Books worth visiting again

The physical heart, which houses the spiritual heart, beats about 100,000 times a day, pumping two gallons of blood per minute and over 100 gallons per hour. If one were to attempt to carry 100 gallons of water (whose density is lighter than blood) from one place to another, it would be an exhausting task. Yet the human heart does this every hour of every day for an entire lifetime without respite. The vascular system transporting life-giving blood is over 60,000 miles long – more than two times the circumference of the earth. So when we conceive of our blood being pumped throughout our bodies, know that this means that it travels through 60,000 miles of a closed vascular system that connects all the parts of the body – all the vital organs and living tissues – to this incredible heart.- Purification of the heart Translated by Hamza Yusuf.

Have you ever tried carrying 2 packs of water crates (6 × 2L) from the shop to your house? One pack in each hand? That’s not even close to 100 gallons of water and yet the human heart pumps ~ 2880 litres of blood 24/7 as long as there is life and soul in us. Isn’t this more than a miracle?

Anyhow I just found this fact about the heart amazing. The modern science has also gathered evidence that heart has its own neurons capable of feelings and perhaps thoughts. Ancient Chinese tradition and Judaism, Christianity and Islam all pay special attention to the state of one’s heart.

I have previously talked quite a lot about spiritual heart. I am reading this book again and this time I would like to share things I learn. This will help me perhaps better remember them.

Humans by nature are forgetful. We forget what we learn. Humans by nature are an ocean of emotions. Not all emotions we express are helpful in our pursuits. Reading this book before helped me tame my anger outbursts with the help of continuing practice of martial arts.

I am at that stage once more where I am falling back into my old self. Impulses and urges are over powering and over riding my rational self. For example losing my temper to someone who is screaming at me when I know they are just reflecting their own insecurities and low self-esteem. My retaliation brings me down to that same level.

In other pursuits not being able to exercise patience and just sitting on my hands has been proving difficult lately. I have disregarded my set of rules and principles. I have broken them only to slide down the ladder. It’s feels like I fell off the mountain that I was climbing. Funny how my subconscious and unconscious minds warned me of this beforehand.

Well at least, I am back to being my spontaneous self again. Blogging really helps put out all thoughts flowing through my mind. Although I may not always put them exactly how they are in my mind. That’s my introverted nature. Still when I read I am able to tell what exactly was on my mind. I was talking about dreams when referring to the unconscious and subconscious minds.

Anyway…. I can keep blabbering and I will forget why I started writing this blog.

I started writing it to explore the different diseases that plague the spiritual heart. This pursuit of cleansing one’s heart is an every day work. Complacency and laziness will put you back where you started. There is no finish line. It’s a constant work in progress. Or maybe I am saying that because my heart is not pure or maybe even if it was… it wouldn’t make sense if I were to say that about myself. No one knows what’s in the hearts except God.

I can only continue to work to polish it and if I fall off track, I have to pick myself back up. Get back on track…

Follow the light. Light guides and darkness leaves you wandering.

So here are the few common ailments of spiritual heart that I’d personally like to reflect on and in doing so hopefully remove these blemishes from my heart and self. Removing any of these blemishes is a difficult task. What I learnt from the book is that, protection from these blemishes is more powerful. Heavenly protection… I will still struggle enough so that perhaps, through Mercy some divine protection comes my way too.

Negative thoughts– the critic in my head. The little voice- doubt, fear and anxiety.

Anger– losing my composure and calmness for any reason

Heedlessness– not acting upon learnt knowledge. It can be applied to all fields. If you acquire some expertise or skills in any arts, it becomes imperative that you practise it diligently with focused attention. Otherwise you fall into heedlessness.

Boasting & Arrogance– I don’t think that I have these traits but you can never dismiss stuff like this because that’s exactly when it creeps back in. And even maybe if I didn’t write about it, that might have been boasting and arrogance in itself.

Obliviousness to Blessings– Being ungrateful. Gratitude is a must… there is always more to be grateful for in life. A lot of the times I forget to do it.

Envy, Rancour, Hatred- I am putting all these together because their roots are same. One amplifies the other and they feed off of each other. It’s easy to possess these traits. Just start comparing your life to others on Instagram and Facebook lol 😆 You will surely feel one of those at least. Or read the comment section on political posts 🤣

There are many other symptoms and ailments detailed in the book that plague the heart. I am going to work on these few and take time to reflect. Work on my habits and whether those habits help me with these goals.

Get back into deep meditation that should surely help. Help cleanse the heart and help live in the present moment.

5 Tips to Revert Back To Being The Old You

Currently I am going through a deep process of rewiring my subconscious and unconscious minds. Think of this process as slowly learning to shed old shell and growing a new one. Or imagine how a caterpillar evolves into a butterfly. Or just imagine how Pikachu evolves to Raichu, not that I am a Pokemon. The mind is limitless, the vastness of our minds allow us to improve continually and seek out discomfort for accelerated learning.

On the contrary our minds; the subconscious and unconscious selves, are also resistant to change. This resistance can halt the process of evolution and growth and seek comfort where there is psychological safety. Where there is a safe space, where there are accepted and embedded beliefs, actions and thought patterns.

If you want easy tips to revert back to being your old self, just follow these 5 simple tips:

1. Sleep excessively

2. Stop exercising

3. Get lazy and stop looking after your mind and body.

4. Ignore your spiritual needs. Stop meditating

5. All of above will grow your doubts enough that you abandon going after your latent potential.

This is a message for myself first. In the past couple of weeks I have stopped exercising, stopped stretching, stopped running. I have been oversleeping. I have a poor sleep pattern. I have poor discipline and eating habits. If I stay any longer this way, I will be sure to revert back to being the old me. But wait, I am trying to think now what that old self was like? Does this imply I am close to turning into a butterfly? That said, there are periods when I am lazy and unproductive.

