I MC’d our ceili on Saturday night and shared the following story with attendees. I think this modern parable is worth sharing broadly so I’m typing it below; it’s a metaphor for life.

The rich industrialist from the north was horrified to find the southern fisherman lying lazily beside his boat.

‘Why aren’t you out fishing?’ said the industrialist.

‘Because I have caught enough fish for the day,’ said the fisherman.

‘Why don’t you catch some more?’

‘What would I do with them?’

‘You could earn more money’ was the reply. ‘With that you could have a motor fitted to your boat to go into deeper waters and catch more fish. Then you would have enough money to buy nylon nets. These would bring you more fish and more money. Soon you would have enough money to own two boats . . . maybe even a fleet of boats. Then you would be a rich man like me.’

‘What would I do then?’

‘Then you could really enjoy life.’

‘What do you think I’m doing right now?’

What are you doing right now? Are you clawing and scratching and scrimping and saving for a better future or are you enjoying life now?

 
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Radio host, inspirational speaker and health educator John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives, a startlingly poignant and inspiring real-life endorsement of the power of thought, belief and synchronicity in one’s life.

In Search of Simplicity is a unique and awe-inspiring way to re-visit and even answer some of the gnawing questions we all intrinsically have about the meaning of life and our true, individual purpose on the planet. I love this book.”

Barbara Cronin, Circles of Light. For the complete review visit: http://www.circlesoflight.com/blog/in-search-of-simplicity/

In Search of Simplicity is one of those rare literary jewels with the ability to completely and simultaneously ingratiate itself into the mind, heart and soul of the reader.”

Heather Slocumb, Apex Reviews

 

There’s a Dances of Universal Peace song I sometimes sing at the beginning of talks I give for groups. The words are:

Why have you come to earth, why have you come?

Why have you given birth, why have you come?

To love, to serve, and remember.

I’m presently reading a book by the doyen of near-death research, P.M.H. Atwater, titled Near-Death Experiences the rest of the story: What they Teach Us About Living, Dying and Our True Purpose. The book outlines findings the author, now 73, was previously unprepared to report. And these findings are based on nearly four thousand interviews with near-experiencers—adults and children.

There is an example of a mafia hitman who experiences a life review during his near-death experience. The following are the exact words from the book:

“An example of a life review more radical than most is that of a mafia hitman whose life review involved him reliving everything he had ever done, good or bad, as well as the consequences. He also had to live through whatever happened to each person he hurt as if he were them. He felt all of their pain, lived through their circumstances, and faced their grief. He was incapable of hurting another person after that and devoted the rest of his life to serving the poor through various church programs.

There is no prison term, no punishment that can equal the totality of a radical life review. Some accounts cover the entire impact of a person’s existence: everything said, thought, or done since birth, and the effect he or she had on everyone, even passersby, whether met or not, and on the air, soil, plants, water, animals . . .  the entire gestalt of one’s life—the result of ever having taken a breath. There are those I have had sessions with who could not even step on a bug after such a review, nor swat a fly.”

The above represents precisely the perspective I have had since the series of near-death and awakening experiences I had earlier in my life. I simply don’t want to hurt another being, step on a worm or crush a mosquito. It is common for me to move worms from the sidewalk to the grass when having an early walk after or during a rain. All life is precious. Each has a place in nature’s mystery. If we could but open our (inner) eyes to the majesty of existence we would see this.

Atwater points out that near-death experiences are far from rare, perhaps touching the lives of 20% of people. And they are far from new. Atwater speculates that Apostle Paul’s life-changing revelation was a near-death experience, so similar was it to the events of many experiencers she has spoken with. Many who have had such experiences as children have gone on to great deeds later in life including Einstein, Abraham Lincoln, Edward de Vere (the 17th Earl of Oxford and believed by many to be the real Shakespeare), Mozart, Winston Churchill, Walter Russell and revered south Indian sage Ramana Maharshi.

I am certainly not suggesting you should actively court a near-death experience. But I would suggest that you learn from these experiences—whether your own or those of others—and adjust your thoughts, words and actions to reflect the interconnectedness of everything and everyone. Satya Sai Baba, once said, and I’m paraphrasing here, that all of life is an opportunity to arrive at death’s door with happy anticipation and a smile on your face. Something to think about.

Have peaceful day.

John

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Radio host, inspirational speaker and health educator John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives and the recently released Beyond the Search, books to lift the spirit and touch the heart. See http://www.JohnHainesBooks.com

 

“In Search of Simplicity is a unique and awe-inspiring way to re-visit and even answer some of the gnawing questions we all intrinsically have about the meaning of life and our true, individual purpose on the planet. I love this book.”

