Proud To Stop Harming Others

We’re taught to push. To go do something. To build a resume. To accomplish a goal. If you want to help the world, go create something that helps. I had no idea how much harm I was doing in the process of trying to help. Vipassana has taught me to slow down to observe my actions and I’ve noticed so many little ways that I harm the world around me. I spent so much time thinking about everyone else that I forgot to focus on myself.

By meditating regularly and allowing my mind to get subtler and more sensitive, I’ve been able to cut out many of these bad habits. Instead of judging people’s choices and actions, I spend most of my energy concentrating on improving my own actions. Each day I become more compassionate to the struggles people face in their lives allowing me to be more loving to them regardless of their actions. By being calm and quiet with people, I’m bringing a little peace to the world around me. Maybe this will allow people an instant of relief to observe themselves without trying to do something.

We are all exactly who we are at this moment. The best support and encouragement we can give to the people around us to grow into something better is love. We often judge others to feel better about ourselves. If we already feel good about ourselves, we realize that judging is only causing harm. Meditation has helped me love myself and love the people around me and I didn’t “do” anything. I just observed and healed myself. This is an amazing shift in my life. Time to meditate.

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About Ryan Shelton

While I'm currently married to a beautiful woman while teaching physics at Padua Academy, these descriptors fail to capture the totality of my adventurous life. I have hiked over 1700 miles, traveled to 5 continents, managed a bakery, started a meditation center, counseled troubled teens, attended Duke, UNC, and Harvard, protected forests as a wildland firefighter, volunteered thousands of hours with Americorps, rafted the Grand Canyon, SCUBA dived on the Great Barrier Reef, and continues to find new adventures. I hope my writing encourages you to pursue your dreams and be the best version of yourself while supporting your communities to work together to solve the current challenges in our world.

3 thoughts on “Proud To Stop Harming Others

  1. Hey Ryan!!!!! Good to see your new pic, which in itself reiterates that everything is anicca ( as you have changed hell a lot..) . The only way I can correspond with is your writings and the pictures you update but for sure , very nice pic…
    You are my inspiration for Vipassana sittings ( though yet to attain the credibility of sitting everyday)….every morning I rush to see my inbox to find your latest update on your blog…
    And i too agree that we are sabotaged by this internal cacophany and keep dancing to the whims and fancies of our inevitable monkey mind. May God bless you all – Ryan, Pooja, Trygve, Cenk- for doing such noble work……….
    Sabka Mangal Ho!!!!( May all beings share my good feelings, which I am experiencing right now by writing this comment)
    Ashish Gupta ( India)

    Like

    • Hi Ashish. Thanks for your comments. It’s great to hear that this blog is working for you the way it was intended. It makes it more meaningful and fun to write! Good luck establishing your daily practice. If you’re persistent, you’ll get there! I look forward to reading your future comments!

      Like

  2. Seize the Moment!!!
    The moment we hear the phrase “seize the moment”, it entails a big picture of some grand event or something where you really need to stretch your limits. In today’s competitive world, we all are running a mad rat race whether its pertaining to corporate life or our personal life. But, do we ever question “Why”? Why don’t we bring our beloved rationality to question the rationale for this mad race?
    The shallowness of the above premise tends to fall apart when you experience the mindfulness. Whether you name it Goenkaji’s Vipassana, Buddhist ‘s Vipassana or may be Ashish’s Vipassana. All the connotations are immaterial. What is important is that one should understand its essence. So, we need to change the conditioning we have with his phrase i.e seize the moment. It should mean that we experience every moment with a sense of its actuality and pristine nature. We need not colour it with our perceptions, judgments. We need not drain our energy on analyzing and creating trivial remixes of a simple and plain event. It’s so simple. Why can’t we accept this? Everyone will realize this sooner or later. Till then, gotta sit and meditate.
    Sabka Mangal Ho!!!!!!

    Like

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