Life’s Purpose

Do you know your life’s purpose?

By that I mean, do you know how you are supposed to show up in this life that makes you feel satisfied?

Many people may not be able to answer that question. They may follow a safe path with hope of one day figuring it out.

What will happen when we do not know who we are and how best we may function?

We most likely be confused, less motivated and enthusiastic, which causes us to rely on outside forces to dictate a goal or purpose to us.

Last week, the benefits and beauty of knowing one’s life purpose became very clear to me.

I was talking to a friend who was treated badly by his co-workers. Normally, one would expect him to be bitter and angry for a long time.

Not only was the friend not bitter, he was getting out of his way to help the situation!

I asked him why he was doing it.

He said that his life purpose is to love unconditionally and speak in the highest vibration no matter how he is treated.

My eyes teared up when I heard the clarity and truth of my friend’s purpose.

I then pondered: What if he did not know his life purpose? How would he have reacted in such a situation?

I reflected more on this subject.

Would any obstacle and challenge stop me easily, if I knew my life’s purpose?

Would I have more energy and enthusiasm every day if I knew and lived my life’s purpose?

My answers were no and yes.

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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Going with The Flow

If you turn on the news, you will hear the news of increasing prices, shortage of meat, gas, diapers, toys which can be very disturbing which remind us of decades ago.

In such a situation what does it mean to go with the flow?

Most of us will still go shopping because we need food and gas. However the state of our being during this process matters.

Do we react with anger, give up, or choose to respond and act differently?

I such a situation, I ask myself the following questions:

  • What part of news concerns me?
  • Do I have control to change it?
  • What can I do about it today and still be grounded?

In my experience, when things change, we are invited to re-evaluate what is still important to us and if there is an opportunity to do something different that may still be beneficial to us.

Of course, I do not desire my standard of living to be reduced. However, emotional state of my being day-to-day is very important. Constantly being angry, resentful or passive are non-starters for me.

I can ask myself, can I still be joyful with less food or less driving?

Can I buy less toys for my grandchildren and still show them that I love and care for them?

Going with the flow does not mean surrender or lack of action.

Going with the flow means, keeping our peace of mind through awareness, being flexible, and directing our efforts on things that we can impact and matter to us the most.

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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Proper Prespective

Sometimes we need to look at our lives from a distance and put things in their proper perspective. This is especially required if we are on the go physically or mentally all the time.

There are two things that we need to constantly reflect on.

1- Check with yourself on what issues you are resentful of. Who you wished had behaved differently toward you? Are you upset with yourself? (How you may have made your life more difficult by avoiding certain issues.)

You may come up with a list of people, including yourself, who you are unhappy or disappointed with.

Let me ask you a couple of questions:

Do you have more clarity about what is important to you due to those unpleasant issues? Can you be grateful for the role those people played in clarifying them for you?

Were you ready emotionally, or physically to do what was a “right” thing then? If not, can you forgive yourself or other person? Why not?

2- Make a list of simple things in your life that brings you joy. This could be plants, animals, morning coffee, talking and laughing with friends, meal with friends, hobbies, interacting with friend or family members.

It is important that in our quiet moments, we energetically acknowledge all those that bring us joy. We also need to let people (around us) know how much we appreciate their presence and how they enrich our lives.

If you do such an exercise, you may notice how your energy shifts to a higher vibration and you realize how rich your life already is.


Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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Feeling of Death and Re-birth

Have you ever felt that you have died and then are re-birthed?

I experienced the duality of two feelings at its peak last weekend.

I have had my belongings in storage for the past six years in Austin, Texas.

Last weekend, I travelled to Texas, with help of my son, to totally empty the storage in Austin.

Several days before my trip to Texas, I felt sad! I knew I had to get rid of items that had memories attached to them, some of them for decades.

I felt that part of me was dying! After all, who am I without my belongings, books, and work memories?

At the same time, I have not used what I have stored in the storage for at least six years and it seemed silly to be upset about letting them go.

The day that I was emptying the storage, it felt like Shervin had died and I was deciding what to keep and what to give away.

It reminded me of the time, I was deciding what to keep when my father passed away.

I decided anything that does not bring me joy and is a burden, it needed to go!

The hardest thing for me was over 600 books that I decided to sell or give away! I convinced myself that people can enjoy the books if they are not kept in storage.

Then it became easier to get rid of racquetball trophies, toastmaster ribbons, carpets and many work related items.

Although all the trophies and ribbons were the right thing at the time for my journey, they had now served their purpose.

After two days, the entire storage was emptied.

I felt a sense of relief and accomplishment! I felt free and alive!

I was not burdened by things of the past anymore!

I no longer had any items to display my accomplishments, but I had my smile and feeling of being content, which does not require any physical storage and can be shared with others freely.

On the way back, on the plane while feeling my sore muscles, I pondered, “What are beliefs, habits, activities or relationships that are no longer serving me, are a burden and I need to consider letting go?”

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat



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Freedom and Safety

We choose between freedom and safety every day.

Some of the reasons for choosing safety can be our current responsibilities, our health, our upbringings or fear of the unknown.

As we mature and our responsibilities change, we may lose the fear of the unknown and enjoy the journey into the mystery.

Fear of the unknown is amplified when we are not present and are focused on anything but the present.

When we are not present and attempting to continuously live in the past or control the future, we lose our freedom and the potential to grow!

Imagine, if one attaches weights to an eagle, the eagle cannot soar in the sky freely and live his/her potential.

Some of the weights that hamper us to soar like an eagle are our ego, judgement, attachment to outcomes, and being out of touch with our capabilities.

If you feel that you are not free, you have had a good reason for taking actions to limit your freedom. However, that does not mean the situation needs to continue.

You are now wiser and have lived through your worst fears and have survived them!

Remember that the first time you enter a dark room (unknown), is the most difficult time, especially if you are projecting your fears into it.  After a couple of times, you may easily navigate through the dark room with ease.

Reflect about the times when you were inspired, relaxed and creative.

Were you present?

Did you feel free?

Were you attached to a certain outcome?

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat


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What are you focusing on?

What have you been preoccupied with and focusing on lately?

This is a worthwhile question to ask every day.

A good friend of mine sent me a lively tango video of two cute elderly couples dancing tango in an open area.

That video of their dance brought big smile to my face.

I later pondered, “What is most unique about the couple?”

The first thing that came to my mind was their focus!

Their focus and pre-occupation was on spending quality time dancing freely.

They were not performing for anyone, but performing together playfully.

The couple could have easily put their focus on many other ‘real’ things (their age, worry about future, health, …) that could have taken away their joy instantly.

Most likely, they are healthy and can dance at such an age, because they have a habit of focusing on what they can control and matters the most to them.

