What do you need but not want?

A lot of the things I offer to the world are a ‘hard sell’. Nobody skips happily to see me for psychotherapy, where they pay money to feel horrible. People are understandably sceptical of our form of Buddhism, which encourages us to acknowledge our foolishness and to open to the Other. My latest book is called […]

What’s your cheese?

I just walked past our old cat Fatty, curled up on the back of the sofa. He opened one eye lazily and, as I neared the fridge, leapt from his comfy blanket and trotted over to me. For several years now we’ve been treating Fatty’s dodgy thyroid with daily lunchtime pills. We discovered that the most […]

Are you a saint or a pickpocket?

“When a pickpocket sees a saint, he sees only his pockets. When a saint sees a pickpocket, he sees only god.” ~ Ramana Maharshi The pickpocket survives by taking money from other people’s pockets. Yes, he could have made different choices. We can always choose differently. But we will never know how it was for the pickpocket […]

On being lazy

I have always strongly identified as Someone Who Works Hard. When speaking to friends, I catch myself complaining about how busy I am. When I look back at a day crammed with work, I feel good about myself. Recently I’ve also noticed that I am Someone Who Wants To Do Nothing. To hide under a furry blanket […]

On being our own mothers

Today I framed this baby Satya, so she can sit on the bookshelf just to the right of my desk. I am slowly getting better at looking after the little Satya that is still inside me. For years I didn’t listen to her. I ignored her fear when I was out of my depth, and […]

Taking care of the temple

Remember that at any given moment there are a thousand things you can love.  ~ David Levithan This morning I lugged plant pots up and down two flights of stairs, washed slippers, tidied out some drawers and cleaned away drifts of incense dust, and it made me very happy. It’s been too long since Kaspa & I […]

Help, I’m tired of myself

This is an Asking For Help blog, where I answer a question (from myself or others) with a slogan chosen at random from my book, ‘What Helps: Sixty Slogans to Live By‘. Question: Yesterday I got lost on social media again, after saying I wasn’t going to, and I feel so tired of myself and my various dysfunctions – I come […]

Help, I’m excited but confused

Here’s the first in my new series of Asking For Help blogs, where I answer a question (from myself or others) with a slogan chosen at random from my book, ‘What Helps: Sixty Slogans to Live By‘. Question: I’m thinking about making some big changes in my work, and I’m excited but also confused about how much […]

Roselle Angwin Says: This Helps

Here is the last of our interviews to celebrate my new book, ‘What Helps: Sixty Slogans to Live By‘, with Zen practitioner and poet Roselle Angwin. Over to Roselle! What are your three favourite slogans? 1 ‘Be kind – everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.’ (Plato, to my constant surprise.) 2 ‘Looking into the heart of light, […]