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Activating Joy

Joy is realized when the personality and soul are in harmony. Joy can also be defined as the feeling or energy of love. Unconditional love is our essence and Joy its expression. “There is no real and true Joy if that Joy is not imbued with Love. Love cannot exist without Joy.” Joy, as the energy of love, is one of the highest vibrations on this planet.

Here are some of the benefits of being joyful:

Physical Benefits
Joy has long been recognized as an important factor in the restoration of health. Proverbs 17:22 tells us: “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a downcast spirit dries up the bones.” Joy strengthens the immune system.

Emotional Benefits:
Joy burns away the impurities in our emotional system. It disperses worries, anxieties, grief, greed, irritation and other negative emotions.
Mental Benefits
Joy sharpens our intellect and strengthens our memory. It clears and balances our mind. We flow with the universe and see the joyfulness in all things.

Spiritual Benefits
Joy nourishes the soul. This energy of Joy expands our consciousness and understanding. It opens us to receive inspiration, intuitions, liberation and enlightenment.

Planetary Benefits
The law of Oneness states there is only One Mind, One Life. As a result, when we raise our vibration to higher levels, we positively affect all life on Earth.

Did you bring Joy?” and “Did you find Joy?”

Man loves because he is Love. He seeks Joy, for he is Joy. He thirsts for God for he is composed of God and he cannot exist without Him.” — Sathya Sai Baba

Every moment, we may choose to experience the Joy of our soul.

  • Remember … Joy is a choice. ” “Joy is an inside job,”. Each hour check in and see if you are CHOOSING Joy
  • Remember … Joy is causative — it brings good things into your life.
    Find Joy first, we’re told, and the rest will follow. Why? Because Joy is a high vibration and as we vibrate at a high level, we attract good things to us.
  • Remember … Behave differently, feel differently.
    “If you want more Joy in your life, do whatever you’re doing with more Joy… The Joy begins a cycle of Joy, which produces even more Joy.”

#1 of the ‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators – Feeling Worthy and Deserving of Joy.
“The greatest evil that can befall man is that he should come to think ill of himself.
Do you feel worthy of having Joy?  Do you feel you deserve it?

The first step to Activating Our Inner Joy is to eliminate the blocks to it. We can start by truly forgiving ourselves and all others. It is easier to forgive ourselves and others when we really understand that each of us has always done the very best we knew to do at that time.
JOY IS ONE OF THE GREATEST GIFTS WE CAN GIVE TO PEOPLE around us. They need our Joy — not our sadness.
#2 of the ‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators – Recognizing True Identity and Purpose.
” For many of us, our Joy is truly activated when we get a bigger picture of who we are and the many reasons we may have chosen to be on Earth at this time. Our natural state of BEING is Joy.   It is wonderful to know that as our JOY increase, our purpose in life will be clearer.

#3 of the ‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators – Developing Gratitude and Appreciation.
THIS IS A FAST TRACK TO JOY. When all else fails, focus on sincere gratitude.
Eckhart, the Christian mystic, wrote: “If the only prayer you ever said in your entire life was ‘thank you,’ that would be enough.”   “A grateful heart is a Joyful heart.” — Mother Teresa
#4 of the ‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators – Offering Selfless Service.
“I slept and dreamt that life was only joy; I woke and saw that life was only service; I served and realized that service is joy.” — Tagore
If gratitude is the ‘fast track’ to Joy, service is the ‘super expressway.’
TO THE DEGREE WE SERVE, THE GREATER OUR JOY. “Service is the best and most efficient course of spiritual development, even superior to meditation,” says Sathya Sai Baba.

#5 of the ‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators — Living Universal Principles.
” Through universal laws we learn how humanity and the universe are interconnected.

-Thoughts held in mind produce after their kind.
– What you focus on expands.
– What your attention is upon, that you become.
– Energy follows thought.
– What you resist persists.
– What gets your attention gets you.
– It happens unto you as you believe.

