A Spiritual Practice

Enjoy these writings about Spiritual Practice from our blog:

The Way to Happiness by Three Questions – a Ted Talk

 Photo of Ohyama with permission This Ted Talk on Naikan titled “The Way to Happiness by Three Questions” is now available on YouTube. You can watch here.   It is in Japanese, but English subtitles were recently added. The subtitles will appear if you click on the closed captioning button marked “cc” in the lower right side of the screen of the video.   The talk is by Ohyama Shinkoh, a Japanese Buddhist priest. Rev Ohyama published a Naikan book in 2012 that has sold around 10,000 copies. Its Japanese ...
Read full post >>

A Report on a Naikan Conference in Japan

This blog post will be of special interest to those who are Naikan Practitioners. With thanks to Clark Chilson.  From July 7 to 9, 2017, I attended a joint conference of the Japan Naikan Association (JNA) and the Japan Naikan Medical Association (JNMA) held in Okayama Prefecture, Japan. It was the 40th general conference for the JNA and the 20th for the JNMA. The theme of the conference was “Finding New Ways to Develop and Spread Naikan.” There were about 150 people present, most of whom were medical professionals, psychotherapists, ...
Read full post >>

How to Find a New Perspective on Your Relationships

 Photograph by Helgi Halldórsson https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Relationship_of_friends_(603887704).jpg Our brains keep us from seeing reality objectively. In fact, they skew our reality toward the negative. Memories of unpleasant experiences stick in our minds while recollections of positive experiences slip out of our everyday working memories.  The neurologist Richard Mendius and the neuropsychologist Rick Hanson cleverly conceptualize this fact in their book The Buddha’s Brain when they write that our brains are like “Velcro for negative experiences and Teflon for positive ones.” If you live in the same cognitive universe as most mortals, negative ...
Read full post >>

A Poem For the Road

The photograph is by tciriello and can be found at https://www.flickr.com/photos/tciriellopix/14559075443 The poem below was written by Morikawa Riu, the mother-in-law of Yoshimoto Ishin, the founder of Naikan.  Yoshimoto regarded Riu as a profound practitioner of self-reflection.  The poem is commonly displayed at Naikan Centers in Japan so those doing Naikan can read it. (Translated by Clark Chilson) Before you lies today’s road, a new road, one you cannot take again. If you run from something because it is painful, joy will become more distant. Everyone has and can find ...
Read full post >>

Naikan and David Foster Wallace’s “This is Water”

Late one night a couple of years ago, I searched youtube for “David Foster Wallace” after watching the film about his life titled The End of the Tour. I stumbled upon his speech “This is Water,” which he gave at Kenyon College in 2005, but was not depicted in the film. After listening to it, I sat in a state of awe at its simple brilliance. I then did a Google search of it and found that many consider it one of the best commencement speeches ever given. About a ...
Read full post >>

Naikan’s Purpose is Spiritual Awakening

Naikan’s Purpose is Spiritual Awakening The founder of Naikan, Yoshimoto Ishin, was a devout Buddhist who saw Naikan as a spiritual practice. In the 1950s, he had some of this writings translated into English and compiled in a book titled Self-Reflection will Guide You to the Right Way. In this book, Yoshimoto describes the purpose of Naikan as follows: “To be spiritually awakened from suffering is the aim of it. In other words, trying to get rid of the selfishness in you, to reach the stage to be able to ...
Read full post >>

Learn more about Naikan and: