On Being Childlike

FRANÇAIS PAGE 2 : AVOIR UNE ÂME D’ENFANT

4 min read

Do you always try to keep a childlike eye to what happen in your life? Are your constantly trying to see the good parts of life? Or do you just start worrying every time adversity arise?

According to many teachings, religions or even philosophies such as Taoism for instance, we must all have a childlike spirit.

Stay childlike and be one with Heaven

Lao Tzu

I remember once, I was able to teach my little sister to ride a bike. She’s 10 years younger than me and when she finally decided to take the training wheels off her, I was here to help her. I actually gave a her what I called a potion so that she would be able to ride her bike by herself.

I believe, by focusing on what children have to say about the world, that we can learn a lot. This is why the documentary project The Internal Change I told you about can finally say publicly that it will make a difference in the world during its filming by helping children in need in South-Asia.

Remember about the project I told you about, you can read the first article about it here : Docu-project : The Internal Change Happening Within and Outside of Us. To say it shortly, my team and I are currently preparing the filming of a documentary from Australia to India that will criticize our consumer society and take example on the children.

Our society is based on possessions, having a lot means succeeding ; which leads to imbalances. But, when we look at ancient civilisations and knowledge, we see that simplicity and sustainability are two words that go hand in hand. In short, focus on the past to understand how to move forward in the future.

As adults, we have a tendency to see the glass half empty, to worry about tomorrow and to always ensure our health and safety. What if, by simply taking inspiration from children’s  temperament, we could grow and blossom again?

One of the secrets to a healthier life is then a simpler life. Or, to use a term known by some, a life that goes toward minimalism. Without saying that we should all live in a minimalist way, it is a way of living more conscious developed by more and more festivals of all kinds that are part of a sustainable approach and from which it is possible to draw inspiration to change little by little our habits and strive towards inner balance.

By focusing particularly on the habits of the children of the countries we will visit, we will be able to realize more clearly where humanity tends towards. We will see that poverty often makes a country rich in its humanity and that children of poor countries will fill the gaps of our western societies.

My sister I told you about earlier in this post, she drank my potion. Guess what, that’s how she learnt to ride a bike! Do not worry, the potion was only water, but I simply told her that this was a potion that would give her enough self-confidence so that she would ride perfectly. And that’s what happened, that day was the day she was able to take the training-wheels off.

Thanks to this movie we will show how, simply by deciding to stop being guided by society and by changing gradually our habits, one can be affected by the problems of the world less and less. One person at a time, it is possible to go toward a sustainable future. It will help raise the vibration of the earth and awaken consciousness.

More explanations on the page of the project on GlobeDreamers.com

In each country visited by the movie, we will engage in an associative and volunteer way. We will visit big cities to witness this consumer society and poorer towns for their wisdom. We will focus on those smaller towns, which at first glance might not be so attractive but that can teach a lot more than touristic places. We will visit monasteries and learn about customs and traditions so that we would open our horizons and always go forward into more understanding of our world and ourselves.

Problem is, the miracle solution doesn’t exist, everything takes time. I would therefore like, with this project, to show to the public how much it is so necessary to start to take care of oneself, bit by bit.

1 – Lines of work 

After two years of research in this field, it is necessary to go on the ground to clearly realize the situation. This is why we will ask 3 questions in each countries we’ll visit :

  • What impact does the consumer society have on the environment and the well-being of the population?
  • What are the customs of this country and in what measures can they be beneficial to us?
  • Does the wealth of this country make its greatness? (or does its poverty make room for the richness of relationships?)
Image by Sasin Tipchai 

2 – Associative work

To do so, the team of this movie is currently preparing it and looking for one project for each country visited. In fact, in order to be sufficiently imbued with countries, to leave our mark and to touch a maximum of subjects specific to the values of the film, the project is still under construction and we will be back soon with a clearer idea of which project will motivate our stays.

And because the children are a major point of the evolution of everyone and of humanity, and that is the subject of our film, we are looking for an association helping children in need in one or more countries we will cross. We are already in contact with an association which teaches English to children and teenagers in Laos and fights for the preservation of the environment there.

We will also stop in monasteries to better understand the minimalist philosophy of life conveyed by the serenity of their residents.

We will also stay with locals, mostly in exchange for lodging to enter into their daily lives and understand precisely what are the impacts of over consumption on their everyday lives. We are already in contact with locals in Bali, Thailand and Cambodia.

3 – The children’s cause

Image by shekharchopra85

According to ILO (International Labour Organization), at least 250 million children would be working in the world, of which 61% would be in Asia.

However, a law dating from 2006 prohibits the work of children under the age of 14 in India. But with few controls and very few laws enforced, an estimated 12.5 million children are working in this country.

UNICEF is also sounding the alarm in a new report released recently. The Covid-19 pandemic, says the organization, « is destroying decades of progress in health, education and other areas for children in South Asia. » Projections show that over the next six months, an additional 120 million children could fall into poverty and food insecurity, adding to the more than 240 million children already in poverty.

India had to order a new lockdown a few days ago. Imagine the damage this could be for so many people there.

Unfortunately, child labour is not the only violation of children’s rights in South Asian countries. India, after Bangladesh in child marriages, still celebrates 40% of child marriages worldwide. The sound girls, promised in marriage at their birth are given to a man older than her around the age of 11 years. Young girls and boys are therefore deprived of normal development and even of proper education, their mental and physical health are hindered and therefore their future. Although child marriage is prohibited by India Law, 47% of girls are married before the age of 18.

The story of my sister tells us about the power of children’s imagination. They just have to believe in something to make it happen. Many more reasons to take care of them and take their point of view into account.

