The Heart of the Matter
June 29, 2011
A Word to the Wise

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Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 10:25 AM | Comments (0)

June 26, 2011
We Are All In This Together

They're dancing in the aisles at the UN! Look at what can happen when inspired and committed people get together to deliver a message of peace and love. (In what ways can you and your friends come together and communicate a powerful message to the world?)

Thanks to Ron Frank for the link to this Amnesty International video.

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 04:31 PM | Comments (3)

June 24, 2011
I Pray at the Altar of Your Lips

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I pray
at the altar
of your lips
and there
sip sweetness
from your breath,
inhale
the perfume
of your hair,
enjoy
the way
the evening air
subdues you
once
again.

More poetry
Illustration
Mystery Link

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 12:56 AM | Comments (0)

June 17, 2011
Cliffhanger in Brighton

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In 1994, I flew to Brighton, England, to attend a 2-day event with Maharaji.

Having seen him many times before and knowing how life- changing time with him can be, I was seriously pumped to be going.

Waking up bright and early on Saturday morning, I made my way to the hall, got on line, and took my seat.

Maharaji, as usual, spoke with great eloquence, humor, and passion, cutting to the heart of the matter -- a great beginning to a series of talks he'd be giving over the next two days.

When he was done, the MC announced the lunch break and informed everyone that the evening program would begin at 5:00 pm.

Perfect! I was really hungry and wanted to find out if the food in England was as bad as people said it was. So I found a few friends and invited them to join me for the fish and chips in a quaint little pub only minutes away.

When I returned to the hall at 4:30, there was already a long line. I found my place on the end of it, chatted up a few locals, and began the slow and steady shuffling forward to the entrance.

Then the line stopped.

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"The hall is full," an usher announced to no one in particular. "There are no more seats. Come back tomorrow."

"Tomorrow? Come back tomorrow? Dude, I just paid $650 for a round trip ticket to England! I just took three days off work! No one told me there was even the slightest chance of not getting in. This is insane! Who's in charge? Let me talk to someone with a walkie talkie! There must be a way to get in!"

My pitiful internal dialogue continued, in full stereo neurosis, for the next ten minutes, me alternately blaming the program organizers, the ushers, my pub waitress, "them," the entire country of England and, ultimately, myself for apparently having too leisurely a lunch.

And then... I remembered.

I remembered what Maharaji had been teaching me in oh so many ways since I first met him many years ago: how to let go... how to enjoy the moment... how to go beyond the chattering monkeys of my mind and enjoy the divine play that is only ever happening NOW.

"Hmmm," I thought to what was left of my self, "I actually have the entire afternoon off in jolly old England. No job. No bills. No responsibilities."

As I exited the scene of my mini-meltdown, I could see, just a few hundred yards away, rising up to the sky like some kind of cinematic mirage -- eight movie theaters.

I scanned the marquee. Four of them I'd seen before. Three didn't start until evening. But one... one was just about to start -- Cliffhanger, starring Sylvester Stallone.

Hey, why not? The joke was on me. And though I hadn't quite begun to laugh, I could definitely feel a smile coming on.

So I bought a ticket, some popcorn, and took my seat (believe me, there were plenty to choose from).

For the next hour and 53 minutes while Maharaji inspired, uplifted, entertained, cajoled, held forth, waxed poetic, and reminded 5,000 people what life was all about -- I sat in a darkened movie theater watching the former star of Rocky I, II, III, IV, V, and VI battle the bad guys, under impossible conditions, high in the Rocky Mountains, trying to save the day.

It was totally surreal.

There I was, 3,476 miles from home, sitting no more than a few hundred yards from the most amazing person I'd ever met (Maharaji, not Stallone) and was totally enjoying a movie I wouldn't have chosen to see in a thousand years.

PS: I got to the hall very early on Sunday morning.

More
Less
Nothing

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 12:53 AM | Comments (10)

June 13, 2011
The Middle Path

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Cartoon

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 11:14 AM | Comments (0)

June 05, 2011
Maharaji in Lima, Peru: 4/27/11

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"I can show you the cadence of this breath, and when you play to this metronome called the breath, it will be the sweetest music you have ever heard in your life."

