and accept everything, leaving you feeling empowered, peaceful, confident and stress free. Your new way of using your mind will give you the option to act wisely, regardless of the conditions you face.
It’s my hope that for you, that this book will serve as a friend and reference guide, to help you live skillfully and peacefully. Become fully aligned with what is, what’s happened and what’s to come. Live a life of harmony within The Process. Let us begin…
Over the centuries, countless religions and philosophies have produced wonderful lists that guide their followers to act ethically and in accordance with The Process. People are advised not to steal, to speak truthfully, not to cause harm, to be loyal to their partners and so on. I’ve studied and practiced some of these lists and they’ve been extremely helpful. That said, it’s challenging to understand and apply them these days, given that they were written so long ago. In Living a Life of Harmony, I’m introducing a fresh and evolutionary set of guidelines that are simple to understand and practical now, in the twenty-first century. They’re aligned with advice from respected religions and philosophies. I’m going to present these guidelines in a way that you can understand and apply them, in your present life situation. This will provide you with a compass to guide you through The Process. Here they are:
- Honor the body
- Be present, bringing awareness and acceptance into every moment
- Act with kindness, considering everyone and everything
- Understand the truth, communicating it selectively and skillfully
- Do only what needs to be done
- Harmoniously obtain and retain only what you need
- Apply The Guidelines to your digital device usage
Be present, bringing awareness and acceptance into every moment
The path of alignment is what you need to be following. This links very much to mindfulness practice. It starts with awareness. You’re aware of the present moment, or a particular situation. The next step is to bring acceptance to what you’re aware of. From there, you’ll always take aligned action. This is the path of the Four A’s: Awareness, acceptance, and aligned action. This path is in alignment with The Process. Even if you’ve never heard about The Guidelines, when you follow this path you’ll always align yourself with them.
The path of misalignment should be avoided. When we’re lost in thought, we’re resisting our experience in the present moment. Being lost in thought is a form of dreaming. Instead of being aware and accepting of what’s taking place inside and around us, we drift off into uncontrolled thought. When this happens, we lose touch with our direct experience. As I’ve already mentioned, any thoughts that we experience, and subsequent action from this state will be misaligned, causing harm to ourselves and others. This misalignment is rooted in ignorance from our ego. The ego wishes to control situations to accommodate its own fear-based agenda rather than wanting what’s good for The Process in its entirety. The ego can be forgiven for this given its lack of connection to the intelligence within The Process. It’s analogous to somebody doing something wrong because they don’t know better. When we experience suffering, it’s feedback from The Process, and an instruction to switch from the path of misalignment, to the path of alignment.
Apply The Guidelines to your digital device usage
When I was considering this guideline, I soon realized there are enough pointers to fill a book dedicated to digital device usage. I produced a shorter, high level list of principles that encompass all of the detailed guidance. These are called ‘The Seven Principles of Conscious Digital Device Usage’. If you follow these, you will align your digital device usage with what The Process needs. Practicing these principles will help humanity evolve through the digital era, as well as allowing you to live a life of harmony today. Here are ‘The Seven Principles of Conscious Digital Device Usage’:
- Only use a device when it’s really needed
- Stay mindful during device usage
- Be kind to your body during device usage
- Communicate selectively, truthfully, and skillfully during device usage
- Have time away from your devices every day
- Take opportunities for real human contact
- Accept that digital device usage is part of life
Do only what needs to be done
The norm in this day and age is for people to do too much and keep themselves busy. You may observe this when you speak with people. When you ask how somebody’s doing, and they say “I’ve been busy”. Businesses are following the same trend. As the push continues for economic performance, businesses are expecting increased productivity from their workforce.
Doing only what needs to be done, involves aligning your activities with The Guidelines. Review your existing activities by creating a list of everything you do. Be sure to include your digital activities e.g. social media, emailing, and watching online videos. Work through each activity following the process below.