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How To Be Happy Even When You Don’t Get What You Want

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“The truth is, there isn’t a single desire you can name that your happiness depends on.” – Gina Lake

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anatomyHaving desires seems so natural to us, so automatic, so ‘the way we are wired,’ that the idea that they could actually be the source of our suffering simply never occurs to most of us. After all, can you even remember a time when you DIDN’T desire something?

In fact, desiring (a.k.a. wanting) is such an integral part of the human experience, that it’s actually quite surprising that it’s almost never talked about. Yes, we talk and think about WHAT we desire practically every minute of every day; but how much time have we spent actually looking at the PROCESS or ACT of Desiring itself, i.e., the mechanics of it?

In Anatomy of Desire, Gina Lake explains how our desires never actually live up to their lofty promises. You would think after a few thousand times we would catch on, but the main reason we don’t is because before we know it, a new desire has popped up to grab our attention. Even if our current ‘desire du jour’ is met, how long before a new one pops up!? It’s endless! Says Gina in the Introduction:

“Wanting is so much a part of being human that we can’t imagine life without it. And yet, wanting causes a lot of suffering: We suffer over not having what we want, not getting what we want, not knowing what we want, and wanting opposite things. When we get what we want, we even suffer over that, as we discover that it doesn’t meet our hopes and expectations.

We put a lot of energy into wanting, and we have a lot of expectations that getting what we want will finally make us happy. But what we find is that getting what we want mostly just leads to wanting more or wanting something different. We are never done with wanting. It is like an itch that is never satisfied.”

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So, if our desires are never-ending, how does one get off of the ‘desire treadmill’? The first step is to understand what makes up a DESIRE in the first place. This is key if we are to keep from falling under the spell that desires seem to have over us; a spell that is fueled by our belief that a desire has the power to bring us genuine peace and happiness.

In Chapter 1, The Fundamentals of Desire, Lake breaks down a DESIRE into three components. The first is the most obvious: a desire arrives as a THOUGHT (what else!?). But not just any thought; desires seem to be much more compelling, have more of a charge to them than our everyday ‘garden variety’ thoughts that we have throughout our day, but barely notice. What makes a ‘wanting thought’ more compelling is its second component: EMOTION.

The example Gina uses in the book is that of wanting a new car. Emotionally it can be very exciting to want a new car, as we imagine all the fun we will have driving it around, playing with all the shiny new gadgets inside it, showing it to our friends, etc.

fancycar

However, the flip side to all the positives of the emotion is also present. What happens if I don’t get this new car? Then I have to keep driving my old car, which because it needs some repairs, doesn’t feel safe. And so suddenly, we have this internal battle going on between the JOY and HAPPINESS we imagine we will experience when we get the car versus the feelings of FEAR and INSECURITY of what will happen to us if we don’t get it.

Gina says:

“If you invest a desire with the belief that your happiness or survival depends on it, it can balloon into something that consumes you. We tend to tell stories about our desires, which make them feel more important than they are. The emotions that result from these stories make the desire feel real, as if it is more than just a thought.”

And this ‘investment’ in the desire, especially when we convince ourselves that our very survival depends upon it, is what brings about the third component to a desire: DRIVE. It’s what motivates us to take action on our desires. So, desires consist of thought, emotion and action; but, and this is the million dollar question: do they really bring us happiness?

In the section called, The SOURCE of HAPPINESS, Gina points out that there are two kinds of very different happiness: fleeting versus changeless. The former (although we don’t think of it as being temporary, although it always is) is imagined to be “out there” in the world somewhere, while the latter is always present:

“The happiness that comes and goes is the happiness we find when we pursue our desires—if we achieve them. The happiness that is ever-present, on the other hand, is not dependent on achieving anything because this happiness is our true nature.

At our deepest core is happiness, peace and contentment. We don’t have to go searching for happiness because we already have it—we are it. The problem is that the ego doesn’t realize this. It believes it needs things and experiences to be happy, so that is what it pursues.”