 

Barbara Cronin, Circles of Light. For the complete review visit: http://www.circlesoflight.com/blog/in-search-of-simplicity/

 

“In Search of Simplicity is one of those rare literary jewels with the ability to completely and simultaneously ingratiate itself into the mind, heart and soul of the reader.”

 

Heather Slocumb, Apex Reviews

 

 

Tui in Blooming Kowhai

To be human is a privilege. It is an opportunity to step beyond the ordinary to the extraordinary. It is an opportunity to shift one’s focus from the quest for ‘more’ to the search for ‘meaning’.

As many of you already know I consider our purpose in life is to find out who we are. Human birth, human existence is a great privilege. It is an opportunity to ask the big questions: Who am I? Where do I come from? Where am I going? What am I here to do?

But more important than the opportunity to ask the big questions is the opportunity to receive the big answers. Are you asking the questions and are you listening for the answers?

Whether we acknowledge it or not, life is an ongoing search for happiness. Everything we do outwardly—the seeking of a partner, the creation of a family, the search for gratifying work—is an (often unconscious) search for happiness. And through this search, through these means—the caress of a lover, holding our newborn child, the big career break—we capture glimpses of the happiness we seek. But is this happiness lasting? Are these the means to the end we deeply long for?

I say human birth is a privilege. Animals too seek and find partners and raise families. They too find gratifying work each day as they go out into their worlds in search of sustenance, in search of food for themselves and their families. But human beings have something rare, something precious. We have the opportunity to find out who we are. And that discover only happens when we make it our life’s work to ask the big questions. In fact, it may come about, as Ramana Maharshi said, through continuously asking just one question. That question? You guessed it: Who am I?

Late yesterday afternoon, after working for the day in the library, I drove for half an hour to the home of a friend, Peter Bligh. Peter has made it a point in his life to ask the big questions. He is heading off soon to the United Kingdom and Europe, where he will spend part of the northern hemisphere autumn doing what he loves—teaching yoga and meditation. Peter has spent most of the last years of his life in ashrams in Europe and India. He has amassed a considerable collection of books on the nature of human existence and he generously invited me to have a look through his book shelves and to borrow some titles that caught my eye. Hence my trip.

Herekino Harbour

To reach Peter’s home I had to drive through the Herekino Gorge. What a joy that was. The road snakes through steep, bush-clad hills. The sharp peaks of verdant green seemed to seek mergence with a late afternoon sky turned vivid cobalt blue, just as the human soul seeks mergence with the divine. The base of the hills began right at the roadsides. There was no space for farms or human habitation. There were only the bush-covered slopes and the cloud-free sky. There was no opportunity to get mired in the distractions of material existence. There was only nature’s beautiful reminder of why we are here: to seek mergence with our essence, with the core of our being, with that part of us which created all this.

Peter and I sat on his porch facing an impressive hill as the darkness gradually came to stay and the stars glistening replaced the last low filaments of feathery clouds. We shared a salad I’d brought from home, lovingly prepared by Lucia the previous night. A narrow river undulated in the valley below us, like a lazy serpent seeking refuge in the grass. The call of a morepork sliced the silence.

We spoke of last Saturday’s earthquake in Christchurch and how we had both been touched by it. Peter had lived and studied in Christchurch. It had been his home for a time. There are probably no New Zealand adults who don’t know someone living in Christchurch. No one was killed in the quake, but I wonder if this event, like so many uncomfortable moments in life, is a wake up call for New Zealanders, as the Gulf oil crisis has been for Americans.

As I said before, to be human is a privilege. It is an opportunity to step beyond the ordinary to the extraordinary. It is an opportunity to shift one’s focus from the quest for ‘more’ to the search for ‘meaning’. The Christchurch quake is a dramatic reminder that the material things we ordinarily seek, the seeming security of the physical, are fleeting and fragile in the hands of nature. Are we here to accumulate and gather more outer stuff or are we here to experience who we really are?

I wish you stillness and abiding peace.

Peter Bligh can be found on Facebook here.

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Radio host, inspirational speaker and health educator John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives, a startlingly poignant and inspiring real-life endorsement of the power of thought, belief and synchronicity in one’s life.

In Search of Simplicity is a unique and awe-inspiring way to re-visit and even answer some of the gnawing questions we all intrinsically have about the meaning of life and our true, individual purpose on the planet. I love this book.”

