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Sunday, July 31, 2011

Lost Consciousness cont'd

Many, many people are not awake. Their mind and body are not in sync with each other. Eating and reading, driving and texting, walking and talking, working out and listening to an ipod. The mind is not focused on the task at hand.

I remember when I was 21. I had my real first job as a biologist and my partner was older, about 40. While we were having lunch at a Chinese restaurant one day he told me to slow down and eat one piece of food at a time. He said, "Take one bean and place it on your tongue. Taste it and feel its texture. Roll it around in your mouth for a little while before chewing it. And when you chew it, chew it very slowly tasting every molecule that comes out of the bean." He said, "Think of the bean as the only piece of food you will ever get for the rest of your life."

I thought he was kidding me. What kind of eating is that, to eat one bean at a time? But I did it anyway. That was my first encounter with mindful eating. My tastbuds came alive, and when I bit into the bean every flavor, every essence of the bean came alive and burst open in my mouth. What an awakening that moment was. That first encounter of eating with intention was permanently embossed in my memory.

Last week my wife and I went biking on the Hawthorn Trail. After biking we loaded our bikes on the back of the pickup and drove into Micanopy and had lunch at the Old Florida Cafe. I had a delicious bowl of chili and Nancy had a Cuban sandwich. After lunch we drove home, unloaded the bicycles and went inside. About an hour later a knock came at the door. It was a man who frequently comes around wanting to wash and wax cars. He had a friend with him and I let them wash and wax the pickup. When they finished I paid them and they left. The pickup was still in the driveway where I left it. I got in it to park it under the shade tree and noticed my billfold was not where I usually put it. I immediately thought, "The guy that did the inside of the truck must have taken it." I looked everywhere inside and outside the pickup. I called the Old Florida Cafe to see if I left it there. It wasn't there. I looked in the house, on the bookshelves, in my pants, everywhere. No billfold.

I called the bank and cancled my credit card and ordered a new one. The next day Nancy and I drove to Ocala to the driver license office and I got a new license. I bought a new billfold. I went to AAA and got a new card. I called my health insurance company and auto insurance company and had them send me new insurance cards.

Today, four days later, Nancy walks in the house and says, "Guess what I found," as she holds my billfold in her sweet little hand. "I found this in my bicycle basket." When I took the biclycles off the rack I must have dumped my wallet in her basket with the intention of getting it later. I was not in the moment. I don't know what I was thinking but I sure wasn't aware. I was in waking sleep.

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