In the next section called, EGO and ESSENCE, Gina explains how as we let go of believing in the egoic driven false-self, our authentic Self, which she calls Essence, becomes more and more obvious as having always been our true nature. Says Gina:

“The real you exists beyond all thoughts, all feelings, and anything that can be sensed. It can’t be understood with the mind or described by it or sensed with our usual senses; and yet we are all so familiar with it that we overlook it, like the air that surrounds and sustains us but is barely noticed. The real you is overshadowed by the loud and noisy egoic mind, which convinces you that thoughts about you are who you are.”

While mind is noisy, Essence is silent. While thoughts have a form to them, Essence is formless. As long as we are lost in mind, we miss the source of our happiness, because we miss the source of Life.

FINAL THOUGHTS
This slim, 160 page volume explains DESIRES better than any book I have ever come across. It also includes several exercises so that you can have a direct experience of what Gina is pointing to. I highly recommend ANATOMY OF DESIRE, for until we understand exactly how desires work, we will continue to be hypnotized by their compelling stories and find ourselves back on the Samsara rollercoaster.

Be sure to discover more about Gina Lake via her OFFICIAL WEBSITE
The book is available for sale on both Amazon and Kindle

—————————————————————————
Michael Jeffreys’ Awakening Blog: www.mjeffreys.com
Michael Jeffreys’ Awakening Community on Facebook: Michael Jeffreys’ Awakening Community

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Alternative News

The US Military Is Now Recruiting Soldiers Who Were Born After 9/11

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    The US Military is now able to enlist soldiers who were not alive when 9/11 happened, but it only seems to be exacerbating the problems the military is having in attracting recruits, despite having increased incentives and lowering standards.

  • Reflect On:

    Is it possible that our awakening to the truth about war and the military is the main reason that recruitment is becoming so difficult for the US military?

Indeed, that title is worth repeating. The US military is now recruiting soldiers who were born after 9/11. And among other things, they are being recruited to fight in the ongoing war in Afghanistan, the first of several wars that the US government used 9/11 to justify. Still going on after almost 18 years? I guess the US government, or should I say the Deep State behind the US government, hasn’t completed their ‘business’ there. That now-famous line in the Neo-Conservative handbook ‘The Project For A New American Century’ is perhaps worth bringing back here. In speaking about a ‘transformation’ in the Middle East that needs to take place in order for the US to maintain and even enhance their supremacy in the region, the manifesto notes that,

“Further, the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event–like a new Pearl Harbor.”–The Project For A New American Century

Of course creating a new Pearl Harbor was one of the major intentions of 9/11–not only to foment public opinion in favor of going to war against the bad guys in the Middle East (except Saudi Arabia, of course, the only Middle Eastern nation actually tied to 9/11), but also to build enthusiasm for more army recruits to sign up and die overseas for the global elite, err, I mean, their ‘country.’

And were they successful with this ploy? I guess it depends on who you talk to, and what would be meant by ‘successful’. The wars launched on behalf of 9/11 were resisted from the get-go by people who were already awake to what was going on underneath the cover of geopolitical rhetoric. And many more awakened when the inconsistencies in the 9/11 story and false premises like ‘weapons of mass destruction’ became part of global discourse and the subject of many documentaries.

But maybe the global elite still consider it a success. After all, they were able to kill a lot of people and make a lot of money, while gaining more of a military presence in the region from which to better bully countries. But have they now backed themselves into a corner, relying on a narrative that is no longer sustainable?

Recruitment Issues

Certainly, 18 years later, this same war in Afghanistan is not inspiring the same recruitment fervor, as this Buzzfeed article notes:

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As the war in Afghanistan enters its 18th year and the US Army falls thousands short of its recruiting goals, the Pentagon is recognizing it has to do something different to recruit an age group that does not remember 9/11 and for whom the “war on terror” has been background noise their entire lives. This includes rethinking some of its traditional military PR, which has unintentionally turned the corner from inspiring to morbid by highlighting that some of the young people enlisting today are taking over the same tasks in the very same places their parents fought almost a generation ago.

