Tag Archive 'The Power of Now'

Dec 10 2012

I’m Losing My Mind, YAY! Here’s How: – #98

In a recent interview, Eckhart Tolle told Oprah that years ago, when he was a scholar and doctoral candidate at Cambridge University in England, he was severely depressed, tormented by persistent negative thoughts, and was contemplating suicide. At the time, he said to himself, “I can’t live with myself anymore.” That sparked an epiphany, a clear awareness of his egoic mind versus his true self, and it catapulted him into the present and changed his life forever. He quit his secure position at the university, and spent his days sitting on a park bench enjoying his newfound peace and sharing with others about ‘the power of now’.

Oprah asked him how the people in his life reacted to his sudden change, and he said, “My mother thought I’d lost my mind.” Oprah smiled and said, “You did lose your mind!” They both laughed. He lost his painful egoic mind and gained the expansive peaceful presence of his true self.

There’s a saying, “Of all the things I’ve lost, I miss my mind the most.” For me, of all the things I’ve lost, I miss my mind the LEAST. I sometimes had a chatterbox mind; when I was unsettled, my busy mind was like a crazed acrobat, tumbling from thought to thought, leaping to conclusions. After my cancer diagnosis (wow, almost 4 years ago), a whole circus of crazed acrobats was unleashed in my mind! I felt highly motivated to calm those painful tumbling fears and imaginings. As a result of my efforts, I’m delighted to say…I am losing my mind! (and gaining so much more!) I’d like to share with you the ways I’m doing that.

The key is bringing awareness to the breath and body. Eckhart Tolle said, “You need an anchor for presence, and the inner body is a wonderful anchor for the state of presence.” When we focus on the body, the mind becomes quieter, because we’re no longer giving it attention. Before my diagnosis, I don’t think I’d ever fully committed to being in my body. Now I am fully occupying and feeling the dynamic aliveness of this earth suit! Here are three areas of my body that especially have become allies in stilling my mind and anchoring peaceful presence.

HEART: When I’m trying to go to sleep and my mind is restlessly chattering, I bring my awareness to my heart, and start breathing through my heart; soon my mind settles down and I fall asleep! When I’m with someone and notice judgmental jabbering in my mind, I send a beam of light from my heart to theirs, and I immediately feel more peaceful, loving, and connected (with them as well as myself). The Institute of HeartMath says that bringing awareness to our heart, breathing through our heart, and imagining someone or something we love, puts our body in a measurable state of coherence and harmony. This is a healing state; it’s the state I want to live in.

ABDOMEN: When worry thoughts start to churn, I take deep slow abdominal breaths (the belly expands with each inhalation). This simple act not only brings me instantly present, it also activates the relaxation response, the lymphatic system, and the immune system! And I feel more juicily alive!

FEET: When I’m walking and find my mind blathering away about something, I bring my awareness to my feet: I breathe in, up from the earth into my feet, and I breathe out through my feet, feeling supported, connected, and held by mother earth.

Bringing awareness to ANY part of our body helps calm the mind and anchor presence. This is something I’ve wanted and needed to learn how to do in this life. I can imagine my soul saying, “We need to be more present in our body, in our heart, feeling our feet on the ground, breathing deeply, and being fully grounded in spirit and in this life. I know just the thing that will motivate us to do that…the answer cancer!”

I answered that call to more vivid, committed aliveness, and because of that, for me, cancer has been the ultimate life enhancer, helping me lose my troubled mind (much of the time), and gain the spacious present. This foray into peaceful presence may even be what’s healing the cancer. What a lovely design – cancer made me more present, and that presence is healing the cancer! (At least, that is the story I’m telling myself, and I like that story!)

How about you? What are ways that help you lose your mind, and anchor peace, presence, and harmony in your life?

In Love,

Jan Jacobsen

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Feb 09 2010

Miracle Marriage by Janet Jacobsen, her first eBook

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Here is my new e-book, Miracle Marriage — A Transformational Journey to Love, Joy & Intimacy.

Miracle Marriage ebookIt is a not so minor miracle that I am married! My husband Tom and I have been thriving in our relationship for over ten years. I still pinch myself and wonder, “Is this really my life?” It is so different now from what it once was. For years I was trapped in a hard-wired cage of beliefs that I was unloved and unlovable. It has been quite a journey out of that hard-wired, lonely cage into a big, open, joyous playing field with the man of my dreams. This book shows how I purposefully set out to free myself from that cage and open myself to love. It also reveals how Tom and I maintain a joyful relationship that just keeps getting better and more fun all the time. Yes, relationships really can be fun!

