Looking to the East when it comes to answers on living a contented life has been a common practice for many decades. Mindfulness, for example, was brought to the West from the Buddhist teachings from the East, in the 1970s by Jon Kabat-Zinn. In this blog, Mind Ninja explores what the East teaches on living a healthier and happier life.
Ikagai comes from the Japanese term meaning purpose. Ikagai conceptualises finding purpose through a combination of 4 pillars: passion, mission, profession and vocation.
If we think of purpose as a flower, with the petals creating the 4 pillars, we can appreciate that our purpose comes from a combination and balance of the petals.
Examining the theories from Positive Psychology, a similar viewpoint is found. Martin Selgman’s Perma model conveys meaning as one of the 5 key emotions contributing to real well-being. He argues that impact, significance, belief and purpose are all strands that form meaning.
Kintsugi is the ancient Japanese art of repairing fractured pottery with gold lacquer.
It is also a wonderful metaphor for life - we can practise compassion and learn to love all of our eccentricities and setbacks, and create a masterpiece celebrating every part including all the 'cracks'.
Much easier said then done but there are ways to enhance self compassion;
Another beautiful Japanese term, meaning forest bathing, invites us to spend time in Nature in order to feel better in the mind & body. This practise allows us to slow down and connect with Nature. A great space to also strengthen mindful walking and mindful living. There has been growing research into the health benefits of forest bathing with some studies showing a chemical released by trees and plants, called phytoncides, was found to boost the immune system.
To apply mindfulness to shinrin-yoku, here are some tips;
This Japanese term alludes to the transient nature of life. It is a worldview where minimalism is revered, unfinished is considered positively, fluidity, growth and humility are celebrated. We can practise this through;