picking up the talking stick.
In a little while, it will go to someone else--maybe you.
In the warmth
of the campfire, we can tell our secrets.
We can share our dreams.
There while holding the stick, we cannot be argued
with, interrupted, or ridiculed.
stick gives us time, and a platform to say our piece.
Others may disagree
with our statements, that’s okay, they will have their turn.
After a while we see each other for who we are—we are The Wisdom Seekers.
You know that
the talking stick is a Native American practice. It’s a physical item, a
decorated stick that gives the one holding it the right to talk.
The others do not
interrupt, make snide comments, or argue. After the first speaker is complete the
stick passes to the next person who wishes to use it.
I saw the
stick lying on the floor this morning vibrating as though it had been attached
to an electrical wire.
Yet, as I, with
a quivering hand, picked up the stick I
wondered if I would be thrown out of the
group. I feared ridicule and laughter. You don’t know what you’re talking about
some might say. You’re crazy, says another.
will have your turn.
I know I’m
not crazy. I know that there is a truth buried deep within me from old times, from
ancient cultures, from present teachers, and from my own experience.
It is our
duty to share what we have gained from the privilege of living on this beautiful
planet. (I am in awe. If you don’t value
this planet watch “This Strange Rock,” on Netflix, and see how our earth is
fighting for us daily.)
We have a
duty to teach what we know and to counter the negative bias that permeates all
of us as human beings.
You know how
anything negative sticks like Velcro to Velcro.
We can have
one hundred positive comments aimed at us, but let one negative slip in and
preys on negativity daily. It feeds us with danger, with stories of war or rumors
of more war, murder, someone falling or getting trapped, animal harmed, the
atmosphere in danger, the ozone leaving, asteroids crashing into us, and the
sun swallowing us up.
to make a stalwart soul quiver in the closet.
made of stronger stuff.
We know that
for the 600,000 years of evolution that built negative bias into us, it helped
us to survive. It kept us away from Saber-toothed tigers, for if we didn’t jump
from danger, or learn what it was, or what its habits were, we weren’t there
the following day.
brain is not equipped to face tigers every day. It isn’t equipped to face the ills of the entire world
on a daily basis. It’s too big for us. We evolved in tribes, a small group of
people we could love, care for, and feel
with. But the entire world? That’s overwhelm.
We can’t do
anything about the past. We can, right now, be advocates for our own happiness.
We have a big thinking brain, we can learn and grow from RIGHT NOW.
Forleo asked Rick Hanson what the difference between the BRAIN and the MIND
was, he said the brain is the hardware. The Mind is the nervous system that took those 600,000 years to evolve. It processes
information. For example, the brain sees
the traffic light, the red, yellow, and green. The mind interprets them.
We can use
our mind to actually change our brain, for thought patterns leave behind
lasting traces. “Neurons that fire together, wire together,” says Hanson,
“Pat the lizard, feed the mouse, and hug the
is the Reptilian Brain, you’ve heard of that one. It is our primitive brain whose
purpose is to see that we survive. (Fight, run, freeze.)
The mouse is
the mammalian brain. It is called the limbic system and is the center of
emotion and learning.
in the mammalian brain is the filtering system—the security checkpoint of
airports. It scans for threats or danger, then it
authorizes admittance into the higher brain, the neocortex.
has no concept of time. Past, present, and
futures are all one and the same.
explains how traumatized individuals are stuck
in the past. For them, their trauma is
happening right now. And the amygdala was never designed to store long-term, but it does.
instructor said, to go ahead and repeat your
bad experiences as long as you want. But 10 times is enough.
Sometimes the amygdala is called, the joyful
amygdala for it has a
train your amygdala away from trauma. The more you know yourself, the more resilient
The more resilient
you are, the happier you are.
opportunity to be happy. Stay with it. Feel the emotion. Allow it to penetrate your entire being. Remember, “Neurons that fire together wire
together.” Too often we let the good slip past us, that compliment where we
say, “Oh, that old thing.”
it to settle, allow those neurons to wire.
opportunity to be joyful.
Intelligent people use their thinking to guide their emotions rather than their
emotions to dictate their thinking and behavior.
Now, hug the
The monkey represents
the primate, the higher brain, the neocortex. The monkey focuses on relationships.
It is our need for social connections. Hanson says that LOVE is the multivitamin.
We as humans
are good at having experiences, so position yourself to go for the better.
“Be happy for others, when you are happy for
others, you will always be happy.”—Dali Lama
the superpower of superpowers.”