It is easy to lose track of our focus, if we are stuck in self-pity, constantly thinking of what is wrong or listening to fearful news.

If we constantly feel angry, are resentful or are fearful, we most likely have a wrong focus, and a change of focus and change of course is required.

Changing of course can be sparked by asking a simple question and waiting for an answer.

“What can I do today, to bring some joy and laughter to myself and to people around me?”

Maybe the answer you receive is to “count your blessings”.

Or, “go dance in the street” or “go dance in your kitchen”.

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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Two Mantras

Have you been in situations that your mind was racing and you were offended about something that someone had said or done?

How did you resolve such situations?

The way that I have resolved such situations lately is doing two things after taking a deep breath:

  • Repeat two mantras few times
  • Go over list of  people and things that I am grateful for (for two minutes)

The mantras that I learned from my teacher may shock you! I would have been shocked if I had heard it two years ago, as well.

The mantras are: “I am nothing. I know nothing!”

One may ask, why do you say such a thing while almost everyone has issues with self-confidence?

These mantras challenge our “ego” which has been causing us suffering.

At first, like anything that challenges the status quo, you may feel resistance repeating the mantras.  It will get easier as you will experience their benefits.

Let us dive into the sentence “I am nothing”. What does it challenge?

  • There are situations that we identify with a role as who we are (good father/mother, engineer, spiritual person). We try to defend the role and we get offended when our identity is challenged.
  • There are situations that we identify as bad/weak/unworthy and we judge ourselves viciously.

The word, “I am nothing”, energetically is like having mud all over our body and taking a hot shower. It has a cleansing effect that causes one to drop any identity (good or bad).

Next, let us dive into the sentence, “I know nothing”. What does it challenge?

  • It reminds us to pay attention to our assumptions which can be wrong.
  • It reminds us that our reality is based on our perception and beliefs.
  • It reminds us to be open-minded, curious and humble.

My experience of using these two mantras is freedom, peace and calmness!

Our mind stops racing, when there are no more roles to defend and there are no more ‘expectations’ to meet or demand.

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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Welcome Home!

In many traditions holding on to anger, hate, jealousy, judgement, regret, worry, self-pity, and shame are prohibited. Why?

Because it hurts the person physically, emotionally and spiritually.

Most of us have forgotten our natural state of peace and joy, therefore, we need reminders and rewards.

We can read books about love and how beautiful it is. But, unless we allow ourselves to experience it, it stays as a mental concept.

The same applies to not holding on to negative emotions. Unless we experience the absence of those sticky emotions, it stays as a mental concept.

You may ask, how can one let go of hurt or disappointments?

At first, it is not easy! It is like letting a piece of you die (death of ego). It is painful. Over time, practice of letting go becomes easier and easier (start with small steps and celebrate your successes).

This is not much different than going to the gym. At first, it is hard and sometimes painful. Over time, you feel better about yourself and you look forward to feeling alive in your body.

As we practice letting go (does not mean approving behaviors of others), we feel more joy and peace. This at first, may show up for 10 seconds at a time! The duration will increase dramatically over time.

Letting go is an ultimate form of self-love. Wouldn’t you want to feel calm, joyful, loving, more productive and alive regardless of chaos around you?

As you keep practicing letting go of sticky emotions, without judgment or blame, a gradual shift happens in you.

You will start feeling joyful without any complex reasons!  A sip of coffee, a chirp of a bird, touch of a tree, hearing a song, feeling a fresh cool breeze, a hug, a text may burst out the joy within you.

At first, you may ask yourself, “What is wrong?  Why am I so happy? I have not accomplished anything this morning!  Shouldn’t I be more ‘successful’ to feel this happiness?”

Nothing is wrong and many things are right.

You now regularly tap into the sweet nectar of joy and peace within.

Congratulations and welcome home!

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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Shut it Off Until …

Imagine you ask your voice assistant, “What is the weather forecast?” It tells you  that it is not good!

Imagine you ask your smart scale, “How am I doing with my weight?” It tells you that you are still fat!

Imagine you ask your GPS for a new direction (you took a wrong turn) and it asks you why you are so dense?

Imagine you ask your voice assistance, “What is my bank account balance?” It tells you that you will be in the streets soon!

At times I ask Siri about San Diego weather and it tells me “its opinion” of good/bad/gloomy. It frustrates me! There are enough people with opinions, I do not need opinion of software on top of that. I just need the facts to plan my day. I like rainy days!

I think most people would not like to hear opinions of a software (or people), especially when it is a negative judgement.

For smart devices we can stop asking their opinions by not using them.

But there is one ‘smart’ device that sadly does the same thing 24×7 and we are OK with it. As a result we suffer tremendously.

That is our ‘smart’ ego!

Our smart ego, like a smart device, is  a program (environment, family ..) whose main function is to give us facts to survive, but instead gives us opinions!

Sadly the programs were mostly downloaded/created when we were a child. Imagine if a child wrote your phone software. How much can you rely on it?

We typically do not listen to everything a voice assistance says, but we entertain every thought produced by our smart ego!

The fact is that we are not responsible to answer every query or react to repeated complaints by our smart ego.

If we are feeling miserable, most likely our smart ego is giving us opinions instead of facts!

Think about times that you felt down. Whose opinion were you listening to?

Perhaps it is time to shut off the smart ego until it provides only facts and not recycled opinions.

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat


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Your Life is Precious

You have heard that life is precious and we need to appreciate it.

But why, if most of the time we feel less than great about our lives.

It is because we have taken many things for granted.

Have you thought about odds of you being born? Your parents, grandparents and great grandparents and ancestors had to exist on a suitable planet like Earth to start their lives. They stayed alive despite all the wars, famines and diseases. They met the right person at the right place and time, they liked each other enough and conceived a child who survived childhood. Isn’t your existence unique and worthy of appreciation?

How about a butterfly that you see and take a picture of? Out of 100 butterfly eggs only 1 or 2 become butterfly.  A butterfly needs to be at the right place and time for you to see and take a picture. Isn’t this unique and worthy of appreciation?

How about your pet that you love dearly? How many things had to go right before that unique animal to be alive and stay in your life? Isn’t this unique and worthy of appreciation?

No matter how you are feeling at this moment, many things had to happen to make this feeling possible and so many things had to go right or not so right. How many dangers and disease did you bypass since childhood in order to be here today? What you are feeling by itself is a miracle and is very precious.

Look at your body and how many things working automatically which you really have no control over them. How many things needed to go right so you can wake up this morning and be able to read this article?

That is why your life and your experience are very unique.

You are very unique and the life you are living is very precious.

Copyright @2018 by Shervin Hojat


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Intellectual Laziness

When we are capable of thinking, being curious, and instead we completely delegate thinking to “experts” or “authorities”.