If we focus on what feels Joy full, we’ll have more Joy in our life. If you focus on T.V etc you feel that way”Your Joy depends upon what you choose to give your attention.”

#6 of the ‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators – Letting Go Of Value Judgments.
When we judge ourselves and others, it is impossible to be in Joy. Remember Joy comes from love, which is the process of uniting. Judgment, on the other hand, creates separation. We can’t love and judge at the same time.   One reason is that we are unable to judge accurately because we don’t see the ‘Big Picture.’ Thrust your pencil through a sheet of paper, look through the hole at the room and recognize how little of the room you see. This limited view is why we can’t fairly judge anyone or anything. Judgment also blocks our Joy because it locks up our energy.

#7 of the ‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators — Nurturing and Balancing Our Four Bodies.
We feel less than Joyful when we are not nurturing all four aspects of ourselves. These are often referred to as our physical, emotional, mental and spiritual bodies. When we get out of balance through neglecting one or more of them, our Joy can be blocked. It’s like the four wheels on a car the ride is better when they are all equally inflated and balanced.

Physical – Various forms of exercise, dancing, drinking more pure water, better diet, a detoxification bath, hugs, massage, etc.

Emotional – Honouring feelings by listening to them, truly feeling them and expressing or communicating them. We are learning to take responsibility for our feelings without making others wrong.

Mental – You may be chewing on new ideas daily, absorbing all kinds of   information and exercising your creative thinking facilities.

Spiritual – The spiritual body, as used here, is our Higher Self. This is our intuitive part that knows we are here in this body for a purpose. This body can be nurtured in many ways —   meditating, reading spiritual material, attending a spiritual discussion group, visiting sacred places, spending time in nature.
“Follow effective action with quiet reflection. From the quiet reflection will come even more effective action.” — James Levin”

#9 of the ‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators — Releasing Laughter and Playfulness.
“We don’t laugh because we’re happy, we’re happy because we laugh

Why Laugh?
The soul is nourished by laughter. Laughter triggers Joy.   Laughter is a genuine form of exercise (internal jogging) and a natural stress reliever. It stimulates the immune system and increases oxygen, stamina and our breathing capacity.  Dance and laugh.  “Time spent laughing is time spent with the God.

“Let your child within run free. A child kept from play is an abused child.”

#10 of the ‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators — Choosing Silence, Listening Within.
when the mind is really stilled and really is itself — fully, without any holdback — it is identical with the deep Joy at the heart of the universe. Besides getting us in touch with the fruits of spirit, such as Joy, love and peace, our listening within offers the specific benefits of:
– Activated intuition
– Increased creative expression
– Improved psychological health
– Enhanced creative problem solving
– Increased ability to concentrate
– Greater relaxation
– Expanded sensitivity to all life

Activator 12 of the ‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators is Using Uplifting Self-talk.
Negative self-talk can zap our energy and our Joy. By the Law of Attraction, we attract what we don’t want, what we worry about, to us.
Whenever we use ‘I Am’ in a negative way (as in ‘I am sick and tired,’ ‘I am broke,’ ‘I am angry, fed up’) we are creating powerfully against ourselves.

  1. “I Am” my Divine Plan unfolding quickly and perfectly.
  2. “I Am” what I want to be.
  3. “I Am” the perfect harmony of my thought, feeling and action.
  4. “I Am” the perfectly controlled breath of my body.
  5. “I Am” the perfect activity of every organ and cell of my body.

Louise Hay reminds us that “every thought you think is either enhancing or depressing your immune system.”
Here are some affirmations she uses every day:

1. I am perfectly happy to be me.
2. I am good enough just as I am.
3. I love and approve of myself.
4. I am grateful for every experience.
5. I am Joy, expressing and receiving all the good in life.

#13 of the ‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators — Connecting with Nature.
Being with nature and discovering its natural order awakens us to the Joy that lies within us. Spending time, quietly, in the outdoors, listening and observing in nature is a wonderful way to directly experience the naturalness, the balance, the resourcefulness, and the serenity of the Universe. “Deviation from Nature is deviation from happiness.” Samuel  Johnson

Activator 14 of the ‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators is Stopping and Simplifying
“Each of us needs to withdraw from the cares which will not withdraw from us. We need hours of aimless wandering or spates of time sitting on park benches, observing the mysterious world of ants and the canopy of treetops.”

