26 Jun 2009
What do I think coaching has to do with spiritual regeneration?
In some other posts on this blog, I’ve talked about the importance of learning and mindset and bringing a positive attitude to “personal change projects”. (And what bigger personal change project do we have than our spiritual regeneration?)
Yet, to create this “new will and new understanding”, it means that we need to be creating and/or practicing new ways of being and thinking and feeling and acting our lives. And not just on Sunday or during other personal worship times, but in every day activities.
Our current ways of being, thinking, feeling, and acting are reflected in our “brain habits”. Change means becoming aware of these habits and intentionally choosing to practice them or to practice a different way until it becomes our new “habit”. Swedenborg even talked about self-examination and the practice of taking a limited number of things needing changing to work on each year.
And that’s where my new interest in coaching comes in.
Coaches, taking their lead from the person they work with, work with them to become aware of what “habits” might be standing in their way and/or to create new choices and plans for active change. Many coaches work with people on life or business goals, health issues, productivity….almost anything.
What I would like to learn more about is how to embed a spiritual dimension into my coaching — and thus why I’m connecting with New Church folks. If you’d be interested in helping me in this project, please email me at DrKarenatBrainAndHealth.com. For more information about coaching generally, please continue reading about Spiritual Coaching to Support Regeneration.
27 May 2009
Did you answer that question? Did you say “up”?
You aren’t the only one…
One of the primary things Swedenborg talks about with respect to reading and understanding the scriptures is the idea of a “spiritual sense” and correspondences between things spiritual and things natural.
Certainly, from the beginning this idea was probably the most intriguing to me about Swedenborg’s Writings — the notion that embedded in the words of the Bible is a deeper meaning.
And that we “detect” that meaning in some way as we read, whether we know it or not.
But how could that be? Don’t different people use “symbols” and metaphors differently? And how can reading have an impact if we don’t consciously “get” the meaning?
There are a couple of interesting lines of evidence that apply to these questions I would love to share with you.
The first relates directly to how the brain works — that mass of networked connections and associations we are building and changing with every experience we have. Read the rest of this entry »
15 May 2009
What if…How you see God and how you practice your faith actually influences your brain pathways and who you become —
Would this be…Regeneration in action before our very eyes?
Andrew Newberg and Mark Waldman have authored a book called How God Changes Your Brain, which seems full of juicy bits about the impact of our religious choices and practice on our brain’s structure and function.
“Juicy? Like what?”, I hear you asking.
Let’s start with one that may not be too new anymore, but is still kind of cool.
Did you know that… Read the rest of this entry »
27 Apr 2009
I won’t believe it until I see it myself.
A common phrase.
How many times have you said this yourself? Or at least acted as if it’s true? Or known others who insist on it?
Yet, Mike Gladish, in his 19 April Easter sermon, broght up an interesting point…
Is believing about seeing? Or is seeing about believing?
Before we go any further, I’d like you to do a short attention exercise. In a moment, I’m going to send you over to a link with a very short video (maybe 30sec). As you watch this video, please count the number of passes made by the white team. Then come back with your answer. There will be a test. NO cheating — watch it only once, then come back here.
So, how many did you count? I won’t give away the answer right here where you could be cheating, but don’t forget how many you counted.
Now onto our topic. Read the rest of this entry »
18 Sep 2007
I love it when things in my life come together at the same time.
This time it was a sermon from Jim Cooper at Olivet New Church in Toronto. The sermon was about Jesus transforming the water into wine at the Cana wedding. And here’s the bit that tickled me:
Waterpots, being vessels which receive water, represents the mind which receives truth. Filling the water pots is, therefore, an image of learning.
The Lord Himself commands us to learn, to fill our vessels. Whether or not that water is turned into wine with us depends entirely upon our response. Do we approach learning half-heartedly? Do we fill the pots with only enough water to satisfy the master, to avoid getting into trouble, or do we learn with enthusiasm and interest, do we fill our vessels to the brim?
Our Liquid Brains
23 Jul 2007
Swedenborg writes about two basic attitudes in learning, which he calls the negative attitude and the affirmative attitude.
When I was first reading and learning about what Swedenborg had to say about our spiritual regeneration, I took these attitudes at face value. Of course, it made sense that a spiritual teacher would prefer that I learn about what he had to say by accepting it first and seeing how what I already know confirms it rather than by being cynical and demanding proof. A bit self-serving, perhaps, and certainly not what I had been trained to do in my scientific training, but understandable.😉
Recently, an article from the American Psychological Association’s Monitor on Psychology had me connecting Swedenborg’s basic attitudes to what I know about heart coherence and positive psychology. This gave it a much broader application to me and I thought I’d share that perspective with you. Read the rest of this entry »
31 May 2007
I happened to come across this article from Science Daily on Ceiling Height Can Affect How A Person Thinks, Feels And Acts. I could’t help but think of how much Swedenborg would approve.. 😉
These researchers took a look at whether ceiling heights influence us in any detectable way.
Here are some snippets from the article (I’ve added some emphasis): Read the rest of this entry »
29 Jan 2007
Someone sent me this story today. I have seen it before and perhaps you have as well, but I thought it was worth sharing as another way to think about heart coherence. …
One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a
battle that goes on inside people. He said, “My son,
The battle is between two ‘wolves’ inside us all.
One is Evil ?It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret,
greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment
Inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego.
The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope,
serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence,
empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.”
The grandson thought about it for a minute
and then asked his grandfather,
“Which wolf wins?”
The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”
Practicing heart coherence is one method for “feeding” the Good wolf.
As I have discussed in previous posts, I believe balancing ourselves in a coherent heart state opens us to influx and to a greater awareness of the Good.
Another bit of inspiration I got was from Michael Gladish’s article in the January 2007 New Church Canadian about Good and Truth, but you’ll have to stay tuned for that one.😉
13 Jan 2007
I’ve been reading an inspiring little book called Seeking the Sacred: Leading a Spiritual Life in a Secular World. I was attracted to the book because it has essays by Romeo Dallaire and Stephen Lewis — 2 people I respect for their efforts to fight to make a difference to make the world a better place.
One of the essays in the book is by Martin Rutte (you may recognize his name as the co-author of Chicken Soup for the Soul). In it, he talks about a project he started called Project Heaven on Earth. I was impressed by his thoughts about what we can do to create our own Heaven on earth — and so much of what he says fits in with our recent conversations about positive heart coherence and influencing others around us just by being in a positive place ourselves. So let me share a few quotes from his essay (emphases added): Read the rest of this entry »
04 Jan 2007
In doing some web research today, I happened to come across an interesting webpage. As I read it, I couldn’t help but think of Swedenborg’s description of influx: Read the rest of this entry »