I created the word Woodsong to evoke how understanding nature achieves harmony. It's about finding balance. We humans have a tendency to overcompensate instead of seeking balance. A string too loose can't produce music, too tight can snap and break the string. Learning to live a fulfilling life is just like tuning your instrument.
This site provides me a forum where I can share with you my thoughts and feelings that tackle the question of human suffering. Learning from philosophers, psychologists, spiritual teachers, neuropsychologists, evolutionary psychologists, patients, and personal mistakes has allowed me to develop a system of ideas to reduce our suffering, called Woodsong.
This infographic is a collaboration between me and my daughter Jasmine, illustrating some of my key concepts. At the center is the seedling representing the reduction of suffering. This core goal is supported and reinforced by the ideas around it, growing from a soil of "living in the moment" and nourished by the elements of "unconditional self-love" and "incorporation of shadow." The "paradox theory" provides fertilizer, while "personal relationships" pollinate and spread these ideas to new horizons.
The diagram describes Woodsong, a place where we not only reduce our suffering, but grow to the fullest as a person. Evolution has shaped us into having many instincts that are very efficient and effective when it comes to our survival and reproduction. This leads to the selection of individuals who best fit into the constantly changing environment. Those instincts are not just boring programming for our species to become dominant, they also inspire us in the creative realms, such as literature, art, music and entertainment. However, those instincts, without being challenged, can lead to much suffering.
This is not a place to criticize our instincts, but to put them into perspective. The spiritual journey I am going to lead is to teach ourselves not to be trapped.
As technologies advance, humans as a collective have become more and more powerful, but individually, we suffer more intensely. The irony is that our intention is to make life easier, but we all end up working more hours and feeling more unhappy. A Buddhist teacher once said people suffer from trying so hard to be happy. Pursuit of happiness might have a paradoxical effect. The first line of Scott Peck's, The Road Less Travelled, is "Life is difficult."
Here you will find personal writings, articles, original art, and audio interviews that will take us on a spiritual journey towards a more meaningful life by embracing our pain, accepting our shadow, having mindfulness of the present, focusing on real relationships and unconditionally loving oneself.
Disclaimer: Materials shared on this platform are for informational purposes only and are in no way meant to function as professional psychological treatment. If you are struggling please seek the advice of your qualified mental health provider.