Imagine when people believed that earth was flat or witches had to be burned alive.

Most experts and authorities at that time supported such things and intellectual lazy people by default also repeated the narrative.

Is easy to let go of being curious and avoid learning new things about ourselves and the world we live in. However, by doing so, it will dull our minds and weaken us within.

Let us look at situations when we can become intellectually lazy by not questioning or being curious:

  • We are not curious about who we are
  • We do not regularly question our own beliefs and assumptions
  • We are not curious on learning new things that is not related to our career
  • We do not question our spiritual or religious or political groups
  • We do not question experts/authorities (medical, financial, educational …)
  • We believe in what we read or hear on our favorite communication channels

Observe your decision process and process of arriving at your opinions for the next couple of days.

How many of your decisions are based on feedback of experts who you are not familiar with or know about?

How many of your opinions do not rely on your personal experiences or are not researched by you?

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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On Attachments

I have realized that peace within is obtained by surrender and non-attachment (lovingly unattached) to  specific outcomes.

This does not mean being lazy and not doing our best.  It means not getting our satisfaction only from a specific outcome. More specifically, dictating how things should happen so that we can be happy.

Last week, I was challenged with dealing with issues that did not meet my expectations, even though I had followed all the expected protocols. Such events remind me to observe my reactions, surrender to what is, be kind, and then  take actions in the moment.

Sometimes we do not know the level of our attachments until we are challenged to let go of them (expectations, people, concepts, things).

The more thought, energy  and work we put into something, there is potential for more attachments.

What we attach to, becomes part of our identity and who we are and letting it go becomes as if we are dying.

Sometimes we get attached to a concept such as not missing out an experience (life as a bigger picture).

As a result we hoard things, so that we can possibly enjoy them later and not miss out.

For example, we may own a book that we have not read for 20 years, but still do not read it or donate it!

Or a shirt we bought many years ago , we have never worn it and still are waiting for the right occasion to wear it!

The problem with this is that events can only be experienced in the now, not in the past or the future.

It Is like going on a trip and taking many pictures so that one day we can look at the pictures and finally enjoy our trip!

The problem with all forms of attachments is that we miss out on being in the present (either due to regret of the past or trying to protect for the future).

One may say that they are not attached to anything. Right! There are always rare exceptions.

Our amount of worry and energy into something  shows our attachment and point of focus.

It is our responsibility to evaluate what attachments we have and what attachments have served their purpose.

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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Present Moment

Present moment (Now), is a gateway to the future. We cannot bypass it.

If we are present, we can enjoy our food, otherwise it is a ritual that we receive no joy from it.

If we are present in a gathering, we can connect with our loved ones and friends, otherwise it is a ritual with very little joy in it.

Think of all of your pleasant memories. You remember them because you were present with it and lived it.

Our lives are a collection of present moments.  The amount of time that we are in the Now, is the amount of life we have lived.

There are certain activators that help us to become present. Some common activators are nature, meditation, breath work, gratitude, forgiveness, laughter, music and dance.

Those activators are means to prepare us to be present and be alive in all circumstances of our lives.

The goal is not to be the best meditator, nature walker or musician. Those are just some means in the art of living. The goal is to be present with every breath that we take.

It is not enough to smile while in nature and be angry in other places. If that happens it means we have confused the means with the goal and have not yet internalized the practice.

We can take a look at some typical activators in life:

  • The purpose of taking a class is not just getting a good grade. It is a means to think and apply the knowledge in our daily life and work.
  • The purpose of a pet is not just to take care of an animal and have a companion. It is a means to help us express our unconditional love in all aspects of our lives.

The ultimate test and question is, who are you, when you are not in nature, not meditating, not dancing or not listening to music or not with your pet?

Are you stuck in the past or are you worrying about future?  Or are you present and alive?

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat


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Inner Knowledge

There are several important life issues/questions that most of us will face. Sometimes we change our initial view on them as we mature.

We may have the book knowledge of such issues, but integrating them into our lives (internalize) may take time and continuous practice.

Such issues are not a mental exercise, rather they are truths that need to be experienced in our being as part of our evolution.

What are some of the common life issues that we may address during our lives?

Here is a partial list:

  1. Accepting temporary nature of things in life;
  2. Analysis versus feeling; what do we avoid feeling by rationalization?
  3. Impact of our words on ourselves and others.
  4. Our self-worth; who/what defines it?
  5. Who is in control of our thoughts?
  6. Being alone. Is it a punishment or a way to grow?
  7. Relationships. Unconditional love and acceptance of self and others.
  8. Pleasing others/society versus following your heart’s desire.
  9. Who am I? What do I enjoy? How am I connected with the Universe?
  10. Expectations versus happiness.  Can I be happy if I have a long list of expectations from others?
  11. Awareness of our trigger points and healing the sources of initial hurt.
  12. What paths fit best toward my life purpose?
  13. Struggle between senses of security versus being free.

Which of the above issues have you addressed?

Which of the above issues are work in progress for you?

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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How To Unstuck Yourself?

If you want to unstuck yourself. , you need to take a small uncomfortable step.

I like to share two of my experiences when I have felt stuck, and how small uncomfortable steps unstuck my situations.

  • I was debugging my software and I had a deadline. I worked on it during the day and at night and the issue was not resolved. I decided to go to bed and deal with it when I wake up. Next day, I woke up at 4 AM with preoccupied thoughts of how that issue could be resolved. I attempted to find out the cause of the software bug for another 45 minutes and it was not successful. I was stuck and I felt frustrated. I realized that my peace of mind and energy is being compromised. I thought of asking for help from a co-worker. But I felt very uncomfortable. I need to be independentWhat if the issue is something simple? What if it is something that I should know?

    My peace of mind was more important to me than potential perception of others. I decided to take the uncomfortable step. I started crafting an email to ask for help. All of sudden an idea came to me where to look for the cause of the bug which solved the problem. I had to take the first uncomfortable step to get unstuck.


  • Few days later, I was debugging another issue and the source of the bug was not obvious. I was stuck!  I was trying to use my will power to solve the problem. I was telling myself, I must fix this issue and then I can go for a walk. After a few minutes of struggle for answers I realized that my energy is depleted. I decided to let the problem stay unresolved and go for a relaxing walk.

    While walking on a nature trail, all of sudden the line of code that had that issue showed up in my head. The issue was solved. I was no longer stuck! I had to take the first uncomfortable step to get unstuck.

Do you feel stuck at some aspects of your life? What is it that you are dreading?

– Is asking for help embarrassing?

– Is letting go of control difficult?

– Are you avoiding feeling certain emotions?

Be kind to yourself, value your wellbeing and challenge your beliefs.