  1. Stop for the Joy of it.
  2. Own less, do less, say less, say NO to what doesn’t excite you.
  3. Toss, recycle, sell, give away what isn’t needed. Create more space in your life.
  4. Make a list of non-tangible things to eliminate: attachments,    attitudes, addictions, resistance, judgments, irritations, desires, toxic people, TV watching, and so forth. Be specific. Make a plan and carry it out.

#15 of the ‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators — Embracing Change.
Change is the only constant. It happens in its own way, in its own time. Permanence is never found in the physical world of form. For some people, any change evokes fear. Others embrace change, even create it. The Law of Attraction decrees that what we resist persists, so our fear of change draws what we fear to us. On the other hand, Joy flows as fear is dissolved.          “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”

‘Sweet 16’ Joy Activators — Creating Joy Rituals and Grab Bags.
Joy Rituals:

  1. Dancing is a favourite energy shifter for most people. Make a ritual of putting on some favourite dance music at certain times of the day
  2. Singing is a popular Joy ritual when doing dishes and, in the shower.
  3. Heart Songs are spontaneous singing from the heart, using nonsense syllables.
  4. Take a Blessing Walk where you bless or appreciate people, places and things. Include yourself.
  5. Call a friend or family member each day and laugh together for 5 minutes.
    “The heavens respect us when we work but love us when we  dance.”


You can CHOOSE to be joyful! As the flower follows the sun even on cloudy days, we need to focus on Joy even in our darkest hours.


“Joy is the most infallible sign of the Presence of God.”      — Teilhard De Chardin
“Joy is not the absence of suffering. It is the presence of God.” — Robert Schuller
“Joy is a state of beingness in which your consciousness is not conditioned by the environment or by the thoughts, emotions and activities going on in your environment. The roar of life is heard, but it does not affect your consciousness. You have joy, not because things and conditions are right or wrong, but because joy flows down from your core into your activities.” — Torkom Saraydarian
“Spirit is pure JOY and you are spiritual in nature.”      — Jack Boland
“The only obstacle to releasing joy is the unwillingness to express love for someone or   something.”
“Joy is a net of love by which you can catch souls.”      — Mother Teresa
“A joyful heart is the inevitable result of a heart burning with love.” – Mother  Teresa
“Real joy is like the sun which is there all the time and is immensely powerful. Clouds, which appear to obscure the sun, are the feelings which come and go — e.g. sorrow, lethargy, pain, ordinary happiness. Although clouds can hide the sun, they are hardly equal to it. They are fleeting mists.”
“From joy springs the universe; in joy it has its being, and  unto joy it returns.”
“Joy and peace are not idle desires. They are your right, because of what you are.”
“Joy is our function here. If you’re sad, your part is unfulfilled and all the world is thus deprived of joy, along with you.”

Joy is high energy. Joy, as an expression of God, is the source of all energy.  Joy springs forth from within.  No one makes your joyous; you choose  joyousness. Choose it now.

The truth behind whitening lotions and creams

Let's face it — the average Indian is obsessed with a fair complexion. Most dusky Indian beauties would give an arm and a leg to acquire pasty white skin, which we refer to as 'gora-chitta'. It's quite sad to see fresh, smooth-skinned (albeit dark) people ruin the texture and glow of their complexions by using every possible cream, lotion, soap, serum, face pack and what-have-you to become fair. The only ones benefiting from this craze are the fairness product companies who are laughing all the way to the bank. Don't get me wrong — there are chemicals which work and there are ways to get rid of unwanted pigmentation, but you need to have the correct knowledge of what's good for you and what's not. Check out the ingredients on your fairness product package and read on to get the low-down on what works and what doesn't:

1.Hydroquinone: This is one of the most effective whitening compounds known today. However concentrations used matter immensely and individual skin responses vary. Most over-the-counter fairness products contain very low amounts (less than 1 percent). However, irritation of the skin is so common with this chemical that the US FDA (Food & Dry Association) has plans to ban it. 

