MEDITATION; SHOULD I; SHOULD YOU?
By Jim “Gymbeaux” Brown, October 23, 2017
How many instructors, authors and some doctors have said that meditation is very beneficial for your peace and happiness not to mention your good or better health? In my lifetime a great many of them have.
As a form of disclaimer, I have tried to teach myself to meditate, and here comes the but, but I have Tinnitus. For those who do not know what that it, Tinnitus is a ringing in your ears. For some people the ringing comes and goes. For others like me, it is there, always there, and it can be very annoying.
Having been in real estate sales for over 33 years, I have experienced homes that are located very near to railroad tracks. When the owners put their homes up for sale, I ask the obvious question, “How do you put up with the noise of the trains that pass?” Almost to an owner they respond, “What trains?” They have adjusted by blocking out the noise; at least that is what they say. Yet that is pretty much how I have adapted to having a constant ringing in my ears. I have blocked it out or at least I try to. What I have discovered is that I will go for hours without hearing it primarily because I don’t think about it. Then, when I think about it, it’s there, it never really left.
That leaves me to today. I purchased and am taking a course Practicing Mindfulness; An Introduction to Meditation by Dr. Mark W. Muesse. You can see this course and many more on www.TheGreatCourses.com web site; a great site. I purchased several courses.
I know for certain that the lessons of the course have already had an impact on my life. Like so many, it did not take much to upset me. Whether it was stupid drivers; unknowledgable clerks at stores; wrong orders, you name it. I may not have shown it physically but I can assure you that mentally, I was angry. A lot of cars dashboards have felt the brunt of my displeasure with the way people drive. I would jokingly suggest that turn signals are optional items when you purchase a car or drive in Louisiana. This weekend proved that watching and listening to Dr. Muesse has made a difference. I was doing work around the house and had a need to go to the Lowe’s store several times. On more than one occasion, I had to return to Lowes to replace a broken or missing item in a product I purchased. A week ago, I would have been really angry. I didn’t realize it until several days later when I had a chance to think about what I had done over the weekend.
I was focused on accomplishing at least 10 significant tasks around the house. When I returned from Lowes to unbox a new overhead light for the garage, I found that the globe was busted in a lot of little pieces. I boxed up the light and headed back to Lowes. I did not argue with the clerk or even get mad; I simply exchanged the broken light for a new one. I opened the box to make certain the globe was intact and it was. I installed the light with no problems until I tried to put the globe on the base unit. That is when I discovered that 3 of the 6 retainer clips on the globe were broken off. In the past this would have sent me over the edge. Instead, I cleaned up and when time permitted I looked up the manufacturer of the light and emailed them to tell them what had happened (twice). I asked that they simply mail me 3 replacement container clips. Done. Have not heard from the manufacturer as yet but I know they will respond. As per the instructions of Dr. Muesse, I put it aside and moved on and until I started writing this Nugget, haven’t given it a second thought.
Dr. Muesse talks about eating a tangerine in one of the lessons. I guarantee you that if you were to watch and listen to the lesson; you will NEVER eat a tangerine EVER again in the manner in which you have eaten them in the past. Me telling you about it simply could not possibly do his presentation justice. How did that one less apply to me? Thought you would never ask.
I had an outpatient procedure involving back injections. As before, I would arrive on time and as in the past being on time only lets the staff know you are there. That is when they begin the pre-op tasks like asking a lot of questions and inserting an IV. When they are done, you lie there and wait your turn. You are in an assembly line of patients. I was #4 in line. The actual procedure takes no more than 5 minutes. You are wheeled in, put under and the next thing you know you are awake, groggy and within 30 minutes you are in the car and on your way home. However, the entire process starting with leaving the house to returning to the house took almost 4 hours.
How did Dr. Muesse’s lessons help me? I thought of him eating that tangerine as I lie there waiting my turn. I could have gotten impatient like I have in the past – I am not the most patient person in the world. Or at least I WASN’T the most impatient person in the world. This time I started with the clock on the wall. I noted the time. Then I started to peel back the story of that very ordinary clock. Like Dr. Muesse, I began asking a lot of questions. I wondered where they bought it. Who bought it? Who made it? How many people were involved in making this clock? How long have they worked at the company that made the clock? How long will the battery last? It was high on the wall, who changed the battery up that high? I wondered if that person was married. Did he or she have any kids? It was amazing; you can ask a lot of questions in your mind. It did not stop at the clock. There was the device where they heated their blankets. There were the nurses. I watched them. I noticed how they moved, what they said, how they made light of the situation to ease the minds of the patients. The questions can be endless if you think about it. And isn’t that the goal of the presentation – get you to be in the present?
Suddenly a nurse appeared at the foot of my bed; it was my time to go into the operating room. I looked up at the clock and to my surprise, the time had flown by and not once did I feel impatient with the lingering time. If you are going to have a medical procedure done, would it not make a great deal of sense to be as calm as you could possibly be BEFORE the procedure?
Another story for the road. I had tools all over the place. When I finished the project in the yard, I gathered up all the tools and intended to put them away. As I turned to look at a pass car, I say my pocket knife lying in the grass. In days past, I would have just picked up the knife and moved on. Not today. I actually said thank you for enabling me to see the knife and put it with the other tools. I know I would NOT have done that prior to this month before I took Dr. Muesse’s course.
My Life’s Mission Statement is “To help people to do what they do to do it better.” Unless you do not pay attention, there is no doubt in my mind that IF you were to take all 24 lessons of Practicing Mindfulness, you WILL do whatever it is you do, and do it better. Pretty hard to screw up if you don’t continually get angry or expect the worse.
My advice to everyone is to go to www.ordergreatcourses.com and look up Practicing Mindfulness and order the course. More importantly, don’t let it just sit there collecting dust, take the course. Let me say it in advance, you are very welcome!