Tag: flow

Cult of Counting

Join the Cult of Counting

Cult of Counting
We're starting this new thing called Cult of Counting, an idea we've had brewing for months. Based on the teachings of Eckart Tolle, the wisdom of Philip Rosedale, and years of experience, we believe silent counting can solve all problems.

Thoughts are the only thing that make you feel bad. What happens when you stop thinking? You feel better. Things like play and exercise help you stop thinking, but you can't constantly exercise or play. What's the underlying reason those things work? Because you stop thinking so much when you're in the flow. The mind goes blank and you just BE. Exist. Experience. Observe.

I've been silent counting for years. Maybe since 2012. The thing about silent counting is that it sucks at first. You don't believe in it. You think thinking is definitely a better use of your time.

Try it during meditation first, or while you're running. I meditate for 15 minutes a day, and on a good day I can count to 1500 during this time. Afterwards, I'm in a way better mood, because I wasn't spending the last 15 minutes worrying or planning or basically doing everything in my power to escape the moment.

Why do we try to constantly escape the moment? Eckart Tolle can tell you all about that in The Power of Now. We escape the now because we are mind-identified (thinking we ARE our mind). The mind's job is to look for problems. It's great at finding problems, but once we find them, we forget we have the power to STEP OUTSIDE THE MIND and let the solution come to us.

That's where silent counting comes in. So, you feel like shit. The first thing is to say to yourself, "I've noticed I feel like shit and that's ok." There, your mind did it's job. It noticed a problem. Now use your mind for one more moment: "What is this contrast (pain/problem) making me ask for?" What do you prefer instead? "I want to feel good." Perfect. Now the counting comes in.

Start silently counting in your head from 1-100. If you're in a lot of pain or really distracted, it's going to be hard to get to 5. Keep trying. Sit your ass down and set a timer for 5 minutes. Try to count. Keep trying. Bribe your mind, tell it it can think about problems all it wants after the 5 minutes.

You get to 100. You might not feel that much better, but maybe you can breathe a sigh of relief. Keep going. You'll really start to notice yourself feeling better when you hit 1000. The rhythm will give you energy. You'll have a 10 minute break from the chatter of your belligerent mind.

The results come slow, but keep it up for a few days. See if you can count to 10,000 in one day. After a solid day or two of giving your attention to silent counting, you'll be feeling motivated. You'll start taking better care of yourself. All because you stood up to your mind. You're no long constantly berating yourself and talking yourself out of life.

You feel better now. Better enough to stop counting. That's cool. You can coast on this good feeling for a day or two. This is a perfect time to start practicing mantras. Your mind is in a good place. You can start creating beliefs and actually believing in them. Now is the time to lay new paths in your mind. They will have a much better chance of sticking if you build them while you feel good. You'll be feeling optimistic and confident.

The mantras that have worked the best for me during this time are "(Breathing in) YES! (Breathing out) THANK YOU!", "I love myself", "I AM", "I love myself / I don't give a fuck", and "(Breathing in) In (breathing out) Out".

When you're feeling good from all the silent counting, this is a good point to jump into breath meditation. The counting trains your attention to focus on one thing, and that's what you need to do breath meditation. If your attention is all over the place, you won't be able to focus on your breath for very long. But if you've trained your attention for a few days, you'll be able to watch your breath and feel very real benefits from the practice.

Take a few days to think in mantras. Remind yourself to think them all day, just like the counting. The training of your attention will wane after a few days, unless you are very deliberately focusing. Silent counting is so amazing because it is measurable attention training. It's hard to remember or keep track of how often you remembered to think your mantra. But with counting, you know exactly how long you've been focusing.

After all this counting and repeating mantras, you're going to experience some amazing manifestations. Things you've been wanting for years are going to show up at your doorstep, because you had stopped thinking about them. You're going to get gifts and love and affection and promotions and cash and health. You're going to be all, "Holy shit! Silent counting works!"

You'll ride the manifestations for a couple days. Life will be so sweet. But with all that sweetness comes lazy thinking. Why bother to count or use mantras when thinking about all the manifestations is so delicious?

