Love Anew

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To find out more about our full line of quality skincare products, visit my Avon website. If you have any questions regarding product information, or information on how you can become an Avon Representative , fill out the form below. I will be happy to help you! Avon , beauty. Email required. Share this:. Like this: Like Loading Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. This also entailed my search outside of myself for a love resembling the unconditional love that I had disconnected from.

As I reflect on my past relationships, I can see that I always tried to look for this kind of understanding and compassion for the little wounded child inside. This endeavor always failed because it came from the wrong view that others could heal her when in fact, she needed to allow healing to take place by reconciling with her parents and reconnecting herself to the treasure trove of love from her parents that has always been available for her.

As their continuation, I have inherited these seeds of craving and suffering which I did not recognize, and hence did not know how to transform them. Then growing up in a society where there is too much emphasis on satisfying sensual and sexual pleasure—as if it were the aim of our life—I could not avoid forming distorted views about love and sex. At the beginning, there was the novel excitement and joy of being together, but after some time, this sense of disconnection and physical discomfort would arise again.

When I reflect on my past relationships, I see that many were formed based on attraction which was fleeting or alternatively, the attraction came from the unfulfilled need to love or be loved and accepted. Unaware of my wrong ideas and their consequences, I also learnt how to use sexual energy to manipulate and control, believing this to be a right to express feminine power in this age of sexual freedom with mutual non-commitment.

Taking Care of My Skin

I lived in this way with not enough care and consideration about how others might feel. If I am honest, I would say that I never knew how to love truly in any of my past relationships. I am sorry to all those kind people who were in relationship with me! Sorry for not knowing how to take care of my own suffering and hence made you suffer, too.

By the age of 30, I thought I had—through a process of intelligent progressive selection—narrowed down the most important qualities I wanted in a partner to ensure a good long-term commitment until we were both toothless old bags sitting beside each other reminiscing about our past. I looked for intimacy in another, but I ended up feeling more lost and disconnected within myself than before.

It must be something inside that prevented me from having the happiness and fulfillment that I yearned for in relationships because no matter whom I was with, I still encountered similar problems.

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So I decided to stop doing things the conventional way and took some time out of the relationship scene in order to look deeply inside myself. I quit my job and booked a three-month winter retreat in Plum Village. After experiencing the joys of community life, the peace and happiness of the mindfulness practices in daily life, and increased understanding about myself, the option of an alternative career and lifestyle became increasingly attractive. I became a nun on a quest to learn true love! It seems ironic that I only begin to discover how to love truly after I became celibate, but that is what is happening.

The first step in learning to care for my mind is to be aware of my sensory impressions and how they can create wrong views. I can see more clearly now that my suffering has come from wrong views about men, distorted views about myself and my body, and deluded views about sex, love, and relationships. We spend so much time and money, make so much effort, and go through great discomfort or pain for the price of physical beauty to look other than we do. It is then no surprise that I rarely felt comfortable in my own skin!

This conditioning begins in our teenage years through the media, our family, and our peers. I could not accept my body since I was a teenager; at times I even despised it.

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It is very damaging because it created a lot of hatred for my own body, non-acceptance of my situation, and no chance for happiness in the present moment because there is always something to buy in order to be happy, to be cool. I could never be fully comfortable and truly connect with another person because of this complex about my body, even if the other could accept me as I was. After being a nun and living in an environment free of these harmful sensory impressions for seven years, I am still working on healing these conditioned views about my body, and practicing day by day to transform habitual ways of relating to others that is not motivated by attraction and manipulation.

This non-acceptance of myself was so ingrained that until now, after being a nun and living in an environment free of these harmful sensory impressions for seven years, I am still working on healing these conditioned views about my body, and practicing day by day to transform habitual ways of relating to others that is not motivated by attraction and manipulation.

I am learning to treat my body with respect and kindness by being aware of what I eat, getting enough sleep and relaxation, and learning to manage stress and strong emotions with mindful breathing and walking meditation. Being surrounded by a lot of nature has been very healing as Mother Earth accepts everything. Whether you are a beautiful flower or a distorted and sick leaf, you are still a wonderful creation of Mother Earth.