Also, here's something that will make you sit up — overuse of this chemical, ie over months or years, can cause a condition called 'ochronosis', which turns the skin black or greyish-black. In desperation, users apply even more of the fairness cream to get rid of the blackish skin tone and instead end up worsening it, not realizing in this vicious cycle that the cream is the culprit, not the cure. The safe way to use hydroquinone is under a dermatologist's guidance, in approved pharmaceutical combinations with other compounds that neutralize the irritation and boost the effects.

2. Kojic Acid: This is a relatively newer discovery — a Vitamin C derivative that blocks a certain step in the production of melanin in the skin. Melanin is the brown pigment present within the layers of skin and is responsible for a dark complexion. Research has shown that only high concentrations of kojic acid, as used by dermatologists in pharmaceutical creams (two percent and above) are effective in blocking melanin production. So commercial products that claim to contain Vitamin C, its derivatives, lemon extracts etc usually have amounts too tiny to be very efficient.

3. Retinoic Acid: This is a Vitamin A derivative that works by peeling off the upper layers of the skin. In the process, dark pigmented skin cells are shed off and the lower layers which come up to take their place are somewhat lighter. Dermatologists use retinoic acid very effectively in combination with hydroquinone and steroid creams to lighten patchy pigmentation, but by itself it can cause irritation  Commercial whitening and anti-ageing products use tiny concentrations and don't incorporate other ingredients that can reduce the chances of skin irritation. If overused, therefore, there is a chance of developing raw, red, burnt-looking skin.

4. Plant Extracts: This is a common term used by most cosmetic brands to include anything and everything from liquorice to bearberry to mulberry to grapeseed to arbutin and practically every other possible fruit and flower essence. Some scientific studies have revealed that liquorice, arbutin and bearberry all possess mild whitening qualities, but the results are never as good as pharmaceutical combinations used medically. These can be used as adjuvant to a medical whitening program but in themselves they are not dramatically effective. Also, consider these statistics — a truckload of strawberries is needed to produce one liter of alpha hydroxy acid. So if your product contains a measly one to two percent of a plant extract, how much of an effect can it have?

Apart from all this, there is always a chance of developing irritation, allergies or sun sensitivity by using products that cause you to break out into itchy rashes, redden the skin, cause burning sensations or then sunburn, followed by pigmentation. So if you must use a fairness product, make sure you test it first on a tiny patch of your skin. I won't even insult your intelligence by commenting on fairness soaps and face washes, as common sense will tell you that any whitening chemical they contain will never remain on the skin — it will get washed off while rinsing. The only darkness they remove is that of dirt.

So if you have a healthy, beautiful, dark complexion, learn to love yourself for what you are and appreciate the good quality of your skin rather than lament over its colour. Pulling a Michael Jackson makeover from black to white is not free from risks and is not possible for everyone. It's a conditioned mindset, enforced by advertisements that translate fair skin into more job opportunities, marriage proposals and movie offers. Remember, the radiance of good health speaks for itself.

Dr Parul S Kolhe is an MBBS, DDV and DNB in dermatology.

Lessons From Benjamin Franklin

The Art of Being Well – How to avoid illness

The Art of Being Well by Dr Varella.

If you don’t want to be ill, please read the steps below

Speak your feelings
Emotions and feelings that are hidden, repressed, end in illnesses as: gastritis, ulcer,
lumbar pains, spinal. With time, the repression of the feelings degenerates to the
cancer. Then, we go to a confidante, to share our intimacy, ours "secret", our errors!
The dialogue, the speech, the word, is a powerful remedy and an excellent therapy!

