Three People, Three Decades, Three Kinds of Tea – A Whole New Mind

cups of tea

Three days, three unique people, born in three different decades, having three kinds of tea, sharing thoughts and creating a whole new mind – That summed up what happened to us.

Two friends of mine,

One 10 years younger, one 10 years older

One right brainer, one left brainer

One loves arts, one loves numbers

Where am I? Somewhere in the middle!

We are similar yet different, we are different yet similar.

That’s why it was so interesting!

It seemed that whatever we discussed or did, we could either empathize, or learn from each other. I felt that by getting to know more about them, from their stories and experience, I learned even more about myself. I hope that through the sharing, our horizon expanded, our feelings enriched, and our mind transformed.

I savored those moments when time seemed to stand still, yet it had flown like the wind…being present and still in the rush of ravaging river. 

May the bond of our friendship last through the ages…until you are 80 years old, I am 90 years old and you are at your 100th year.

Learn and Grow!

Inge Santoso, B. Com

written in response to “Tea with two masters” by Yenche

Going Up The Mountain, Nissan Juke or Joke?

juke inge

Two weeks ago, my friends came from Jakarta to Solo for a short trip. Since one of them has never been to Tawangmangu before, so we stayed in Tawangmangu that weekend. We had a great time having a heart-to-heart sharing about life. It was an enlightening experience for me.

On Monday, before we went back to Solo, I offered to take them for a drive to Cemara Sewu on my Nissan Juke. I just got this car a few months ago and I hadn’t had the chance to try in on steep mountain road. I was curious to see how this good looking car would perform going up the mountain. I was pretty confident that I would be able to take my friends to see beautiful sceneries on top of Cemara Sewu.

After loading our luggage on the car, I took my friends for a scenic drive up the mountain. At the beginning the car rode smoothly, but when we got to the point where the road was very steep and long, no matter how deep I stepped on the accelerator, the Juke could not move forward. I put the car on power mode and pressed the gas pedal to the ground, but the car only moved forward in inches. After a few meters going on like this, we decided to turn back.

In my mind, I was furious. How could this new Nissan Juke not go up Cemara Sewu? It was embarrassing!

When I got back, I complained about this to my Dad. He told my uncle who was very knowledgeable about car to check it out.

Yesterday, my uncle and the mechanic from Nissan took the car for a test drive to Tawangmangu. When they arrived in Karanganyar, they tried to put the car into test and drove it faster. Although it was only a gentle slope, the car just would not run as fast as it should be. They stopped on the side of the road to check. There was no problem with the engine, so they checked the accelerator. When they saw the position of the accelerator, they finally figured it out why the car would not run faster. The accelerator was hindered by the double carpets! When they removed one of the carpets, the accelerator could be pressed down to the ground and the car just ran like the wind!

The carpet was the culprit!

When they told me about this, I was laughing out loud. I could imagine my uncle’s facial expression when they found the culprit! It was so funny!

What can I learn from this?

A trivial thing may cause a big problem, and a big problem may be solved with a simple solution.

In life we are often confronted with problems big or small. When we are faced with big problem, we often assume that we need complicated solutions to solve it…well, not necessarily! Sometimes a simple solution is all we need if we can find the true nature of our problem.

Finally, I need not go to Nissan to complain that their Juke is a joke!

Just like the song by Bee Gees “I Started a Joke”…Oh if I’d only seen that the joke was on me!

Learn and Grow!

Inge Santoso, B. Com

My Meditation Journey Continues… Bali Usada Tapa Brata 2

TB2 Tawangmangu 2 

Happy faces after finishing Bali Usada Tapa Brata 2 in Tawangmangu. The course was held for 12 days from 30 March 2010 to 10 April 2010.

This 12 day Bali Usada Tapa Brata 2 course can really transform how you use your mind. The main objective is to train your mind to become a skillful harmonious mind that can be used to proactively heal and maintain good physical, mental and emotional health.

Before attending Tapa Brata 2, I’ve attended Bali Usada Tapa Brata 1 course twice in the last 9 months and I found them very beneficial for my health, especially for my emotional well being. After attending Tapa Brata 1, I feel more relaxed and calm. I become more aware of my feelings and emotions thus I am able to control my emotion better than before.

