Simple and effortless

When it's so complex you can't be bothered even starting

In life there are those who want to measure and study something from a distance and then there are those - bless their souls - who want to get face first in and experience it. Taste it!

Take chocolate - or a fine whisky - or a sunny day - or anything you love ... you can analyse the heck out of it OR you can get down and immerse yourself in it.

Just think about it OR fully experience it it? What would YOU prefer?

I know what I prefer.

Every now and then I go onto various meditation and mindfulness forums and see what’s happening, see what’s being talked about, see if I can learn something, see if I can lend a hand or some advice to someone.

Every single time I’ve quit within ten minutes. 5 minutes actually. Perhaps I should persevere but some of the denizens of the internet just bore me super quick.

There is a bunch of people trying to make meditation and mindfulness so complicated, using foreign languages and jazzy terms and arguing about this state of being and that state of being … doing anything it seems EXCEPT for actually experiencing what they are talking about.

Because when you actually experience it you have little concern to argue about it. You kinda just shrug your shoulders and walk away and go and hang out with people who taste it - because they are so much more fun.

Simplicity is the height of gloriousness. Simplicity is good, simplicity is true, simplicity is what you deserve. Complication, on the other hand, kills all enthusiasm, and I believe, denotes wanting to measure something rather than actually face first experience it.

Being stress free is your natural state of being. Meditation, believe it or not, is your natural state of being. Mindfulness and awareness, is your natural state of being. Being content and calm and clear with a half-step back is your natural state of being.

Kids do it - you’ve forgotten it. That is all. Don’t complicate this, please don’t … there’s absolutely no need. It’s the simplest thing in the world. And experience it! Experience now. This is it. You cannot think about it, you can only do it. Freedom from all suffering lies within you, right here, right now.

If you have a “formal” meditation practice great. If you Ascend, great. If you do “the pause” and regularly just stop as you listen to music (or silence) or drink tea or read or breathe or exercise or knit then wonderful.

Whatever you do, switch off regularly, get to know the comfort and the calm that comes with your own presence and you are golden.

Keep it simple, and just do it, ok?

Go well! Arjuna

PS. Of course, I think of an eyes closed meditation practice as an incredible boost to your sanity. If you want to be the sanest person alive, a simple meditation practice will furnish you with that quickity quick. Here’s a few things I wrote for you, and it's free:

Why aren’t you a vegan?

People ask me how I can be a monk and yet not be very monkly. Please note, I write monkly and not monkey, though "people" could be meaning that: Why are you so monkey and not monkly?

Why don’t I practice sitting ramrod straight with folded legs? Why aren’t I a vegan? Why do I drink coffee? Why do you drink whiskey? Why do I have a family? Why do I take all of this so un-seriously?

The fact of the matter is I have tried all of the things that are “correct”. I have tried just about everything under the sun that you are “supposed” to do. And I have rejected most of them because they didn’t work for me. I couldn’t see the benefit - again personally speaking - for me.

For example, when I was a vegan because it was the “right” thing to do, I was actually slowly starving myself. People may say that my diet was all wrong, and I should have this supplement and that supplement, but the truth is it was too rigid - for me - and it didn’t bring me any joy.

Hence the whiskey and the coffee. Even though they are “intoxicants”, a little goes a long way to making my heart sing … “lah lah lahhhh …” Joy is a very underrated propellant for transformation.

I had someone yell at me once; accusing me of not following the proper way of meditating and carrying myself as dictated by the ancient texts. I shrugged my shoulders and said “meh” - and noted he wasn’t sitting on a goat hair skin either.

Rigidity - it is the enemy of joy. It is the enemy of freedom. It is the enemy of discovery.

I’m not against rituals and useful barriers, of taking choices that don’t serve you off the table - but they have to serve a noticeable purpose and benefit TO YOU.

Otherwise it’s just dogma. And dogma just makes your life grey. It puts you in a whole world of “I should”, and that is a nasty wormhole to get trapped in.

It also has to be sustainable. It has to be something you will do time and time again. Now that will change, but regularity trumps (excuse the term) “proper but never done” every time.

