Frank Liddy was a driving forces in the Twinbrook Residents Association in the seventies and eighties, taking a break for a short period to try his hand as a saxophonist in a punk band, before embracing the study of Zen Buddhism and mindfulness.
He has over 35 years’ practice-based experience with mindfulness programmes that have helped to transform the lives of many people across Ireland.
Frank is the co-founder of the Black Mountain Zen Centre and Compassionate City Belfast. He now lives in North Belfast but a return to Twinbrook is on the cards.
I love hearing all these buzzwords that appear out of nowhere and the next thing you find is that everyone is speaking the speak. At the moment the buzzword appears to be 'robust'. Everything has to be robust; robust this and robust that.
A change is as good as a rest
I’m going to set my resolution for the New Year. Instead of making lots of resolutions that I won’t keep, I’m going to make a resolution that I can actually keep: becoming a compassionate mess.
Well here we are at the end of 2021 and still in a time of uncertainty with the pandemic raging. Who would ever have thought that in our lifetime we would encounter a pandemic? Nevertheless, two years on we may be going into fresh restrictions as a way of keeping us and others safe.
I love the lines from the poem, If, by Rudyard Kipling. “If you can keep your head when all about you, are losing theirs and blaming it on you."
What a crazy time of the year Christmas is. The world is filled with mania and there is a feeding frenzy as the hunters stake out the bargains in town. Have you ever seen so much congested traffic on the road? That doesn’t help to my congested health much —bring on the Rennies and a decongestant.
Isn’t it amazing how a sobering thought can liberate our thinking? Especially whenever we find ourselves caught up in our thinking which can create a false belief system. As a six-year-old child I wouldn’t eat kidney beans because my good friend Mark, who was the ripe old age of seven, told me that kidney beans came from frogs.
I was honoured this week to be part of an Aisling assessment team which was invited to view four nominees for the coveted Aisling Wellbeing award.
The time His Holiness the Dalai Lama visited Clonard, I remember Fr Gerry Reynolds, God bless him, telling me “that to err is human, to forgive is divine”. I don’t know what it was about Fr Gerry, but when he said that to me, it clicked.
I love that question, "is your glass half-empty or half-full?" For me when I was drinking it was always half-empty but now in sobriety it’s more than half-full, it’s overflowing.
A zen student asked his teacher Nakagawa-Soen during a meditation retreat, “I am very discouraged. What should I do?” Soen Roshi replied, “Encourage others.”
Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never harm me
One of the best books on addiction is 'In The Realm of the Hungry Ghosts' by Gabor Maté. The title comes from the Buddhist texts.
How times have changed for the better! Not too long ago mental health was a taboo subject. It was an area that was not talked about and unfortunately by not talking about our mental health adds to our suffering in silence. Today we have a World Mental Health Day - today, 10 October — to highlight the crucial importance mental well-being.
As a child I was always at conflict within myself. I knew there was no difference between our neighbours and me and yet our belief systems appeared to be completely different.