This must be disconcerting for second-generation recruits: while they are being told that their efforts to fight overseas will ‘make a difference,’ they have first-hand knowledge that in addition to all the death, dismemberment and PTSD they must have heard about, and in some cases directly witnessed, that the time their elders have spent in Afghanistan over the past 18 years has not made the situation any better. It has not improved the United States, the country that was invaded, or global security in general.

So that being the case, it might surprise you to know that, according to statistical research done for the year 2015, recruits who already had a relative in the military represented a full 83% of all recruits in that calendar year.

The Rise Of The Warrior Caste?

The army reasons that there is a rise in the ‘warrior caste,’ which comprises the groups of American families that have the ethic and patriotism to ‘bear the burden of a nation at war.’ But is this an accurate assessment? Does this notion not stem from a foregone belief that most Americans still endorse the wars that have been fought and continue to be fought since 9/11, but they are simply leaving it to other citizens to go through the rigors of ‘fighting the good fight’?

In many cases I actually believe that the propensity of family members continuing to join the army stems not from a generational patriotism as such, but from the greater difficulty they may have in shifting their perception about the true underlying motivations behind military aggression.  They would need to acknowledge the fact that not only they but their respected older family members have all been duped by a false narrative. I assume many must continue to cling to the threadbare notion that the military is going around the world invading countries to bring freedom, foster true democracy and make the world safer for American citizens–unless of course they were only in this killing game for the money.

And speaking of money, the military actually has been increasing its offer of financial compensation in order to reach its quotas, as well as lowering its standards for a new recruit’s history of mental illness, according to this USA Today article:

People with a history of “self-mutilation,” bipolar disorder, depression and drug and alcohol abuse can now seek waivers to join the Army under an unannounced policy enacted in August, according to documents obtained by USA TODAY.

‘Nuff said.

The Trust Gap

Would it be a surprise to the top brass in the military that recruitment is down simply because most people no longer trust the military or the U.S. government? Or that fewer people are willing to go overseas and kill people for no apparent reason?

People are waking up, getting smarter, despite Deep State efforts to keep people dumbed-down. There is a trust gap between citizens and the military, and it’s getting wider by the day. What would help recruitment, Military PR department? The truth. Yes, we can handle the truth. If people had real reasons to believe that they were actually fighting for individual rights and freedoms, and a better life for their children, the recruitment lineup might be a little longer. If they believed that the military was really about the defense of traditional American values, then a career in the military might make more sense to them.

But any argument about truly using the military for defensive purposes would naturally imply that there is not such a need for America to have military presence around the globe. Then the notion popularized by Ron Paul and others that we should close our bases in other countries and bring all our troops home to focus on defending our borders would become the rule of the day. And then the tremendous amount of money spent on the military, if not being outright reduced and diverted to matters of domestic importance, could be used to support great projects at home designed to improve the lives of American citizens.

Of course, none of this can happen, until the military is wrested away from the Deep State and put into the hands of ‘We the People’, to serve OUR best interests, as the Constitution meant it to be. In the meantime, let’s just enjoy the goods news that a swiftly decreasing number of young people in America are willing to go overseas to disrupt and control other nations by force.

The Takeaway

The power of the Deep State is only as great as the extent to which people are willing to continue to take up arms and fight for causes that we are clearly seeing are unjust. Many in the past were brainwashed into thinking that they were fighting in wars for important values and principles, like ‘freedom’ and ‘democracy.’ As we awaken to the truth of our history, and our unwitting complicity in unnecessary conflict in the world, the way of global peace and unity will become clear to us.

