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For The First Time in 10 Years, Mercury is Going to Transit the Sun

On this coming Monday, May 9th, something spectacular is going to happen. This event only happens 13 times every century! For the first time in about a decade, we’re going to witness Mercury make a rare transit across the massive face of the Sun. A transit across the Sun is when a planet passes directly between the Sun and a superior planet and becomes visible against the solar disk. During a transit, the planet can be seen from Earth as a tiny black disk moving across the sun. sdovenustransit_007b363a451b83e04db5c510e130c0a8.nbcnews-fp-1200-800

This is an amazing experience to really see the massive size of the sun and what a planet looks like in front of it! This is something that won’t happen again until 2019 and then 2032. So make sure you’re watching!

This astronomical event is easier to watch than most. It’s viewable from most places on Earth, and unlike most cosmic events, this one lasts at least 7 hours to see! It’s easy to know where to look, just go to the light!

The transit is suppose to begin at around 7am EDT and will last all day. Depending on where you live, this is either in the middle of the day, or in the dead of night:

If you live around the Eastern Asia area, it will be in the middle of the night for you unfortunately!  Continue reading

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9 Powerful Decision-Making Tips To Help Your Indecisiveness

Imagine that you are always directing your attention and energy in the best possible way. There is no limit to what you can achieve.

We constantly make tiny decisions. We can direct our attention in any direction we desire, in this moment.

Sadly, we humans make a lot of strange decisions. Evolution has not built us to make perfect choices all the time. Evolution built us to spread our DNA and conserve as much energy as possible. The keywords here are “conserve energy”. Our brain is not big compared to the rest of our body – it is only about 2% of our body mass – but it contributes to about 20% of our energy-use when resting [1]. To conserve energy we have evolved a lot of shortcuts in our thinking.

However, there are some tools that help us make more correct decisions. Few things in life can be done with absolute certainty, but you can significantly improve the probability of your decision being the right one. Here are 9 of the tools that can make your decisions, and your life, amazing:

1 – Begin with the end in mind

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I was first introduced to this principle in the book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People [2].

One of the amazing capabilities of human beings is visualization. But it is a double-edged sword. You can visualize both what you want to happen and what you don’t want to happen. When you put a lot of sustained effort into the visions, they have a tendency to come true, both the good and the bad.

This is the essence of the law of attraction. We attract more of what we focus on.

“If the ladder is not leaning against the right wall, every step we take just gets us to the wrong place faster.” – Stephen Covey

2 – The 80/20-Rule

The 80/20-rule, or Pareto’s Principle, states that 80% of our results come from 20% of our efforts.

Before you do something, ask yourself:

smart thinking an positive thoughts Continue reading

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Studies Show Living Near The Sea Improves Your Mental Health

There’s a very important reason why we enjoy taking walks near the ocean. It’s not just a romantic getaway or a fun time at the beach that makes it so exciting. New research published in this month’s issue of Health & Place,  conducted a study that connected positive mental health with having a view of nature.

nature5This might be obvious to some, but living in natural spaces is how we are supposed to exist on this planet. When we are coexisting with nature, living in homes that don’t disturb the natural way of being and being able to actually live in harmony with the planet, then we can transform the mess of this planet. It doesn’t really make sense to pave cement all over the lush flora of the earth.

Researchers from the university of Canterbury in New Zealand and Michigan State University both looked at the difference between blue and green spaces. Blue spaces are areas that have large bodies of water, places like beaches. Green spaces are areas like parks or forests.

This information was gathered to assess anxiety and mood disorders. They took into account factors like age and gender to eventually find a correlation between people who had a view of nature and positive mental health. The study is interesting, because the blue spaces did much better then green because many of our green spaces are in cities and have concrete structures entangled within them. The green space does not have the same effect on your brain when it is full of man made structures.

To be completely surrounded in a forest or by the sea with out any man-made objects has a drastically positive effect on our mental wellbeing. We are not designed to sit in a computer chair for hours at a time in concrete buildings, we are built to move and live and close knit communities that are all connected.

Woman at the seaThis information from the study can help give us better insight on designing cities and incorporating nature into our man-made world. Fundamentally, we need to change the design of society to completely shift how we interact with the world and each other.

We should be able to exist in harmony with the planet and live sustainably without destroying it. It seems quite simple but this system has things like the oil, gas and large industries as a priority.

If you are able, go out and explore the beautiful world of nature. Stop by a park if you live in the city, go buy some plants to put around your house, and bring nature into your life. They purify the air and make you feel good to be in the space you’re in.

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This Boy Remembers His Past Life as His Own Grandfather

This is a bizarre one. Gus Taylor remembers his past life as his own grandfather. At the young age of one and a half he had told his dad, while getting his diaper changed “Y’know, when I was your age I used to change your diaper!” His dad a had pretty humorous response, remarking “Whoa… This is.. weird.”