Take a first uncomfortable step, you may get unstuck in a magical way.

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat


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Why Me?

Am I being punished?

We can understand why ‘bad’ people may go through hardships. They may deserve it!

We do not understand why good and loving people go through hardships. It does not seem deserving.

The hardships we may go through is not a punishment, it is part of the evolution of our soul on this planet.

What makes a diamond rare and precious, is its character developed due to experiencing hardship (high temperature and pressure).

What makes a soul beautiful is the degree of its evolution.

Evolution of soul requires, letting go of attachments and false beliefs which can create hardship due to our resistance.

The more evolved a soul is, the less of the hardship may be internalized.

Attaining anything worthwhile, requires some form of hardship.

If you are faced with hardship, be kind and gentle with yourself, be steadfast, it is part of the evolution of your soul.

Perspectives on hardship from two of my favorite teachers:

  • “Where there is Ruin, there is a hope for treasure.” ~ Rumi
  • ” Braving obstacles and hardships is nobler than retreat to tranquility. The butterfly that hovers around the lamp until it dies is more admirable than the mole that lives in a dark tunnel.” ~Khalil Gibran

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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What If

We all dream and sometimes can remember our dreams.

Some of our dreams are as real and vivid as our awake life.

Some of our dreams are terrifying and some of them are yummy and joyful.

It is fun to dream especially when we do not follow any rules, and are not bound to the Earth’s gravity.

Sometimes, in our dreams, we are aware that we are dreaming. In such a situation, we are not terrified, we are rather curious and playful.

Think back to a time that you had a scary dream.

How did you react when you woke up from your terrifying dream?

Weren’t you happy that it was just a dream?

Did you want to be aware that you were dreaming while in your dream?

I would!

What if the life that you are experiencing, is just a dream and you have not yet awakened from your sleep?

Would you deal with difficult situations in your life differently, if you know you are experiencing your life in a dream?

If this life is a dream:

Who is the dreamer?

How well do you know the dreamer?


Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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The Roles We Play

We all play different roles in the cast of life as part of our becoming.

All the roles we play are temporary and they will end someday.

The result of roles we play, transformations occur within us (positive or not).

Some of the roles we play are by our choice, and some are not.  Environment of some of our roles may not be our choice either.

For example, we all have to play the role of a child (no choice), with a varying family environment.

Some of our roles may be:

  • We play the role of a child who receives lots of love, a little or no love.
  • We play the role of a famous person, average person or an unknown person.
  • We play the role of a parent whose child performs great or performs less than average at school.
  • We play the role of an individual, who may experience good or bad health.

It is important we do not allow our temporary roles, transform us in a negative way!

Our negative transformation happens when we attach our identity (who we are) to our roles. This is when our ego and programming kicks in a high gear.

For example:

  • We may play the role of a person who struggles with finances, but we cannot allow it as a result of identifying with the role to turn us bitter and blaming.
  • We may play the role of advocate for justice, but cannot allow it as a result of identifying with the role to turn us into an unjust person.
  • We may play a role of advocating for peace, but cannot allow as a result of identifying with the role to turn us into a combative individual.
  • We may play a role of helping humanity, but cannot allow as a result of identifying with the role turn us into an uncaring and arrogant individual.

Whatever temporary roles we are playing, whether we like them or not, can help us become a better or a bitter version of us.

Humility, honesty, acceptance during our role playing are our allies in the journey of experiencing a better version of us.

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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Reflecting On Valentine’s Day

It is very desirable to be able to share care and love with those who we enjoy their company.

However, we need to keep in mind the person who is responsible for making us feel loved, is ourselves!  It is the nature of our thoughts, beliefs and actions that dictate how we may feel on this day or any other day.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Sharing a poem from years ago:

A day
with many expectations.

A day that you are expected
to show love.

A day with the expectation
of receiving love.

A day when love is measured
on how well you can afford things.

It is great to be appreciated and remembered on this day.

There are 364 other days that you may crave love and attention.

Who is supposed to love you and make you feel good inside all year long?

What kind of flower will bring you constant joy all year long?

What kind of chocolate will bring you constant joy all year long?

Who knows your needs the best?

Who cares about you the most?

Who can bring you joy all year long?

Do not search for the prince or princess out there.

Look in the mirror. It is YOU!

Have you cared about yourself today?

Have you gone within, to know yourself better today?

Have you told your inner child, I love you, today?

Happy Valentine’s Day.

 Copyright . 2008 Shervin Hojat

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Junk Food of Soul

Do you consume junk food?

If no, how do you manage staying off junk food?

When I was younger I used to consume junk food.

Later on, I realized that eating junk food makes me agitated.

I am no longer attracted to junk food even though they are prominently displayed everywhere in the stores. I prefer having my state of calm.

We not only feed our body junk food, we also feed our soul junk food.

Junk food of the soul, also brings down our vibration and keeps us stressed, angry and anxious.

Junk food of the soul is sticky. Like a virus, it needs a host to survive while replicating itself.

Junk food of soul, is our repeated thoughts and beliefs that keep playing in our head (we host and feed them) while lowering our vibration.

Since we think those thoughts are us, we listen to and take in every thought as truth and relive it.

How many times a day do we listen to and take in thoughts like: “I am not lovable”, “I am a failure”, and ”my future is gloomy”?

Such thoughts are junk food of the soul on a 24×7 binge.

How to reduce feeding junk food to our soul?

  • Become aware of thoughts that lower your vibration; when you are agitated take time to find out what thoughts (junk food) caused that.
  • Mediate; listen to relaxing music; walk in nature; anything that naturally puts you in a state of calm. This is your true nature and needs a reference point as a reminder.
  • Consider your repeating stale thoughts as advertisements; they are planted to manipulate you; ignore them!  You are not your thoughts; you do not have any obligations to those thoughts.

How are you going to nurture your soul today?

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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What can we do to positively impact this chaotic world?

Letting go (fear, anger, …) , connecting to our essence and being in the moment is the most effective way to be a source of  joy, love and understanding to ourselves and others.


As If

Sing as if you are the most elegant songbird.

Dance as if you are freed.

Smile as if you see your beloved.

Cry as if you are a spring feeding a thirsty plant.

Cook as if you have an honored guest.

Breathe as if the last breath you want to remember.

Observe as if the first time your eyes see.

Listen as if you do not know anything.

Smell the flower as if she has a secret message for you.

Give as if there is no end to its source.

Receive as if the Sun is warming you up on a chilly day.

Internalize the sunset as if your soul stores the best images.

Hug as if it is the last hug to remember.

Stay still so you can feel the oneness.

Listen to silence so you can hear the music.

Love so you can experience yourself!

Copyright @2021 by Shervin Hojat

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Happy 2021!

