July 9, 2006 at 4:00 am #15436
From your writing it seems that early rising and running/movement get your head clear and then things can happen for you. Hold that intention.
Many of the things you describe you are doing look great. If you think you need more “discipline,” then apply some gently. The only healthy way to do that is to keep reminding yourself of what you really want to get out of it. Stay in close touch with how you feel when you do practices and when you don’t. This will motivate you. Also, you should enjoy the practices. Don’t force yourself to do anything because you think you ought to. Looking forward to how you will feel after practicing is powerful impetus.
There is a website you may have come across: http://www.alchemicaltaoism.com which is a well-written and very helpful source of info. You may enjoy reading though it.
You asked how “we” get so much time for meditation/practices. The answer is: You’ve got to make the time. Since you like to get up early, get up earlier and do more then. Run the dog, breathe, open up, then practice. (By the way, your dog will cooperate with you if you suggest to him/her that you are serious about practicing.)
When you smile, allow it to take you. When the energy builds, relax and let it sink into you. You can direct your awareness any way you want to. Try only feeling the smile (love) without picturing anything first. Smile into your brain focusing on the left and right halves alternately then the left and right halves of your whole body. When you are done, make sure you collect the energy into your lower dantian. Rub your body with your hands a little. Bring the energy down from your head.
A really important point is to remember that you are working with the most intelligent thing in the universe- the lifeforce. It wants to develop relationship with you and when you let it know you are ready to really talk with it it will be at your door all the time. Ask it to help you. Ask beings and spirits to help you too. Asking for what we want (whether or not we think it is possible) is essential. Asking is choosing.
“the tape says circle the energy counterclockwise 36 times and then clockwise 36 times. the counterclock wise i had no problems with. i enjoyed it- it was a soothing slow rotation, but to go the other way, i felt like i had to force it. are you supposed to do that? i didn’t finish those 36.”
Don’t force anything. In fact, counting is often counterproductive. Do certain reps for awhile to get the feel of a thing but then let it tell you how to do it. Counting can make a practice very mental whereas just feeling how it wants to go and following that can be much more organic and rewarding. Do both and see what is right for you and when.
In my own practice I use the gardening approach. When you’re growing a garden you go out in the morning and see what’s going on. What wants to happen today? Some weeding here, some watering there… Not the same two days in a row, usually.
Standing practices are really great and essential. Do at least 15 minutes a day and you will feel different. Just take a few basic postures, not deep, and hold them in a relaxed way. Breathe through your feet/heels and connect with the earth chi. You may enjoy making up circular movements afterward to circulate the energy or just meditate.
One important thing to keep in the front of your mind is that balance is the key to everything. Not too much and not too little. This should be applied to every aspect of our lives, making a chi gung attitude prevalent all day long. Foods that are extreme in one direction or another are better eliminated because they will drive the body to extremes and waste your energy. Caffeine is an addictive, mood altering drug. If you have to have some, make it green tea. Coffee is very hard on the liver/gallbladder system and the nerves, and its acidity can imbalance your stomach. The polar opposite of caffeine is sugar. Nurture the middle ground and you will build a solid base.
Blessings, AlexanderJuly 9, 2006 at 7:48 am #15437
i really appreciate the input. i only get paid once a month, but when i get my next check, i’m going to go ahead and get signed up for that inner smile class in november. Your comments and the inner smile ebook was VERY helpful. i’m going to do some stuff differently today.
* Also, you should enjoy the practices. .. Looking forward to how you will feel after practicing is powerful impetus. *
this is so true with running/working out too! I DONT want to go running until i’m already out there doing it, and then i’m like . . . oh yeah, this is why i made myself do it. now i’m glad i did.
*Since you like to get up early, get up earlier and do more then.*
I’m already up at 5am, so earlier isn’t really an option if i want sleep. i guess i need to work more on what i’m doing in the evening.
*Don’t force anything. In fact, counting is often counterproductive.*
GOOD!! It didn’t really work for me.
*In my own practice I use the gardening approach. When you’re growing a garden you go out in the morning and see what’s going on. What wants to happen today? Some weeding here, some watering there… Not the same two days in a row, usually. *
I love gardening 🙂 but have only indirect sun where i’m living now, so most of what i grow are herbs.
Coffee. . . yum. . . are you saying it is the caffene or the coffee? b/c i love the aroma in the am. i have no problem drinking the caffene free coffee, but i crave that smell (green tea- bitter, yuck, but some other hot teas are really good).
Treesinger 🙂July 9, 2006 at 3:04 pm #15439
“are you saying it is the caffene or the coffee?”
It is both. There is 2-3 times as much caffeine in the average cup of coffee than there is in a cup of black tea. Less even in green.
Coffee is extremely acidic and very intense on the organs. The substance of coffee is difficult for the body to process through and it gives you nothing. On top of this, most coffee is grown with chemicals.
“i love the aroma in the am.”
It’s just an association you have with it. Think up a new one that gives you the same feeling. Or just focus on the feeling.
“i have no problem drinking the caffene free coffee”
Decaf is usually processed with a lot of chemicals. For the time being, while you are exchanging something else for the coffee, you could drink only organic and make it light blends.
