Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Now, Nature and Love via 5 ways to deepen GRATITUDE

GRATITUDE — the first Magic Carpet

Wedding ( March 5, 2016) Vow #3:
We are delighting in the wonder of life, and constantly sharing our gratitude with each other and the world

Let’s start.
In our hearts.
With “doings” that we’ll call games. Why? Because this is a book in which you’ll play your way to transformation.
Why doing?
Anyone can think or imagine that they are changing. Change is change is change is change.
Want a new you? A better you? A sexier you? A more loving you? A moe present you?
Do something different.
Preferably something small. Do-able. Do-able and fun or at least interesting, and do-able now.

And, it is only by doing new (and mindful, as we’ll see soon) behaviors that real transformation can take place.
Do you want fabulous love at the center of your life?
Then let’s play.

Game #1: SAY ALOUD three gratitudes.
Start these three sentences and finish them, and say them aloud:
“I am grateful….”
“I am grateful…”
“I am grateful…”

Game #1.2: WRITE down, in handwriting,  three gratitudes.
Any paper will do, any pen or pencil.
The writing is handwriting, not typing onto a computer or thumbing it into a smart phone.
Good old fashioned, handwriting, where you use your hand and fingers and arm to move the pen, and watch with your eyes as the letter swoop out and  are formed and then change, as the now does, into the next letter, and the next and the next.
If you have no paper in this moment and can’t get to any, then handwrite it in the air, or on your leg.
If you are at the bookstore, reading this book, finger write it on the back page.
Then go buy the book, and borrow a pen, and actually write your three gratitudes in the pages provided for this in the back.

But one way or another, write down three gratitudes.
Right now, write now, right now, write now.
Not later alligator, when you’ve finished the chapter. Or, God forbid, when you “get around to it,” which almost always means… never.
Whatever you wanted out of this book will keep growing right now, as you write, right now, write now, right now, write now three gratitudes.
If this is one more book to have good ideas that you don’t take any actions on, then admit that you want to stay the same, as if a little more information in your brain with no new action can actually change you.
Change = change = change = doing = life = fun = yes.

And since we are doing, let’s get MORE OF OUR BODY INVOLVED.
Hint: we are alive.
We are in a body. Usually we are wasting our life up in the words in our head, and better sex and better love and better life is going to require a delightful shift to now, to nature and to love.
Now, Nature and Love.
Your body is nature.
You are going to stand and notice your whole body now.
Gratitude is love for certain parts of your life.

Let’s DO IT!!!!

Game # 1.3: STAND UP and say aloud new gratitudes or the three gratitudes you just wrote, or some combination of new and just written.
Doesn’t matter.
Stand. Feel your feet on the ground or floor. Feel your head held up by your spine. 
Speak from this taller, more fully human you.
“I am grateful…”
“I am grateful…”
“I am grateful…”

Don’t read them.
if you can’t remember, standing and saying any three gratitudes is great.


And now, let’s go to a more full human level. More of nature. More of what it means to be human.
In the next section we’ll develop and improve being present as a three level operation, 
being present below the waist in the BOTTOM layer, 
being present in the torso/arm/hand MIDDLE layer and 
being present in the head/eyes/ ears/ air in TOP layer

Let’s expand the more fully you, more fully in now, nature and love game to the next step.

Game #1.4 GO TO A WINDOW, OR BETTER, GO OUTDOORS and say aloud either these gratitudes again, or three more. Smile while you say the gratitudes and enjoy with your eyes seeing something that is pleasant to look at.

Why all this body stuff?
Now, Nature and Love.
To be in nature is to be on the Earth.
To be in nature is to know and feel in the moment that we are in a body. (Imagine an animal in the wild who was not aware of being in their body. That’s an animal that is going to die soon.)

To be really present is to live in at least three levels of the body.
The body at it’s bottom layer, connects to gravity.
The body in it’s middle level breathes and feels love and wonder and gratitude. (And all the real and unreal emotions centered around fear. More on that soon)
The body in its top layer sees the world with our eyes and hears the world with our ears and takes in air through our nose and mouth.
We are in a body.
I am in a body.
You are in a body.
You were born on and of the planet Earth. Your body is from the Earth and of the Earth. When you are in touch with the Earth, you are more in touch with your body. When you are in touch with your body, you are more in touch with the Earth.