I used to struggle a lot with the feeling of anger. Before attending Bali Usada Tapa Brata 1, whenever I got angry, other people suffered. After attending Tapa Brata 1, whenever I got angry, I suffered the most. Why? Whenever I was angry, now I could feel my body was burning inside, it felt so hot. I could feel wild energy shooting here and there attacking my inner organs, very uncomfortable! No wonder wise people say that anger is harmful for your health. After that experience, whenever I feel the emotion of anger rising, I do my best to be aware of it, let it go and never let anger run its course.

I’ve been meditating every day since I attended Bali Usada Tapa Brata 1. I usually meditate 45-60 minutes a day. Sometimes I meditated for 90 minutes because I wanted to prepare myself to attend Tapa Brata 2. I heard from previous participants of Tapa Brata 2 that it was very challenging.

How did I feel about the course? It was tiring mentally, physically and emotionally. It was definitely a very demanding course in terms of mind training. I’ve never used my mind as intensive as this before. I’ve attended many seminars and programs by Anthony Robbins, T Harv Eker, Silva Method and many others and none of those programs can beat Bali Usada Tapa Brata 2 in terms of mind training.

I thought attending Anthony Robbins’ Date with Destiny was demanding because the seminars went well into the night and we jumped, we screamed, we danced, we did a lot of things there, yet I felt more tired just by sitting and concentrating my mind during TB2.

During the course, I felt many different kinds of sensations, feelings and emotions. Sometimes I remembered things in the past so clearly, I felt that I was there. Sometimes I was even astonished to discover my own subconscious thoughts. It was a very interesting experience!

Although I found the course to be very challenging, it was well worth it. I definitely recommend this course for anyone who wants to transform their mind and life to a whole new level. The transformation is not superficial as I have experienced after attending other courses, it is a real transformation. Once you’ve experienced it, you would know it in your heart.

A bit of warning:

I recommend for anyone who is interested in attending Tapa Brata 2 to at least attend Tapa Brata 1 twice and meditate regularly at home for about 60 minutes every day.

After finishing the course, sometimes there may be some bad reactions lingering for a few days. Do not worry, just keep meditating and it will balance itself.

Finally I want to thank Mr. Merta Ada and his assistants, Mr. Suardika, Mr. Budi Waluyo, Mr. Sutedjo who made the course possible. Thank you for your guidance and support. I also want to thank you my dear father, Mr. Djoko Santiko who allowed us to use the villa in Tawangmangu to hold the course. Last but not least, I want to thank you all my friends who attended the course together, Joseph, Hijau Berlian, Wulan, Tining, Jenny, Juniar, and Cha Cha. Thank you for the friendship, love, and support so that we could successfully finish the course. I hope we have an opportunity to attend another course together again.

May all beings be happy!

Learn and grow,

Inge Santoso, B. Com

I Took The Wrong Bag – We All Make Mistakes


Yesterday my friend and I flew from Solo to Jakarta. We brought four luggage with us, one of them was the samsonite bag pictured above. While we were waiting for our luggage to come out, we were discussing about passengers who turned on their mobile phones on the plane. Then we saw our bags coming out, so we quickly took them and put them on the trolley. I prepared my luggage tags just in case they asked to see them before leaving the airport. As it happened, no one was there to check the luggage tag, so we just went out to get a taxi. I loaded the bags to the trunk of the taxi and we left the airport.

About 10 minutes after we left the airport by taxi, I received a call from an airport ground staff. He asked me whether I arrived by GA 221 from Solo this morning. I said yes. Then he asked whether I got all my bags because he found my samsonite bag. I confidently said that I’d got everything, I’d taken all my four bags. He asked me to stop and check because I might have taken somebody’s else bag by mistake. I insisted that I couldn’t have mistakenly taken the wrong bag but I asked the driver to stop and check anyway. When I opened the trunk and saw the bag…Aaah the samsonite bag in the trunk was definitely not blue, it was black!! It was not mine! I took the wrong bag!

I told the taxi driver to drive back to the airport to return the bag and get my own bag. This mistake cost me more than Rp.100,000 in taxi fare because we had to exit the highway, turn back and re-enter the highway to the airport.

It was the first time it ever happened to me and hopefully there won’t be a second time.

