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May 16, 2013

Creating Happiness, A Book Review & Junk Reps

Happy Thursday to You!

Welcome to my blog today.

In this blog, I cover the following topics in this order:

– Highlights on my May 25, 2013 zen In The Garden Workshop

2. Book Review: Funding Your Bigger Future, by Phil Randazzo, MBA

3. Junk Repetitions and Exercise: A short video explanation with Mike Salemi and I.

1. SIMPLE (zen) WAYS TO CREATE HAPPINESS IN YOUR LIFE and zen In The Garden, with Paul Chek

You were born with potential.
You were born with goodness and trust.
You were born with ideals and dreams.
You were born with greatness.
You were born with wings.
You are not meant for crawling, so don’t.
You have wings.
Learn to use them and fly.
~ Jalaluddin Rumi ~

When it comes to creating happiness for ourselves, Rumi does a beautiful job of making it clear what the pathway is.

We were all born with potential.

Baby on Dura ball
When we learn to exercise our potential to be other than happy in our general self-expression, we are in the practice of flipping coins, and consciously or unconsciously predicting “tails”.

When we learn that happiness is avoiding fear, oddly, learn to need something to fear to be happy. This is like looking for a dirty plate to put your birthday cake on.

You were born with ideals and dreams.

Milky Way Galaxy
Wholeness is the overarching principle of The Universe.

There is nothing here on earth, or within ourselves that could be here as a cause in and of itself; the world could not give birth to itself, and neither can you or I.
We depend on the earth for our survival.
The earth depends on the sun and moon for it’s survival.
The solar system is a harmonic balancer for the sun.
The sun is a star, in a sea of stars called the Milky Way, which is but one sea of stars in an infinite, possibly eternal sea of stars.

Paul CI
Because Wholeness is the overarching truth of life, we must each be individual expressions of that Wholeness.

Just as each bird naturally knows where it fits and functions in a formation, and finds its migratory path without a compass or GPS, we each naturally come to know where we fit into life, and how to express our “humanness” authentically.

Each step of the way in my life, I’ve encountered the inner-feeling of either flow and joy of learning by doing, or, I’ve experienced inner-resistance.

When I stuck with the feelings of flow and joy, I learned quickly and mastery came easily. When I stuck with what was most often what others told me I should or had to do, I felt inner-resistance emerge.

As a child and young man, I found it less painful and stressful to deal with the backlash of being honest about my needs than to buckle under the pressures from others. Therefore, I was often labeled as a bad boy, a troublemaker.

Today, my professional experiences as a life coach have shown me that most of the children who were “good girls and boys who always got their homework done and learned to button their lips”, are still looking for their dreams, or have convinced themselves that their deepest, most sincere desires, are but dreams.

I was blessed to have the sun sitting right under my chest, and it is sitting under yours right now too!

The path to finding our natural state of inner-well-being, or “happiness”, is one of learning to feel and follow the natural flow of our life. Each of us is as a puzzle piece, expressing perfectly, the outward illusion of separateness, yet we cannot receive, nor give love without others.

My path in life has taught me that when I’m feeling inner-resistance or pain, to slow down. Stop if necessary. I look into my imaginary crystal ball and ask myself:

1. What will my life be like in a tomorrow if I keep living this way?

2. What will my life be like in a month if I keep living this way?

3. What will my life be like in a year if I keep living this way?

If I’m not clear enough by the time I look a year forward, I keep going until I feel clear enough to make a decision and stick with it.

In my diagram above, the river on the left represents The River Of Life (TAO). The sidewalk with a door to no-where represents the Eternal Return. The window with the partial sun above and the partial earth below and the sign wave symbol in the middle represents all that you know and remember yourself to be.

In the state of emptiness, free of expectation or desire for “this”, or for “that”, you come to realize as you look through the doorway on the path in front of you, that the picture in the window can never be complete because you are what is missing!

Not realizing this leads to a life of face lifts, boob jobs, penis enlargements, fake butts, fake abs, fake degrees and titles, lots of make-up, etc… Our happiness becomes our face.

But life is a lot like hockey in that there are regular “face-offs”.

In our youth, we often face-off with others. By the middle of our life, we usually grow enough awareness to begin to realize that the real “face-off” is with ourselves.

We come to know this because each day as we put our “face(s)” on, they become heavier, and we get more and more tired (of maintaining them).

As our wisdom grows, we get wise. Wisdom appears as a living pilot-wave, that guides you out of your darkness and insecurities.

