I was at a whole foods today. And while I was in the supplements department I overheard an employee informing one of the innocent customers about a particular enzyme supplement. I don't make it a habit of listening in on other people’s conversations but what caught my ear was a statement I’ve heard all too many times... A statement that starts something like “As we age...” and the statement usually goes on to reiterate some lovely tendency of degeneration within the human body to some impressionable person who wants to feel better... which is why they were in the supplements department... to feel better. But now they’ve just been reminded of their one way ticket to death on a path that has been down hill since age 20 something. So, in fact, they don’t feel better.
This very friendly and knowledgeable sounding employee truly felt he was doing this lady a favor by informing her that her enzymes were going to be produced less and less as she gets older. Something I’ve heard numerous times before. Well, though I didn’t expect it, his well-intentioned impartation was the straw that broke this camel’s back (me...I’m a camel). And I rushed to my computer to fight back the only way I know how... With a new script! Which is why I'm giving you this blog. Remember... I'm not getting paid for this. I'm doing this for you! 'Cause I want to spare you from automatically following suit!
I’ve heard these insidious warnings from my aging forerunners since I hit 25 years old. And I’ve almost always heard it from someone who gave me the distinct impression that they were making themselves feel better in some twisted way by foreshadowing my all too attractive future of degradation.
Another one that I “love” is when I shared with my friend the way my hair has changed in recent times. Not at all as a complaint, but as an observation. He jumped on the opportunity like a tabby on a cat toy... “Oh that’s nothing! Wait till you get older... you’re hair will start to get wiry and shit... Just wait!” Or my other friend a couple decades ahead of me warning me of thinning lips as well as other self-image threatening predictions. Again, with a kind of sadistically pleasured glint in his eyes as he essentially told me, "just wait." Yet another friend spoke very endearingly to me at a recent gig about watching everyone he loves checking out of this planet one by one in unpleasant and painful ways as he bitterly scoffed at the fact that they’re called “the golden years.” It was intense.
I’m not going to lie. I value the upkeep of my appearance and health. But it was not a foreboding sense of loosing my attractiveness or deteriorating into a painful liberation from life that got my attention... but rather, the very fact that there seems to be an uncalled for degree of enthusiasm to pass on to their successors the reassurance of something they themselves obviously don’t celebrate. Aging.
Now, Mr. Wholey McFoodins was by no means rocking this kind of fiendish transmission while assisting the customer with enzyme supplements. He really, quite innocently, was just doing his job. And doing it well, I might add. At lease according to where the cultural mindset currently resides around such matters of... er... growing wiser. And herein lies my case in point. It’s a program that spreads like an infection throughout the collective consciousness of mankind (and womankind). We don’t even realize we are participating in the propagation of these ideas, we just pass it along based on the assumption of their inherent validity. We just lip sync to what we’ve been told about aging (and what we see) usually without ever examining why we feel driven to do so, let alone why we chose to believe it. Like my youth-loving friends whom I mentioned above.
Now many of you may feel that the arguments in favor of the loss of certain human faculties are indeed valid and founded on the overwhelming evidence of... well... “old people.” And the countless scientific studies of the aging process. Not to mention what may be your very own colorful list of sorely missed youthful attributes. But this is where I come in ;). I admit I am being bold to step into this arena with only a few gray hairs. But what I’d like to bring to the table of your awareness is very simple. Have you considered that a lot, if not all, of the aging and decay of the human body is subconsciously programmed into us and reaffirmed by what is embodied and played out by our elders? Have you considered that your expectation of aging contributes to your aging? Like some kind of unintentional self-fulfilled prophecy? And, to really blow your head off, have you ever stopped to consider that the very way you use your mind (the underlying practice of how you think/perceive) directly determines how you age? Well I have… quite a bit!
I’m going to take you deeper in layers here… and attempt to do it briefly. So fasten your seat belts…or not. Basically, we inherit the script about what to expect when you’re expecting… death. We see our forefathers and foremothers pass before us due to old age and the physical states they were in prior to departure and we log this into our subconscious… in a deep real way. We think “I’ll deal with that later.” But we unconsciously expect our own demise in the back of our minds and feel our hearts slightly drop every time new wrinkles appear on our faces in the mirror… “Just like they told me they would.” There is a very tangible gravity to what we perceive as the inevitable. But I am venturing to say it is perceived as inevitable only because we haven’t seen anything else yet. So why would we expect another outcome?
