Book Reviews

Review: Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

This week I’m reading Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert M Pirsig. It’s a curious book: not really a novel, more an excuse to philosophise about anything and everything, and likely to provoke many arguments and lots of feverish thinking. The narrator of the tale sets out on a road trip with… Continue reading Review: Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

Free Your Pen · Writing

Free Your Pen: The Importance of Mind Training for Writers

Last time I introduced my book on mind training for writers, Free Your Pen. In this post, we’ll delve deeper into why mastering your mind is so important with an extract from chapter one: Why Train the Mind? Have you ever sat down to write and found that your mind has gone totally blank? Or… Continue reading Free Your Pen: The Importance of Mind Training for Writers

Buddhism

The Eightfold Path: Right Mindfulness

Right Mindfulness is the second practice in Mental Discipline on the Eightfold Path and involves being aware of the present moment with a clear focus. Right Mindfulness is the heart of Buddhist practice and applies across the whole Eightfold Path. When you’re mindful, your thinking is Right Thought, your speech is Right Speech, your actions… Continue reading The Eightfold Path: Right Mindfulness

Buddhism

The Eightfold Path: Right Thought

Right Thought is the second Wisdom practice of the Eightfold Path, and is also known as Right Intention. It follows directly from Right Understanding because your thoughts and intentions arise from your perception of reality. If you see reality as it is, you’ll have no problems. But if you see reality through a haze of… Continue reading The Eightfold Path: Right Thought

Addled

Addled Chapter 9: A Grand Prix of Cogitation – part 2

I sat in a pool of sunlight pouring through the long Velux, amplified and focused by the glass. Propped up on a cushion, struggling to keep my back straight, I fidgeted and rubbed my knees. I was supposed to be watching my breath. Adam said I could count them if it helped, but I kept… Continue reading Addled Chapter 9: A Grand Prix of Cogitation – part 2

Writing

Zen in the Art of Writing – according to Ray Bradbury

In this great essay, Ray Bradbury gives us four words of advice that are essential for writing, or any kind of creativity: WORK RELAXATION DON’T THINK! ‘Work’ is self-explanatory. ‘Relaxation’ means getting into the Zone and letting the writing write itself. And ‘Don’t Think!’ means not second guessing yourself or interrupting the flow of Relaxation.… Continue reading Zen in the Art of Writing – according to Ray Bradbury

Creativity · Writing

The Creative Process: Nurturing your creativity

WISHING is the first stage of the creative process and is about nurturing your desire to create something. This is where you look for ideas and inspiration, and research stories to obsess over. The Desire to Create To create anything you need a space in which to do it – not just a room of… Continue reading The Creative Process: Nurturing your creativity

Creativity

Being Creative in a Mad World: Doubting

If you are creative then you’re paying attention to the world around you and exploring your inner world looking for inspiration and passion. But the more you look, the more you will doubt. You can’t take anything at face value. You must penetrate the surface of life to find the truth. Like a good scientist,… Continue reading Being Creative in a Mad World: Doubting

Creativity

Being Creative in a Mad World: Thinking

Creativity involves much thought. Most of the work of writing is thinking: questioning, investigating, exploring and researching, turning the idea round and round, interrogating it from every angle. There are many different ways to think, but if you want to be creative you must allow intuition and feeling to influence and guide your thoughts. Pure… Continue reading Being Creative in a Mad World: Thinking

Meditation

How to Meditate: A Guide to the Ultimate Healing Practice

If you think meditation is just for religious people or crazy-eyed sadhus in loincloths, you could be missing out on one of the most powerful practices available to humanity. Meditation reduces stress and aids healing, clears and focuses the mind, and makes you happy. You don’t have to be spiritual or religious to meditate, but… Continue reading How to Meditate: A Guide to the Ultimate Healing Practice