A current snapshot….
My main practice is relaxation and sleep these days, which is sorely needed in the recovery phase after chronic fatigue.
In terms of practice, I mostly allow experience as is, with kindness. Every few days, I inquire into one or more beliefs. When in bed, either before falling asleep or after waking up in the morning, I bring attention to the sensations at the tip of the nose when I breathe. I pray, mainly to be shown the way, and for the well-being of all beings – usually through visualizing all beings being happy and awakened. I usually focus on specific individuals, then myself, and then all beings. I also use the heart (Jesus) prayer, with breath and heartbeats. And at times, I do the Christ meditation. (Visualizing Christ in my heart, and a couple of meters in front, back, on either side, below and above my body.) I also use some of the tools mentioned in The How of Happiness, including gratitude lists and letters, visualizing an ideal future self, and so on. Whatever else I do, I pay attention to the sense and images of a doer and observer, and notice it is content of experience as anything else. Or more accurately, “there is attention on….” although that sounds a little contrived. In general, I do whatever comes to me to do, when it comes to me to do it, with no regular schedule and free from “shoulds”.
In terms of food and drink, I drink a good deal of water every day, mostly in the form of Stangeland’s herbal tea and cinnamon/raw cocoa drinks. When I feel properly hydrated, it corresponds to clear or very pale urine. Food is quite simple and traditional, with an emphasis on vegetables and fruit. I also eat some (soaked & dried) nuts, fresh and dried fruit, and crunchy nori flakes throughout the day.
I continue to take my herbs, including rhodiola (for mental clarity and energy), eleuthero (for physical energy), and kwei ling chi (rapid energy boosts). In addition, drink a tablespoon of codliver oil in the morning, and take some additional vitamin D. For energy boosts throughout the day, I drink raw cocoa with cinnamon (no sweetener) as mentioned above. It is a great strengthening drink.
Due to circumstances, I do mostly self-Breema right now, although I want to find ways to bring the bodywork more into my life again.
I walk briskly at least 30 minutes a day, mostly for transportation and enjoyment purposes (between home, train, light rail etc.). Some days, I skip the light rail and walk an hour instead through a beautiful park and interesting neighborhoods. On occasion, I go skiing in the woods next door, and want to do more skiing in the next few weeks. I do some occasional strength training.
My social life is stepped down these days, to conserve energy, and more focused on quality than quantity. I live the life of a semi-hermit in my small log cabin, in a beautiful landscape covered in fresh snow. And it feels good and very appropriate right now, especially since I know it is temporary. I do occasional social and fun things, like going to a microbrewery with a friend yesterday, and curling with friends on the “national curling day” this coming Sunday.
Since it is the Winter Olympics, I take pleasure in watching some events online – especially cross-country, biathlon, curling, snowboard cross, and ski cross. Otherwise, I listen to a few podcasts (mostly science and history), watch a few documentaries (often BBC Horizon), and listen to some music (on my mp3 player: Tabula Rasa by Arvo Pärt, Facing North by Meredith Monk, Passion – Music for the Last Temptation of Christ by Peter Gabriel, Tales from the Acoustic Planet by Bela Fleck, Back to Mine by Royksopp, One Nation Under a Groove by Funkadelic, The Mating Game by Bitter:Sweet).
Note: When I pray for and visualize deep joy and well-being for others, I usually see if there is any lingering resentment towards anyone in my life. If I find anything less than a wholehearted and spontaneous well-wishing for someone, I start with that person until there is a shift. When I visualize Christ, it is a combination of light and the familiar Christ presence – the infinite love and wisdom with a fiery quality, experienced in my body in the heart and at the top of the head.
Some of the podcasts I listen to: Are We Alone? Science Radio for Thinking Species, Planetary Radio, NRK – 20 spørsmål, NRK – Museum, NRK – Verdt å vite, NRK – Gull, America’s Evolutionary Evangelists, PRI – To The Best of Our Knowledge, BBC Science in Action.
Some things I read on the net: Wired Magazine, BBC, NY Times, NRK and other Norwegian news sites, Forskning.no.
Some things I watch on the net: BBC Horzion, BBC Wonders of the Solar System, BBC QI, and whatever other BBC documentaries I can find.
Some movies I have watched recently: The Man Who Skied Down Everest, Hurt Locker, Frost/Nixon.
- allowing experience as is, with kindness
- inquire into beliefs
- attention to breath (sensations at tip of nose) in bed
- prayer – show me the way, all the best for all beings (visualize, similar to ngondro), heart prayer, christ meditation
- the how of happiness
- simple, low on the food chain
- vegetables, fruit
- raw cocoa + cinnamon, dry nori
- herbs: rhodiola, eleuthero, kwei ling chi
- cod liver oil
- stangeland herbal tea – infusion throughout the day
- physical activity
- walk, hike, ski, some strength