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Consciousness

Is Marijuana Unhealthy? An In-Depth Look at the Research

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    There are large bodies of research that show the ups and downs of cannabis. Yes, much of it contradicts itself in many ways, but science is never all that cut and dry. Simply, cannabis does have negative side effects, but do they outweigh the pros?

  • Reflect On:

    Do you have an extreme pro or anti stance on cannabis? If so, why? Are we able to recognize the pros and the cons of cannabis and truly be open to them without getting triggered? Are we open to exploring spirituality without substances?

Here in Canada, Cannabis was recently legalized, essentially making it so that getting your hands on Cannabis and recreationally using it is now much easier and accepted. Let me be the first to say I feel this is a good thing, as I do not think the plant should have ever been illegal to begin with.

However, I do feel that this is quite a bit of a bait and switch by the government. We could go on for days about how this is simply a huge government control/profit tactic, huge tax opportunity and ultimately they will control the medical side even more etc. But we’ll leave this for another discussion. In fact, in just a few weeks I’m interviewing an incredibly knowledgeable figure in this space on the subject and much more on The Collective Evolution Podcast. So stay tuned.

Today, I simply want to explore some of the health effects of cannabis as I have found that anytime you have such extreme polarity around something, you get extreme beliefs, misinformation and falsehoods on either side. For example, someone reached out to us via email the other day simply because in one of our articles we stated that it was a good idea to not simply medicate ourselves with cannabis all the time when you are feeling down, but instead to also seek other forms of help. The person emailing was quite angry as they felt we were saying cannabis was bad. Meanwhile, all we were saying was, ‘medicine’ isn’t supposed to be taken every day.

The point is, some will have you think it’s the devil, while others think there is not a single negative side effect. Both are false. As the video below will summarize, “it’s totally wrong to say there are no negative health effects.” But are these health effects as bad as other common substances? No. So let’s ground this conversation and look at both sides objectively as that’s important.

One Quick Note On The Spiritual Aspects of Cannabis

Before we get into the health effects a bit more in the video below, I want to mention two quick things that come up a lot.

Often times people will assume my spiritual knowledge, calm way of being or state of consciousness must have come from either smoking weed or doing some other psychedelics. This is fair, as this is the CULTURE being aggressively pushed. Insight comes from psychedelics. If that were the case on a large scale, we’d see a massively spiritual world, but we don’t because it’s not that simple. This is, unfortunately, a ‘cure all’ culture that has gotten a bit out of control and makes it so that those new to the use of psychedelics can get lost or confused about them. If we remain grounded, in ANY subject, we can help many more people.

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For my journey, I did not grow up trying cannabis or using psychedelics. Cannabis experimentation came a bit later. All of what I currently know, in a spiritual sense, came from simply reflecting and practicing meditation and inner work. I have achieved ‘highs’ from meditation that you learn to bring into daily life in an incredible way. It’s not complicated, it just takes some practice.

Often times people claim that smoking cannabis connects them to god or their higherself. This is a fair thing to feel as I do know, from experience, that cannabis can help quiet the mind to some extent. If you are someone with a very active mind, smoking cannabis can show you what it’s like to have a less active mind. This can certainly be a good thing, but there’s more to this picture.

For me, I’ve experimented on multiple occasions with different strains, and have also ventured into edibles (which I knew wasn’t going to produce that result lol) and all I can say is, for me, this is not connecting to self or higherself. Nor was this the same type of ‘quiet mind’ that comes from meditation. Again, does it quiet your mind in a way? Yes. But something.. is missing.. so to speak, when we’re talking about truly connecting. It was not the same connection as in my normal waking state or my meditation states.

This led me to want to explore more about why people felt this way. Sure, in my direct experience, and I’m truly not meaning to offend here or anything as I feel this is an important conversation to have, but most of the people that were claiming they felt this ‘deep connection’ were not meditators nor practiced things of that nature. Intuitively I felt it was simply coming from the lack of knowledge and experience of what connecting to your true self or higherself actually is. Again, what I feel, and know from experience, is that what we feel when smoking cannabis is a quieter mind. To note, I can’t say that no one can connect to self on cannabis, as I imagine some may.