The mantras have lost their flavor. "I love myself" just doesn't have the same feeling it did the day after you were counting to 10,000. This is because your singular focus loses strength once the manifestations started coming in. Your mind is taking over. It's getting attached to the good stuff, worrying about what happens when it's gone. It's starting to find problems in all the manifestations. It's making you doubt the power of mantras and counting and yourself in general. You don't even notice your vibration slipping until you wake up depressed. "What's the point of life? I have all this stuff I wanted and I still don't feel good."

And so the cycle begins again. You're mind-identified, looking for problems and finding them. All you have to do is acknowledge the problem ("I've noticed _____ and that's ok"), ask for what you want instead ("What is this contrast making me ask for?") step outside of your mind ("1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 ..."), and let the answers come to you. This time, your manifestation muscle is going to be even stronger and more powerful. Enjoy!


The Surrender Experiment

I just finished reading Michael Singer's The Surrender Experiment, in which the author decides to stop making decisions based on his internal likes and dislikes, and instead just say yes to whatever the flow of life brings him. The book was deeply moving, because of the constant examples Singer provided regarding his experience. Every single time he put his personal preferences aside and just cooperated with the unfolding of life, life brought him a miracle.

Reading the book made me see how hard it has been for me to surrender lately. I've been very hung up on specific preferences and in a lot of pain when life doesn't go my way. Singer encouraged me to go life's way instead.

For example, there was a stray cat in the front yard yesterday. Six weeks old. Begging for food and water. Wanting to be held and pet! I knew I shouldn't feed it but I couldn't resist. It was so hungry.

It was hot out. The baby kitty started coming in the garage to lay on the cool concrete. My cats weren't very happy about this and spent the whole day in hiding.

I posted about the cat on Facebook. Can someone please adopt her? A friend of mine wanted him and promised to clear it with her husband then pick the cat up.

But the husband said no. It was getting dark and I couldn't keep the kitten inside with my cats. It was beginning to rain.

I put the kitten in the bush tearfully. Our 7yo neighbor was assisting. She picked the kitty back up and said, "I can put her in my garage just for a few minutes to keep her dry."

Within minutes her mom texted saying the cat was in their bathroom, and they were going to look for a home for it. I was beyond relieved.

Then this morning, the neighbors said they were keeping the cat! They took it to the vet, found out it was a healthy 6-week-old boy, and all the world rejoiced!

Because I surrendered to the flow. I let go of my preference of my friend coming to get the cat. I let go of my preference of taking care of the cat for the night. I let go of my preference to rescue baby animals. I let the cat go, and the next instant, able hands picked him up.

Flow Toys, Entheogens & Presence


I get so mad at my hoop
TEACH ME THINGS! I want to scream,
Like how astrojax felt on that one new year's on acid, how it talked to my body so effortlessly

And yet it is not the hoop not teaching me
it is me leaving the TextEdit window to start pandora
but then I don't want to listen to something with words
bc writing

so I distract myself over and over
today I discovered how much i actually think
it's so much
it's all the time

but every day i become more conscious and i explore my mantras and once in a great while i place my singular focus upon my breath and
there is a whole other dimension there
there is a world
beyond thought
beyond words

there is a world that i was introduced to with entheogens
and yes i did see god
so many times

i am addicted to opening my mind
i am compelled to see how deep life can get
drugs took me there
(but you know religion
then meditation
took you first
i can get there with my own breath now
and exercise
and mantras
and hoops!

