Tag Archive 'Buddha’s Brain'

Jul 27 2011

From Hyper-Vigilance to Higher-Vigilance – #76

I sometimes call my new kitten Buddha-Pest because at times he has the serenity of a Buddha, but at other times he is a pest — nipping, biting, and digging his claws into anything that moves! This is much like my mind, which at times rests in a sublime state of peace and acceptance, and at other times pesters me with gnawing, clawing fear thoughts, like, “What’s that ache? What’s that twinge? Why am I so tired? Could it be the cancer is back!?”

I wish I could rest in a Buddha-full state of serenity all the time, but my mind is ever alert for danger. That’s what the lower reptilian brain does — its prime directive is survival and avoiding harm. For that reason, according to Rick Hanson, author of the book Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom, painful experiences are much more easily and deeply imprinted in our brains than pleasurable ones. He explains that there is “an innate negativity bias of the brain, whose unfortunate default setting is to be Velcro for negative experiences but Teflon for positive ones.”

Here’s an example: A few weeks ago I saw a three-foot snake on the nature path behind my house. It was patiently poised beside a gopher hole, so I’m assuming it was a gopher snake. Nevertheless, it was a SNAKE! And it was BIG! I haven’t been back there since…until today. I walked along the path, vigilantly scanning for snakes, seeing twigs, and even shadows of branches, as snakes. Even though I was surrounded by beautiful nature, all I could envision was snakes! I sadly realized, “Every time I walk here now I will be looking for snakes.” The same is true with cancer — with each minor ache and pain and fatigue…my mind leaps to cancer.

Buddhists call this “the pain of pain” — the initial pain is unavoidable, but the reaction to that pain, the fear and resistance to it, is self-inflicted. The challenge is to get free of the pain of pain, to let go of negative reactions to ‘what is’, because those reactions and perceptions are what cause the greatest suffering.

I want to walk along life’s path and see the beautiful flowers, the blue sky, the mountains, instead of imagining twigs as snakes and twinges as cancer. I want to be higher-vigilant instead of hyper-vigilant — to see life from the higher perspective of my soul, where I remember that I am an eternal being, where I know that cancer is my great teacher, life enhancer, and burr under my saddle that woke me up and keeps me awake!

Fortunately, the higher brain has neuroplasticity, which is the ability to learn from experience and imprint the positive new learning. But in order for this to happen, research shows that the new belief and feeling needs to be repeated many, many times. Fear is an easy neural pathway to go down. Faith needs to be repeated over and over again. Therefore, whenever fear appears, I higher-vigilantly remind myself, “What’s the truth? The truth is that right now I am safe. Right now all is well. Right now is all there is.” I breathe a big, deep breath, really feeling and letting in this belief.

Rick Hansen says we need to hold the desired thought and feeling for about 30 seconds so that it can imprint in our memory. We need to bathe in it for a bit and feel it fully. He says, “The longer that something is held in awareness and the more emotionally stimulating it is, the more neurons that fire and thus wire together. The more you get your neurons firing about positive facts, the more they’ll be wiring up positive neural structures.”

I am passionately intent on firing and wiring beautiful, Buddha-full neural pathways in my brain — pathways where a snake is just a snake, simply another of God’s creatures, and a twinge is just twinge, reminding me to breathe and turn from hyper-vigilance to higher-vigilance, and cancer is just a kick in the can, waking me up to my true self, my Big Ass Soul Self.

Being in a state of higher vigilance helps me put the ‘can’ in cancer, as in I can do this, I can learn and grow from this, I can remember that I am watched over, loved and guided, I can be present with whatever happens, fully, deeply present. I’m feeling all fired up now! I’m going to go dance a rousing rendition of the cancan to help fire and wire this feeling!

Is your mind a Buddha-pest, serene at times but pestering you with habitual, hyper-vigilant worry thoughts? I invite you to shift into higher-vigilance and fire and wire up some new, positive, life-enhancing neural pathways! Yes you can can!

In Love,

Jan Jacobsen

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Mar 03 2011

How to Be Really, Truly, Deeply Free & Clear – Issue #68

Rumi said, “Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” Our natural state is love, health and wholeness. With cancer cells possibly still remaining in my body (according to my recent PET scan), I am on a full-scale mission to clear, clean and purify myself physically and emotionally, removing the barriers that keep me from love, health and wholeness.

