No saucy bedroom antidotes here, no love stories. I’ll leave those experiences and imaginings for my future award-winning screenplays – and the universe has been ‘activated’.
I came up with this title over a year ago. Inspired by quiet Sunday mornings. Peeking my head from beneath white sheets the morning light, the sky and birds my only distraction. The house lay silent, a contrast to week days when you have a child.
I love Sunday mornings because I’m able to slowly wake and wonder. This morning I feel as though I’ve glimpsed between the sheets of the bed we’ve all made for ourselves.
Deep stuff! Sometimes I look back and I’m surprised by what I’ve written. Occasionally I don’t recognize my words, I find myself trying to remember where I was, with life. Which brings clarity, it confirms, I am ever-changing.
I’m speaking in general terms – too general perhaps – of some difficulties we face as human beings. We’re born somewhere on earth – spin a globe and poke a point – we grow, watch and learn, imitate others, try to fit in. All the while ticking milestones of development, or not depending on the journey we find ourselves on. There is, in my mind, a building of expectation subtle for some and like a bulldozer for others. It would take a special kind of mind to not be moved and influenced by these expectations.
Thinking back those mornings were easy, day-dreamy and I’m not so sure I fully appreciated the experience. Or could it be that times change and I miss having those feelings then and there because like a puzzle it all fitted so well.
They say timing is everything.
Recently I was drawn to the idea of spiritual journeying. Every now and then during life people often feel an urge for guidance or direction. And we all are drawn to various ways to journey. During my teenage years I remember a couple of occasions being told by someone close to me, who holds a Christian perspective “you shouldn’t look beyond the veil” – insert a ghostly “Woooo”. I’m sure my face was a picture, I can only imagine my expression as I tried to understand another veil other than the one that covered a brides face. As my thoughts rolled I created dark and terrible things that must lie beyond this veil. Somewhere in life there must be a magical thin curtain and if I were ever to happen upon it I should run screaming in the opposite direction!
Needless to say fear can be a great tool in putting young minds off investigating the unknown. It only took another fifteen years for me to experience my first shamanic drumming session with Julie from Personal Tao. There are some enlightening articles and more information at http://personaltao.com/teachings/shamanic/.
There are many levels to a persons spiritual advancement, layers to peel back. Evolving isn’t always obvious and it doesn’t have to be weird or wonderful, you could literally go walking in the countryside each week. More specifically people take pilgrimages, others fast, some dance themselves into a trance like state, talk in tongues etc. Fasting is an example used in many belief systems, it’s said to sharpen our spiritual senses. There are Christian websites which explain the benefit and reasons behind fasting. Like this one; https://www.guideposts.org/better-living/health-and-wellness/5-spiritual-benefits-of-fasting?nopaging=1
I’m going to para-phrase, the article is a tad heavier than my approach to worship. Also I would replace the word God with Spirit or the term Universe. So our bodies are temples, this has been a quip for years I’d be shocked if you hadn’t used it yourself or heard a friend humorously joke while pouring another glass of wine “my body is a temple, I worship it with wine…” or something similar. The article explains when the body doesn’t have to work at digesting food, energy and focus can be on other things. Now this really interests me. If we weren’t distracted by the many food choices today, if our bodies didn’t have to digest all the many modern styles of food, what would our bodies focus this energy on? Can you imagine for a moment, less food to digest, what else could our bodies achieve?
We could look at a spiritual take on fasting; http://www.earthspirit.com/fireheart/fheffa.html. In the first paragraph of this article I immediately see where I went wrong. When my mood dropped I should have went out for a walk.
Lets look at fasting from a nutritional perspective; https://authoritynutrition.com/10-health-benefits-of-intermittent-fasting/ or the BBC News http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-19112549. All really interesting information about improving your health.
At this point I have to be brutally honest, I am thee worse example of all the positive effects of fasting however I would still like to share my experience. Sadly none of which took me beyond the veil, rather it took me to bed as I attempted to sleep my way through the horrendous, mood plummeting affair. Only to wake Sunday morning ravenous and more appreciative than ever that I had food to eat! Thankfully, a friend coincidentally posted how to make your own chocolate on Instagram and by Sunday evening I was high on raw cacao powder. I don’t believe in coincidences that recipe was sent to save my mind from the depths of impoverished negative thinking and lift me up into positivity and abundance. I’ll say an “AMEN” to that.
So the story goes, I was chatting about some nitty-gritty spiritual experiences with my mate Casey and he was like “Oh you should try a three-day lemon cleanse…. it’s dead easy”. The conversation was via Skype, thank God he couldn’t see my face. There was a long pause on my end as my brain tried to wrap itself around the notion of not eating. My only previous experience was going into hospital as a kid to get my tonsils out and not being allowed to eat from the night before, pure hell. Or that other time I did a charity fast, the 24hr Fame, except my friends mother convinced me to eat rice from the local Chinese takeaway because they eat rice in third world countries – why do I suddenly feel like Chunk from the Goonies.