Gus was named after his grandfather, of course, which is actually short for August. Whenever his family would talk about his grandpa, Gus had a very clear insistence that they were talking about him. When children remember past experiences, many parents will immediately dismiss their claims as their imagination. It’s understandable when this happens, but when kids have such a consistent story that sometimes comes with such emotion, it’s vital to really listen to them. Some children cry in missing their old families because it is so real and to them, it was pretty recent. Most children start talking about past lives as soon as they are able to speak. hqdefault

In Gus’s case, he is able to pick out distinct details, like recognizing his grandfather as a child in a large group photo. He also identified a picture of a car as the first car his grandfather ever owned. But this is really where it gets freaky. Gus claims that his sister (his aunt) died and became what he called a fish. What actually happened is that she was murdered and her body was dumped into the San Fransisco Bay! How would any child know that? He wasn’t told by anyone in his family; this completely stunned everyone.

This story is truly remark and unique in that his grandpa died a year before he was born, and just seemingly came right back. This child has access to information that would be other wise impossible to know unless he was told. To say such things at the tender age of one and a half is mind blowing.

If  you have a child that talks vividly about past experiences, really listen to what they’re saying.

Gus excitedly told his mom “You know, when we die, we get to come back! I used to be big, and now I’m a kid again!”

 

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Psychological Spirituality: Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs & The Chakra System

What makes people thrive? How can you feel fulfilled and connected to a higher consciousness? This is exactly what Psychologist Abraham Maslow tried to answer with his famous pyramid of needs. It is also what the chakra system has explained for thousands of years.

I first noticed the similarity of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and the chakras a couple of years ago. They both used similar colors from top to bottom. There are seven bodily chakras and seven needs. They both advocate a holistic approach – all levels of needs and chakras must be satisfied and open to fulfill one’s potential.

However, it was not until recently, when I was studying for an exam in psychology, that I started seeing a deeper connection between the two. I did some deeper research on the chakras as well (even though they definitely were not part of the curriculum).

Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs has been an influential motivational model in psychology since it was proposed in 1954. Due to its intuitive appeal, calling attention to the human desire for growth, it has influenced thinking in fields such as philosophy, education, and business. [1]

Maslow's hierarchy of needs. Seven levels, plus self-transcendence

Maslow states that the ultimate human motive is self-actualization, the need to fulfill our potential. His hierarchy of needs is composed of deficiency needs – needs concerned with physical and social survival – at the bottom, and growth needs at the top. He proposed that true self-actualization could be achieved when all the other needs were covered. You can find out if you are lacking in any of the needs by doing some self-inquiry. Then you can take steps to fulfill those needs. Continue reading

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Letting Go Of Emotional Pain: 4 Ways Forgiveness Heals Your Body

Inherently, we understand that forgiveness is powerful technique for freedom, but through lack of experience or understanding, we often don’t understand how.

What are the ways in which forgiveness frees you?

Emotion is a physiological experience

In her book, Molecules of Emotion, author and molecular biologist, Candace Pert, explains beautifully how we experience emotion through the physiological mechanisms within our physical bodies.

To put Pert in context, her original research was into the opiate receptor site and resulted in the medication that they give to heroin addicts, that makes them unable to get high. In a nutshell, what Pert explains is that every emotion or feeling or urge you feel in your body is caused by a specific combination of neuropeptides chemicals released by your brain.

This chemical cocktail rapidly enters your bloodstream, with each little ‘unit’ of the neuropeptide acting like a key that unlocks specific receptor sites on your cells. This then causes a reaction in the cell that you register as a feeling or emotion.o-FORGIVENESS-facebook

Each neuropeptide ‘key’ can only unlock specific receptor sites on each cell, and every time the cell multiplies, the new cell has more receptor sites for any emotion or feeling you have been bombarding your body with. Over time therefore you need a greater amount of the chemical in order to feel the same ‘rush’, because you have more cell receptor sites available for that chemical trigger.

However you only have a limited amount of space for receptor sites on the surface of each cell, so what the cell does is it starts using up the receptor site spaces for elements you use less frequently – nutrients, vitamins and minerals for example.

This is why it takes time for you to develop a new, or break an old, habit, attitude or way of being. Your capacity to experience the new reality literally grows as you increase the amount of receptor sites on your cells that can process that combination of chemicals when they are released from your brain.

You also have to allow time to elapse for receptor sites for the old way of being to fall away. It’s also why it gets ‘easier’ to do something when you’ve been doing it for a while – the reason it feels like stuff has ‘suddenly’ clicked into place is because your actual physical cells have caught up with the changes that your mind has been making and you are now able to ‘feel’ them in your body. Continue reading

Seeking Higher Consciousness