oh yeah back to the hoop

so i try to remind myself, making awkward hoop video after awkward hoop video, that i should just play with the hoop
just be there with the hoop

that trip with the astrojax taught me that the flow toy
is an extension of self
it's alive
you can make it come alive
like real live magic
it's like this extension of your pineal gland
a black light, spinal looking energy that comes the fuck AWAKE in your hands

i looked at my cat after seeing this energy crawl down his arms, thought about how she was organic matter, a single expression of the flow, a dance that will come to an end

this energy
it was the thing animating the dance
the thing that came to play
the spirit
by itself

personified/drawn out by astrojax and visual trails

so i ask my hoop
please tell me something
please teach my body

because i realize how painfully out of the present i am
every time i get present for one second i think "ok..."
then try to rationalize/explain/figure out how i was able to be present for that second

you think about it and you lose it
can't be

so i want to go back to my breath but then what do i say
i remember i must do simran (repeat a mantra over and over forever)
but they are all words
i remember reading about someone's (david cain?) technique for being present on a walk home

just be without words

so i remember i can feel my breath on the tip of my nose
but i have to do that with my eyes closed

i will try hooping with my eyes closed
and feel my breath go in and out at a single point on my nostril

i asked for the hoop to tell me something

and it did

magick is flowing through me today

Seed of life

Tuesday Tips: 9 Ways to Blossom Right Now

Seed of life

Welcome to Tuesday Tips, the weekly digest of life design tricks and techniques. All of my suggestions come down to practicing the same idea: don't worry, be happy! As Alan Watts says, "Basically, there is simply nothing to worry about, because you yourself are the eternal energy of the universe."


1. Make art just to make art.
What if you could make any art you wanted, but couldn't share it online? Is it still worth making if you can't get likes and favs on it? Try creating something for the pure pleasure of it. Imagine the act of you making art as a one person show with a one person audience--you.

2. Make your art better.
When I was a kid, I would frequently win the coloring contests at my local grocery store. My secret was simple: just use something a little more creative than crayons. Cotton balls for clouds and bunny tails always seemed to do the trick. When making your own art, ask yourself, "How could I win the coloring contest?" Inspiration will come.


3. Try this mantra: "I love myself, right now."
I made a nice meditation about this one. If you can repeat it over and over eventually you’ll train your mind into manifesting circumstances in which you actually do love yourself right now. It’s really neat!

4. Remember your power. Every thought is a prayer!
If you haven't checked out E-Squared: Nine Do-It-Yourself Energy Experiments That Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality yet, please do! It explains so many concepts of conscious creation with humor and ease. Here's a little testament to the power of your mind: "The only reason Jesus could walk on water was because 100 percent of his thoughts (prayers) believed he could. He had overcome the world's thought system that says Only an idiot would be stupid enough to step out of the boat. There was not one doubt--not a single thought (prayer) in his consciousness that didn't fully believe it."

5. Read David Cain's blog, Raptitude.
I was going to pile a bunch more tips in this edition based on David's articles, but you should really just go read them yourself. First: Why most problems never have to be solved. To summarize: write down each problem as it occurs to you on a post-it. Then go through your post-its at the end of the week and prove to yourself how many things do work themselves out. Then read The First World’s biggest addiction. David explains how every time we reach for coffee or alcohol or food or our phones, "we are training ourselves to be needy and dependent on circumstances." Finally, check out 15 unexpected side-benefits to living in the present moment to convince your mind to try it out, right now.


6. Examine your anxiety.
I came across this tumblr post about the long term effects of anxiety: shortness of breath, rashes, headaches, and fatigue to name a few. I've had all of those symptoms and it suddenly occurred to me that my inexplicable asthma and allergies are likely just caused by anxiety. Again and again I remind myself to relax and stop worrying. Now that I have made the connection between my thoughts and physical symptoms, I can be more conscious of my triggers, and more devoted to chilling the eff out.

7. Find your muse: channel desire into creativity.
You know when you want someone so bad it drives you crazy and you can't think of anything else? You can tap into that energy and use it to drive your creative work. From Think and Grow Rich:

The energy must be transmuted from desire for physical contact, into some other form of desire and action, before it will lift one to the status of a genius...The salesman who knows how to take his mind off the subject of sex, and direct it in sales effort with as much enthusiasm and determination as he would apply to its original purpose, has acquired the art of sex transmutation.


8. If you flow, you're a flower.
I found this gem by Forest Sage in the Universal Geometry Spirit Science video. "If you labor, you are a 'laborer'. If you work on a farm, you are a 'farmer'. And if you flow, you are a 'Flower'." Finally, an answer to, "What do you do?"