Happy New Year!

Many of us are excited for the end of 2020.  

We have put our best efforts in 2020 and have dealt with many difficult challenges.

We are looking forward to the next twelve months with hope and optimism.

As we are celebrating a new beginning of the year,  we are also kinder toward each other.

Most people like celebration and optimism toward the future. It is joyful and joy is food to our soul.

It is a good practice to celebrate new beginnings once a year. It is much preferable than celebrating it every decade!

Why not celebrate and reflect more often?

Imagine instead of a once a year celebration of the New Year, we celebrate the next day at the end of the current day.

Imagine instead of being joyful for someone’s birthday once a year, we are joyful every day.

Imagine instead being kind and loving on anniversaries, we are like that every day.

Who sets the structures to celebrate once a year? Why?

What should we do on January 2nd? Wait for another year to celebrate and reflect?

Observe little children.
Do they smile and laugh only on certain dates on the calendar (i.e. 5th day of the month)?

Go back in time to your childhood.

We all came into this unpredictable world. We could not take care of our needs, everything was new, strange and scary at times. We cried one minute and the next minute laughed on simplest goofy things. 
What changed as adults?

  • Is keeping scores of the past helping us?
  • Is worrying about infinite possibilities of the future helping us?
  • Are we better off now in experiencing joy?

Every moment is an opportunity for a new beginning and is a gift.

Life invites us to show up for every moment, be optimistic, do our best, and have no set expectations.

If we show up the way children do, our lives will be richer and we will have plenty of reasons to celebrate at the end of every day.

Happy New Year!

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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Two Weeks

With holidays, there is always a question: what are you planning to do the next two weeks?

Last week, a friend asked me that question.

I did not have a fixed plan. I could work or take some time off, take it easy, watch movies and listen to podcasts.

Later, I pondered, would I do anything differently if I had two weeks left on this planet?

The answer was ‘yes’! 

I wanted to appreciate all the people (alive or dead) who have left a lasting impression on me.  This included family members, teachers and friends who I have not talked with regularly.

I wanted to let them know that their smiles, laughter, kindness and care had made a difference to me. What made them special to me was their presence of heart, while they were going through their own big challenges.

I also wanted to drop my anger and disappointment toward the few people who I was not excited to be around. Mentally, I know they are here to help me grow. Emotionally, there is something still unresolved.

I made a list of people who have enhanced my life experience. I realized how blessed my life has been.

Each time that I updated the list, I felt a sense of deep gratitude and richness in my life.

For the next two weeks, I have a plan to execute that is deeply meaningful to me.

Would you do anything different in the next two weeks, if any, if you had two weeks left on this planet?

Happy Holiday!

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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The Day

We sometimes seek approval from outside to feel worthy and loved.

Poem below reflects on when we decide to change the focus of our seeking.


The day that I connected with the one who has always walked in my shoes.

The day that I connected with the one who has always laughed and cried with me.

The day that I connected with the one who has never been busy for me.

The day that I took charge for my well-being.

The day that I put down the begging bowl.

The day that I searched for the lost one within.

The day that I accepted myself as I have accepted my other friends.

The day I cared about myself as I have cared for my other friends.

The day I listened to myself as I listened to my other friends.

The day I showed empathy for myself as I have shown for my friends.

The day I held myself and said “I understand”, as I have said to my friends.

The day I felt content and calm as I have been in the presence of a loving friend.

The day that I did not have to wait for anything outside of me to feel supported.

The day I used my kindness to be kind to me.

The day that I sobbed in joy as I had finally met my lost friend.

The day I could share my feelings without effort, expectations or judgements.

The day I could be myself and be perfectly OK with me.

The day that I realized what it really means to be at peace.

The day that I become my best friend.

The day that I could love more.

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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Emotional Attachment

The word attachment feels hot and the word detachment feels cold and impersonal.

They both may be used as a tool for survival and both are not healthy in the long term.

I like to focus on emotional attachment. Emotional attachment may seem kind, warm and caring.

Too much emotional attachment, especially in a group setting (families, ideological groups, tribes), can take away our identity and inner joy.  It can create guilt when we are happy and ultimately resentment toward others.

What are some dynamics of emotional attachments?

  • When someone in a group feels sad, you are expected to be sad.
  • You should not be happy, if others are not happy.
  • You should not enjoy anything, if others are suffering.
  • You should be happy when others are happy.

Emotional attachment can be portrayed as love, but it is not love. Love is accepting (of what we feel) and helps us grow in our vibration.

How expecting others to be sad/angry for our sadness/anger makes us or others more vibrant?

Feeling empathy for others does not require us to lower to our vibration to show care. How can we support/help anyone effectively when we lower our vibration?  

Empathy means having understanding for their situation and providing support when possible, while we keep our energetic integrity.

Look at your relationships/interactions during the day:

  • How much the moods of friends/family/coworkers or tone of news impacts your mood?
  • Do you feel guilty for not feeling the same as others? Do you feel agitated?
  • Why?

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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Our Relationships

All of our joys and hurts are due to our relationships!

Why would anyone want to be in a hurtful relationship? It does not logically make sense.

Take an inventory of your hurtful relationships in the past (or at the present).

What were the common themes?

  • Were you able to express yourself freely?
  • Did you feel safe to be yourself?
  • Did you feel that you were respected and valued?
  • Did your vibration diminish with such interactions?

Why do we stay in such a relationship?

Fear of not surviving (economically, emotionally or physically), hunger for positive validation and familiarity are major factors that cause us to stay in toxic relationships.

Think about an abusive work situation. Think about a friend or spouse who talks down to you.

Do you have peace of mind and high vibration in such a situation? What is the reason for staying in such a relationship?

This situation is not exclusive to our friends or work.

There are deeper relationships that take away our joy and peace and we do not question them.

These deeper relationships are like old friends that we have known and have trusted for decades!

Take a look at your  relationship with beliefs that “you are a failure”, “you are not lovable”, “you are not good” or “you are this or that”.

These beliefs are like toxic friends who may call you any time of day and night and repeat their mantra.

After listening to them, you most likely will feel miserable, sad and angry.

You have accepted abuse of such old “friends” for decades. Why?

The other abusive relationships are with our additions.  Addiction becomes our companions who comfort us  at first and dim our lights gradually.

Some of such friends (addictions) who we believe we cannot live without are: food, drugs, hatred, need to control, self-pity, seeking approval, self-importance, drama, jealousy, gossip and blame.

We know their friendship is not good for us (for sure for others) but we allow them to sabotage our spiritual growth.

At the root of our abusive relationship is our relationship with our “ego”.

This is another old friend who can be very mean and we listen to its mis-guided advice constantly.

