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The 7 Factors of Enlightenment

The 7 Factors of Enlightenment

The foundations of Buddhism began more than 2500 hundred years ago in India. With over 540 million practitioners today, Buddhism is practiced worldwide, and about 10% of the population is estimated to be Buddhist. There are many different traditions and common fundamental beliefs followed by most Buddhists. One of those beliefs is that there are seven skills are required to reach enlightenment. These seven factors are required for individuals to gain insight into themselves and the environment in which they inhabit. They are known as the 7 Factors of Enlightenment. I believe that practicing these seven factors can help any individual live a more productive and purpose-filled life.

Factor 1 Mindfulness (Pamáda)

Mindfulness is the first factor, and it relates to the ability to be fully present and maintain an unbiased awareness of the reality of things. It can cure delusion by providing clarity to what is going on around us. When someone is in a state of mindful awareness, they will not find themselves becoming lost in ruminative thoughts about the past or fortune-telling about things that have not occurred. They will also find themselves able to experience emotions without judgment which can end unnecessary mental and emotional stress.

Mindfulness is conducive to great profit — that is, highest mental development — and it is through such attainment that deliverance from the sufferings of saísára is Possible
– Buddha, taken from the Dhammapada, which is a collection of 423 verses as uttered by Guatama Buddha himself to his disciples

Factor 2 Investigation (Dhammavicaya)

The second factor is Investigation. It requires investigating the truth for ourselves. It is the acceptance that to understand something, it must be questioned and not just accepted blindly. Understanding and experiencing ideas and things for ourselves allows us to increase our ability to comprehend different concepts and ways of thinking.

“Right is it to doubt, right is it to question what is
doubtful and what is not clear. In a doubtful matter, wavering does arise.”
– Buddha

Factor 3: Energy (Viriya)

Energy, also referred to as effort or fortitude is the ability to remain consistent in pursuits without being distracted by outside influences or obstacles is a factor that takes consistent effort. In a world that offers more distractions than ever before, the ability to remain diligent and maintain the energy needed to follow the path of enlightenment can be difficult.

The Buddha did not consider himself not a savior who endeavors to save ‘souls’ utilizing a revealed religion. The concept that one person can raise another from lower to higher levels of consciousness or offer salvation, takes away the power from that individual and can make them unwilling or unable to find the resolve needed to take control of their destiny. To offer help or guidance is noble but each individual should take their journey towards enlightenment upon themselves.

The function of energy has four purposes:
(1) the effort to eradicate evils that have arisen in the mind; (2) the effort to prevent the arising of unarisen evil; (3) the effort to develop unarisen good; (4) the effort to promote the further growth of good already arisen.

‘’Each individual has himself to put forth the necessary effort and work out his deliverance with diligence.’’
– Buddha

Factor 4: Rapture (Pìti)

The fourth enlightenment factor is Rapture or Happiness. Also, a mental property and includes the body and mind. Both are understandably connected. Those lacking in this quality cannot proceed along the path of enlightenment. Participating in life with a lack of joy makes one unable to reach enlightenment.

There will be an avoidance of the practice of meditation and may manifest itself in negative expressions. Any individual who strives to attain enlightenment and deliverance from repeated wandering should try to cultivate the factor of happiness. No one can give another the gift of rapture; it must be created with effort, reflection, and concentrated activity.

Happiness is a thing of the mind and should be sought internally and not in material things, though they may in a small way be instrumental. Those who are joyful individuals are usually content and find pleasure in meaningful things. Some seem to think that it is difficult to cultivate and develop contentment but through courage, determination, systematic attention, and thought about the challenges one meets within everyday life, the ability to obtain joy will be much more attainable.

Factor 5: Tranquility (Passaddhi)

It is only when the mind is in a state of peaceful tranquility and on the path of orderly progress that it becomes useful to the possessor and society. A disorderly mind is a liability to both the owner of it and others. It is not hard to be calm when all things around us are favorable. To be composed in mind amid unfavorable circumstances is hard and it is this quality that is worth achieving; for by such control, one builds up the strength of character. The man who cultivates calm of the mind does not get upset, confused, or excited when confronted with the eight vicissitudes of the world. He endeavors to see the rise and fall of all things conditioned, how things come into being and pass away. Free from anxiety and restlessness he will see the fragility of the fragile.

