Friday, April 12, 2024

3 ways to cultivate peace of mind

Read Ibsen's plays if you're about to get funky. But to reach serenity and calmness, you'll have to let the past disintegrate and keep in mind the following 3 simple rules. They'll probably help you stay normal—or not!

Dispel the spooks

Every day you wake up with your head full of concerns and great causes. What is not supposed to be your concern! To begin with, the good cause, then the causes of truth, freedom, justice—a list full of lofty notions. And these higher causes demand that you labor and devote yourself to their fulfillment. "Shame on the egoist who thinks only of himself!" But what is your own, true concern? Isn't it unique, like yourself? Away then with all these alien, sacred causes! Shouldn't you rather say: "What is sacred with me is not my own"?

Max Stirner

Analyze yourself. Have you found any fixed ideas that govern your thoughts and actions? Maybe you think that the modern state –an ongoing concern of mankind– consists in the unity of particular interests with the common good. I'd say, instead of indulging in comforting presuppositions such as these, step out of your comfort zone!

The state is a lie

Life coaches agree with the famous Russian anarchist Mikhail Bakunin on this simple, yet fundamental, position: think and act outside of the box! Hard to believe it, and even harder to do it.  

First, seek to become better than you are. For example, try to notice social cues others may miss; ponder on your true interests and associate with others to fulfill them; think about the people you care about and support freedom and equality for all. Or even try to abolish privileges by transforming the conditions that create them.

Mikhail Bakunin

I would also suggest discarding any attempts to connect the common good with the state. Deduce the world, fight for freedom and don't forget to practice your breathing exercises. Politics are not meant to make us happy or calm—this techne [art] has other ends!

Flee into your solitude

If you still haven't attained serenity, then perhaps you're in need of a hammer to crush each and every idol inside and outside of you. How often do you find yourself worrying about those absolute and impatient ones, who press you to set your chair between For and Against? But as you know, truth and inner peace do not cling to the arm of an absolute. 

Friedrich Nietzsche

Find a cozy spot to meditate, where rough, strong winds blow—a place higher than all human regards! Close your eyes, take a deep breath, and sense the odor of the tranquil seas; far from the petty interests of the so-called "great politicians" and their adoring masses.