Daily Life & Yoga Philosophy

In the spirit of fighting for one’s own freedom

Elections are coming up soon in Switzerland. This means that we are being inundated with hundreds of smiling faces behind smart suits representing some three letter acronym advertising in a few short words what they stand for. Hm.

The other day I happened to whiz by one such poster. As it was an 80 km/h zone I only chanced to see a few faces with a smile on their face and a slogan that read: “we are going to fight for you”. – Huh?  Are we under attack?

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In the spirit of Pratyaahaara and Meditation

I have a few friends that love nothing more than to go scuba diving – preferably on the Maldives, Seychelles or some other island group with lots of sunshine. When I ask them about their fascination with diving it isn’t so much the sunny beaches (nice too of course) but the peace and quiet that they experience under water. Sure, the diversity of the fauna too is mentioned – but more as an add-on.

The main reason for diving seems to be the sense of quiet, of floating. When they mention that, my reaction is always the same: “you can have that for free, every day, as often as you want or need, right here.” Upon their quizzical look, I simply tell them: “meditate”. The reaction to that? – “Oh, I can’t do that. It is not for me. My mind is way too active.” – Hm. Besides this often heard answer, a friend the other day voiced another very important concern regarding meditation.

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In the spirit of berries

Summer is the time to eat lots of berries. Me, I just love berries – be it blueberry, blackberry, strawberry, raspberry or any other type of berry. I just love them. Out in the country-side there are plenty of blackberries to be picked as you go for nice hikes. It really is simply a matter of “eat as many as you can and enjoy them”. They are tasty and very healthy and for free. Mother Nature really is very generous – it is all there.

Doctor’s advice

When I was still a kid, I once developed an allergy to which the doctor – without actually checking anything – simply claimed that I had an allergy towards strawberries. STRAWBERRIES! I absolutely loved strawberries. And this doctor said that they were supposed to be a no-go for me. After observing the family henceforth enjoying their fill of strawberries that year I had enough. Somehow, I simply knew that it was impossible that I was allergic towards strawberries. I mean, how can one be allergic towards something one loves? I can understand an allergic reaction towards certain types of work, certain teachers or bosses. But strawberries?! Somehow, a doctor would never say that you are allergic towards liver or spinach or anything else that we typically don’t like as children. It always turns out to be something we love! Fancy that.

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In the spirit of de-corrupting (human) systems

The other day they showed “Independence day” on T.V. It is one of those movies that clearly show who the good guys are – the human race, ehem – and who the bad guys are – the out of space-aliens. Naturally, in the beginning of the movie, the humans get hit as the aliens seem indestructible due to an impenetrable protective shield they possess. And of course the intelligence of the aliens is way above that of the human race. But still, in the end the human race survives. Hooray.

However, little surprising as the end of this blockbuster is (after all, who wants to walk out of the movie theatre feeling miserable?), it has a great message in it. And this brings me to the topic of this blog: corruption.

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In the spirit of congruence

The other day I expected an acquaintance for a late-afternoon tea. As I suspected that this acquaintance wanted some advice or some information from me I asked a friend what she thought and how much information, if at all, I should convey.

The answer my friend sent by e-mail was short and to the point. Without actually telling me what to say she simply advised me in a one-liner sentence to be congruent.

I looked at the sentence and thought: “Okay. This sounds right, but what precisely does “congruent” mean in this context?

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In the spirit of ranking

One of these day’s headlines was that Switzerland is rated No 1 in terms of happiness. UBS presented itself as “The world’s leading wealth management franchise“ and ‘our’ Roger (Federer) is – naturally – the greatest tennis player of all times. – Yes.

Personally, this ranking-mania is a point that I have truly never really understood. Why this extreme ambition, this need, to be the best in class? And if you don’t reach that goal a world collapses? What about No 2,3,4, etc.? Are they really worth(-)less?

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In the spirit of friendship

I have always had a close friend that I picked up at every stage in life -be it from school, University, work or travel. Since I have gone through extensive education, travelled a lot and worked in many different places the list of very good and lasting friendships has steadily grown longer over the years.

Naturally, the frequency of direct contact may diminish here and there but that never seems to inhibit the quality or status of that friendship. You just seem to continue where you left off when you do have the happy opportunity to meet up again. So, what makes a friend so special?

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In the spirit of being smart

The other day a friend and I went for a walk along a stream. All of a sudden my phone beeped. Looking at my friend in an apologetic way I took out my phone to check the message. That was when my friend full of admiration exclaimed that I was being trendy. – “Trendy?” – “Yes. Your phone is very retro. People are into that again. May take a look at it?” – “Why, certainly.”

It was funny to observe the reaction how this friend weighed the phone with admiration in her hands. The phone has a metal coating, so it has a nice and agreeable weight about it. Personally, I was thinking it a little odd, to be honest – this admiration for a phone! It’s just a mobile phone that I have had for years and have been very content with, sure. However: there is nothing smart about it: no e-mails, no internet, no whatsup, it is just a “bl…” PHONE.

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In the Spirit of Easter

The other day during a conversation a dear friend asked me whether I happened to know of Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians, mainly of course the much-cited chapter 13 on the topic of love. In fact, yes, I did happen to know the letter quite well, as I was asked years ago to read it at a wedding of a friend.

As it is Easter it seems thus a good time to post a section of this famous letter. So, without further comment, here is an English version as posted on Wikipedia. Continue reading

In the spirit of de-certification

One of the latest overkills in regulatory state control is the mandatory certificate for dog-holders. This means that any person acquiring a new dog has to go to doggie training, beginning with puppy training – both for the puppy and of course for the owner.

It sounds sensible and no doubt may have its merits too. However, with every new required certificate that we have to attain for everyday life situations, we not only kill self-responsibility bit by bit but also nature.

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