This friend was supposed to give us information without judgement. Now it expresses its opinions and demands to be in charge.

How does this ego friend ego talk and treat you?

If we are seeking peace of mind and joy, we need to examine ALL of our relationships that we cannot live without.

We then need to explore the space within our heart, free of the need for limiting/toxic relationships, to experience the truth of who we are.

Spiritual growth is a journey that requires being gentle with oneself and no self-judgement.

During your journey, be aware of friendly voices who will try to sabotage your progress.

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat


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Forgiveness: An Act of Self-love

Let go and become peaceful.

Letting go of certain events and behaviors are easy, but some are not.

We can easily let go of the behavior of a stranger than a friend or a family member.

Why? Because we have invested more time in such relationships. As a result, we have more expectations.

We may verbally express that we want to let go of disappointment and hurt, but such feelings do not leave us alone. Sometimes we even forget how to let go.

I had such an experience a few days ago. I felt angry, hurt and disappointed for several days.

I could not mediate and focus. When I woke in the middle of night, my mind reminded me of the hurt and disappointment. It was difficult to go back to sleep.

I was frustrated, exhausted and upset with myself. Why cannot I let this go?

Day later, at 5 AM, while I was struggling with my thoughts, something in me said, forgive!

The light came on for me!

What do I have to lose?  Can I be more miserable than now?

As soon as I decided to forgive, my relentless thoughts stopped. Emotional storms within me subsided dramatically and I felt calm. 

I had no need to tell other people that I have forgiven them. It was not about them. It was about me and my energy. 

By allowing myself to forgive others, I have allowed to forgive myself!  

I no longer had to carry the burden of hurt with me and relive it. I also no longer had a need to blame others or myself for the hurt.

Later, I felt light and I felt empathy for others who I felt who have hurt me.

I realized that others may hurt me without knowing or awareness. I also know I have hurt others as well.

I realized others may not forgive me right away. It is not under my control. But I could forgive myself and the situation. 

Think of all those nagging thoughts you may have in meditations, during the day or when you wake up in the middle of night. Will forgiveness of yourself and others release those gooey thoughts and associated suffering?

I have experienced that when we energetically forgive, others also forgive us much easier. It is an amazing dynamic.

Forgiveness is a bitter medicine that we may not want to take at first. It may take time. However, it is the right medicine for our soul, mind and body. It is one of the best ways of expressing care and self-love.

The beautiful truth is that our freedom from the past hurts ultimately does not depend on anything outside of us. We are in charge of our freedom and peace through forgiveness.

Some quotes regarding forgiveness:

  • Grace comes to forgive and then forgive again. ~Rumi
  • Those who are free of resentful thoughts surely find peace.  ~Buda
  • To be wronged is nothing unless you continue to remember it. ~Confucius
  • It is in pardoning that we are pardoned. ~Francis of Assisi

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat 

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How Are You Using Your Gifts?

Why are humans in general “superior” to animals?

It is due to the proper use of their gift of mind/memory and imagination. When humans use their mind and imagination correctly, they can create magnificent things and help many.  

What makes humans one of the most miserable creatures on the Earth?

 It is due to the abuse of their gift of mind/memory and imagination. When humans misuse their mind and imagination, they cause pain and suffering on themselves and others. In general, if humans are suffering emotionally, they are either living in the past or in the future. 

In my opinion, when we are not present, we are abusing our God given gifts. We abuse our gifts by:

– Imagining constantly how terrible the future may be which results in living in constant fear and tension.

– Using our mind to constantly focus on past hurts, unmet expectations and losses.

–  Using our memory to keep score of people’s shortcomings to justify our behavior.

– Using our mind/focus to ignore all our blessings. 

When we misuse our gifts, we lose sight of the lack of permanency of life. Instead of appreciating encountering a beautiful rose (i.e. our loved one) and being grateful for experiencing their beauty and fragrance, we mourn its transformation and loss instead. We become willing accomplice in our own suffering.

When we misuse our gifts, we fight life by becoming obsessed with behavior of people who we care about to behave in a certain perfect way. We feel hurt if our expectations are not met and use our mind and focus to play the hurt over and over.  We become willing accomplice in our own suffering and bitterness.

We cannot observe abuse of our gifts in ourselves easily. Even though emotional pain and suffering are good indicators of such abuses. We tend to blame others for our emotional pain and suffering instead of investigating how we are contributing to it now. It is easier to observe such situations in others, because it is less personal and our ego will not fight it.

 My dear mother, RIP, was dealing with dementia. She was very scared when she could not remember things. Imagine you wake up tomorrow and all of sudden you have a limited memory. How would you respond?

To compensate for that issue and to remember, my mother wrote some notes in her notebook and reviewed the notes every morning before coming down for breakfast. In that notebook, there was not a list of all good things that happened to her, etc. The notes in the notebook besides some phone numbers, contained a list of people who have hurt her or not met her expectations. Reinforcing that memory agitated her and set her day in a wrong direction.

After hiding the notebook from her, she was not as agitated before breakfast. She had to let go of past memories of hurt and self-identification. My best times with my mother was when her hurt memory of the past was gone (no need to revisit them) and we could be present with each other, talk, laugh and enjoy the moments together.

We do not need to have Dementia to be present with our loved ones. We can make a conscious choice. We can stop reinforcing our memory of hurtful events (by not constantly talking about them and not reliving them over and over) and instead use our mind on reinforcing the blessings that we have. 

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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Survival Mode

Have you wondered why people do things that are not in their best interest?

They may even agree that their behavior is not healthy and still do it!

It is like something else drives them.

What if this driving force is the need for “survival”?

If you are lost in a jungle and you feel that you are in danger (real or imaginary), a sense of survival kicks in. You will behave differently and will feel very tense.

Need for survival (avoiding death) may not be just physical. It may be emotional as well. Both of them feel similar.

Some triggers for survival may be previous traumas or ancestral memories in our DNA.

Let us assume that we deeply want to be valued because the feeling of not being valued/worthy scares us enough that we believe our survival is at risk.

We may believe that the best way to be valued is to make lots of money or become famous (at the expense of our health and relationships).

We also agree moderation in work is healthy, but rarely do it in action.  We may even get upset at our own behavior for not doing the right thing.

It is very frustrating and demoralizing. Why is there a discrepancy between our actions and words?   

We are in survival mode!!!

It does not matter if we agree working for long hours is not good for us.

By trying to reduce work hours (vacation or a different job), we may temporarily eliminate the symptom.  

We need to deal with the root cause and not just the symptoms to eliminate the situation.

Taking Tylenol for an infected tooth is a temporary remedy of symptom. The root cause fix still needs to be addressed.