Barbara Cronin, Circles of Light. For the complete review visit: http://www.circlesoflight.com/blog/in-search-of-simplicity/

In Search of Simplicity is one of those rare literary jewels with the ability to completely and simultaneously ingratiate itself into the mind, heart and soul of the reader.”

Heather Slocumb, Apex Reviews

Many people work hard and spend their health trying to achieve wealth. 
Then they retire and spend their wealth trying to get back their health.

If you are like so many people today, you’re either short of money and working at something you don’t like in order to get more, or you have more than enough money and not enough time to enjoy the good things in life.

I was in that position once – over 20 years ago. Then something changed and I’ve been doing what I love and enjoying the good life ever since.

And now it’s time for me to not only live the good life, but to share with people like you the amazing journey that brought me to this place of contentment and deep fulfilment.

In Search of Simplicity is my true, exciting and serendipitous journey through the wilds ofPapua New Guinea, theHimalayas, around the planet and into the heart of life guaranteed to change the way you see the world.

In Search of Simplicity offers a gateway into a world in which your deepest dreams and wishes are fulfilled, even before you are aware of them, a gateway into that place of simplicity where you stop struggling and trying to make it happen and simply allow it to happen.

When you’re in the right place, doing just what you want to do, and genuinely enjoying it, the Universe bends over backwards to ensure your success.

Buy the book on Amazon.

The small investment required to buy this book could just transform your life, as the events described in page-turning style transformed mine. At the very least you’ll enjoy a tantalizing read.

Click here to read just a few of the endorsements of satisfied readers from all walks of life.

In Search of Simplicityis a startlingly poignant and inspiring real-life endorsement of the power of thought, belief and synchronicity in one’s life. It has been compared with James Redfield’s The Celestine Prophecy and Dan Millman’s Way of the Peaceful Warrior. It is a page-turning adventure story and it’s TRUE.

Listen to a three minute audio trailer here:

In Search of Simplicity offers a gateway into a world in which your deepest dreams and wishes are fulfilled, even before you are aware of them, a gateway into that place of simplicity where you stop struggling and trying to make it happen and simply allow it to happen.

When you’re in the right place, doing just what you want to do, and genuinely enjoying it, the Universe bends over backwards to ensure your success.

 book-cover-target2

BUY THE BOOK

‘This book has important keys to living well. Far from predictable, it is an exciting read; showing us that living with simplicity can lead to stimulating adventures, fresh insights and a deeper understanding of life.’

Suzanne Stewart, Wellington

  

 
 The following is a fun, five minute interview that Eileen Kapa of DBFR makes with the author as he speaks about In Search of Simplicity and some of the bigger questions of life the book endeavours to answer. This was made as a small part of a Far North book launch and book signing tour in March, 2009.

In Search of Simplicity

will soon be available in eBook format. More details to follow.

.

From the Author:

My search for simplicity carried me all over the world. You could call it a search for a simpler way of living, a more natural way of being.

The external journey culminated in living for periods of time with two sets of agrarian people, one Islamic, the other Christian—the Hunzas in their Shangri La stronghold at the roof top of the world and the Trobriand Islanders at their doorstep perched on coral islets in the western Pacific. Each of these societies lives with grace and in balanced harmony with nature.

The internal journey took place while staying in Dharmsala, home of the displaced Tibetans and their leader, the Dalai Lama, in northern India. That journey carried me home to the place we’re all seeking, to the source of sustenance spoken of by every mystic, to the Heart of Life itself.

It is a story of import to every human being because it is the journey we are all on, a search for the meaning of life.

The story is filled with coincidences to the point of disbelief. The journey brought me in contact with inspiring people who dared to be different, who have dared to be themselves.

It is an epic adventure. It is a story of love. It has helped me to live my life with a simpler perspective and more meaning. I trust it does the same for you.

  
Years after the events described in In Search of Simplicity took place, I read The Celestine Prophecy for the first time. It feels like my personal journey is like that of the reluctant fictional hero created by James Redfield. I continue to be swept along on a great adventure (of my own making) to discover and to share the magic and the mystery of life. It’s waiting for us all behind every smile and with every breath of the wind.


Blessings,
John

 

 

 

IN SEARCH OF SIMPLICITY by John P Haines …a truly amazing true story travel/adventure book by a loving and thoughtful man.

Amanda McBroom said this February 25, 2009 on www.amcbroom.com

Amanda is an outstanding actress, singer/songwriter and is the composer of the 1979 worldwide hit, The Rose.

  
 

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