In response to the request / challenge that Mark J gave us students of The Master Keys Experience (MKE), I gave 12 hours to the Silence last Tuesday – a period of time in which contact with electronic communication systems was removed, along with any other distraction, from the objective of allowing us to listen to our minds.
Several personal accounts of the benefits of the Silence were aired on the webinar on the previous Sunday. I was intrigued to discover the benefits for myself.
I have been fortunate enough in my life to experience good teaching, from fine exponents of their profession, of the art of mindfulness. I had been taught breath control and meditation techniques (see blog Week 21 – Heroes and Mentors in the Abyss) and had been coached in the art of holding thoughts objectively, loosely in the mind and to discard them if not of value (see blog Week 9 – Answers from Nowhere). I have learned the stark, introspective nature of wall meditation and the expansive, vibrant experience of cloud meditation, but to spend an extended period of time in quiet and secluded contemplation was something I really wanted to try out. So at 9:30 am Tuesday, my new adventure began…
It never ceases to amaze me how apt and timely are the scrolls we read from Og Mandino’s “Greatest Salesman” as part of our daily exercises for MKE. The current offering is centred on the mastery of our emotions. The silence for me began as a struggle due to my initial feelings and moods. Tiredness was the root cause of my restlessness when attempting to start the Silence. Having the sleep pattern of a “night owl” the start of the working day is difficult for me to function properly and despite a good dose of caffeine to stimulate the thought process, the relaxation of the event resulted in periods of dozing and refocussing courtesy of the works of Og, Charles and Napoleon for the first couple of hours. But at least I learned that early morning is not the best time for me to be still and contemplate for long sessions. A walk in the local forest would serve me better.
The afternoon was far more promising, with contemplation of my DMP firing-off a trail of thoughts connecting the key words in the text and deriving a clearer meaning of what these words actually mean to me – getting a sharper focussed picture of what my DMP conveys. It all led me to a contemplation on the type of person I want to become by the time I was finished, I had defined eight attributes of my character I want to work on. These attributes will go onto a “Franklin Makeover” table that we’ve previously used in MKE. But this time for a given day, I want to tally ALL of the attributes at once, then repeat the process with the same table every week. That way, I can start to build a picture of the attributes that tally least – and therefore probably the weaker ones in my character in order to improve them.
Sorry if this sounds a little dry to you – it’s not the “freakin’ AWESOME!!!” type of comment that people on last week’s webinar used to describe their experiences. In fact, when I finished my 12 hours of the Silence, my overall impression of the event was….pleasant…sort of nice. Is that because I am a reserved Brit with a “white” colour code personality? Only partly. Is it because I just didn’t get it? Not at all. The reason is that 6 hours into the session, I realised that these conditions aren’t much different from my average day. I noticed just how blessed I was with the lifestyle I have, with bags of time to contemplate and meditate if I wish. One of my identified Personal Pivotal Needs was Autonomy – to do what you want to do when you want to do it. From the Silence, I made the realisation that I already had it! And that, my friends is not only a comforting thought, but a great revelation to me. Freakin’ AWESOME, actually!