Make Decisions
The undecided person remains in doubt, in anxiety, in anguish. Indecision accumulates
problems, worries and aggressions. Human history is made of decisions. To decide is
precisely to know to renounce, to know to lose advantages and values to win others.
The undecided people are victims of gastric ailments, nervous pains and problems of
the skin.

Find Solutions
Negative people do not find solutions and they enlarge problems. They prefer
lamentation, gossip, pessimism. It is better to light a match that to regret the
darkness. A bee is small, but produces one of the sweetest things that exist. We are
what we think. The negative thought generates negative energy that is transformed
into illness.

Don't Live by Appearances
Who hides reality, pretends , poses and always wants to give the impression of being
well. He wants to be seen as perfect, easy-going, etc. but is accumulating tons of
weight. A bronze statue with feet of clay. There is nothing worse for the health than
to live on appearances and facades. These are people with a lot of varnish and little
root. Their destiny is the pharmacy, the hospital and pain.

The refusal of acceptance and the absence of self-esteem, make us alienate
ourselves. Being at one with ourselves is the core of a healthy life. They who do not
accept this, become envious, jealous, imitators, ultra-competitive, destructive. Be
accepted, accept that you are accepted, accept the criticisms. It is wisdom, good
sense and therapy.

Who does not trust, does not communicate, is not opened, is not related, does not
create deep and stable relations, does not know to do true friendships. Without
confidence, there is not relationship. Distrust is a lack of faith in you and in faith

Do Not Live Life Sad
Good humor. Laughter. Rest. Happiness. These replenish health and bring long life. 
The happy person has the gift to improve the environment wherever they live. 
“Good humor saves us from the hands of the doctor". Happiness is health and therapy.

35 Fast Tips To Make This Your Best Year Yet

  1. Remember that the quality of your life is determined by the quality of your thoughts.
  2. Keep the promises you make to others – and to yourself. 
  3. The project that most scares you is the project you need to do first. 
  4. Small daily improvements are the key to staggering long-term results. 
  5. Stop being busy being busy. This New Year, clean out the distractions from your work+life and devote to a monomaniacal focus on the few things that matter.
  6. Read "The War of Art". 
  7. Watch "The Fighter". 
  8. In a world where technology is causing some of us to forget how to act human, become the politest person you know. 
  9. Remember that all great ideas were first ridiculed. 
  10. Remember that critics are dreamers gone scared. 
  11. Be "Apple-Like" in your obsession with getting the details right. 
  12. Take 60 minutes every weekend to craft a blueprint for the coming seven days. As Saul Bellow once said: "A plan relieves you of the torment of choice."
  13. Release your need to be liked this New Year. You can't be a visionary if you long to be liked. 
  14. Disrupt or be disrupted. 
  15. Hire a personal trainer to get you into the best shape of your life. Superstars focus on the value they receive versus the cost of the service.
  16. Give your teammates, customers and family one of the greatest gifts of all: the gift of your attention (and presence).
  17. Every morning ask yourself: "How may I best serve the most people?" 
  18. Every night ask yourself: "What 5 good things happened to me this day?" 
  19. Don't waste your most valuable hours (the morning) doing low value work. 
  20. Leave every project you touch at work better than you found it. 
  21. Your job is not just to work. Your job is to leave a trail of leaders behind you. 
  22. A job is not "just a job". Every job is a gorgeous vehicle to express your gifts and talents – and to model exceptionalism for all around you.
  23. Fears unfaced become your limits. 
  24. Get up at 5 am and take 60 minutes to prepare your mind, body, emotions and spirit to be remarkable during the hours that follow. Being a superstar is not the domain of the gifted but the prepared.
  25. Write love letters to your family. 
  26. Smile at strangers. 
  27. Drink more water. 
  28. Keep a journal. Your life's story is worth recording. 
  29. Do more than you're paid to do and do work that leaves your teammates breathless. 
  30. Leave your ego at the door every morning. 
  31. Set 5 daily goals every morning. These small wins will lead to nearly 2000 little victories by the end of the year.
  32. Say "please" and "thank you". 
  33. Remember the secret to happiness is doing work that matters and being an instrument of service. 
  34. Don't be the richest person in the graveyard. Health is wealth. 
  35. Life's short. The greatest risk is risk-less living. And settling for average. 