In my opinion, depression, rage, hate, co-dependent behaviors, taking and many forms of addictions are all symptoms. They need to be corrected and root cause needs to be addressed as well.

Why? Because we are still in survival mode, and fear is driving our actions/inactions.

How do we know we are in survival mode?

Being constantly restless (busy) or feeling numb and not enjoying our lives can be the clues.

Before we judge others’ undesirable behaviors or our own, we need to understand most of the undesirable behaviors are symptoms.

This does not justify the behavior, but provides understanding toward its root cause.

If you are frustrated with some of your behaviors, be understanding and kind to yourself.  Often, your survival skills also become your strength.

You are doing your best based on your current beliefs! What triggers a sense of survival in you is real at this moment.

The most effective way to eliminate the symptoms is to understand the root cause (belief/trauma).  The timing for everyone is different. When we are ready we can address it.

If helping others too much is your concerning symptom. Do not spend all your energy on avoiding helping others. It will sap your joy and energy.

Focus most of your energy on understanding yourself and changing the belief(s) that cause that symptom while managing the symptom.

Maybe you need to question/change your belief on what makes you valuable (root cause) and then can help others by choice.

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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Do You Love Yourself?

For some of us, this topic may be an abstract subject or be considered a selfish discussion.

Let us consider a loving relationship among two people.

What are some outcomes of such a relationship?

• They bring the best in each other
• They attempt to reduce pain and stress in each other
• They listen to each other
• They enjoy being together
• They forgive each other
• They show love in action
• They do not blame each other
• They respect each other

Now if you love yourself, shouldn’t the above outcomes be present for you as well?

• Do you bring the best in you?
o How often are you angry or worried during the day?
o How often do you feel joy and smile?

• Do you attempt to reduce pain and stress in you?
o Do you take time to meditate or relax?
o Do you take care of your needs?
o Do you eat the food that nurtures you?
o Do you draw a boundary on how much people and outside events may trigger you?

• Do you listen to and acknowledge your needs and feelings?

• Do you enjoy being by yourself?
o Are you busy all the time?
o Is sitting silent with yourself a torture?

• Do you forgive yourself and others?
o Remember if you stay angry, the first person that feels the anger is you

• Do you show your love by action?
o Do you buy yourself a gift with joy or you only do it for other people?
o Do you try to reduce pain in others while yourself is in pain?
o Do you ridicule or diminish what you feel?

• Do you blame everything on others?
o Blame only takes your power away and puts you at mercy of the behavior of others.

• Do you respect yourself?

When we love ourselves, we can love others freely and with ease.

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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Be True to Yourself

For a minute, imagine that you are a small Sun.

What are your roles and responsibilities?

Will you stop shining if you are surrounded by dark clouds?

Will you please others at the expense of deviating from your essence?

Will you be anyone other than yourself?

Imagine what the Sun in our solar system goes through.

Some people get skin cancer due to over exposure to its rays.

Some people enjoy its beauty.

Animals and plants rely on its energy to live.

Some people hide from its heat and may get sick or die from its intensity.

At some locations, some people want the Sun to be cooler or hotter.

Does Sun feel guilt and shame due its undesirable impact on others?

Does Sun feel proud and arrogant due to all its life giving?

Will Sun’s behavior change if everyone one the planet disapproves of its presence?

Remember the essence of who you are.

You are light.

You are love.

Do not dim your light to fit in or be accepted.

Be true to yourself, no matter what happens around you.

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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Preserving Your High Vibration

These days, with unusual chaos and uncertainty, it is becoming obvious that keeping a high vibration is requirement for thriving at spiritual, mental and physical level.

High vibration is a natural state when you are connected to your core and essence (knowing self). This usually requires regularly sitting in silence and observing your thoughts.

Imagine you are watching a movie. It maybe a scary and upsetting. Maybe there are some events portrayed that are not fair.

You are watching the movie, but it does not need to become your reality and allowing the movie to zap your life force.

The movie will end sooner or later. The residual impact on you is very crucial.

It is like type of food you choose to eat. It may have a lasting impact on you.

Does spending your energy and attention on that movie serve you?

Some people get a bag of popcorn and watch the movie. Some people watch the movie and complain how disgusting it is.

Some people walk away from watching the movie in the middle or do not get engaged in watching it at all.

That ‘right’ choice (in the moment) comes from levels of self-awareness.

Every day we engage in many movies with different actors at home or outside home. These movies will have different outcomes depending on our quality of interactions and our state of being.

Imagine you observe somebody drops a trash on the floor of a nature trail.

Definitely, it is something irresponsible to do. You also do not know state of mind of that person.

You, as nature lover, are correct if you want to fix the situation.

Your choices may be:

1- You may go and confront the person; lecture them on how irresponsible they are (how good you are indirectly).
2- You may decide to ignore the situation, walk away, hope someone else will deal with it.
3- You may decide to pick up the trash and move on.

All the above three options maybe the correct thing to do depending on level of your awareness.

What are the key question to ask in such a situation?

• What is my state of being? Loving? Agitated?
• What is my end goal?
• What action(s) keep my vibration high?
• What does my heart say?

Lately, I have observed that I have given options of being right or keeping my vibration high.

At first, it is very difficult to allow someone keep doing something ‘unfair’, ‘wrong’ or ‘intentional’ and do not engage with them.

Usually many of such things are trivial with lots of unresolved charges within us (toilet seat, lane change, gossip, blame …).

The ultimate question is to ask: if I engage in a certain way, how will my vibration be impacted?

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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Love and Respect

Do love and respect go together?

Can you love yourself and have no respect for self?

Can you love  the environment and not to respect it by damaging it?

Can you love someone and not show respect by not being present with them?

What are different aspects of respect?

  • Listening
  • Being present
  • Empathy
  • Honesty
  • Help
  • Kindness
  • Being considerate
  • Freedom to choose

If  I have issues with other people respecting me and my boundaries, then perhaps I need to re-evaluate my own self-respect.

Do I  listen to myself?

I am present with myself?

Do I have empathy for myself?

Do I treat myself kindly?

Am I honest with myself on how I feel?

Do I give myself freedom to choose?

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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Sources of Energy Drain

We have a finite amount of energy and we need to preserve our energy as much as possible.

The higher our energy, the more loving, happy and calm we are. We are also more productive in such a state.

I have found  that the things I enjoy doing not only does not drain my energy but amplifies my energy.

I have also have  found the things that I resist and avoid drain my energy.

We can drain our energy by ourselves (thoughts and certain behaviors)  or drop our guards and allow others tap into our energy.

What are some energy drains?

  • Lack of self-care.
  • Not honoring your wishes.
  • Doubting yourself.
  • Not letting go of thinking of a problem or an argument.
  • Thoughts and ideas that create fear and worry.
  • Co-dependency (your happiness depends on happiness of others).
  • Anger and complaints.
  • Judgement and jealousy.