9. Be a joy for yourself to watch.
This reality you're seeing is for your eyes only. You are the performer, and you are the audience. Don't let what other people think influence what you do. Just do what delights you, right now. Sing while you do the chores. Type with a flourish. Sit up straight and smile for your camera. The only purpose this moment has is for you to enjoy it. And when you take pleasure in being yourself, others will too.

Daily Guide to Life Design #12: Flow

Cecil the cape sundew

The tree grows from a seed effortlessly. The flower blooms naturally. Life just flows.

There is a rhythm to life that you can connect to at any time. You can hear it in music, see it in dance, taste it in fruit. When you silence your mind, you can feel it in your body.

Have your desires and let them go. The flow of life will bring them to you. Let what's happening, happen. It's the flow of life. Let what you see, be. Let yourself be who you are, where you are. You are in the flow of life.

Any time you feel stress, struggle, or strain, remember the flow of life. It is never a struggle to blossom. It is an allowing. When you allow life to unfold, you are connected to the rhythm of life.

To literally feel the universal rhythm, try playing with flow toys like Astrojax or hula hoops or poi. They'll help you remember how to be effortless.

How I’m Doing Right & Killing Everything

ink print by watanabe sawako. pencil drawing by kelly cree.

I scraped together my $324 credit card bill. It was easy. Now I need $433 before Thursday. I just transfered $18.36 from Paypal, so make that $415.

We've had to turn down invitations to dine out twice now. Opting to cook at home, Kelly and I are remembering the magick of food. We love to cook. It's such a blessing.

I have never been more focused. I've always wanted this. A reason to stop buying so much food, a reason to say no, something external pushing me to work. It's like the universe has become my dad. I just want someone to tell me what to do.

The most hilarious part of all of this is that I'm finally taking my own advice. I preach from the high fucking heavens all day every day, but how often do I do my own worksheets? Read my own books? Apply my own tips? Practice my own mantras?

I do practice, all the time. But now I'm beginning to truly believe in my work. My worksheets work. I just have to want something bad enough to do them. My contrast is so high right now, I know exactly what I want, and wild horses can't stop me from doing everything I can to succeed.

The advice I have to take from myself is to stop doing. To stop caring, to stop worrying, to go with the flow. Stop chasing money. Stop chasing success. Be still. Allow. Receive.

The more I focus, the more beautiful the reflections I can see. Yesterday my friend Ari gifted me the best book I've ever read, Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends On It. It's one person's story about using a mantra that actually worked: "I love myself." It's that simple.

Even as I drag my coin jar to Coinstar for booze money, I'm laughing at myself. This is so funny. It's not serious. I still love myself at the bottom. I love myself. And I'm having more fun than ever before.

Focus one point and breathe

How to Enjoy Being

Focus one point and breathe

There is an apartment building in my neighborhood that has the words "Enjoy being" painted across the front of it. I love the concept, but up until recently I really had no idea what it meant.

In another part of Austin, on a bridge that crosses Lady Bird Lake, I've discovered explicit instructions sent from above to answer the question of how to enjoy being: "Focus one point and breathe."

Focus one point and breathe

Focus one point and breathe. Feel one point on your body or look at one single speck and breathe. It's the simplest flow toy there is. You know you're outside of the Now if you lose your focus, break your gaze, or get distracted. But if you can keep your attention steady on one single point, whether it's something you're looking at or a point you're feeeing on your body (for example, the point where breath enters and leaves your nostrils), you'll feel the joy of simply being. It feels like tripping—that blissful state where you know everything is perfect and magickal right now, and things like money and time truly don't matter.

When you direct all your attention and focus to a single point, you can see how what seems stationary is constantly changing. You can begin to see and feel the unfolding of life. It's always in motion and there is no action you can take to influence it. All you can do is play with it and accept the gifts it constantly brings you.

Practice that state of being—the state of enjoying being—and that is the only work you will ever have to do on this Earth. Everything you want will unfold perfectly, now that you've gotten out of the way.