More

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 10:44 PM | Comments (0)

June 04, 2011
Maharaji in Sao Paolo: 4/17/11

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"What is the first thought that comes into your mind in the morning? Is it something to do with your responsibilities? Or is it something to do with your contentment? It's a good question. Responsibilities? Or contentment? As a human being, you still have that part in you that wants contentment. And if your first thought is about your responsibilities, then you are empty-handed. And you will go empty-handed. Why? Because the responsibilities will never end."

More

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 11:40 PM | Comments (2)

June 02, 2011
Stone Walls Do Not a Prison Make

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Inmates in correctional facilities around the world are listening to Prem Rawat's message of peace... and responding in extraordinary ways. Like this, for example, from a prisoner in Texas:

"Thank you for providing a perspective that has given my life significance, meaning, and most of all, peace applied directly to the wounds of my life that personally, privately, and powerfully give me the direction I longed for."

More

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 12:23 AM | Comments (0)

June 01, 2011
Results of the Inspiration Poll

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Last year, I posted an INSPIRATION POLL on this blog, asking readers to rate (on a scale of 1-5) a variety of "inspiration triggers" (the experiences, internal or external, that help them connect with the feeling of inspiration).

194 readers responded. What follows is their response...

4.56 Nature
4.55 Love
4.54 Music
4.44 Learning
4.41 Meaningful work

4.41 Freedom
4.38 Creativity
4.38 Compassion
4.37 Accomplishing the seeming impossible
4.37 Authentic people

4.35 Wisdom
4.34 Kindness
4.33 Inner peace
4.28 Giving
4.28 Hope

4.27 Having an AHA!
4.27 Gratitude
4.27 Beauty
4.26 Friendship
4.26 Courage

4.25 Good conversation
4.24 Inspiring others
4.24 The ocean
4.23 Connecting with others
4.21 Laughter

4.19 Possibility
4.18 Trust
4.15 Fun
4.14 Selfless service
4.10 Falling in love

4.08 Being appreciated
4.04 Sunlight
4.03 Simplicity
4.02 Art
4.02 Anyone who has mastered their craft

4.01 Travel
3.98 Looking up at the stars
3.98 Spontaneity
3.97 Solving a problem
3.94 Good stories

3.93 Surnise/sunset
3.93 Springtime
3.92 Big ideas
3.92 Meditation
3.91 Letting go

3.91 Success of friends
3.90 Your Teacher/Master
3.90 Wise elders
3.89 The sky
3.89 Great quotations

3.89 Forgiveness
3.87 Children
3.85 Books
3.80 Mountains
3.77 Walking on the beach

3.71 Photography
3.71 Playing
3.70 Birth
3.70 God
3.67 Family

3.66 Singing
3.64 Fearlessness
3.63 Summertime
3.59 Starting a big project
3.58 Writing

3.58 Flowers
3.57 Spiritual Masters
3.52 Your heroes
3.51 Your home
3.48 Making love

3.46 Dreams
3.45 Vacations
3.44 Poetry
3.43 Dancing
3.39 Movies

3.32 Faith
3.31 Celebrations
3.25 Winning something
3.24 Thunderstorms
3.18 Sex

3.10 Making a lot of money
3.10 Prayer
3.08 Your pet
3.07 A teacher from your past
3.03 Theater

2.96 Holidays
2.95 Asking for help
2.85 The town/city where you live
2.78 Honest politicians
2.76 Death

2.62 Sports
2.61 Scriptures
2.52 Having nothing to do
2.51 Space travel
2.37 Yoga
2.34 Championship teams
1.98 Religion

Insights? Surprises? Conclusions? Comments?

Photo

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 11:44 PM | Comments (0)

Gimme Shelter

Gimme Shelter | Playing For Change from Playing For Change on Vimeo.

Posted by Mitch Ditkoff at 01:01 PM | Comments (1)

Welcome to Mitch Ditkoff's blog about what's really important in this life: Peace, gratitude, love, joy, clarity, and the effort required to wake up and smell the roses. Enjoy!

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