Together with this movie, we’ll go through the biggest megalopolis of the world, Paris, Sydney, Melbourne, Bali, Jakarta, Singapore, Phnom Penh, Bangkok, Chitagong, Dhaka, New Delhi, focusing on humbler towns on our way.

We’ll see that simplicity does help happiness to come through.

More explanations on the page of the project on Globedreamers.com

If you too want to be part of something greater, that you want to show up for the world and more specifically for the children of the world, I invite you to take a look on the project. It is supported by a platform for sustainable travel projects called GlobeDreamers.

You can click on the image below to be redirected to the project on their website.

Image by Ben Gananda

Or simply click on this link : https://globedreamers.com/en/crowdfunding/travel/6717-le-changement-interieur-qui-sopere-en-nous-et-tout-autour-de-nous

One way you could start helping the project would be to like and share it on your favorite social media, this will help A LOT the project to be heard!

If you are interested, I will also be interviewed on a live with GlobeDreamers on their Instagram page (in French) on Sunday 19th at 7 pm (GMT +1).

Stay tuned, as said in my previous article, we will dive deeper into the mind-body connection in the next article. Be sure to subscribe to the newsletter below!

In the meantime, take time for yourself and your loved ones.

Love,

Ben

Want to keep reading ?

Interested by India’s philosophy ? Have a look on my article about Ayurveda : Ancient Science

Interested by meditation ? Then read this one : Meditation Series : Mantras with Carrie Grossman

If you want to receive all the latest news in your mailbox it’s down here :

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Terminé ! Vous figurez dans la liste.

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Silent Retreat

FRANÇAIS PAGE 2

3 min read

Have you ever felt the need to be alone? Did you ever feel the need to step back and take time by yourself in nature?

I knew about someone who was one of those people who needed to please its friends and family to feel accepted. I saw that he was completely forgetting himself just because he thought that he needed to do as many things as possible to finally be accepted by someone and therefore to be whole.

Maybe if by then I had known about what was a silent retreat, I could have had told him about it and it would have been a life saver for him. Because after all those empty attempts he never found anyone that had the same convictions and therefore he felt rejected and even rejected himself from his country..

Maybe you too are feeling overwhelmed by some people or just maybe by social medias. Maybe you also need to step back from the news and the situation happening in the world with the virus. And I know that it is overwhelming, you can get easily anxious with the situation and that’s partly why I decided to experience this silent retreat.

Hridaya Yoga, a mediation – yoga school based in France organised a 3 and 10 day silent meditation retreat – in French and English. The rules were simple, we had to be alone for the duration of the retreat and we couldn’t do anything more than what the program was offering. Except eating of course and writing on a journal ; no music, no reading, no talking.

Thanks to the quarantine – if I can say it like that – Hridaya Yoga organised this online silent retreat based on a conscious donation. Anyone who was interested could join and take part in all the courses offered. We were guided through four hours of meditation, two hours of yoga and three hours of teachings each days from 8 am to 9 pm.

Of course if you’ve read my articles, you know that I’m familiar with mediation but I was never bold enough – because it takes courage – to meditate for one full hour. My girlfriend joined the French group and I joined the English one. The French group was guided by Deborah Blin and the English group was guided by the founder of the school, Sahajananda. 

Sahajananda stayed in silence for 17 years. Yes, you heard well, 17 years. And when you follow his mediations, it’s wonderful to see how, even through a camera, his peace can touch you. All the teachings given in this school are the product of 17 years of silence.

I’m not going to lie, staying in silence for 3 days was really hard, especially when you know that I planned to do the 10 day retreat. But this is also part of the process, yes, all in good time

Moreover, as I said I was doing it with my girlfriend, but in a little flat so we had to organise our three days in order for us to not even see or eat with each other. We weren’t even supposed to sleep next to each other, we couldn’t do that so we agreed that we wouldn’t look nor touch. It might seem harsh but since we wanted to have the full experience, we had to play along.

The first day was the harder one, my mind even tried to spoil me by checking my bank account. This too could wait. It is difficult to talk about an experience like this since everything is happening in your mind and especially in your heart. My girlfriend explains her experience here :

“I apprehended a lot before the retreat because of all the things we couldn’t do, like not interact with anyone and especially not having any information coming in or out if I can say it like that, no books, no tv… But despite those apprehensions, it made me feel a lot better, like an introspection, something I wasn’t used to do. It did lift things to the surface of my being but it help me sort things out and soothed me. It was like an exploration of the self. »

As for myself, I know that there is a Ben before the retreat and a Ben after ; it’s a crazy experience and we don’t realise how our mind are busy and how we really have to calm them. Now I’m taking things less seriously and I’m learning to listen to myself even more. Since then, my meditations and yoga sessions are a lot more easier and I go through life more serenely. The retreat wasn’t easy at first but we do have to fall before flying.

I advise you to look for a retreat like this. Another one I heard about is Vipassana. But I’m sure you can find one of your own that suit you best and that you can benefit from. Life can be scary sometimes but remember those moments where you stepped out of your comfort zone, wasn’t it worth it? The fledgling is scared as well when it has to leave the nest and fly but when it does fly, it is finally free.

I hope you liked this article. If you did, do not hesitate to type your address email below to receive an email once a week with a new article. And I would really appreciate a like or share on any social media, you’ll find my links bellow.

Stay safe and take care.

Love

Ben

Want to keep reading ?

You can read one of my last article : 4 Different Ways Our Body Ingest Energy

Want to know about my next film project ?

Here’s my article about my Docu-project : The Internal Change Happening Within and Outside of Us

If you want to receive the next article in your mailbox it’s down here :

Traitement en cours…
Terminé ! Vous figurez dans la liste.

You can follow me below @ Ben Gananda