Again, this is why I’m here. If nothing else, I’d like to open a door for you with this entry and give
you at least a glimmer of something far more interesting than aging like we’ve seen it. It’s like you’ve been handed a script and you start reading it but you forget that it was a script and you are such an amazing actor, you play the part so well, that you die. You had me fooled. And you should really consider a career in hollywood before your talent kills you! That would be such a waste!
What if you can write your own script? What if you realized that every cell in your body were like little impressionable bright eyed and bushy tailed minions waiting to say yes to every single thought you thunk? Every order you gave? Imagine that these cute little soldiers laughed when you laughed and cried when you cried. And cursed the world when you were angry. What if you knew that the feelings you feel in your body were the overwhelming symphony of the sum of millions and billions of their voices informing you of the quality of your thoughts? And what if when the symphony doesn’t sound so great you took it as a valuable information that something ain’t working on the administrative levels of You Inc.?
What if you knew that every thought that didn’t feel good was wearing and tearing on your most prized and precious physical instrument? What if you knew that your body hears exactly everything you tell it? Including with regards to aging? Well, obviously the implications are far more encompassing than just maintaining your youth. It starts to look like… super powers? Who knows man! But I can guarantee we are capable of so much more while we keep ourselves stuck in what we’ve already seen and what we haven’t!
Yes, your every thought is ingested by your body. And this can be shown “scientifically” with observations of chemical phenomenon in the human organism. We know it’s real. But it’s not just the kinds of thoughts we think… and this is where we drop deeper… it’s the very structure of our thinking itself that we must look at. We can go from bad thoughts to good thoughts on the same
playing field of our familiar modes of thinking. Or we can, as yoga suggests, rehab our minds out of the familiar dualistic framework where we habitually objectify reality and ourselves which then opens us up to Life as we never knew it before. And what better antidote to decay than Life itself?
In other words, it’s not just that we’re eating our thoughts and therefore choose happy thoughts… that’s kindergarten. I’m suggesting that our thinking itself is blocking us from the primary source of Food/Life. And this is why we age like we do. We’re asphyxiated from the very source of Life by the age old habit of looking at everything (including ourselves) and this leads us to disconnect from the very source of vitality which funds all life. When we ask, “where does it all come from?” we are always dumbfounded and even science can’t answer it. Well that does not mean that it is not real. It means that it is more real than anything else! It means that the Source of it all overwhelms the structures of our familiar modes of perceiving, measuring and compartmentalizing what the Source generates. We can't look at Reality. But we can directly tap into it.. as it. And this is what we haven't been taught to do. We just inherited this mode of perceiving reality that objectifies (and therefore takes the life out of) everything we look at.... Including our bodies! This standard and familiar form of perceiving is analogous to looking at the light after traveling through numerous filters and refractions until it is a dim replica of it’s source. And we call this understanding… scientia… science. But it is only a dim replica. To see the source directly would be "blinding." And our everyday lifestyles only allot for tiny little sporadic tastes of the awesome reverence that Reality obviously commands. And this is just not enough to sustain our youthfulness!
But what if we could live in a constant direct basking in this Source Light? Source Food? How would we age? How would we feel? What would we be capable of? All our greatest wisdom teachings through the ages are trying to rehabilitate us into the primary source of life through enlightenment, which is wisdom, which is dropping the old suffocating script we use and stepping into presence and primary being! It’s closer to us than we are. Go figure (I’ll bet you can’t). Try to wrap your head around it (I’ll bet it hurts). This is the “Die before you die” of which Zen speaks. This is Jesus’ medicine, “unless you die you cannot be born again.” This is Krishna's invitation into Yoga. But the word rehab implies getting back to where we were. But this is not accurate. The teachings are inviting us to Transcend the mental program in its entirety. So it would be more accurate to call it "Transhab." A new word you can put into your dictionary for supernatural humans. It is not new what I'm sharing. It has been hidden in many of our world's traditions. But more importantly you can access this wisdom directly and feel your vitality sky rocket upon releasing the death grip that our old mode of thinking has on us.
I ask you to enter an experiment with me. Let’s opt out of the irresponsible lip syncing to our predecessors’ script around death and aging. And let’s start practicing NOT blocking ourselves from Source Light/Source Food by taking responsibility for our thinking itself. I may have yet to prove it to you in the flesh... but you better believe that this experiment has begun. Wanna join me?