Factor 6: Concentration (Samádhi)

Concentration is our willingness to focus. When the ability to concentrate is increased, the potential to gain deeper insight into our lives is created. This skill must be worked at and developed over time. Improving the ability to concentrate benefits one’s life in several ways (for instance, our ability to be loving attentive partners or obtaining a new skill or talent).

It is only a tranquil mind that allows you to easily concentrate on a subject and see things as they truly are. Concentration is the strengthened stability of the mind, like the shielded light of a candle that is not affected by the wind. Concentration keeps the mind and the mental properties in a harmonious balance.

Factor 7: EQUANIMITY (upekkhá)

Equanimity is the ability to face whatever life offers you without attachment. Of all the 7 factors it may be the most challenging to attain. When dealing with situations that occur in our lives that we do not feel are ideal or when something goes wrong it can be challenging to maintain one’s composure, but those who can master equanimity are not easily discouraged or upset. No matter what the experience is, gain and loss, positive and negative interaction, joy and pain – the individual who has mastered equanimity are far less likely to stumble in their quest to reach enlightenment.

To allow one’s problems to become bigger than oneself is a choice, and by surrendering the need to control that which outside of your locus of control you are empowering yourself with the understanding that no matter what comes your way you can manage the situation with grace.

Question – Of all 7 Factors of Enlightenment, which ones do you understand and put into daily practice the most? And which of the 7 Factors of Enlightenment do you feel you could benefit from gaining a stronger understanding and practice?

Author Clayton Hobbs
To view, a full version of The 7 Factors of Enlightenment click the link below.

 

Your Authentic Self

Your Authentic Self

We live in a time where being yourself is exceptionally challenging for most people. Our social media-obsessed society teaches us to wear masks and falsely represent our true selves to impress people we do not know and are not being their authentic selves to gain likes and followers. This creates a genuine issue because our society is changing into a culture where people have to keep up personas in fear of being exposed as a fake when their authentic selves are not being given a chance to grow. The issue with this is that people are not learning to value what really makes them special.

Now more than ever people feel pressured to meet unrealistic beauty standards are causing people to develop mental health issues, identity issues, and severe problems with body dysmorphia. The effects of social media marketing and advertising are causing many people to adopt materialistic mindsets. This is only magnified by the use of likes as people equate likes and reposts as value.

All of this is causing unneeded and dangerous pressure to be placed on teenagers and society as a whole when we really should be accepting people for who they are and encouraging people to grow as individuals, not clones of the latest influencer. Countless studies correlate teenage depression, anxiety, and even suicide with social media addiction and overuse.

Changing the Narrative

If social networks such as Facebook and Instagram promoted more authentic means of storytelling such as deeper interactions, written storytelling natural conversations, it would help to support a healthier reflection of who people are and not who they think people want them to be. If social networks promoted positive things more openly by advertising platforms for positivity and authentic representations of who people are, we would begin to see people taking more pride in who they are authentically. One idea that might work is to have different sections for stories where positive things such as kindness and genuine interactions with people are promoted. If the videos are unauthentic they can be reported and removed. Keeping the users honest and not just in search of likes.

When We Become More We Do not Need More.

The three main relationships that are expressed through social media are:

  • Doing – “Look what I can Do”. This attitude is used mainly by people hoping for a return in likes or marketing a product or brand. Do not get me wrong, there is a need for marketing on social media, and I would be a complete hypocrite if I denied that I use this to promote my products. But I believe a lack of authenticity affects our society negatively that will hopefully change soon.
  • Having – “Look at all my shiny things” This is showing off for people who you do not know and if they did would probably not like you ( because you’re not genuine). Collecting objects and showing them off on social media does nothing positive for anyone, especially the person doing it.
  • Realness/ Being Authentic – When people show who they truly are and act from a place of authenticity, it helps share that person’s experience with others in a way that inspires, motivates, and encourages people to be REAL.

I hope that we see more of this as time goes on because I am getting tired of people I do not know trying to impress me with things I simply do not care about. Can you show me something real? Can you inspire me to want to be more. If not, thats okay, but please stop pump faking people with disingenuous video’s of fake insincerity. Just be yourself and grow into who you truly want to be.

You Are Enough

Lead With Love

In our lives, we all have challenges in which we question how we define ourselves. If we choose to define ourselves based on our values, beliefs, and personalities, we must be cautious about assessing who we are in the present instead of who we have been in the past. And, we must think beyond unhealthy labels—those we place on ourselves and those outside sources place on us. Who we are cannot be defined simply by what we do, what we have done in the past or our emotions. Who we are in our most authentic nature is based upon our core beliefs—those we hold about ourselves and those we embrace as universal truths.