It was quite amazing how two set of eyes could get it wrong, then by chance there was no one to check the tags as we went out. One other thing, that bag also had the same broken wheels. Coincidence? I don’t think so. I do not believe in coincidence. Thinking positively about this incident, perhaps the taxi driver needed more money and we had helped him out. There were so many possibilities and I’d rather see this as a part of a master plan and something good has come out of it.

Lessons to learn:

  • Do not be arrogant. Mistakes can happen to anyone. We all make mistakes one time or another.
  • As we go through life, from one experience to the next, there is always a first time for everything. It is just part of life.
  • Next time, ALWAYS check twice that I get the right bag hahaha

Learn and Grow!

Inge Santoso, B.Com

Blog Action Day – Climate Change


This year Blog Action Day is about climate change.

I live in Solo, Indonesia. I definitely can feel the climate change. In the last few months, the weather was unusually hot. The sun is so bright so that whenever I am outside for too long, I get migraines. The heat of the sun stings my skin. The hot and humid air makes breathing uncomfortable. The effect of global warming can really be felt for real here.

In Indonesia, we used to have a saying that any months ending with “ber” such as September, October, November and December means wet weather with a lot of rain. This year, September has passed without even one drop of rain. This October, I only witnessed three or four days of light rain.  

I try to do my part to reduce my carbon emission and global warming by doing a few things such as:

  • Conserving water by taking quicker shower, turning off tap while brushing my teeth.
  • Becoming a vegetarian (today is my 18th day). I am not a pure vegetarian yet, but I am on my way there.
  • Raising awareness about global warming and climate change in classes that I teach
  • Reducing the usage of air-con. Instead of using air-con, I use a fan to improve air-circulation and cool the room
  • and other things

From the things that I try to do, the hardest thing is becoming a vegetarian. There are a lot of challenges such as overcoming temptations, adjusting social activities with my friends and getting used to other people’s reaction when I tell them that I don’t eat meat anymore. The last time I went vegan, it was in 2005. It lasted only for 54 days and it was really a struggle for me. This time around, I find it easier to overcome temptations because I’ve been practicing my mind through meditation.

I am only one person. I may not be able to do much, but I hope this Blog Action Day post may raise the awareness about climate change.

My dear readers, I hope not only you are aware of this climate change but you will take action – no matter how small, so that together we can make a difference and save our planet.


Learn and Grow!

Inge Santoso

Memories from the Past – My Meditation Journey

From August 2nd to 8th, I was attending Bali Usada’s Usada Tapa Brata 1 for one full week. It was a health meditation program. For more information about the program:

A seven-day intensive course where participants are requested to leave all the daily routine to stay isolated from outside world under the Tri-Tapa rules: no talking, no reading, and no writing.

A training to build up concentration, an exercise to develop awareness and mindfulness to strengthen harmonious mind and loving kindness.

You will be trained to understand the healing process through harmonious mind.This meditation is for beginners, also for those having completed the Usada Regular/ Private I.

I was quite proud of myself for being able to follow the Tri-Tapa rules of not talking, reading nor writing during the course. On top of those three rules, we were only provided with two vegetarian meals and one snack a day. At the beginning of the course I was not sure that I would be able to do it, but it became easier with each passing day. At the end of the course, I actually enjoyed it so much and I was reluctant to talk because talking and hearing loud noises gave me headache.

Out of 46 participants, only five of us really adhered to the rules. I was glad that my roommate was also very committed to the rules, otherwise I might not be able to succeed. It shows how important it is to have supportive people around us in order to succeed.

The most amazing thing that happened to me during this course was uncovering a memory buried so deep in my subconscious mind, a memory that I didn’t remember having, yet it surfaced during the course.

This is the story…

On the fourth day when we started to meditate with a purpose of feeling our own body, I felt a pain on my back. It felt like being cut and stabbed with a sword or a saber, it was about 25cm long and located on the left of my spine. When I focused on the pain, it throbbed and became more painful, but the pain was gone when I finished a session. If I didn’t meditate, I felt no pain, but whenever I started meditating, the pain came back.

I was curious and when I asked the instructor, he told me to keep focusing on the pain. During meditation, I kept focusing on the pain and the more I focused, the pain became smaller until it felt like a small dot next to my spine. Although it became smaller, it also became more painful and unbearable. I felt like being shot or stabbed, it was hot and throbbing. Yet when I finished meditating, I could not feel the pain at all.