You are HERE

Using the Kaleidoscope to Understand Time Travel

You are HERE

The kaleidoscope is a metaphor for reality. The mind is the center point on the 'scope, and the mind chooses what passes through that center. Whatever passes through the center is then reflected through the entire available view, just as whatever thought passes through your mind is reflected through your entire reality.

The mind will never see the big picture, because it has a very limited perspective of a single point. Whatever shape it chooses, it chooses based on a linear perspective of time. It wants so bad to create the big picture pattern, but it can never see the pattern. So it chooses shapes to the best of it's ability with limited perspective.

Consciousness sees the bigger picture, the entire kaleidoscope view. When you zoom out to become consciousness, instead of just your mind, you get a sense of the overall pattern of things, how they're all connected. But if you stay mind-identified, you will try and try and try to pick the right shape to make the big-picture pattern you want, but with a time-based linear perspective, you will never be able to see the patterns you're creating.

The mind wants to choose the right shape to make the big picture pattern, but mostly it just wants to keep passing through shapes. The trick is to zoom out and see the big picture and know that the mind cannot logically select the proper shape to create the big-picture pattern. Only broader consciousness can do that.

The mind may try to force the shapes it thinks will create the pattern. It will select the same shape over and over, trying to make it work, but forcing a logically selected shape (i.e., experience) will only cloud and dim the big picture. We must surrender the task of choosing experiences to the broader perspective of consciousness. We must surrender our need to logically decide what's best for us and let the flow provide us with the shapes or experiences we need to create the big picture pattern we want.

When a shape passes through the center of the kaleidoscope, it happens Now. But shapes that have previously passed through the center are still being reflected through the big picture view. What shape passes through the center Now affects the shapes that have already passed through the center. This is a way to understand how what thoughts or experiences the mind chooses right now affect the past and future. The current shape moves the other shapes not currently passing through the center. Our present thoughts affect our past and future.

Using your mind to decide what to do will always produce weak results because the mind cannot see the big picture. The mind is the single point of perspective that allows us to experience reality in the way we do, but it is just a single point. Our lives are the big picture kaleidoscope view, which we are capable of seeing when we step outside of our minds to the perspective of broader consciousness.

My point is this: allow the flow to determine what shapes pass through your mind. Whatever desires, experiences, or thoughts come to you, say yes to them. The flow is giving them to you because the flow sees the bigger picture pattern, and knows exactly what shape to give you next to create the pattern you want to live. Don't let your mind trick you into believing it knows what's best for you. Your rules, limiting beliefs and resolutions are only resisting the gifts the flow provides. Say yes to whatever passes through the center of your kaleidoscope and watch the exact pattern you desire unfold, more perfect and beautiful than you ever imagined.

The Work

Feel Good No Matter What

The Work

Choose to feel good first.
Your mind won't believe it.
It will tell you those tools and processes won't work. They won't feel as good as a drink, or a drug, or a drivethru.

Remember the last time life was running smoothly. What was different?
You decided to care about how you felt.
You told your mind to shut the fuck up.

Once you learn the lesson for yourself, you'll forget.
But you'll remember again, and this time it's easier.
You'll go higher, further, deeper.

When you get so low that you're afraid for your health, or your safety, or your life,
just laugh. It's not that serious. I promise.
Your laugh is your ticket to the ride back up.

When you feel good, milk it. Milk it, milk it, milk it.
Remember every detail. Paint pictures. Pray harder than ever before.
You'll be so grateful you have a bookmarked place to return to.

When you start blaming caffeine, or weed, or your job for your bad mood,
remember that when you feel good, none of those things matter.
You can have it all.

Take a picture of your good feelings. Write them down.
When you feel bad enough, you'll remember about your bookmarks.
How did I feel good again?

Eventually you'll prove to yourself again and again,
feeling good is the only way to get what you want.
Feel good no matter what. Feel good no matter what.

When you catch that good feeling, memorize it.
Write about it. Be it. Bask in the feeling of feeling good
even though you're broke. Even though you're broken.

And what you want will come,
and you won't care,
because you already have everything you need inside.