positive psychology books, mindfulness books, positive psychology news, calmness
In her article Mindfulness: A Call to Clarification, Kirsten Cronlund (Positive Psychology News Daily) notes a metaphor that can serve for resilience, equanimity and Wu-wei, the experience of “knowing when to act and when not to act.”
She writes, “A widely used metaphor in Eastern philosophy likens a wise person to a stream flowing down a mountain.
“The direction of the stream is determined by the pull of gravity and the slant of the mountain, but the actual path is constantly shifting and changing.
“When the stream encounters an obstacle – say a boulder or a thick tangle of sticks – it doesn’t stop flowing, and it doesn’t waste its energy in forcing a path through inpenetrable obstacles.”
She quotes from the book Positive Psychology: The Scientific and Practical Explorations of Human Strengths that Mindfulness is “attending nonjudgmentally to all stimuli in the internal and external environments.”
This is one of the values of mindfulness – to gain more emotional stability, which is no small thing.
Calmness frees our mind as well as spirit
The Dalai Lama says, “If we are calm, even if we are confronted by a serious problem, we will know how to handle it.
“To utilize our human intelligence fully, we need calmness. If we become unstable through anger, it is difficult for us to use our intelligence well. When we are overly influenced by negative thoughts, our intelligence becomes tarnished.”
From “Cultivating Altruism” in A. Kotler. Engaged Buddhist Reader.
Video: Happiness at Harvard: positive psychology by Tal Ben-Shahar, PhD, author of Happier: Can You Learn to be Happy?
“It is easy to see how this is the backbone of the most popular course at Harvard today.” —Martin E. P. Seligman, author of Authentic Happiness.
Here is part of a summary of Happier: Can You Learn to be Happy?:
‘Divided into three parts, “What is Happiness?”, “Happiness Applied” and “Meditations on Happiness,” Ben-Shahar provides insight and exercises, prodding reflection in readers (“Do you accept negative emotions as natural?”
“Do you see your work as a job, a career, or a calling?”) while explicating the relationships among happiness, motivation and goals. Though it sounds simple, Ben-Shahar insists on keen self-awareness and purposeful action to overcome entrenched patterns of despondency and/or disbelief.’
More positive psychology books
Another positive psychology book is The Beethoven Factor: The New Positive Psychology of Hardiness, Happiness, Healing and Hope.
The author Paul Pearsall says, The Beethoven Factor is “SIG, Stress Induced Growth.”
He notes there are people “for whom adversity is a stimulus for personal growth and creativity. Also like Beethoven, they aren’t ’super humans.’
“Like all of us, they are flawed beings, but something within and about them allows them to construe their lives with an upward psychological trajectory even when things seem at their worst.
He adds, “Positive psychology confirms that rather than shrinking from adversity, we must become engaged by it — and thrive through it — before we can savor all the sweetness life has to offer.”
See more of his quotes and other books on Personal Growth Information.