Wisdom teaches you to be a child again: open, fresh, innocent and playful! Wisdom grows itself by playing more, for it finds that playing encourages loving and loving encourages growth and celebration.


Rock Spirits
I have used rock lifting for many years to help as a meditation, and stress reduction too, as well as an excellent form of overall conditioning.

When I’m in my rock gardens (the one above at home and the one at my office ), I can let go of the world and be present with the process of unbound creation. I can enjoy seeing the animal and human-like images and shapes in the stones; I’m imitating one above.

The same thing in school use to get me kicked out of class, but now it “keeps me in the class of life!”


Sun Tree

The sun picks us up out of the water and gives us life, just as it does with all living things. Yet, we know where there is sun without water, there is a desert. We also know that water can’t exist without earth, just as the earth cannot live without sun, water or air.

The biggest majority of the people ranging from professional athletes to business executives, house wives, and children, are suffering pain and stress that most often relates to what I call “fire management”.

Fire is the chief element of transformation. The fire element is represented by the qualities of being hot and dry.

Fire is counterbalanced by the water element, which is cold and wet.

As our culture has turned outward to find itself in the mirror, we have lost touch with the fact that who we are is inside us.

We put huge amounts of time and energy into achieving some form of success, be it financial, intellectual, athletic, or otherwise, often ending up feeling less satiated and alive than we thought we’d be when we started.

Sometimes, we are so self-gratified with our mode of self-expression, we get lost in it; this is called over-training when it occurs in an athlete’s life.


Big stones 2
In my upcoming zen In The Garden workshop, I made “fire management” the theme of our day together.

In our last workshop, we explored the water element in our lives and how to express more water/yin energy through our creativity in nature and in our personal lives. This is helpful for most people because learning to manage your water energy (cooling) is essential to learning to manage your fire energy (heating).

Paul and Brandon lift big stones

I learned, with regular practice in my zen rock garden, how to effectively manage my fire. I learned that if you try to do things alone that are best done with a partner, you can get hurt, loosing both your fire and your blood.

This made me more aware; A better manager of my inner-fire; A more patient man.

I learned that you can’t use your fire energy (outgoing, masculine energy) effectively unless you can generate, and commit enough fire to meet your basic biological needs.

I learned that if you eat well, drink enough water, sleep well, but don’t learn to stay focused, present, you can waste a lot of your fire, and feel coked, but unfulfilled.

This often leads to “wishing we had time, or energy to do the tings we say we want to do.”

I’d love to share as much of my wisdom with you as I can about how to manage your creative fire. Managing your creative fire is as an essential component in the process of creating happiness through your self-expression.

My upcoming zen In The Garden one-day workshop, is next weekend, Saturday, May 25.

I will include a variety of body-mind integration exercises, breathing and lifting techniques, and the chance to learn to create beauty in nature while keeping yourself in incredibly good shape!

To see my workshop outline or register or to register zen In The Garden Workshop, or view testimonials from past participants, please click here: zen-in-the-Garden

See you soon!


I have the blessing, as a teacher, of having students that not only apply my teachings in their own life, but writing beautiful books about unique ways to live holistically.

In a brand new book titled, Funding Your Bigger Future, by Phil Randazzo, MBA, you can gain an incredible, holistic view and approach to creating financial freedom for yourself.

Phil Randazzo and his son are CHEK HLC 1 Practitioners. Phil has done a beautiful job of bringing a holistic view to financial planning and creating financial freedom for ourselves. He is very experienced in this field, and his book is clear, simple, easy to follow, and essential reading for anyone wanting the joy of financial freedom.

I really enjoyed reading Phil’s book and was very happy to share a testimonial, which appears on the back of his beautiful new book.

Feel free to visit Phi’s web site or send him an email with your own thoughts: or [email protected]

3. JUNK REPETITIONS AND EXERCISE: A short video explanation with Mike Salemi and I.

In a recent blog, I shared some photos of Mike Salemi, Kettlebell competitor and I working together on his program. While I was coaching Mike, he took some footage of me explaining why training to failure = training to fail in most instances of athletic conditioning.

I hope you enjoy this short video explanation:

I hope you have a great weekend!

I’d love to have as many of you as we can handle for the upcoming zen-In-The-Garden Workshop so feel free to register here if you are interested: zen-In-The-Garden

I’m taking the day off of my normal workweek tomorrow to work on my public health program but I will be with you all in spirit. I will be working to share with you from my heart.

Love and chi,
Paul Chek