Quotes from “The Alchemist” by Paul Coelho

The Alchemist is an allegorical novel by Paulo Coelho first published in 1988. The Alchemist was originally written in Portuguese. It has sold more than 65 million copies in more than 150 countries, becoming one of the best-selling books in history.
The Alchemist details the journey of an Andalusian shepherd boy named Santiago. Santiago, believing a recurring dream to be prophetic, decides to travel to the pyramids of Egypt to find treasure. On the way, he encounters love, danger, opportunity, disaster and learns a lot about himself and the ways of the world. One of the significant characters that he meets is an old king who tells him about discovering his personal legend: what he always wanted to accomplish in his life. And that "When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it." This is the core philosophy and motto of the book. 

What is a personal calling? It is God's blessing, it is the path that God chose for you here on Earth. Whenever we do something that fills us with enthusiasm, we are following our legend. However, we don't all have the courage to confront our own dream.

There are four obstacles. First: we are told from childhood onwards that everything we want to do is impossible. We grow up with this idea, and as the years accumulate, so too do the layers of prejudice, fear and guilt. There comes a time when our personal calling is so deeply buried in our soul as to be invisible. But it's still there.

If we have the courage to disinter dream, we are then faced by the second obstacle: love. We know what we want to do, but are afraid of hurting those around us by abandoning everything in order to pursue their dream. We do not realize that love is just a further impetus, not something that will prevent them going forwards. We do not realize that those who genuinely wish us well want us to be happy and are prepared to accompany us on that journey.

Once we have accepted that love is a stimulus, we come up against the third obstacle: fear of the defeats we will meet on the path. We who fight for our dream, suffer far more when it doesn't work out, because we cannot fall back on the old excuse: "Oh, well, I didn't really want it anyway."

We do want it and know that we have staked everything on it and that the path of the personal calling is no easier than any other path, except that our whole heart is in this journey. 

Having disinterred our dream, having used the power of love to nurture it and spent many years living with the scars, we suddenly notice that what we always wanted is there, waiting for us, perhaps the very next day. Then comes the fourth obstacle: the fear of realizing the dream for which we fought all our lives.

This is the most dangerous of the obstacles because it has a kind of saintly aura about it: renouncing joy and conquest. But if you believe yourself worthy of the thing you fought so hard to get, then you become an instrument of God, you help the Soul of the World and you understand why you are here.

Some of the memorable quotes in the book:
  • It's the possibility of having a dream come true that make life interesting.

  • If someone isn't what others want them to be, the others become angry.
    Everyone seems to have a clear idea of how other people should lead their lives, but none about his or her own.

  • If you start out by promising what you don't even have yet, you'll lose your desire to work toward getting it.

  • Every search begins with beginners luck and ends with the victor's being severely tested. 

  • When each day is the same as the next, it's because people fail to recognize the good things that happen in their lives every day that the sun rises.

  • In order to find the treasure, you will have to follow the omens.
    God has prepared a path for everyone to follow.
    You just have to read the omens that he left you.

  • Don't forget that everything you deal with is only one thing and nothing else.
    And don't forget the language of omens.
    And, above all, don't forget to follow your destiny through to its conclusion.

  • There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.

  • And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.

  • When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better too.   

  • I don't live in either my past or my future. I'm interested only in the present.
    If you can concentrate always on the present, you'll be a happy man.
    Life will be a party for you, a grand festival, because life is the moment we're living now.   

  • When you are loved, you can do anything in creation.
    When you are loved, there's no need at all to understand what's happening, because everything happens within you.

  • Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself.
    And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams,
    because every second of the search is a second's encounter with God and with eternity.   

  • People learn early in their lives what is their reason for being. Maybe that's why they give up on it so early, too.

  • The secret is here in the present. If you pay attention to the present, you can improve upon it.
    And, if you improve on the present, what comes later will also be better.