Physically I have been doing a healing regimen that deeply cleans and clears my body (described in my previous newsletter). I am also doing deep cleaning on an emotional level and I want to share with you three powerful tools I’ve combined for optimal inner cleansing. One is called Ho’oponopono, an ancient Hawaiian healing tradition (ho’o means cause and ponopono means perfection). It’s modern form is taught by Dr. Hew Len, who is famous for having healed an entire ward of criminally insane people at Hawaii State Hospital in the 1980’s, without therapy, by simply doing Ho’oponopono on himself.

Its basic premise is that everything in our life is a projection – just like in a dream, it is all an aspect of ourselves. Whatever shows up in our life is our memories and old programming replaying ‘out there’, showing us where we are blocked from our true divine self. The way to clear these programs and return to our pure essence state is to say these words over and over until we are clear, “I love you. I’m sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you.”

Conflict “out there” is cleared “in here”, and once clear we are one with the Divine. The beauty part is that in that clear, higher vibrational state we attract miracles. That state can be maintained by repeatedly saying to ourselves throughout the day, “I love you” and “Thank you”. Doing this on a daily basis aligns us with a state of grace place where life unfolds easefully and magically. That’s where I want to live!

I have found that doing EFT while doing Ho’oponopono makes it even more powerful. EFT stands for Emotional Freedom Technique, an extremely effective healing method that involves tapping on specific meridian points to clear negative beliefs, feelings and programs from our body and bring in new desired beliefs (see P.S. below for more info).  When you add to that some deep, slow breaths with long out-breaths, it further clears away the charge, since our reactive programming is locked in by shallow breaths and is set free by deep, full breaths.

I recently had an opportunity to put these three clearing superpowers to the test. I was having a conflict with someone in my life that set my two inner chickens to fighting. One chicken, Chicken Little, felt victimized, with feathers ruffled, lots of plaintive squawking, and she wanted to fly the coop. The other chicken, my glorious Warrioress Chicken Supreme, wanted to fly with the eagles and thus kept bringing me back to the awareness, “If it’s in your life, it’s in you. Now is an opportunity to clear, clean, and heal this inside yourself.”

While one part of me was having a furious uprising, the other was having a spiritual “upwising” (as Swamibeyondanonda would say). As I witnessed myself preparing for a defensive battle, I thought, “Since it’s my creation, why not prepare for peace?” This was a new thought for me – instead of imagining a battle ahead, I could imagine peace.

Realizing the other person was mirroring a wounded part of myself, I loved that wounded part in me. Whenever I felt the furious wet-hen uprising within, I’d repeat the words, “I love you. I’m sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you.”  I added the meridian tapping and deep, slow breaths and the result was a peaceful resolution of the conflict. It proves the saying, “My how you’ve changed since I’ve changed.” When I shift inside, my world shifts outside. I can choose love and peace, and clear whatever gets in the way of that with Ho’oponopono, meridian tapping, and deep slow breaths.

There’s a wonderful story about Nelson Mandela (as told in the book Buddha’s Brain) who was imprisoned for 27 years. His greatest despair was that he would lose contact with loved ones, as he was only allowed to receive letters from them about every 6 months. He didn’t want to live without love so he decided he was going to bring love to the guards. By loving them it was hard for them to treat him harshly, therefore guards were frequently replaced; but he would simply love the new ones too. Despite the harsh barriers of prison and hard labor, he chose to focus on love and that is what he experienced. Though he was in prison he was FREE of hatred and anger.

These three tools, Ho’oponopono, tapping, and deep slow breaths, help to release old programming and clear away the barriers to love, healing and wholeness. This results in miracles and major life shifts. Toward that end, I am doing the Ho’oponopono with my body and the cancer, tapping and breathing, and saying, “I love you. I’m sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you.” As I continue to do this healing work I’m hoping that down the road the results of my next PET scan will declare, “You are clean! You are free of cancer!”

Maybe even more important to me would be if one day I were able to declare that I am emotionally “free of charge”, having successfully cleared away all my hot buttons. That is the ultimate freedom – what a monumental accomplishment that would be! Then I would be easefully, peacefully residing in the state of grace place, in the Divine, in the field “out beyond right doing and wrong doing” that Rumi talks about. At the end of my life I want my epitaph to read, “Really, truly, deeply free at last!”

How about you? Do you have barriers within that are keeping you from love, health and wholeness? It’s all an inside job – LOVE, TAP and BREATHE your way through those barriers and celebrate becoming free and clear and open to miracles!

In love,

Jan Jacobsen


Free EFT e-book


Page 12-15 shows where to tap and describes the process

UsingEFT and Ho’oponopono together video


Great book on Ho’oponopono

Zero Limits – The Hawaiian System for Wealth, Health, Peace & More

By Joe Vitale and Dr. Hew Len


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