The flower does not compare and disparage the leaf, and the leaf, in its own capacity, will still provide nutrients to the flower and the tree. Only after I had removed myself from my conventional environment and allowed myself to experience an alternative—an environment free of these conventional stimuli—that I was able to see more clearly the effects of conditioning on my behavior and daily choices of what I consume for the health and well being of my body and mind.

Bonnie Leon

Life in current high tech society is like being in a gushing river. You only experience being swept away, bobbing up and down uncontrollably, sometimes gasping for air and just getting a glimpse of the blue sky. But if you can manage to extract yourself from this torrent and sit on the shore, then you can see that peace and ease is possible, that the blue sky and green trees are so beautiful, that the stars in the sacred night are miracles that we all belong to. What we think and what pushes us to behave, including our habits, are largely dependent on what we consume through sensory impression that leave us with a perception of something.

If we keep consuming images, sounds, and ideas through conversations that reinforce these perceptions, they can become a view that is ingrained in our consciousness. They become our reality.

To Love Anew (Sydney Cove, #1) by Bonnie Leon

All of this process is happening in a very subtle way so that we are not aware of our changing views and perceptions. If our view is wrong or distorted, then this becomes the foundation for all the actions that bring about harm and suffering. I am not blaming the media and society for my suffering. What I am trying to say is we can be more aware of how our sensory impressions can impact on our mind on a daily basis and be intelligently selective of what we consume, so that we can protect our mind and body. Like a branch of white orchid that will become purple if we soak it in water with purple dye.

What kind of nutriment or colour do we want to feed the flower that we are? We can be more aware of how our sensory impressions can impact on our mind on a daily basis and be intelligently selective of what we consume so that we can protect our mind and body.

I have experienced for myself that by living more simply with fewer sensory stimuli and learning again to enjoy and find a sense of wonder in the simple things in life, I am re-setting my priorities in the right direction. We often take the simple things for granted like taking a walk in a beautiful sunset on our own, enjoying the moonlight as it creates wonderful patterns on the ground through the branches and leaves of trees, and savouring the delicious colours of autumn leaves with our beloved on a Sunday afternoon. The daily things we do can be the very thing that our spirit needs when our mind is united with our body, when we are really present for the moment, anchored by our mindful breathing.

To Love Anew (Sydney Cove Series #1)

Mother Earth provides us with so many miracles, but only if we stop to receive and be healed, be transformed by her. Otherwise, we remain destitute and continue to run around searching when we already have precious jewels within our hands. During our summer retreats in Plum Village, we have a teens program.

Last year in working in the teens program, I felt so much pain hearing stories of how much young people hate their body and feel the need to cover their perceived ugliness with lots of make-up, or they think that they can only be attractive when they dress sexily, or be accepted or loved when they agree to have sexual relations. Underage drinking, using drugs, and having sex have become a source of unfortunate peer pressure that happen to teenagers before they have sufficiently developed the emotional and mental capacity to deal with such things.

When I see this reality, I understand why young people only know empty sex without ever touching true love and why they suffer because of this superficial level of happiness. How can we help young people to have more realistic views about beauty, love, and sex which are kind, respectful, and loving as well as views that can nourish and develop our true self?

In our daily practice we have a gatha a short poem to recite every time we look into the mirror:. When there is love, kindness, and openness in our hearts, people will find us naturally attractive and will be drawn to us without any need of cosmetic or charisma.

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Conversely, if we are a famous supermodel with the most beautiful clothing and make-up, but we look down on others or think we know it all, then others will not enjoying being in our presence. Last summer, I attended the Wake Up Earth retreat in Plum Village and experienced deep healing and understanding of my relationship to men. Over the past seven years, I have been working on healing my childhood wound, and I think I have made good progress.

During the retreat, I saw a brother being moved to tears by a sharing by Christiana Figueres.

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