One crucial element of good living that we have mostly cast aside is the idea of getting to know ourselves. For me, the concept of getting to know the 'how, what and why' of our motivation in life, is the foundation of our human experience. The quality of our personal and public life, as well as our relationships and careers could be improved from night to day if we could take the time to discover and reflect on our innermost feelings, programming, and reactivity.
In a perfect world, children would be given the tools for emotional intellegence at school and at home. The arts would have equal value to academia, and kids would not be made to feel shame about their competence and intellegence, especially in institutions.
After all, how long is a piece of string? And how can you compare apples to oranges? That brings me to my next point, that good living is a radical acceptance of ourselves, and the world around us. It is a compassionate experience that pays close attention to the child within us, and the unfolding mysteries of our natural Universe.
If I could remind people to make better friends of themselves, to step out of their thoughts so to enjoy the tingling sensation that is life, then my dreams would be sweet knowing that this very space touches goodness. It would mean that like this support group of inspiring people that I'm about to share with you, I have used the internet (a device so often criticized for removing 'us' of 'ourselves') for a deeper connection with life.
This is what I consider 'good living'. Not how well you can decorate your house to look like a magazine spread, nor how you need to proove your worthiness of happiness. The mystery of good living, is that happiness and sadness are both crucial parts of it, so are an infinite rainbow of emotion, and being able to sense the whirling of feeling within ourselves is the interface of experience itself.
Dr. Tara Brach
Strap in for a ride down a wormhole that sucks you in a and spits your soul out into a kind, loving dreamland. Dr Tara Brach opens up a space for us to explore ourselves in the raw, holding our hand with her kind and soft voice, you will find her talks fascinating grounds for further conversation with yourself. I particularly love how she draws relatable stories to great philosophical ideas, sometimes light, and at other times heart moving examples of humanity.
Her talks give you the tools to embrace the everyday with mindfulness and kindness. I also found her book, 'Radical Acceptance' hard to put down, as it weaves her personal struggles with other accounts of our strange human experience, ultimately showing us that reality is not made up of the stories that play in our heads.
Alain de Botton
Your adorable, very nerdy pal from highschool has put together some very compelling points about our culture, societal behaviour, and inner thoughts over the expanse of a very impressive ongoing body of work. An academic through and through, Alain de Botton has the gumption to bring the words of great thinkers through history to life once more in a very relatable sense. He brings together philisophy through history to look at how we function, and my kudos goes to him for his thoughtful attention to his audience. You will not be lost in a scary world of non-sensical jargon here.
Alain de Botton tells us why its important to pay attention to art, and how your idea of romantic relationship is riddled with booby traps. I recommend watching his documentary called 'Status Anxiety', looking at the psychological effect of meritocratic societies, who merit those who have worked to success, and label those who have not touched it as, 'losers'. I also encourage you to check out his project called 'The School of Life' which is exactly that! A Youtube librabry of short digestable insights into the human experience, great thinkers through history, and other fun topics to sink your teeth into.
Out of the billions of Youtube yoga teachers, Adriene Mishler stands out from the rest for her earthy, no-bullshit attitude to using yoga as a tool to reconnect with our bodies. Like Dr Tara Brach, Adriene will help you bring awareness to the mind-body connection that has been disjointed by the Modern condition with her project called 'Yoga with Adrienne'.
She is a refreshing reminder to be true to yourself and to check in with your motivation and intentions that drive you through time on this rock. Adriene has had me and millions of others across the globe doing asanas in our bedrooms and greeting the world with yoga everyday. Oh yeah, and she has the cutest Blue Healer named Benji who trots in and out of her videos. What a crazy wave for sure!