This is the body that you will have better sex with.
Nature is out there, always fueling us if we let her.

(Vow #6: We connect with Nature for daily nourishment. )

Nature outside. Nature of sky, and cloud and tree. And nature of our bodies as feet and legs and hands and fingers and arms and spine and head.

So, let’s do the next level of game.
Because of this great truth: To be alive, is to move. To be in nature is to move. (Again, imagine an animal that doesn’t move. No eating = dead. No mating = death to the species)

One more gratitude game, perhaps the most fun of all, and the one that will get our breathing and our sensing our feet and our enjoying what we are seeing in the world all involved at once.

Gratitude Game #1.5 : Lifting heels up and bringing heels down, and saying gratitudes at the same time
Go to a window or outside.
Breathe in and lift onto your toes, so your heels are lifting from the ground.
Notice whatever your eyes are seeing out the window, or in front of them if you are already outside.
Notice the feel of gravity coming up your legs, and through your pelvis and into your spine and into your skull.
Say to yourself or aloud as you do this raising up your heels as you come on to your toes…. “I am grateful…”
Stay at the top a little while and enjoy this.
Then, smile a bit and..
Breathe out and bring your heels back down to the floor.
As you do this say something for which you are grateful. The short phrase or one word seems to work best.
Do this at least three times.
“I am grateful for feet.”
“I am grateful for blue sky.”
“I am grateful for this window.”
“I am grateful to be saying gratitudes.”
“I am grateful for breathing.”
“I am grateful for movement.”
“I am grateful to be alive.”
“I am grateful for…(someone in your life).”
“I am grateful for…(some place you love.)”
And so on.
Let whatever comes to your mind first and easiest come out of your mouth. 
If you say the same thing three times, that’s fine.
Now, Nature and Love.
Enjoy it
Enjoy life
Enjoy the real you.
Inner nature is what?

Gratitude seems to be part of our real inner nature?
What will you discover if you practice gratitude several or many times a day?
For you to discover, eh?

And, hey…..
What’s the deal with gratitude?

Well, I’m so glad you asked.

This is not a book of statements you will accept because they are in a book. We’ve all done too much of that.
The proof is in your experience.
So, let’s take the statement: gratitude shifts our mood and our experience.
What was true for you?
In the five games, what was your experience? Did anything shift?

 Game One: As you said aloud gratitudes, what was your experience? Did anything shift?
Game two: As you wrote three gratitudes, what was your experience? Did anything shift?
Game three: As you stood and said three gratitudes, what was your experience? Did anything shift?
Game four: As you stood at a window or outside and said three gratitudes, what was your experience? Did anything shift?
Game five: As you stood at a window or outside and lifted onto the toes as you breathed in and said, “I am grateful,” and came back down with an out breath and finished the sentence, what was your experience? Did anything shift?

Enlightenment is experiencing your own experience, without filtering it through thoughts and comments and judgments.
Enlightenment is experiencing your own experience exactly when it’s happening: now.

So, in your life and in this book, your own experience is the test of how useful and amazing this material can be for you.
To believe anything I or anyone says as a truth that you don’t test in your own experience is a level of immaturity totally contradictory to the transformation you want for you and I want for you.
Enlightenment is a certain peace and freedom that can only come from discovering over and over and over the truth of your own life, now, as you are experiencing it.

Back to some of my pointers (not truth, unless it’s true inside you), about gratitude.
What’s the deal about gratitude?

One deal is that for centuries people have been suggesting that you give thanks to your creator, or to the Great Spirit, or to those who are at Thanksgiving dinner with you, or as you say grace before a meal. (See Philippians 4:4-6)

The second deal about gratitude, and this is huge: brain research says this:
The brain/ you can be in fear, or it can be in gratitude, but it can’t be in both.

As the book progresses we’ll start to see how all the crappy emotions come back to fear and self-dislike, but for now, just mull over how unlikely you are to feel any love, or happiness, or optimism, or enthusiasm or curiosity if you are lost in fear.

