Exercises in Mastering the Powers of the Mind.
Bring all of yourself out there in nature. Not just your body. To achieve this, you’ll need to bring your mind into this moment of time. You do that by thinking about what you’re doing right now. Look where you walk, look at the flowers, smell the roses, taste the sweetness, hear the waved. Draw yourself into this moment in time by activating all of your senses. Turn up.
Take a pen and paper because when thoughts pop into your usually busy head, they stay there until you either forget to remember, or you act on them. So, download the hard drive onto a piece of paper and free your mind. Free your mind by respecting it. If your mind is worried about something, that’s great, honour it, but, for now, make a note that you’ll get back to that worry later. Reassure yourself that the best way to solve a worry is to be in nature and “forgetaboutit” … Forget about it
Think posture, posture, posture. Your body has memories too. If you hunch forward it goes into the past. If you arch backward it goes into the future. To be in nature, I mean really be in nature for your twenty minutes a day, you are wise to set your body into this moment. You may need to stretch a little before you start or even do some sort of tai chi or yoga so that your posture is upright. Make your neck long, the crown of your head as high to the sky as you can. Draw your lower abdomen in at all times. Breathe into your belly and chest. Balance is posture.
Pick things up. Leaves, sticks, flowers (not the neighbour’s roses) and stones. Pick things up and enjoy them. I’d hesitate with snakes and spiders, I mean things that don’t bite. Pick things up, feel them in your fingers as you walk, bring nature into your being with your touch as well. Observe things and play. Everything is precious.
Walk gently. Walk as if you don’t want to be heard by anyone. You want to walk with the least impact on your feet as possible, gently heal to toe. Be mindful where you place your feet and how so that your experience is total. It is one time in the day where you are not competing with the universe and instead, you’re in harmony with it. Walk Gently.
Prepare your mind for the time by simply saying to yourself. I want nothing, I need nothing and therefore, I have everything. Emptiness comes from fullness. Fill yourself with needlessness. If you are filled with everything then, what could disturb your happiness? Nothing. If you are filled with thankfulness, what could cause you unhappiness? Nothing. If you are filled with emptiness you have everything, and therefore, there cannot be depressions. This is how you prepare for your nature time. “I want nothing, I need nothing and therefore I have everything. With this mantra, you’ll celebrate the future with an open heart. Empty is full.
To see a person and say, “that person is bad”, that is learning, an opinion, and highly emotionally consuming. To see further, and recognise something good in that person, that is unlearning. Then there is ambivalence. When you see the goodness in someone you have already called bad, you have unlearned. You have unravelled that knot, a judgement and you will not be distracted, or waste energy on emotional side tracks. First you learn by seeing with one eye; then you unlearn and you see with two eyes, this makes learning from life complete.
Emotional and mental stability Emotional and mental stability comes from balance, neither excess or deficiency. Neither overeating nor under eating. Never too much, never too little. The result of balanced living is obvious. A balanced person will be at ease. Whatever the situation, the relaxed attitude will not be lost. Unconditionally, the lack of tension will stay. A person who is at the centre is always at ease. Even if the death of a loved one comes, they will be at ease. They will receive death as they receive birth. If misery comes they will receive it as they receive joy. Whatever happens it cannot dislodge this person from their centre. This relaxed attitude, this ease is also a consequence of being balanced.
Life is how you see it. The miracle of your mind is that it can see beauty in the ugly and ugly in the beauty. Out here in nature practice makes perfect. Just look for the ugliest things and practice seeing beauty in it. Broken trees feed the worms, oil spills create awareness. Death creates life. Convention points us toward the beauty, and away from the ugly, but this makes you so temperamental, so fragile that your life is too easily stressed. Practice between performances, look in nature for the order in the chaos, the beauty that exists in everything. It will transform your life.
MEASURE YOU LIFE IN SECONDS
Measure your day in fractions of seconds. The person who measures their life in the smallest increments will hold the most confidence, because they will find security in those tiny fragments of time. Confidence requires that we are happy with what we’ve got, content in the abundance of the nothingness, free from the prison of striving, sometimes joyful even in the agony of challenging circumstance. So in that tiny increment of time duality does not exist, emotions do not exist, we are fully present, in the moment. If we can measure our life moment by moment those moments will always be good for us. There is always something to be thankful for in the moment. What could be intolerable for a day is totally acceptable for a second. This is another of the great gifts of adventure in nature. Even photography draws us into the moment and teaches us to appreciate this very second of time, without desire for something better, bigger, etc. This is why you do your daily morning Instagram.
Give your dark thoughts to nature. Nature is the great mother goddess. She absorbs your emotional pain. If you have anger, frustration, jealousy, resentment or fear, find a rock or a tree and give your emotion to that tree. Let if flow through your hands and just empty it into that portal. Let the feelings be real and honest, experience and feel the anger and, rather than carry these toxins around, give them to the earth. Let the trees and rocks and waters carry your dark emotions away to the core, release them to the earth, let your heart be free again. Let Go.
QUIET THE NOISE – NOW
Turn off or down the external work of compensations. Let the iPod be supportive or quiet enough. Let go advice, you don’t need a second voice in your head while nature is speaking to you. Let go of worries or the need for answers. You do all this simply by forcing a smile into the corners of your mouth. Celebrate this moment by smiling at it. Celebrate simplicity.
Be comfortable. If you’re hungry it’ll distract you. If your belly is overloaded with food, you can’t even hope to feel the spirit. If you need a bathroom, do it. Nature will forgive you for your little indiscretion, even if the neighbours wouldn’t. Be warm and most important, be clean. Don’t wear stinky old clothes out on your sojourn. Clean is really important, even if, the garment is 100 years old, clean is important. Be safe.
Be thankful for the NOW. If you are not perfect already then there is no possibility, there is no way, that you can become perfect. The whole situation is totally ridiculous: you are already that which you want to attain. That is why simple techniques can help. It is not an attainment, but the discovery. It is hidden, and it is hidden in very, very small things. So go to nature and find yourself reflected in the beauty.
Remind yourself of the simplicity of life. There is a chance to really become resilient to the world of competition and emotional expectations just by being in nature and remembering the simplicity of life. Hold a view of how nature has adapted to change, survived drama, ridden through storms simply by letting go. There is no need to hold onto what you were hoping for your life. Simply by adapting to what is in your life and finding joy in it, you’ll reach a whole new level of happiness. Adapt.
“Exercises in Mastering the Powers change everything but must be practiced between performances”
Chris “Batman” Walker