So work out what works for you. Work out what brings you maximum joy - don’t just accept someone’s word for it, test it, try it. If an authority is available, quiz them about it.


Good work - go well!



Mindfulness - it’s a funny concept, highjacked a little. I prefer the word “awareness” or “presence” or “noticing” … it is training to be familiar with this moment in time, but also the part of you that never ever changes - even in the middle of the biggest thought or emotional storm. The anchor that stops you flying off the handle, and all it takes to have it is a little practice.

This is a little challenge I devised to get more awareness, and therefore less stress, overwhelm and negativity with more fun, focus and contentment:

What have I done wrong?

I got a Facebook message the other day, regarding the little mindfulness challenge that I got going on.


Arjuna I haven’t done the mindfulness meditation for two days! I have slept and slept and I’m starting afresh today … I hope no one else has slipped up like me!! Thing is I don’t know why ... I was feeling so good and getting excellent results straight away, whats happened ??!


Now whether you are part of the challenge or not, here’s the thing:

You will forget, you will get distracted, you will fall asleep. This is normal, this is habits.

The critical thing you can choose to have - the attitude you can choose to take - is one of gentleness, and a willingness to simply get back on the horse WHEREVER you find yourself.

Forgiveness and patience, and innocence too - you can only be mindful and aware right now. You can’t do a single thing about the past; it has totally gone, it has removed itself from you.

And that is the whole point of being mindful and aware, of meditating: is making the habit that now is it. Now is the one place you can attend to, the one place you can live, the one place you can do anything about.

So when you forget - and you will, unless you are an Olympic athlete of awareness - simply smile and begin again. No recriminations, no wondering what you have done wrong, do nothing but resetting to here and now. Re-begin again - give yourself that gift.

OK? Keep it that simple and life will become a constant joy.

Go well!



If you’d like to be a part of this challenge - the goal of which is to become more aware, more focussed, more happy, more half-stepped back from those pesky thoughts and feelings, here’s all the gubbins: 

Life is NOT a journey

On A Journey?

Someone once said that Life like climbing a mountain.

You’re on a journey from one state of being to another. Progressing, getting, heading forth, getting better - at stuff and things. Schooling yourself.

If they didn’t say that, well, they should have. If they didn’t say that then I’m saying it - and you can quote me.

That’s what it feels like doesn’t it?

Climbing up this mountain, and it’s hard going some days. You slip up, you feel like you fall back and lose that precious ground.

(I did a video on facebook, if you'd rather watch:


Sometimes you get so demoralised with the slipping, falling back into old habits you just give up.

“What’s the point?!”

“I’m never going to get there anyway!” as you throw away your intention, your vision for your life, for someday getting to the place you want to be, to finally being the person you want to become.

I want you to consider something though.


Not Up or Down, Balancing

Progressing in life is actually more like Buddha said - a razors edge.

Ooh! Sounds dramatic doesn’t it? But it’s this balancing act where your goal is to stay on balance. You fall off, of course you fall off, but what do you do? Just get back on.

You haven’t lost anything. You haven’t declined, this isn’t a game of snakes and ladders - you just fell off. You just forgot. You fell asleep.

Now you’re awake. Jump back on! Consistency you see. Get back on and do the things that you know you need to do.

You’ll stay there longer and longer and longer AND the things that make you fall off just get more and more obvious. You begin to master that fluid simple effortless focus of staying on until one day you find you’re staying on much much more than you’re falling off.

All because you simply jumped back on.


Melting Away

Being free of stress, negativity, limitation, and all your habits that you’re not proud of? The thing is it's not even a balancing act.

It’s a hot bath. And the small you, the ego, your limited beliefs and patterns are like an ice cube.

Being present and mindful - humour me and do it right now. Give yourself completely to now - if you do it fully, it's like slipping into a hot comfortable bath where it needs nothing else. All is well, right here. Right?

Here in the Now bath your limitations melt away, so simply, so effortlessly - just by you staying in the bath. That's where transformation comes about, just from soaking in the bath.

Not thinking about how you were going to do it, just by being in it.