But I’ve been around people when they smoked, and their overall energy was not resonating in a place that was all that ‘high’, but more so sedated and relaxed. This did not remind me of the energy of being around a group of meditators for example. And this is what I mean by ‘something is missing.’ The energy, the state of being, is simply not the same.

So why do I say this? Why bring this up? Simply because I want to encourage those who are looking to go deeper, and find true inner peace in their waking life, to develop the necessary practices that will truly help them get there.

It feels as though, now, in this moment, and moving into 2019, the ‘trend,’ if you will, is going to evolve towards inner work. Less will we be pacifying and medicating (with things like food, sex, cannabis, alcohol etc.) in a sense, and more will we be truly looking to solve our challenges and turmoil from within. The substances we use may still be consumed for periods as we continue to explore this inner work, it’s not about having anything against them, for some of us, this helps us get through more difficult experience at the moment, but we also must look to do the true inner work that helps us evolve past these challenges, or else we will be pacifying our entire lives.

What can help us explore ourselves? I truly recommend committing to a 10-day meditation practice of just 10 minutes a day can provide enough insight into what this can look like that it can fuel a greater practice and understanding of what it is. For those wanting a bit more food for thought, check this out.

OK, enough about that, let’s jump into the research side of things.

Is Cannabis Healthy?

All of the research Mic refers to and links to support his work are in the video description on YouTube.

The Takeaway

As you probably noted in the video. Yes cannabis smoke, like other smoke, is harmful. It appears cannabis is mildly addictive or that people can make it habitually addictive, but it’s significantly less addictive than other substances like smoking or alcohol. Is it a gateway drug? Maybe slightly, but why do we ignoring alcohol as a gateway drug?

On a spiritual end, let’s truly attempt to develop that practice all the research and time-tested wisdom has always shown is the way to inner peace. Meditation! Start small and simple if you are intimidated. The point is, start!.

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In order to stay truly independent, we need your help. We are not going to put up paywalls on this website, as we want to get our info out far and wide. For as little as $3 a month, you can help keep CE alive!

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Awareness

Antidepressants Cause Severe Withdrawal Symptoms Like Hallucination, Mania, & Anxiety, Study Reveals

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Another study has emerged outlining the harmful health consequences of taking antidepressant drugs. Not only do pharmaceutical companies lie about their benefits, but they also conceal their harm.

  • Reflect On:

    There are other ways to deal with depression that are more effective than medication. Placebo, for example, exercise, a plant-based diet, meditation etc.

This article was written by Sayer Ji, founder of Greenmedinfo.com. Posted here with permission. You can sign up for their newsletter here.

A concerning new study published in the journal Addictive Behavior and titled, “A systematic review into the incidence, severity and duration of antidepressant withdrawal effects: Are guidelines evidence-based?,” reveals that antidepressants are far more addictive and harmful than previously assumed, and vindicates the long time activism on this issue spearheaded by American psychiatrists like Kelly Brogan, MD and Peter Breggin, MD.

Highlights from the paper are as follows:

  • More than half (56%) of people who attempt to come off antidepressants experience withdrawal effects.
  • Nearly half (46%) of people experiencing withdrawal effects describe them as severe.
  • It is not uncommon for the withdrawal effects to last for several weeks or months.
  • Current UK and USA Guidelines underestimate the severity and duration of antidepressant withdrawal, with significant clinical implications.

This study aimed to assess the veracity of the the U.K.’s current National Institute for Health and Care Excellence and the American Psychiatric Association’s depression guidelines which state that withdrawal reactions from antidepressants are ‘self-limiting’ (i.e. typically resolving between 1 and 2 weeks).

In order to accomplish this goal the systematic review used the following methods:

“A systematic literature review was undertaken to ascertain the incidence, severity and duration of antidepressant withdrawal reactions. We identified 23 relevant studies, with diverse methodologies and sample sizes.”