Excerpt from IndiGrowth Health & Wellness upcoming book:

IndiGrowth’s Guide to Healing Relationships Through Mindful Awareness.

Written by Clayton Hobbs

Natural Health Supplements from IndiGrowth

Natural Health Supplements from IndiGrowth

IndiGrowth Health & Wellness has created two nootropic multivitamin formulas that meet Health Canada regulations for licensed Natural Health Products (NHP). These all-natural supplements help you meet your nutritional needs and optimize your physiological, psychological, and overall well-being.

GET UP AND GROW: DAYTIME PERFORMANCE-ENHANCING FORMULA:

With the introduction of our nootropic multivitamin supplement: Get Up and Grow, we believe we have created a highly effective combination of performance-enhancing nootropics and vitamins to help improve the ability to attain improved mental focus naturally, enhanced cognitive function, and physical energy. Formulated with seven highly effective natural nootropics, Vitamin C, Zinc, and a certified Vitamin B Complex multivitamin formula, Get Up and Grow gives you a performance-enhancing, energizing, immune system boosting formula all in one.

EVENING EVOLUTION: NIGHT TIME: REST AND RECOVERY FORMULA

Evening Evolution is designed to facilitate quality rest, enhanced cellular healing, and increased resilience to stress by aiding the autonomic nervous system. Evening Evolution contains four natural nootropics along with a multivitamin formula consisting of Vitamin A, Vitamin D, and E

With Evening Evolution, we have created another nootropic multivitamin formula. The nighttime formula’s primary focuses are:

  • • Repairing the mind and body.
  • • Improving the quality of restful sleep.
  • • Increasing the mind and body’s resilience to stress.

Using either of these products on their own will be beneficial and add significant value to users’ daily lives when used for no less than three months. When used in conjunction with one another, our supplements will help optimize your cognitive function. The combination of the daytime and evening formula also provides benefits to your overall health. The ingredients in our daytime and evening formula have had proven results with enhancing memory, increasing energy and motivation, boosting the immune system’s resistance to illness, elevating your ability to manage stress, and slowing the mind’s aging process and body.

At Indigrowth, we aim to help you Get Up and Grow every day! and Evolve into the best possible version of yourself each evening.

ATTN SHAOLI: Please add links to the individual product pages for all three product options.

  1. Get Up and Grow
  2. Evening Evolution
  3. Nootropic Multivitamin Combo

The Ability to Live in The Present Moment

What’s The Rush

We live in a fast-paced world—we seem to do everything in a thoughtless rush. We get up in the morning in a daze, we shower in a hurry, we brave traffic, and we arrive at work in a mindless haze. Most of us work jobs we are not passionate about. Some days we work hard … some days we coast through, waiting for the day to end. We don’t take the time to pursue our career or personal goals. Why? Because we just can’t find the time. We put in a day’s work, we clock out, and we commute home, exhausted. We do this for five days or more—and then we collapse into our weekend. Saturdays disappear as we cook, clean, do the laundry, and catch up with family routines and responsibilities. Finally, we embrace Sunday as the one day of the week we can relax and rejuvenate. By Sunday evening we’re preparing to face the week ahead.

We live our lives mindlessly, using the food we eat, our entertainment, and our relationships to distract us from taking care of our minds and bodies. We fuel ourselves with cups of coffee “to keep us alert,” and feed our families unhealthy food and sugary, carbonated beverages that are convenient but harmful. We know that ideally, a well-rounded lifestyle should consist of balanced nutrition, a healthy diet and exercise, the pursuit of hobbies and passions, meaningful interaction with family, and investing time in healthy relationships. Last but not least is that key component we often overlook in our crazy-busy lives: proper, restful sleep.

But despite our best intentions, few of us live this healthy, balanced lifestyle. Our hectic lives leave us feeling helpless, uninspired, overwhelmed. Are we really, truly living? For those happy few who approach life with “mindful awareness,” the answer is “No.” The truth is that the standard modern lifestyle is mindless.

When was the last time you admired a sunrise? Listened to the birds chirping on your way to work? Stopped to appreciate the beauty of the flowers growing in your neighbor’s garden? When was the last time you thought about your life and smiled? These are questions you need to ask every day. Do you want to answer “Yes?” Imagine how your life could change if you welcomed present-mindedness and gratitude into your everyday reality.