Just Jump Back In

Through habit you jump out of the bath. In the beginning, a lot. No deal! You feel asleep.

Now you’re awake - jump back in to the one place that really satisfies, and the one place stress, drama, negativity can’t exist, and where everything you don’t need melts away - where you transform.

Keep it that simple.

The more you jump back in? The more you realise just how pleasant this bath is. It never gets cold. It always has your favourite rubber ducky.

Jump in and relax. The Now bath will take care of everything for you, in the right time. Nothing to get, nowhere to go.

Go well!



Too long, didn’t read?

Life is a bath of now. Stay in the bath. Realise you’re out of the bath? Get back in!

Here's a 108 ways so you make getting in the bath and stay in. It's FREE too:

What Adele’s Vocal Cords Have to do With Your Peace

Adele, like many singers, has had troubles with her voice.

Most recently I believe she had to cancel a couple of Wembley shows.

To help remove the polyps, the lumps and bumps on her vocal cords,

A surgeon stuck a scalpel and forceps on foot long handles down her throat,

To grab the tiny little nasty that was causing Adele the problem.

Well done that fellow.

A cut a few millimetres either side and her voice is gone.

No pressure huh?

And I have trouble with a sausage and a set of barbecue tongs …

The reason I mention Adele is that there is a real movement towards more natural, effortless ways of doing things.

In singing there a movement that sees such polyps as being due to not wear and tear,

But singing with force and effort.

This movement is about finding and using your natural voice - not straining.

It’s the same in running, for example.

Many years ago I got injured and had to retrain to run how I might if I was running barefoot, rather than relying on heavily cushioned shoes and bashing along.

It made a world of difference.

The whole paleo diet trend - the idea that humans don’t do well eating cultivated carbs like wheat and rice - could be seen as part of this search for a more natural way too.

Where ever you look there’s a quest for a more natural, effortless, strain free way of doing.

What has this to do with peace, happiness and mastering the negative tendencies of your mind?

I’m glad you asked.

I talked last time about assuming a Zentitude - of equanimity, of nothing matters

Which works extremely well IF you’re easy with it.

But many take it to extremes,

As always, with everything there are zealots -

No matter if it’s diet, singing, running or frisbee.

For these guys - and I know this because I’ve been there -

Mastering the mind is seen as silencing the mind through force

“Nothing matters” is done through sitting on a spike and putting up with it …

The idea being if you can train the mind to cope with punishment, then you can cope with anything.

Now - force isn’t charming to the mind.

Suffering isn’t a good way of making friends with it.

No way Jose.

It just doesn’t work.

Being without strain and suffering is the key to any learning, any training.

You need commitment for sure - but it take commitment to get up and make a coffee in the morning …

A certain focus to get you where you want to go.

Easily done, effortless, MOST mornings for sure …

But you do it because it’ll bring you reward,

Not a hot cup of strain.

I realised this quickly, I’m glad to say.

When it comes to learning how to master your mind, no force or strain is necessary,

It should, and can be, pleasant.

It should, and can be, instantly rewarding

It’s not about shutting your mind up.

It’s not about forcing it to do anything.

It’s about connecting with that part of you that your mind is actually searching for …

(That’s why it’s so busy -)

Your mind - in its strange way - is trying to help you find happiness and peace.

When you have a proper technique, or a “vehicle”, such as Ascension,

The mind is brought to where its been crazily running around looking for.

That natural, already existing part of you that is ALREADY content and present and stress and strain free.

No effort - it’s pleasant, and rewarding.

Commitment to get your mind used to moving in that certain direction, yes.

Strain and force and punishment? No.

You don’t force the mind to stop running down those rabbit holes of worry, doubt, regret and overwhelm …

You give it something else to tune into.


No strain is key here.

Peace is your natural state - it takes no effort to return to.

Questions on that?

Let me know, and if you like the idea of this effortless way?

Get started with my FREE guide to mastering your mind by keeping it easy and simple:

Go well!



If you have a nearby young child -

Check out how freely they smile.

How effortlessly they are present.

You were the same too, once.

You can be again.