Hope is something you give yourself in the darkest times. Balance

Sometimes it’s through these slumps and picking myself back up from them that helps me accept that there will be more periods where I may not want to write, may not want to exercise, may not want to meditate.

Instead of going down the rabbit hole of asking myself, Why am I like this during these periods? I should start asking myself, how can I do a little better tomorrow? How can I create a new idea for a blog post? How can I refuel my energy to exercise and meditate?

By asking How? I can then think of What action I can take?

Humans are complex creatures. We make all the easy things difficult for ourselves. We continue to seek out motivation, we continue to seek out the reasons why? The Why can be the reason for doing or not doing, it can be the reason for the cause effect relation, it can be the reason for seeking certainty amidst uncertainty. If we can learn to embrace the uncertainty, we can rid ourselves of The Why and learn to be in the present and seek out The How and The What?

A light bulb 💡 moment. I don’t do this enough. I am going to find things that I am grateful for, look back see the progress so far, look back and see what % of the time I have been sticking to the process. Look back and see % of errors. Be grateful for the progress and process and continue to refine it. Most of all be grateful. If anything the only thing I have really stopped doing in the past 2 months is writing down things that I am grateful for. Got to get back on track. Life is a blessing when you can find gratitude in your heart and in the blessings surrounding you.

Thoughts At Dawn

I am writing this at the hour of tiger. Although, I hear more ravens cawing haha the dawn is about to break. I mostly wake up around this time, no matter what time I go to sleep. It’s like a body clock that just wakes me up before dawn. Boy am I glad it does! Some of the most fulfilling moments of life are the hours witnessed at the break of dawn. The still and calming air. It’s almost as if all tranquility descends down at this time. Those who wake up find some of it descend into their hearts. However, waking up is not enough. Once out of the bed, you have to perform your routine rituals to truly feel and witness the moments. One of my habits when I wake up at this hour is to feel and witness the quietest moments, enjoy them, meditate on them.

That said, sometimes I lose the ability to get up of the bed and laziness becomes my companion. I wake up lying in bed, feeling cold and sometimes feeling other emotions. At other times it’s a rush of thoughts in my head that I am trying to calm. This turbulent state of mind sometimes really worries me. How can the mind not be quiet at the break of dawn. When all life is still, why is the mind not still? Why are there thoughts zooming in and out of the head? Pretty sure though, this is probably something a cycle or a period others go through too. When I get to this stage, I am concerned with the ways to return to a state of calm and quiet. Sometimes that is through meditation, other times through prayers, or at time simply accepting the fact that I am feeling lazy and half the reason why my mind is filled with myriad concerns is because of feeling unproductive. The mind is concerned with productivity and perhaps ego. Ego wants to feel valued, ego wants to break laziness, the higher consciousness is rebuking the laziness that is creeping in the self.

Exercise- martial arts, running or some of form of routine is a good way to create a void in mind, where thoughts can be blocked out. This void is quite healthy the way I am. Solitude and finding time alone is something that has always come easy to me. To keep my self in balance though, I have to balance solitude with activities or simply conversations with other humans; friends, family, peers and so on.

Then there are fewer periods where I lose the ability to wake up at the hour of dawn and my body clock stops waking me up. There are also periods of fatigue tied to waking up naturally at this time. No matter what time I go to bed because I wake up just before dawn, which is a blessing to me. My body requires a nap in the afternoon. Lately, these naps had been turning to hour long naps or more. Last few days, I have been so fatigued I guess that I fell asleep during the daytime without realising it. The following few nights were followed with waking up from a sleep paralysis and hypno-whatever the term for that nightmare lol. I am saying this and yet here I am writing at the hour of dawn… this had me worried because when I woke up, my leg muscles felt so weak that it felt like I had no strength in them. I looked this up and all symptoms pointed towards narcolepsy. Yes… taking a long look back I have had few moments here and there where I have fallen asleep and woken up confused. However, knowing my level of activity in those times especially school days and college helps me dismiss these as symptoms of some sort. These last 2 weeks fatigue built up is probably due to some other factor too, lack of consistent exercise, poor blood circulation. The fact is because it has been raining I haven’t ran or exercised at home. Yesterday though after waking up, I exercised till my leg muscles gained their working strength.

What I am saying is human body has limitations. Sometimes the weather, other times poor sleep pattern-(in my case), lack of exercise or psychological or physiological stress can induce fatigue, undue stress in our body which is out of the ordinary. The best thing to do when stuff like this happens is to take extra care of the self.

I didn’t start writing this article today. I have written it over a few different days. More like whenever I felt like dumping my thoughts in my head at the early hour of dawn. Writing at this hour helps me quiet the mind and focus, instead of just scrolling through the internet or YouTube or some other platform. It helps me centre myself so that I can look forward to mediate and exercise at the minimum. After I have done that I am more than grateful and happy to head back and catch up on my sleep.

This is my normal circadian rhythm. I am quite used to the fact that I have to catch up on my sleep via naps. Although there are occasional days when I sleep a whole 12 hours or more. This reminds me of the time when I was around 9, I fell asleep for two weeks. There are just a few things I can recall from that time, I vaguely recall being dragged to go to the toilet, I recall waking up after two weeks and getting up to walk and falling down. My body wasn’t responding, so I had to crawl until I could walk again. Which only took a week at most. The reason given to me at the time was that I was sick and mumps made my body quite weak. Not sure if that was a coma, because I was not hospitalised. Anyhow… that’s just a short trip down memory lane, the last two years has really helped me recall most past memories. Before that I mostly used to think that I have a poor childhood memory. Even though I know that my memory in the present has always been really good. In fact, if anything it has improved a lot more after being able to process and recall many of the past memories.