( Aside, for now:
Not that fear is bad.
Back in the primitive day a tiger might want to eat you, or in this day, a car may be barreling down on you because you are texting and not paying attention.
And the shocking blast of the horn courses through your nervous system as fear, and you jump out of the way, and you aren’t dead.
Good use of fear.
Sometimes we are in real danger.)

And in reality in this world, often we aren’t in real danger and yet the fear is there as bad as a tiger or a dangerous car. We can be wrought up and miserable because 
we are afraid that we don’t know what to do, or 
we are afraid that our mate doesn’t love/ appreciate/ understand us enough, or 
we are afraid that something is wrong because we don’t have a mate, or that our job is a mess and never will change,
we are afraid we did something wrong because our children, young or grown, are acting like assholes ( usually, strangely enough, a slight variation on the way we are assholes)
we are afraid whatever is real pain, or emotional pain, is going to last forever and ever and ever
or we have some other disaster/complaint/ worry feast of bummer inner yammer going on.

Human Slavery: Approval/ Disapproval
The biggest fear is often what Gurdjieff has said is the cause of the greatest slavery of human beings in general,
The greatest cause of human slavery: we are afraid of the disapproval of others, or its flip side: we are afraid that we won’t get the approval we crave
(Who is Gurdjieff? More on him later - for starters. an enlightened and very practical man, whose spiritual teaching required real work, usually on a farm and whose “meditation” was our daily living as our best and quickest path to deep change. Gurdjieff taught in Europe from 1906- 1946)

And the alternative to fear of disapproval and fear of failure and whatever our mind has conditioned to want us to be afraid of?

That’s our first magic carpet.
You can go to it anytime, in any of the five versions presented in the last section.

Saying aloud
Writing gratitudes
Standing and saying gratitudes
Standing at a window or outdoors and saying gratitudes
Standing at a window or outdoors and lifting up on your toes and coming down and saying gratitudes

And… get thee a gratitude journal, because writing down gratitudes several times a day can produce a certain magic.
Like what?

Well, the Carol and Chris story has many parts. The overarching miracle is that at 66 and 70 and pretty sure we would never find a mate anywhere near what we really, really wanted, ended up finding one far, far, far better than we could ever have expected.
First sighting: March 24, 2015.
Lunch meeting that turned into a twelve hour date where we almost knew for sure we’d hit the jackpot: June 20, 2015.
Wedding that we set out to be transformative for us and all those invited, and succeeded, almost ( for us, for sure, for most others yet. And some chose to stay asleep. That’s the way it goes.)
The miracle had a big gratitude component.
As Chris’ thirst for a wonderful mate was intensifying in May and June of 2015, he was writing at least three times a day his gratitudes for what was going well in his life at least three times a day. Often more.
And Carol was saying her gratitudes each day in prayer.

Focused on what was good and wonderful in their lives, they discovered something more good and wonderful than they could ever imagine.

This is my/ our wish for you.
That this book propel your adventure and path toward a truly fabulous love at the center of your life.


This can be at any one of these levels.

In a relationship that is “pretty good” and want it at the fabulous love level? Then this book’s for you. (And already you have tools for that)

In a relationship that kinda sucks and want it at the fabulous love level? Then this book’s for you. (And already you have five tools toward making that!)

In a relationship that is great and want it at an even more fabulous love level? Then this book’s for you. (And already you have five tools toward making that!)

In NO relationship. Heartbreak or divorce keeping you shut out? A longtime pattern of no mate? That awful state of having lost a mate to death and having done your two years or more of grieving?
And you are, however reluctantly, beginning to dare to think that you really do want a fabulous love at the center of your life?
Then this book’s for you.
And all five of the gratitude practices are a chance to love the one person you are always with: yourself.

Love is good.
Gratitude is good.

Now, Nature and Love will get you everything.


On, to the next adventure toward fabulous life that emerges into fabulous love: being present in three levels of your body, and having even more fun and awakening in awareness and pleasure and learning mingled with moving. 

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