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How to live the slow life

 

Lead a SLOW LIFE

Soneva, a world leading sustainable luxury resort operator recently produced a very informative coffee table book (published under previous trade name Six Senses) showcasing their responsible business practices, which features an outlook they have called SLOW LIFE. 

It is a set of principles to live and work by, which, as an individual can make a difference to the World, as well as help one to better appreciate and Love Life. 

Lead a Sustainable life

Buy Local products

Use Organic produce

Have Wellness and good health in body and mind

Learning. Nothing comes easily… it must be practiced

Inspiring. Good leadership and strong ideals

Fun. Love Phuket and enjoy this bountiful Island

Experiences. Hands on teamwork, learn by doing it at home, at work, at play.

These principles, adopted individually and communicated on a broader scale through this document for Hotel operators, will help us to make Phuket a better place today, and in the future.

In the following sections we highlight some of the issues we face on Phuket and within the region, principally a waste management crisis and its impact on the marine life, and show you some easy steps to follow to help to make our area a better place.

Lead by example, educate others, encourage kids and lobby/support local government in its change of thinking and its embrace of sustainability.

http://www.soneva.com/soneva/explore/slow

 

The Art of Happiness: will it revolutionize our planet

The Dalai Lama over the last few decades has consistently extolled the virtues of humanity and the underlying compassionate nature of human beings, a view that is slowly gaining ground in the west. In 1998 Howard Cutler wrote the book the art of happiness and with the Dalai Lama helps to extol the compassionate virtues of mankind and how we can come together to solve problems.

 

The notion that human behavior is essentially egoistic, that fundamentally we are all out for ourselves is deeply ingrained in western thought. The idea that we are not only inherently selfish but hostile and aggressive has dominated our culture for centuries.

 

Power, money, control, religion all good reasons individuals felt for persecution, short term thinking, natural resource pillage and an attitude of me me me.

 

There have been others before the Dalai lama with a more compassionate view, such as David Hume in the 1700’s who wrote about “natural benevolence” in humans, and a century later even Charles Darwin himself attributed an “instinct of sympathy” to our species however generally a more pessimistic view of humanity has prevailed.

 

Thomas Hobbes a philosopher in the 17th Century saw our race as a violent, competitive, conflict orientated, self interested and generally held a pretty dark view.

 

In the earlier 20th Century Spanish born George Santayana, another philosopher wrote that generous, caring impulses, while they may exist are generally weak, fleeting and unstable in human nature, but “dig a little beneath the surface and you’ll find a ferocious, persistent, profoundly selfish man.

 

Freud claimed that “the inclination to aggression is an original, self subsisting, instinctual disposition” whilst writers Robert Ardrey and Konrad Lorenz looked at patterns of animal behavior in certain predators and concluded that humans were basically predators as well, with an instinctive drive to fight over territory.

 

In recent years the tide appears to be turning.

 

Contemporary researchers have refuted not only the idea of humanitys innate aggression but also its egoistic behavior. Humans, it turns out do have an altruistic basic instinct.

 

The tendancy to closely bond with others, acting for the welfare of others including other species that we share the planet with. All humans have the seed of compassion, which with consideration, an open mind and support can flourish.

 

Once we conclude that the basic nature of humanity is compassionate rather than aggressive our relationship to the world around us changes immediately. Seeing others as compassionate instead of hostile and selfish helps us relax, trust, live at ease. It makes us happier.

 

The source of Happiness, the ills of pleasure

Humans are quite adept at confusing happiness and pleasure. The dalai lama suggests two ways to be happy, without destructive pleasure.

  • Inner contentment, not about how much we can “get”, the houses, the cars the spending as there will always be a cap, always a limit and for every man to live like an American lifestyle will require 3 planet earths just with our existing population. Inner contentment comes from appreciating what we have.

  • Inner worth, to be happy, there must be another sense of worth than purely economic, to be good, to do good and to be seen as an honest, compassionate & caring will ensure that through good times or bad, sickness or in health we enjoy support of friends and family.

  • Spirituality, not to be confused religion is also key to training the mind, asking the question will this make me happy or provide pleasure. Nurture the basic human qualities of goodness, kindness, compassion and caring.

 

This is the art of happiness.

 

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Media

Richard Branson on Slow Life

slow life symposium in maldives 2011

David Suzuki with WWF looking at the state of the planet