Sometimes I hear something that just rings true.
I think that this sits very nicely with what I’ve mentioned previously about Illusions by Richard Bach
Back in a previous post I mentioned that I wanted to try something, to see how it might go, just for the hell of it. To just opt out somewhat from the expectations of society. I called it a society fast, to not buy into the things that society says that you have to do.
Well that week back in March of last year went okay and my world didn’t end. I still did what needed to be done when things needed to be done and I was able to do whatever I wanted to do as I felt inspired. So I kept doing it, the society fast. Doing what I wanted to do as I wanted to do it.
And guess what? I haven’t stopped. I haven’t found the need or desire to buy back into what society says that I’m supposed to do. What am I talking about I hear you say?
I’m taking about how our Western Society says that we have to do certain things, like relationships, work, income, career, worry and stress about tomorrow and how it’s going to be when I’m old and I don’t have enough money in my retirement fund, how at my time of life I should be in this certain type of lifestyle, all of that sort of thing.
That’s why I started the society fast to have a break for just one week away from that and see what would happen and I haven’t stopped. That was 16 months ago and it has been some of the best times of my life because I’m living in the moment and just doing what is right for now and it keeps working.
Now before you think I have it easy, that’s not my point. In the last 16 months I have worked for income in an employed situation for only 6 weeks and earned $12,000. I’ve additionally done a little audio and video recording and editing work and earned another couple of thousand dollars but that is all. I have been leaning on my credit card and I’m slowly going backwards at about $1000/mth but I’m fine with that. I live a very lean life and I have everything I need and desire little more.
For a long time I was looking for something to put my attention to, some strong focus and direction that society says that you have to have to be a member of this society. That was causing me grief and one of the reason for starting this society fast, to have some chill time away from that stress. Continue reading
50 Years I’ve been here now.
50 years, 18,250 days, the same number of mornings and evenings the same number of nights asleep bar a dozen or so all-nighters. 5o years of experiences good and tough.
Yes, I would say tough but I wouldn’t say bad, although there have been some challanging times. Like when I was out of sync in my last year at school because I couldn’t do my precious wood work. That was the time to leave, just before and fortunatly as I got my apprenticeship. Or the frustration of dealing with the end of my marriage and the subsequent crash and burn that came from that. These times were tough but I wouldn’t say bad, not real bad, like some people have, some people don’t have tough lives, they have real bad lives. My life has been just challenging, requiring me to, well, suck it up and get on with it. And sometimes I’ve had the help of some wonderful people to help me through. To all of you… thanks.
So far it’s been a good life anyway I look at it. I have very good health both mental and physical and I’ve managed to do some interesting, even wonderful things. The highlights would have to be doing my apprenticeship, skydiving, building a house, my marriage to Gail, my daughter Sabina, the many wonderful relationships that I have had, the skills that I’ve gained, working on the Matrix 2&3 films, my podcast and associated travels and learnings and in recent years, the joy of tango.
If you asked me to reflect on the tough times, I’m genuinelly, mentally challenged to remember. I can remember the events but there is no emotion connected to them. I don’t feel as distressed from them that I felt at the time. It must just be my psychology but I seem to remember the good, with a joy that is hard to express and the bad times seem to fade away like a dream in the morning. Continue reading
Just now I was reflecting on how Eckhart Tolle mentions about how his ego doesn’t interfere with his daily events as they would cause identification with the events around him. This identification would interfere with him doing things in the moment and cause stress and anxiety. This reminded me of the numerous times when I’ve been in fear before an event and how when I’m in the flow it always works without fear. How this stress is always ego related and how without the expectations of a new beginning I do well and if I allow my ego to get involved I always seem to screw it up.
Does this mean that if I am fearful or anxious I’m identifying with the event with my ego? I think so.
I’ve always said that I have “Beginners Luck”. The number of times that I’ve done something for the first time and done it initially with ease is staggering. I remember when I started skydiving at 17 years of age. I went to the drop zone the first weekend and did my training and the following weekend I went to do my first jumps. That weekend I did four static line jumps, each and every one was copy book perfect. Everyone praised me, paying complements as to my natural abilities. Then the following week end I returned to continue and failed monumentally, moving onto free fall and tumbling out of control eventually returning to static line descendants and doing 13 instead of the usual five until I eventually moved onto free-fall again. It was even recommended that I should give it away. Ultimately I amassed 2000 skydives and became an instructor at 19. By then I was humbled by by initiation into the sport.
For a short time when I was about 30 I had a sales job using a style of sales similar to encyclopaedia selling where I had to present to people in their homes from a script and eventually close the deal. After the initial training I went out on my first day to present, not expecting any results as I was such a raw recruit and managed to sell four out of five presentations blowing everyones expectations, including mine, out of the water. The following six weeks were harrowing as I slowly started to stress and didn’t sell one programme until eventually I decided to give it away and on my last presentation I sold two unexpectedly to the client and her friend who just happened to be sitting in. I’m sure I sold on the last day because I no longer had an attachment to the outcome, the stress of achieving was removed and my ego was now out of the picture.
This has happened in all the fields that I have ventured into where the first time I do something, I do well as I have no expectations, my ego is subdued as I’m only starting and I don’t expect any results. Because I’m completely with the experience and not at all in my ego I allow anything to happen and it resolves in ways far better than I would have expected. It’s even happened with the first time I played lotto and won $35 because there is no chance to win on my first attempt and I’ve never won anything since.
The problem is that once I have the initial success, I then buy into others and my own expectations based on the past experience and extrapolate it out into the future, then naturally expect the evolvement of the good fortune into something grand. Then when it doesn’t materialise I become demoralised, think of it as a failure and it all falls apart. If I do keep at it in the long term and persevere through the negative period as I did with skydiving and my trade skill I notice that I eventually return to the level of success that I originally had but now I’ve been humbled by the experience of doing so poorly during the intervening period. I then don’t think of what I do as being anything special but think of it as something that anyone can do, as is really the case. If I can do something anyone can and often times anyone has, so why should I think that I’m anything special. This is what I find so interesting.
I seem to be blessed with some innate natural talents which enable me to do well initially but if I allow my ego to rise up even at the most basic level I come unstuck then my ego feels blighted by the failure and stress develops and a downward cycle begins. What if I don’t allow my ego into the picture? What if I simply say “this person which is me is doing this thing and it will be as it will be”? If the goal of the day is achieved or not is irrelevant. It’s only important to do the task as seems appropriate with no judgement of whether it is good or bad, which is a judgement in itself. Just let it be and not to identify with the event in anyway as being something personal.
That’s the take home, “not to identify with the event in anyway as being something personal” which has to exclude any form of ego.