Get Jan’s Miracle Marriage Ebook  right now for only $5.95        Funny and Inspirational!

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May 28 2009

Now Here This – The Purrer of NOW #14

Eckhart Tolle has said that he’s known three Zen masters in his life and all of them were cats.  My Zen master, Zeena, is teaching me valuable life lessons. One of the most important things I’m learning is to Be simple and to Simply be, to feel my feet on the ground and be fully present.  

Buddha said, “Be where you are, otherwise you will miss your life.” It’s easy to go unconscious and sleepwalk through our life, therefore, it’s important to have reminders that wake us up. In the novel “Island”, by Aldous Huxley, the mynah birds on the island are taught to say “Attention, Here and Now, Here and Now.” Zeena does this for me; sometimes I’ll be lost in watching some TV show and Zeena will jump on my lap and say, “Neow Neow Neow.”

She’s teaching me that Now is all there is. Whether you’re chasing a mouse or chasing a dream, be fully present with it. It doesn’t matter what your dream is and it doesn’t matter what you do; all that really matters is that you be fully where you are while you’re doing it. A cat isn’t concerned about yesterday or tomorrow. Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, right now is a gift, that’s why they call it the present. I invite all of us to open our present like a cat does. A cat enjoys all that there is about the present; the present is something to fully savor with all our senses.

I’m also learning from my cat that we are purrfect just the way we are. I’m learning to fully allow, accept, and welcome All of who I am. Like Zeena, I can sometimes be persnickety, and have been known to throw the occasional hissy fit. But like Zeena, I’m learning to accept myself just as I am. Carl Jung said, “I’d rather be whole than good.” I bet Carl Jung had a cat. A cat doesn’t judge and criticize itself and try to be good. A cat doesn’t think, “I really need to be more loving.” Or, “I shouldn’t be napping now, I should be doing something, I should be accomplishing something.” Or, “I really shouldn’t use my human as a trampoline when she’s trying to sleep.” No, a cat allows ALL of its catness. A cat is a cat and that’s that.

I was getting ready to go to a party one day and I was feeling nervous about it. I feel uncomfortable at parties sometimes. I worry about what to do or say. I feel a bit like a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs. As I was worrying about this, I looked at Zeena, and these words came to me: “There’s nothing I have to do today, there’s nothing I have to do or say, just be in the Now all the way, that’s all I have to do today.  Breathe in. Breathe out. That’s all I have to do.” I love those words. They’re very soothing to me.

While driving to the party I shared those words with my husband Tom, and our friend Nicola Gordon, a singer and songwriter from Santa Barbara. She loved those words too and said, “Let’s turn them into a song!” And we did! We put the words to the tune of  “The Ants go Marching One by One”.  We call it the Now song. This song has become a great reminder to me and my friends to breathe and come into the Now whenever we feel stressed or pressured. It’s also a great reminder, just like Zeena is, that we are enough, we are purrfect just the way we are.

(This part was written a week ago)

I am laying on my back and Zeena is laying on my chest. We are looking into each other’s eyes. She is very sick; her liver is failing. She is so still. I pet her, and she softly purrs. “I’m so sorry sweetheart that this is happening. I’m so sorry you are hurting.” I realize I’m saying this to myself, as well as to her.

As we lay heart to heart, I imagine pink light radiating from my heart to hers, flooding her whole body in pink light, trying to change her yellow jaundiced skin to pink. Maybe I will suddenly be endowed with healing power and a miracle will happen and she will survive, proving the vet wrong.

We hold each other in our silent gaze. We lay together in the warmth of loving presence for a long time, heart to heart, eye to eye, soul to soul. As I look at her, my mind starts to wonder, “How will it be without her?” It is hard to imagine her not being here. I will miss so much her sweet meow, her bunny-soft fur, how she runs to me for safety when her brother Bo is chasing her, how she lets me hold her like a baby, how she nestles into Tom’s armpit when he’s laying next to me, how she licks us with sweet kitty kisses and we joke, “Zeena can’t hold her licker.” Tears slowly roll down my face.

As I wipe my tears, I look at her – she is still here. Right now, she is here. She is laying on my chest. She is looking into my eyes. She is breathing in and breathing out with me in this warm, intimate moment, in this sweet, timeless space. This moment is all that there is. She is here now, and, so am I.

Is there something that life is asking you to come into loving presence with? Breathe in. Breathe out. Now…Here…This. Right Now is all there is.

In Love,

Jan Jacobsen

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