We need to be on our guards when we are tired, hungry or thirsty. This is time to pause doing what we are doing and take care of our needs first.

Self-care  (physically ,emotionally and spiritually) is one of the most important commitment we need to honor.

What are sources of your energy drain?

How well do you self-care?

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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Change and Chaos

How do we respond in times of change and chaos?

Put it mildly, many things are uncertain. Many of pillars that we rested our peace of mind on may be gone or crumbling.

We may dread watching the news. Our friends may not be as social as before. We may feel emotionally and physically exhausted. We may feel lonely.

What we are going through is a catalyst to know ourselves and grow. 

Look back at past few months. You have made it so far. You have adapted. You are stronger as the result.

We do not have control on many of the events. We have control on how we respond.

The best form of response is being in high vibration as much as possible.

The following reminders has helped me to raise my vibration which I hope they help you too:

  • Find things to be grateful about.  Remember our lives are about opportunities to grow and learn.
  • Remember pain point for everyone is different; What may be easy to deal with for you, may be very difficult for others.
  • Lower your expectation of how others should respond to you. Do not take things personally.
  • Be lovingly specific on what you need from others or what you can provide.
  • Be flexible. Plan and if things change, do not lose your peace of mind.
  • Do not get trapped in one perspective. Constantly ask Universe to help you see what you need for your growth.
    • When you want to pick fruits from a tree, you do not stay in one place and pick the fruit of that section only. You move around and with each new perspective there are new findings. This concept applies to many aspects in our lives as well.
  • Give others what you want to receive.
    •  If you want to be understood, make attempt to understand others.
    • If you want others around you be positive, you be positive.
    • If you want others be kind, you be kind in actions and words.

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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Love and Action

“Love without action is meaningless and action without love is irrelevant.” – Deepak Chopra

Action and love need to go together (with awareness) for our spiritual growth.

What are some actions related to love?

· Acceptance of the other person- it is not about fixing them.

· Being present with them.

· Being vulnerable to verbalize your love

  • Many people’s dream is to hear ‘I love you’ from their loved ones.
  • Verbalizing love is a good start.

· Acting in their love language

  • If someone loves flowers, showing your love by getting them power tools is not a very effective way to communicate that love.

Why action without (unconditional) love is irreverent?

· Any action based on vibration lower than love, can only reflect the energy that was put into.

  • Unconditional love brings out that energy in giver and receiver
  • Acting with expectations most often produces disappointment, resentment and anger. Recall a time that you may have given and later felt resentful because you expected something in return and did not receive in kind.

· If an action does not propel us toward raising our vibration, is self-defeating and not in our highest good.

I invite you to ponder about people whom you love (including yourself).

Is there an action you need to take to communicate your love more effectively toward yourself or others?

What would change if you acted toward yourself or loved ones with more unconditional love?

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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Tribute To A Friend

Last Wednesday, a friend texted me with a sad news. He broke the shocking news that our common friend, Balmiki, who I have worked with in two companies – has unexpectedly passed away.

Bakmiki, was one of my few friends who I had at my work.  We had common passion for nature, photography and poetry.

We had enjoyable times walking, sharing pictures we have taken and talking about books we have enjoyed reading.

I had to ponder why I felt so sad from the news?  I have not talked to him for more than one  year since he moved to another city.

I realized that when we talked with each other, we were often laughing and exchanging ideas. 

Whenever I think of Balmiki, smile comes to my face.

Some reflections on my friend’s sudden passing:

  • Do not take anything for granted, focus only on important things.
  • By sharing our passion, we share joy with others.
  • Quality of our interactions is dependent on how present we are.
  • We remember people by how they make us feel.

Rest in peace my dear friend.

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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How Sovereign Are You?

How much outside events influence your mental, emotional and spiritual state?

You are sovereign if we know yourself. This is more than knowing what personality type you are. This is about experiencing yourself to the core.

Knowing self is like being a tree rooted deeply in the earth. Winds of criticism, job loss, failures, rejections and lack of approval do not break or upset us.

If we do not know who we are, we are not sovereign. We depend on outside events/people to validate our identity. We are easily are manipulated, hurt or angered.

Most people, as a child, first try to fit in and be somebody ‘acceptable’. As soon as we deviate from the ‘norm’, we feel the guilt, shame and may feel unhappy and hollow.

After several decades of fitting in and seeking outside approval, this process becomes repetitive with no lasting joy. We may feel anger, resentment and may turn the anger on ourselves or others.

This is the time that we can challenge our beliefs, thoughts and norms that hold us back from knowing ourselves.

We decide to become self-ish and go deeper within. As a result developing a stronger root such that outside events minimally impact us.

Going within requires dropping all the thoughts, knowledge and beliefs about who we are and how we should be.

This is a process that with humility we connect to our heart.  We ask the intelligence within, through silence and meditation, to guide us to experience Self.

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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On Manipulation

Manipulation is a way to control and direct others to have a certain desired behavior.

Some reasons for manipulation is lack of effective communication, lack of awareness and lack of honesty.

Some tactics used for manipulation are:

  • Fear/mis-information
  • Urgency
  • Shame
  • Guilt
  • Various forms of Rewards

If we are not conscious, we all will participate in such manipulative games.

If we are conscious and have a sense of who we are, then impact of such tactics are minimum on us.

As children we may be ‘directed’ by fear, shame or guilt for own protection. As adults same may apply.

What can we do in this regard?

  • The only way to improve things is to start with ourselves.  
  • Contemplate on how much you may manipulate others and through what means.
  • Contemplate through what mechanism you are most likely to be manipulated (fear, shame, praise…).
  • Only give and share when you have no agenda. This means you do not have fixed expectation of correcting other people’s behavior to your own liking.

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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How to Respond

Imagine something unexpected happens. Your travel plans get cancelled. Your income is reduced, or an unexpected illness is encountered.

The default reaction is to get very upset and say why me? It does not seem to be fair! You have gone through a lot already and this was the last thing you needed. Your every step of recovery is encountered by constant grief and resistance to moving on.

You may also respond by acknowledging the loss and then turn the situation into wonder! You may wonder what gifts this difficult situation may bring you (remember Universe is on your side).  Of course, you may not know the answer yet, but changing your focus has several quick benefits.

With the above mindset, you are not bitter, you are more creative, and you are more relaxed. People around you respond with more ease and care towards you. The recovery step is surprisingly more pleasant than expected.

This concept is not just a theory. It has worked for me and I have experienced benefits of it.

Perhaps this approach can work for you too. You need to put it into practice to find out.

Copyright @2020 by Shervin Hojat

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