Anyway I continued listening to Casey as he explains, my mind speedily formulates a reason why this cleanse wouldn’t suit me. “Can you do it with lime” I half-heartedly ask “I follow an alkaline diet” expecting the answer to be “no” I seal my fate without realizing it “Yes actually you can”. My mind weeps, my face freezes while I remain calm and extend a totally false, “oh great”.
I’d just like to thank Dr. Stanley Burroughs for coming up with this fantastic cleanse and of course Beyoncé in recent years for popularizing it. Having read some information on Dr. Stanley Burroughs I am impressed by the results of his work, unfortunately we’re now using this man knowledge to lose weight. http://www.naturalnews.com/035854_lemons_detox_recipe.html
From what I understand through reading, Dr. Stanley Burroughs recommended this lemonade for stomach ulcers and it proved miraculous for his patients. The lemon or lime mixture is drank for ten days, there are other instructions, salt water in the morning and a laxative herbal tea in the evening. It’s not terribly surprising a result of the cleanse is weight loss.
Just for clarity sake, I don’t have ulcers and I’m not interesting in losing weight. What I received was a clear understanding of who I am without regular meals. I’m not sure this translates to anything other than eye-opening.
Saturday morning I woke, I felt ready, the time was right! Gulping the luke-warm salt water to flush my body, then preparing the first mixture. I swig it back and it registers as, not too bad. Out the door I take a second mixture to yoga class, it catches my throat as the smell of the lime and maple syrup waft around my nostrils. Got home busied myself around the house but decided to lie down and meditate. I become aware of my hunger, sitting up I drink the third mixture. Stopping and starting, using the non-breathing technique with every gulp I had to admit I’d been lying to myself. The
lemonade lime’monade was awful. The cayenne pepper hideous. I turned to bottle water and chugged a pint. My stomach began to moan at me.
I slept throughout the day, lingering in moody discontent. But worse than this my thoughts turned dark and negative. Scrolling Instagram for positive posts and quotes, I was shocked at how low I began to feel. Next the cravings began, red meat, which I haven’t eaten in eight months or more. The craving turned to visualizing a large cheese burger with dripping cheese, onions, ketchup, mustard, lettuce etc. It’s as though my mind began throwing up visual pictures of all the comfort foods from my past. I began to feel ill in the evening and slightly dizzy it was then I decided twenty-four hours was my limit. Roll on Sunday morning, homemade kamut pancakes, hemp milk, prunes, agave nectar. With sliced apple, crushed walnuts and maple syrup on top. I crammed two large pancake down the hatch, without a care in the world if my stomach was willing to smoothly digest it!
Kamut pancakes. Similar to these but much bigger.
I’d promised my son we’d go to see the Lego Batman Movie, I took dates, walnuts and plenty of water. The flashing images did nada for my mood, my son thought it was fantastic. I began to worry about the dip in my mindset mid-to-late afternoon. Back to Instagram I went in search of some positive words but instead I came across a friends post on how to make chocolate with coconut oil, cacao powder and maple syrup. So I Googled the ingredients, found a variation and by 7pm Sunday evening I was chowing down on the salty, sweet, nutty goodness of my homemade chocolate. And bing like a light bulb switched on I was grinning from ear to ear. Astonished by the effects of both fasting and then cacao powder, the natural high I got from the chocolate would scare you. Like night and day, I’m still wrestling with an inner truth. The true extent to which nutrition impacts my body, my thoughts and ultimately my happiness!
Coconut oil, cacao powder, maple syrup chocolate with rock salt and nuts, optional.
2/3 cup coconut oil (125g)
2/3 cacao powder (125g)
1/3 maple syrup (76g)
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
pinch of salt and hazelnuts (optional)
I think because my diet at present is very simple in terms of the variety I assumed fasting would be a non-event. Although I hadn’t intended to go three days I had decided two days would be a sufficient experience. Mixed feelings bubbled forth when hearing my mother fasted for two weeks and my dad had gone forty days without food back in their missionary days. Totally gob-smacked and left momentarily wondering, why on earth would you want to! Until my mind brings me back to spiritual enlightenment.
Picture from Instagram Josh Lee @spiritchaserrr
From a health perspective I apparently did my body some good, if you read the BBC News article above it has information on the benefits of intermittent fasting. Life-style changes are great but I wouldn’t encourage anyone to rush blindly into the unknown, timing is everything.
Spiritually I’m prepared to take baby steps toward enlightenment and sharpening my senses. This experience has highlighted a darker truth something that was first brought to my attention back in October 2016 when I took part in a social experiment – more about this in the coming months. This experiment helped me glimpse through the sheets of the bed I have made for myself. The layers of my mind fell away around me, in a quiet place with no distractions I realized I am highly skilled at lying to myself. Last weekend I saw this truth echoed but I perpetuated my avoidance by rustling up some great tasting chocolate!
Accepting it now, Wednesday, I release what no longer servers me and commit to moving forward, growing from the new seeds of understanding.
If you can’t see the way, close your eyes and feel with your mind.