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Monday, August 8, 2011

Staying in Pure Awareness cont'd

In order to find out where you are in your mind at any given time during the day, you have to be reminded periodically to wake up and check where you were right before the wake-up call. That's where the wake-up call comes in. For example, you are doing something like making the bed in the morning and a bell rings to remind you to check where your mind was. You immediately realize that you were thinking about what your spouse said to you earlier that morning - you were not in pure awareness; you were in waking sleep. This is not only testing but it is also practice - practice of being more and more in pure awareness.

The more you practice being in pure awareness the easier it is to stay there. However, if your practice begins to be an annoyance it may be because you are beginning to get "gun shy" and are anticipating the wake-up call rather than just letting it be. You do not want the anticipation of the wake-up call to turn into anxiety. In other words, don't let your good intentions, become too intense. If this happens, take a few weeks or even months off and come back to the wake-up call when you feel more comfortable with it. When you come back to the practice of using a wake-up call you may find that you have gained ground because of the time off. The main thing is, have fun with the process of becoming more and more aware. If you let it become a burden you may not gain ground.

In our group we tried various things as wake-up calls. After trying all kinds of things we finally ended up using a clock called the Zen Timepiece. We set the clock to go off every 20 minutes while we discussed varous topics such as meditation and being in the Now. We discovered that no one had any idea when the 20 minutes was up or when the clock was going to chime. While we were in discussion, sense of time was lost and the wake-up call was a total surprise.

Later on we came across medical wrist watches that work great as wake-up calls. They are relative inexpensive and can be set them to "beeb," flash or vibrate at any interval during the day. We wore the watches during the day and recorded our results on a graph. As time went on we found that our efforts were paying off. We all were staying in pure awareness longer and longer. 50% is considered very good.

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