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The Art of Peace

But, the way of the peaceful warrior teaches us that there are no ordinary moments ; it teaches us that there is always something amazing happening and that we have but to open our minds in order to see it. I guess what I need to do is train myself to see the extraordinary; to see the beauty and the love that is all around me at all times. When I can do that, the past and the future won't matter because this moment - the now - will be overwhelming.

Socrates : Where are you? Dan Millman : Here. Socrates : What time is it? Dan Millman : Now. Socrates : What are you? Dan Millman : This moment. My thought is that it isnt about the content of the moment overwhelming you or being powerful enough to hold your attention. In both those situations you are looking to the external content to keep you in the moment by distracting you from yourself. The trick is to realise that one can stay in the moment no matter what the external situation - whether it be as boring as batshit or as exciting as lightning - by maintaining control of your mind.

If not you may want to get a copy. It sounds like it would fit well with your philosophy of Life. I've been meaning to watch the movie for a while, but I've read the book a few times over the years the sequel is worth a read too. There's a reason they put so much Tai-chi and meditation and the like in the book - those are tools for getting a little more awareness of your mind.

I find that if my minds racing, I'll just sit for a while and come back to the breath. If I'm too buzzed to just sit in meditation, something like Tai Chi works well as there are movements you can focus on, but they are simple and repetitive enough that it calms the mind down pretty quickly. If you want to know more about those kind of "flow" experiences we all have when coding, playing a sport, etc. It makes no difference at all, so just be happy NOW!

Love is the only reality of the world, it is all ONE, you see. And the only laws are paradox, humor, and change. There is no problem, never was, and never will be. Release your struggle, let go of your mind, throw away your concerns, and relax into the world. No need to resist life; just do your BEST. Open your eyes and see that you are far more than you imagine.

You are the world, you are the universe; you are yourself and everyone else, too! It's all the marvelous Play of God. If you haven't already, do yourself a favor and read the book. The movie is great, but leaves out so much. His other books are good to. It's interesting that you mention that Tai Chi has movements that are simple and repetitive enough to concentrate on. I think I may be able to concentrate on them as well; my worry, however, is that when there is someone less tangible to concentrate on, will I be able to?

The book you mention looks very fascinating. I'll try to pop into Barnes and Noble tonight and take a peek.

5 Life-Changing Takeaways from the Book, “Way Of The Peaceful Warrior”

The way that I have done it is by making sure I take the time to meditate every day for at least 20 minutes - prefereably twice a day. In my meditation I practice "stopping thinking" - ie just being and observing myself being, as opposed to thinking about what happenned yesterday, or the tasks for the day, etc etc.

I can manage up to a minute or so of that state before I distract myself by attaching to a thought and then I notice that I am thinking and detach myself again.

The most powerful experience of this I have had was doing Vipassana meditation retreat - 10 days of meditating for 16 hours a day and not talking to anyone. It was fantastic! Not religious, not dogma, not a sect, not weird at all! Just a space to practice a fantastic "simple" technique. I guess what I am saying is that while the intellectual understanding of the process is important ie "Way of the warrior" and "the power of now" etc , the change is most potent by constant practice and experience so that our old habit of a busy mind is replaced by a new habit of a calm mind.

Neuroscience tells us that to rewire our brains ie drop an old habit and install a new one we need repetition.

Global Peace Warriors “The Peace Innovators” by Dan Buttry

I've heard nothing but great things about real meditation. Meditation for 16 hours sounds quite intense : I will look into some more of this practice. I am all about "repetition" and I agree that we need to train and re-train our brains to act a certain way. Maybe I will make it a ritual before I go to sleep, to lay in bed and just keep my mind as still as possible. Thanks for the feedback. Your idea sounds like a good one.

One way to help that process is to try to keep your focus on your breathing - feel the air going in and out of your nose. That way, you are focussing on being now and since we cant think about more than one thing at any instant, you wont be thinking about the past day or the future tomorrow. You can then get a feeling for the experience of the space of not "thinking" in the now. Or to put it another way - there is much to be gained by giving the CPU a rest by suspending all tasks and blocking the input queue.

Hey Ben, If you want to find a place to get a little experience of sitting. Not specifically religious and they have good intro to meditation sessions. If you ever want to roll over together, let me know. I haverm't been there in forever, so I could probably do with an excuse to go there! Interestingly enough I was just talking to my Mom about this last week, she is talking a class in "hot yoga" where you do yoga in a super-heated room and she was talking about how it really clears her mind and she's able to just lay there during cool down and not think of anything else, just with a totally clear mind.

I've gotten terrible in fact at trying to multi-task all the time. When watching TV, I'm almost always doing something else, when working, I have music going and will often be working on hard strength from time to time, or jumping up regularly to do some cleaning or cooking.

Reader Comments

I too easily let stress get to me and learning to enjoy the moment would probably greatly help in dealing with that. On a side-note Ben, you deserve a smack in the head for actually using a word like "proprioceptive", you show-off you! I read your post with deep interest.

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Thank you! I've spent a great deal of time involved in attempting to understand this thing of "the moment".

Way of the Peaceful Warrior by Dan Miilman Audiobook

How does it happen that one enters that space. What's the path? It's been my one true passion for a long time. The really interesting part is that it seems there is nothing to learn about it! I haven't gotten any "better" at it, not one bit, in all these years. But I have learned something about the pathway. I suppose we are used to horizontal pathways in life, step 1, step 2, step 3, especially when learning something, or achieving something. Step 1, study up on the basics of OO. Step 2, learn Model Glue. Step 3, learn Transfer. Step 4, tackle Flex. Step 5, use these skills to "make it" in the world So you would think the same strategy might work with "the moment", just you're not sure what the right steps are yet, cuz you haven't found anyone delineating them clearly, and you're not so certain where being in "this moment" actually leads!

So it's not so easy to find the steps you should take, and that's probably because, paradoxically, there aren't any. So to me, this is perhaps the ultimate Zen koan.

What I Thought of Dan Millman's “The Way of the Peaceful Warrior”

In reality, I'm "here and now", so no steps are needed to arrive "here and now", any steps lead me away. What you say is very interesting. In it, he tries to explain much of the frustration you might be feeling. For starters, when you become fully conscious in the moment, there is no time. The Now contains all moments because you can never have a moment that wasn't in the Now have you ever lived in the future? No, you can only ever live in the Now.

Also, as you are saying, you can't "Think" your way into the Now. What you can do is simply try to observe your thoughts and realize that your thinking mind is separate from your identity. Once you do this, you will start to disassociate from your ego and you will be come more conscious as an indirect result. But, this requires you quiet your mind, to think less. As such, you cannot "think" your way into consciousness of the moment as this is almost a contradiction in terms. The book is a bit hard to wrap my head around.