I have always been fascinated by training methods. I thoroughly enjoy getting to the HOW things are done, specially when stripped from dogma. I once remember reading an article about how Catholic and Buddhist nuns “pray.” The Catholic nuns prayed the rosary while visualizing the image of Mother Mary with the intention of being more kind and compassionate like her. The Buddhist nuns recited their mantras while visualizing the image of Kwan Yin with the intention of being more kind and compassionate like her.
So it was the same training method – repeat prayer/mantra, visualize, adopt feeling of your intention.
I also enjoy taking the nuts and bolts of a thing and applying it in practical ways. In the TV series House of Cards the politician played by Kevin Spacey coined the term “Ruthless Pragmatism.” While in the TV program it becomes a license to justify any action that gets you what you want, the concept in itself reminds me of Bruce Lee’s adage of “absorb what is useful and reject what is useless.”
I like the idea of simple solutions that work TODAY, not in 5 years or after 100,000 repetitions. I decided to try a little experiment for the sole reason to see if it would make driving in Miami more pleasant. It seems that in Miami the rules of the road are considered optional, like stops signs and red lights, and drivers simply change lanes with the expectation that YOU are the one paying attention and will slam on your brakes as they weave in and out of cars while texting or talking mindlessly on their cellphones.
My idea was to bring in some prayer beads and focus on a positive statement that was meaningful to me in the here and now. Instead of some of the well known mantras like “OM MANI PADME HUM” which is stated to provide its benefit after 100,00 repetitions, I decided to simply focus on an the notion of choosing life that day. What I mean by this is that you can look at every action you take and every thought you choose to think as being aligned with life and therefore life affirming or aligned in the other direction and taking you somewhere other than life.
My drive to work is about 15 minutes and each go around of the beads (108 count) is about 3-5 minutes depending on the rate at which you go. On the first go around I stated “I choose life in everything I do today.” On my second round I shortened it to “I choose life in everything I do” and by the third round I just said “I choose life.” Here I am driving and reciting these things to myself while getting the feeling of it. When I see a crazy driver I simply let him pass. When I get to a red light it’s like “great, now I can concentrate deeper on what I am doing.” By focusing on my this exercise, which also regulates the breath, I drove with greater peace of mind, plus the physical act of passing the beads with your thumb and index turns this into a whole body practice.
Now here is the interesting part. Over the last couple of months, I have noticed that after dinner with my family I would raid the kitchen for any kind of children’s snacks. Yeah, call it what you will, sugar addiction, a sweet tooth, or whatever, but the deal is that both you and I know that eating four cookies n’ cream granola bars after your healthy dinner is not exactly a life affirming choice. Well, I ate dinner and did not eat any sweets. It was rather effortless, I simply was satisfied from eating my healthy dinner.
OK, now this is where it gets REALLY interesting. I use a Vita Mix in the morning EVERY DAY because it is easy to use and CLEAN. I also own a juicer, yeah the ones that separate the juice from the pulp. I detest the clean up of that thing and hence have not used it in three years. My morning time is precious and I would rather spend the time doing mobility, meditation, or writing rather than spending 30 minutes on juicing. Well, for some reason at around 8:00 p.m. I felt inspired to make myself a refreshing carrot, apple, and lime juice. I pulled the juicer out, washed and cut the fruits and veggies I was going to use, juiced them, drank it, and cleaned the juicer out. All this was natural and effortless. I have been able to juice or eat fruits at night and have avoided sugar for the last week while doing this.
After three days I decided to see what would happen if I changed the words. So I playfully recited “I feel myself growing younger” and I would remember and get the feelings in my body of when I was 26 and then 18. You know, you are happy and you spend your time thinking about exciting things as opposed to mortgages, reports, and business trips that take you away from your family. Well, lo and behold, after dinner my daughter came up to me and we started talking. Then we put some music on and she wanted me to dance with her. So I danced with my daughter and felt happy and alive… and yeah, I felt a lot younger too. I looked at my wife and told her that I was very happy that my daughter would remember me as her first dance partner. Again, this was not something I normally do when I get home from work – it just happened.
This proved to me that WORDS MATTER. Everything that you say and do and everything you come in contact affects you in some way and programs your mind and body.
You can choose to listen to music in your car. You can also listen to books on CD and turn you car into “University on Wheels”, however programming your mind with exactly what you want while you drive will affect your being in multiple ways and will require no extra time and effort on your part.
It is my sincere desire that you are able to take something out of this article and apply it to your life for the better. Let me know which phrases or affirmations you tried and what was different at the end of the day as a result of this. This is some really cool stuff that works in the most unexpected ways!
In my next article on Esoteric Experimentation I will share with you how I mix electricity, magnetism, and acupuncture during my morning meditation to go deeper mentally, create electroporation in my cells to increase nutrient uptake, magnetize my blood stream to clean the blood out, and super charge my day!