Wanting more is not a bad thing. When we take positive action for the right reasons, we see positive results. When we don’t apply a proactive attitude toward things we want to improve, our lives become increasingly unbalanced—and positive change rarely occurs. If we lack symmetry in any area of our life by acknowledging it, applying conscious effort, and managing our time well, our desire for change can bring balance and help us experience life with more joy.

—Excerpt from IndiGrowth Health and Wellness’ Workbook for Creating a Balanced Life in an Out-of-Balance World

What Does Being Mindful Mean

Being mindful brings clarity, a sense of well-being, a sense of control, and ultimately, inner contentment. Normally, our minds work like machines—they work 24/7. We are in constant motion, thinking, feeling, flitting from one thought to another: from one task to the next … endlessly. As a result, our minds are tired, dull, slow. Noisy thoughts and gloomy emotions cloud our thinking; we end up a hot mess. Edgy and upset for no reason, anger creeps in, and if we are angry, there is no room for happiness.

Awareness may peek through our chaotic emotions from time to time, but our negative thoughts overwhelm us and cloud our clarity. This is when we need to practice mindfulness, for where there is mindfulness, there is peace, calm, and joy. We are aware of what is happening. This awareness helps us to shed negative thoughts and in the present moment, our minds find balance.
Being mindful—finding peace—doesn’t mean you need to meditate for hours. Being mindful will not eliminate your problems or make you unable to feel painful emotions. But it will ground you, help you tap into your inner knowing, and help you understand the reasons you feel the way you do. Being mindful will help you make peace with your past, discover who you are at your core, and give you the skills you need to improve your relationships.

Mindfulness doesn’t take a lot of effort. You can practice it while traveling to work, while sitting on a bus, even at your desk. All you need to do is be ‘AWARE.’ Where are you? What are you doing? Allow your five senses to take in everything around you—see, hear, feel, touch, and taste the world around you in an active way. Be childlike—engage with the world joyfully. We are all born with the ability to embrace happiness and joy. As children, many of us embraced this easily and naturally. For many of us, our joy has been lost along our journey. If you want to live mindfully, ignite your passion and purpose, and pursue an insightful, uplifting, and enjoyable life then try slowing down and focusing on what you are doing in the present moment. There is no right or wrong way to try to be more mindful. The only thing you are trying to do is be present in the specific moment in which you are living without focusing on the past or worrying about the future.

Do you want to reclaim, restore, revitalize, and your life? Our IndiGrowth team can help. We have developed a guide to help you reevaluate your life, reconnect with your authentic self, and overcome life’s challenges. We want to help you create harmony and balance in your life. Check out our “Wellness” section. We think you’ll love our Health and Wellness Workbook for Creating a Balanced Life in an Out-of-Balance World @https://indigrowthhealth.com/life-balance/

You can also connect with one of our Health Coaches to see if we can help you improve a specific area of your life that may benefit from approaching with a more mindful appraoch

The Benefits of Using CBD – Is it Right for You?

The Benefits of Using CBD – Is it Right for You?

Cannabidiol (CBD) is now “mainstream.” CBD is used in products as diverse as cosmetics and skincare, food and beverages, pet food, health supplements, and pharmaceuticals. Today, we know that CBD products are beneficial for numerous health issues, for both human beings and their animal friends. Cannabidiol products are a global phenomenon, offering anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, anti-seizure, anti-anxiety, analgesic, and painkilling benefits. Research has shown that CBD can also help users with such health issues as cardiac health, insomnia, arthritis, digestion, and gastrointestinal issues, as well as calming the behavioral effects of Alzheimer’s. It helps support muscles during sports injury recovery, and as a complementary therapy, CBD has been shown to help reduce cancerous tumor growth in the brain, breasts, and lungs. If you read the research papers, you’ll understand why this nutraceutical can be good for us. That said, consult with your physician or a CBD-savvy naturopath or holistic veterinarian to offer insights as to high-quality CBD product choices to target specific medical conditions.
Consumers are on board, eagerly trying out new CBD supplements, and enjoying this much-touted natural wellness compound. By 2024, the collective sales market for CBD sales is expected to exceed $20 billion in the U.S. alone. The most popular methods of administering CBD are in tincture form, as capsules, or as lotions—and in “treat” form for pets. Countless users have reported that CBD works fast, providing relief from chronic pain, and helping with numerous health conditions.

