The only worthy resolution: The hardest thing ever. ;)

So, this is what spiritual practice (as opposed to study) looks like.  (I learned this from the study; but the difference between the study and the practice is the difference between music theory and playing scales.)

Every single waking moment, strive to notice everything:

The input of all your senses,

The physical feelings inside your body,

Your emotions,

Your thoughts.

NOTICE all of these things, but do not THINK ABOUT them.  (No words.)  Every time you start to think about them, halt the thoughts and move back to noticing.  (Let the words go as soon as they arise.  …Or, well, if you're a writer and some particularly beautiful words arise, as they frequently do out of silent awareness, write them down and then let them go.  When you notice your thoughts, pay attention to what they are, but don't get "involved" in them, and as soon as you're clear on what they are, let them go.)

Especially be on guard against JUDGING anything — notice how the cold wind feels; but don't think "Augh this weather sucks."  If you do slip into judging, halt it, and then notice what it does to your body and emotions to have done it.  Then let it go and go back to noticing.

Do this when nothing is going on; when you're habitually doing anything; when you're having conversations; when you're struggling — constantly.  You cannot do it too much, though you'll be surprised at how exhausting it can be.

Why is it exhausting?  Because the parts of you that have hold, that run your life because you don't have enough awareness to stop them, are really, REALLY not okay with it, and will fight you tooth and nail.  This practice is the hardest thing ever, not just to do but especially to sustain; and that's not because it's actually difficult — obviously; with a little talking-through, a child could do the above — rather, it's hard because when you do it, your mind fights it.  And I daresay us polyphasic sleepers know just how difficult a fight with your mind can be.

I'm dealing with a pretty common tricky bit now:  I want to "wait until things are pleasant" before doing this, because it's so hard to avoid judging, and therefore making myself miserable, when they're not pleasant.  (And right now, they're not; I'm stuck in the Midwest in the snowy cold with nothing to do, and I hurt my back so even what I can do indoors is limited, and zomg do I hate it.)  –On the other hand, I've done this dance before; when things ARE pleasant, I won't want to "ruin" them with constantly thinking about this difficult practice, either.  

The mind is never going to want to do this, any more than the body will ever want to do a painful bit of physical therapy.  And it's worse, really, because there are structures in the mind that have the survivalist mechanism going, and which know that they'd die if your usual consciousness began to involve present-moment awareness.  So you're literally fighting the mind's survival mechanism.


Anyway, the answer is to just do it.  That's always the answer, and the only answer, and the only escape from needing to just do it is to give up on peace and true happiness.  (True happiness = the kind that comes from within, and is thus much more robust against external circumstances than the fleeting kind caused by temporary pleasures.  But you knew all that.)  And that's not something I'm giving up on, darn it.  Not only is it as worth finding as a hacked sleep-schedule or diet, it's also the best way to ensure that my own future decisions and reactions don't suck.  

So, that's my resolution, I guess.  Sure, better diet and getting my naps and all; but those things are ongoing and are also helped by this; and this, as I've mentioned, I've been neglecting too long since I figured out all the "how to" of it intellectually.  

ONWARD, darnit!

About puredoxyk

Word addict, kungfu/taiji nut, and life-partner to polyphasic sleep. Rabid fan of as many hobbies as the world will let me pry into its piddly fourth dimension (it helps to have knocked out the fourth wall).
This entry was posted in better thinking. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to The only worthy resolution: The hardest thing ever. ;)

  1. ChristianKl says:

    There are time when striving to notice everything is the right way.
    There are also times where it's way to much effort to be sustainable. Times where you can't simple force it to happen. Forcing creates stress and brings you away from yourself.
    Don't be too hard on yourself.

Comments are closed.