“but i crave that smell”
Focus on the feeling you get in your body (you’re obviously very body-oriented) when you smell the coffee and detach from the picture of coffee that has gone with it. Put something else in its place. All habits need to be exchanged for something else. I stopped smoking many years ago by exchanging breathing smoke for breathing fresh air. It was one of three major techniques I used to quit.
I have 2 basic premises I use with regard to what I put in my body.
1/ If it’s not food, preferably a really good one, it doesn’t go into my mouth.
There are a lot of things people eat that are not really foods- potato chips, ice cream, coffee… A lot of the rest of what they eat is a poor quality, chemical and hormone laced substitute for what they could be eating.
2/ Aim for balance.
A lot of the things we eat are rooted in unresolved emotional needs and issues. To remove the foods associated with nurturing (like how the smell of coffee affects you) is the make a psychological change. Most of these changes require a lot of attention and the willingness to feel your feelings and issues. This is why most everyone who goes on a diet doesn’t do well. People are unwilling as a whole to face their issues. Mind and body are one thing.
-AJuly 10, 2006 at 11:46 am #15441
Coffee is absolute poison for my body, if I drink it more than one cup my lips become hot and itchy, I have a spot on my leg (galbladder meridian) that starts to itch bad, I have a spot in my intestines that starts to hurt, and as result my right shoulder is getting painful and on top everybody near me can tell I drank it because of my terrible smell I spread in the room 🙂 so it is totally not-done to drink it BUT as every stubborn human being there are ways to by-pass, I can drink it combined with sugared cream or even more delicious as Irish Coffee, combining coffee, cream and whiskey… no problem for my body to digest that :)) speaking of going to the very edges…
Overall it is just very bad like Alexander says and when I am in a wise mode I don’t come near it to avoid the bad effects, most of the time I am wise, and when I am not,I enjoy my Irish Coffee or coffee with so much pleasure. Oh so bad ;))
but without any doubt I feel so much better without it…
You should consider it as a medicine, it can have some positive effects for some people, and some very bad as in my case. Coffee is hot and drying, if there is too much heat in the body it will worsen the heat. Becoming a dry desert… not much to grow there, so learning about your inner weather is a very interesting and beautiful way of spending your time…July 10, 2006 at 1:56 pm #15443
how do you know what your inner weather is?
well, i’ll finish what i have and then be done with it. it won’t be the 1st time that i have, as you said, been wise. it does’t have any big effects for me one way or the other. i can have it or not, but i will miss the am aroma. honestly, me not drinking it will have more to do with the price of organic coffee than anything else. coffee beans are a natural part of the earth, it’s here for a reason i think — but i don’t want all of the chemicals that come with the processing.
everything in moderation, at least for right now for me
i try to buy organic as much as my budget allows. there are certain fruits and vegies that i ALWAYS buy organic (apples, grapes, etc), and others that i do if i can (bananas, broccoli), and the months i can’t at all, oh well.July 11, 2006 at 2:34 am #15445
“how do you know what your inner weather is?”
Inner weather is how you feel physically and emotionally and how your organs are working together. You tell how your’s is by comparing what you know about yourself and the flows you go through with what an acupuncturist can tell you by reading your pulses.
“it does’t have any big effects for me one way or the other. i can have it or not, but i will miss the am aroma.”
Sounds easy. Then brew it and breathe it but don’t drink it. Coffee just makes the body work harder. The energetic connections within society to things like this will dissipate over time when you no longer put it in your body.
“coffee beans are a natural part of the earth, it’s here for a reason i think”
Lots of things are natural, and they all have a certain energy. But that doesn’t mean you have to consume them all. This kind of thing, coffee, is so extreme that, like arsenic, it should be considered a medicinal and taken in homeopathic doses.
If you want to read a good book on foods and their energies try Bob Flaws -The Tao Of Eating. It’s TCM and has some built-in limitations in concept but is a good basic manual for understanding how your-stomach-as-a-cooking-pot works.
-AJuly 11, 2006 at 7:18 am #15447
gracias amigo . . . brew it and breathe it but don’t drink it. . . that is what i will do for the rest of this can. actually, i’ve found out that if i’ll get my butt going in the morning (running or jumping rope,etc) then i don’t want coffee. then i just want water, so that sounds like a good replacement.July 11, 2006 at 9:06 am #15449
very logic, because ‘activity’ moves your liver energy so you don’t need ‘fake’ replacement for your energy to move you through the day…
Alexander did a good job explaining ‘inner weather’ ,no need for more explanationJuly 15, 2006 at 10:32 pm #15451
Just to give you some differnt information to chew on. Organic stronge “fully lead” coffee has some important health benefits. It can lower LDL “bad” cholesterol, and has been linked to a 40% reduction in the risk of breast cancer among pre-menopausal women. There is also a good dose of antioxidants in coffee that translates into a reduction in cancer risk. I think the main problem is the fact that most people drink non organic coffee mixed with fluoride water. You have to listen to your body coffee is not for everyone, nothing is except water, but of course I am told there are people that servive off of just breathing. Also doing coffee enemas are great. http://www.sawilsons.com
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