With so many CBD brands and products to choose from, finding a natural, high-quality product to suit your needs may prove daunting. With this in mind, we’ll review some of the reasons why it’s important for your health that you find a natural, organic, non-GMO, gluten-free CBD product.

What is CBD?

CBD is a natural supplement that when used properly, has been declared by Health Canada to be safe for human and pet consumption. CBD is a component of the cannabis plant that does not cause a psychoactive effect when consumed without tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

What are Cannabinoids?

Since cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the trendiest products in pet and human health today, it is important to understand CBD’s potential benefits before choosing from the array of CBD products on the market. This means understanding cannabinoids and the differences between THC and CBD.

Cannabidiol is derived from the cannabis plant, and if a plant has no delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), it does not have psychoactive properties. The World Health Organization (WHO) states that “No public health problems have been associated with the use of pure CBD and there has been no known association with potential for dependence or abuse, unlike most pharmaceutical alternatives. The most commonly reported potential side effects of CBD usage were diarrhea and bloating, with some also reporting nausea.” WHO states that “Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the naturally occurring cannabinoids found in cannabis plants. It is a 21-carbon terpene phenolic compound which is formed following decarboxylation from a cannabidiolic acid precursor, although it is also produced synthetically.”

Where Should I Purchase CBD Products From?

When choosing a CBD product for yourself or your pet, choose a product that has been through rigorous lab testing. We also suggest that it be produced by licensed manufacturers and sold by licensed retail suppliers. Many also recommend that products be GMO-free. As with any product that either you or your loved ones are ingesting, the more natural the product the better the chances it will provide better results without potentially harmful short or long-term side effects.

Things to Look for When Choosing a CBD Product

● Natural Organic CBD
● Premium Quality CBD
● Non-synthetic products and ingredients.

Our products are:

● Gluten-free
● Non-GMO
● Hand-made
● Fresh
● Industrial hemp-derived
● 3rd party tested for CBD isolate, and
● CBD potency tested.

Organic isolates are extracted from the entire hemp plant, so they are chemical-free. By using an organic, natural CBD oil, you’ll avoid toxins, pesticides, and synthetic compounds. Pure organic CBD products are contaminant-free, helping you to rejuvenate and heal.

CBD as a Natural Supplement

One of the most popular benefits of a full-spectrum hemp CBD oil is that when combined with a high-quality diet and healthy lifestyle, this nutrient-rich supplement is great at helping to fight an array of health issues. CBD is being called a “superfood,” with wellness benefits on par with berries, leafy and nutrient-rich nutraceuticals.

CBD contains Omega-3 fatty acids that help fight inflammation. In a recent 2017 study reported in Science Daily, researchers “found an enzymatic pathway that converts Omega-3-derived endocannabinoids into more potent anti-inflammatory molecules that predominantly bind to the receptors found in the immune system.” This finding demonstrates how Omega-3 fatty acids can produce the same medicinal qualities as marijuana but without a psychotropic effect.

Cannabidiol as a Superfood for Humans and Pets
Cannabidiol contains minerals like iron, zinc, and magnesium; antioxidants; and vitamins A, E, and C. These can protect us from the free radicals that we’re all exposed to in living day-to-day. CBD also offers all twenty-one amino acids—which are the building blocks of protein—and it contains Phyto-cannabinoids, terpenes, and fatty acids … all of which help with stress relief in both pets and humans.

Full Spectrum CBD Oil

Whether you’re purchasing a CBD product for your pet or yourself, your most important considerations are ensuring you are buying the purest, highest quality CBD product and checking the amount of CBD your product contains. The most potent product is an isolate or a full-spectrum oil because they are derived from the entire plant. Look for the “pure” CBD content mg amount stated on the ingredient label as a percentage. If you’re confused about a CBD product, we suggest you do your research and talk to someone who can give you the proper information.

Consuming CBD with high-fat food helps with bioavailability.
Research has also demonstrated that to increase the efficacy of any CBD product, it helps when it is taken with high-fat foods.

https://www.who.int/medicines/access/controlled-substances/5.2_CBD.pdf

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/05/170508112400.htm

https://www.greencanadacbd.ca/canadian-cbd-laws/

https://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/regulations/SOR-2016-230/index.html

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/06/190623143055.htm

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/08/190813130426.htm

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/08/190813130426.htm