During the open meditation session, I was committed to really focus on it and I resolved to meditate until I found the cause of the pain. So I did. I focused, focused and focused on that one extremely painful dot until suddenly I saw in my mind, pictures of my grandmother and me when I was just a baby. I saw her holding me as well as sitting next to my baby crib. I must have been less than a year old because my grandmother passed away in 1977 when I was only one year old. I could feel how she poured her love, her hope and her dream to me. I felt a flood of emotions rushing through me, emotions of love, gentleness, kindness and hope as well as hate, anger and unwillingness to let go. When I felt all these emotions, I could not stop the tears from flowing, I just cried and cried until I could not breathe through my nose.

At that moment I could really feel her love, how she put her hopes and dreams into me…she wanted to leave a legacy through me. Suddenly I understood why I was so driven to make a difference and to leave a legacy. It was not only my desire but it was also my grandmother’s desire that she passed to me before she died.

On the other hand, I also felt her anger, hate, attachment and unwillingness to let go. I could understand her feelings because I would be the only grandchild that she would be able to see and hold because of her illness. She was not ready to let go and I could feel those emotions flooding through my heart.

After all those feelings and memories came rushing through me, I felt a sense of relief, calm and clear-headedness. Suddenly everything seemed to make sense and I understood my life. I felt at peace with a part of me that I didn’t realize I had. It was such a wonderful feeling.

At the end of the course, I was asked to share my experience in front of the class. I did not share this story because I had not verify it with my parents. Therefore when I met my parents a day later in Jakarta, I asked them whether those memories were true and those things really happened. They said that those memories were true and real. Wow…it was simply amazing! Consciously I had no memory of what happened when I was just a baby, but meditation helped me to remember something buried so deep in my subconscious mind. 

One more thing, after those memories surfaced, the pain on my back was almost gone. The pain was completely gone after I told my father this story. Believe it or not, it was like my grandmother wanted me to pass a message to my father.

How do I feel after all this? I feel at peace. I feel so calm, serene. I feel that I know and understand myself better. I feel a sense of relief, a burden lifted. I feel happy.

Finally, I really recommend all of you to take this course. I’d say that this is one of the best courses that I have attended in my whole life and I’ve attended a lot…from Anthony Robbins’ Unleash the Power Within and Date with Destiny to T. Harv Eker’s courses, as well as numerous trainings and seminars held in Singapore and Indonesia for the last 18 years.

I would like to end this post with what the founder of Bali Usada, Mr. Merta Ada often says at the end of a meditation session:

“May all beings be happy!”

Inge Santoso, B. Com

Five Rules of Happiness

I got these five rules of happiness from a book by Jose Silva and Burt Goldman “Silva Mind Control Method of Mental Dynamics”.

Five rules of happiness:

  1. If you like a thing, enjoy it.
  2. If you don’t like a thing, avoid it.
  3. If you don’t like a thing and you cannot avoid it, change it.
  4. If you don’t like a thing, cannot avoid it, and cannot or will not change it, accept it.
  5. You accept a thing by changing your attitude towards it.

If you like a thing, enjoy it. It sounds simple, but sometimes it is one of the hardest things to do. I think it is about being present, fully aware about what you are doing and enjoy every moment of it. For me, it is enjoying a cup of coffee mocha in the morning, reading a good book or writing journal.

If you don’t like a thing, avoid it. If you don’t like a thing and you can avoid it, just avoid it. It is something under your control, but sometimes it also requires courage to say no. For example, if you do not like clubbing and your friends ask you to go, just say no.

If you don’t like a thing and you cannot avoid it, change it. If you do not like something and you are the one who needs to do it, then change it. For example, if someone is overweight and there is no one else who can shed the weight except that person, then change it through better eating habits and doing exercises.

If you don’t like a thing, cannot avoid it, and cannot or will not change it, accept it. You accept a thing by changing your attitude towards it. An excellent example for rule no 4 and 5 is my previous post The Value of Rp. 300,000. I didn’t like to pay that Rp300,000, I couldn’t avoid it because I’ve taken the test, I couldn’t change it, so I accepted it. I accepted it by changing my attitude and perception. Instead of looking at it as a loss, I am now able to see it as a valuable lesson and a great learning experience. By changing my attitude, my perception, I feel happier.

Learn and Grow!