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The results were reported as follows:

“Withdrawal incidence rates from 14 studies ranged from 27% to 86% with a weighted average of 56%. Four large studies of severity produced a weighted average of 46% of those experiencing antidepressant withdrawal effects endorsing the most extreme severity rating on offer. Seven of the ten very diverse studies providing data on duration contradict the UK and USA withdrawal Guidelines in that they found that a significant proportion of people who experience withdrawal do so for more than two weeks, and that it is not uncommon for people to experience withdrawal for several months.”

Side effects were wide-ranging, lasting several months or longer (including permanent dysfunction), such as: 

“Typical AD withdrawal reactions include increased anxiety, flu-like symptoms, insomnia, nausea, imbalance, sensory disturbances, and hyperarousal. Dizziness, electric shock-like sensations, brain zaps, diarrhoea, headaches, muscle spasms and tremors, agitation, hallucinations, confusion, malaise, sweating and irritability are also reported (Warner, Bobo, Warner, Reid, & Rachal, 2006, Healy, 2012). Although the aforementioned symptoms are the most common physical symptoms, there is also evidence that AD withdrawal can induce mania and hypomania, (Goldstein et al., 1999; Naryan & Haddad, 2011) emotional blunting and an inability to cry, (HolguinLew & Bell, 2013) long-term or even permanent sexual dysfunction (Csoka & Shipko, 2006).”

The study concluded:

“We recommend that U.K. and U.S.A. guidelines on antidepressant withdrawal be urgently updated as they are clearly at variance with the evidence on the incidence, severity and duration of antidepressant withdrawal, and are probably leading to the widespread misdiagnosing of withdrawal, the consequent lengthening of antidepressant use, much unnecessary antidepressant prescribing and higher rates of antidepressant prescriptions overall. We also recommend that prescribers fully inform patients about the possibility of withdrawal effects.”

The researchers also noted that the rising numbers of antidepressant prescriptions used throughout the world may be fueled by the antidepressant drug withdrawal side effects themselves:

“As the lengthening duration of AD use has fuelled rising AD prescriptions over the same time period, we must understand the drivers of such lengthening use. The evidence set out suggests that lengthening use may be partly rooted in the underestimation of the incidence, severity and duration of AD withdrawal reactions, leading to many withdrawal reactions being misdiagnosed, for example, as relapse (with drugs being reinstated as a consequence) or as failure to respond to treatment (with either new drugs being tried and/or dosages increased). This issue is pressing as long-term AD use is associated with increased severe side-effects, increased risk of weight gain, the impairment of patients’ autonomy and resilience (increasing their dependence on medical help), worsening outcomes for some patients, greater relapse rates, increased mortality and the development of neurodegenerative diseases, such as dementia.”

The concerning implications of this study to millions around the world who are on antidepressants were immediately recognized by the media, as evidenced by mainstream reporting on the topic with the following headlines:

Thanks to a small but courageous group of professionals who have been raising awareness of the profound, unintended adverse effects of psychiatric drugs and the abject absence of objective criteria for determining “mental disease,” not only are there already resources available to the public today to better understand the dangers of psychiatric drugs, but there are also programs and protocols in place to help those who are on them to come off of them safely and with the support of others who have done the same already. For instance, the program put together by Dr. Kelly Brogan — Vital Mind Reset — has produced powerful outcomes. Take a look at the testimony wall here to learn from the first hand experiences of those who underwent the program and came out drug-free, often with their psychiatric symptoms and comorbid conditions reduced or completely put into remission.

A Quick Important Notice:

The demand for Collective Evolution's content is bigger than ever, except ad agencies and social media keep cutting our revenues. This is making it hard for us to continue.

In order to stay truly independent, we need your help. We are not going to put up paywalls on this website, as we want to get our info out far and wide. For as little as $3 a month, you can help keep CE alive!

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