RESTFUL PLAY and LESSONS IN THE GARDEN
Good Monday to You!
I hope you all had a lovely weekend!
Well, my scheduled vacation time is dwindling fast now!
As I’ve taken time to rest and play more, I’ve found that I feel like an onion inside; as I rest, I find that there are layers and layers of healing that occur inside, making me realize how tired all the jet travel over the years has made me.
Thank God I developed good self-management skills such as living the six foundation principles I teach in my Holistic Lifestyle Coaching program.
If I did not know how to eat, exercise, breathe, meditate, stretch, mobilize and practice creative self-expression, I’d have probably been ill many times over the years.
That said, I can still feel how the many years of stress have developed such that I became hardened to the demands on me.
With scheduled time off, I’ve been able to rest when I’m tired, do nothing when I felt like that, listen to great music, draw a lot and play in the garden.
For those of you that haven’t taken a real vacation of at least two weeks in over a year, it may be worth some introspection as to weather you are really gaining, or progressively draining yourself in the name of making money!
Saturday, Vidya and I were out in the garden playing while Penny was teaching step class and catching up on things she wanted to get done.
These stacks generate a lot of energy in the frequency ranges that is easily felt, and used by the body.
When the sun is shining like you see in this image above, you can really feel the energy radiating off the stones.
The big crystal (yes, that’s a HUGE quartz crystal!) is very yang (outwardly expressing energy), while the black lava stone next to my left hand is very yin (inward pulling of energy).
When I place my hands as they are, a circuit is created between me and the stones. It’s very much like I’ve been connected to some kind of bio-battery.
I can feel the energy enter my field and body, charging my meridians.
This kind of play serves as an anti-aging technology for me, helping my body stay strong and well-tuned to the earth frequencies that make up the basic energy matrix the cells use to recreate themselves.
It is because of this function that stones have been part of healing practices from thousands of years.
In fact, if you read the book (or listen to the audio book) titled, Vibrational Medicine, by Richard Gerber, MD, he tells about a profound experience he had using bloodstone to help someone heal from a disease.
I bring this up because it’s great to read and hear such things from a medical doctor.
He also tells about a powerful experience he had with Angelic beings; I’m suspect that got him put on the Quack watch list!
That said, one need only read the book to see that Richard Gerber is a highly intelligent man and not some hippy playing with flowers and stones as many would project him to be from their own programmed biases!
Here you can see one of Vidya’s many amazing stone creations.
Vidya has a very different style of creating stone sculptures than I do. She moves very quickly when she creates.
If they fall over, she just keeps recreating like nothing ever happened and does this over until she’s satisfied with her creation.
Because I tend to be attracted to the very biggest stones I can possibly lift â˜º, I must be very careful and move slowly.
The ground is covered with sharp stones sticking out that are buried, stone shards from rocks fracturing, sticks, insects that do bite(!), bees that sting, and the terrain is very uneven.
Moving and carefully placing heavy stones in this environment can be VERY dangerous. I’ve left my share of blood in the garden, I assure you.
The other day, I was working away and stepped on a little arrowhead stone. It went right through the sole of my foot like butter. I was opened and bleeding instantly.
That injury really served as an awareness tool for me. I had to walk slowly and place my feet carefully to avoid re-opening the wound. It healed in about three days though.
Over the many years of martial arts, motorcycle racing, car racing, logging, extreme weight lifting stunts, parachuting in the military and the likes, I’ve acquired many broken bones, concussions, and a long laundry list of injuries.
When I was young, these events would really piss me off.
As I’ve aged, I came to realize that every one of my injuries was a gift to teach me better awareness.
I also realized that every time I’ve hurt myself, I learned ways to heal faster and more completely that ultimately allowed me to help others do the same.
Now, if I get injured, I see it as an opportunity for growth. The injuries teach me not to get addicted to expecting everything to be the same each day and to learn to improvise and adapt.
Though this may sound simple, these are life skills that many never learn and disease is a common result of not being aware of what you are creating day to day.
Every now and then, I find stones that have strange and interesting human and animal forms in them.
This piece of lava stone had a face that looked like a human had been trapped in the lava and was expressing the pain of being cooked.
I wondered what it would look like to have a human head expressing that look on the top of the stack. I guess this is what it would look like â˜º.
Sunday, Angie Lustrick came to visit with her dog “Maggie” and enjoy some art, rock stacking and R&R with Penny and I.
Angie hasn’t been able to attend any of my prior zen In The Garden workshops and wanted to learn how to stack rocks with me.
I normally don’t want dogs around the house or in the rock garden because I’m allergic to dogs and cats and dogs often jump up onto stacks or drag leashes around them, which can result in a dead dog!
I had to put warning signs up in my front yard because so many people were coming to look at the rocks and letting their dogs wander into my rock garden while holding onto long leashes; seeing the near death experiences left me very nervous.
I also had a family come by one day with four children and a little girl about four ran into the yard and started pulling rocks off a stack. I almost jumped out of my skin!
I just happened to be outside the house and had the urge to look down into the garden when I heard people talking and saw the girl running toward the stack.
As soon as she reached for it, I yelled to the parents and her to “STOP!” I scared the poor girl and her parents but she insisted on taking rocks down anyway.
I ran down there and stopped her before it fell on her. It was cute because the little girl refused to let go of the stone she’d taken from the stack so I gave it to her.
After that day, I put warning signs up in the yard warning people and dogs to stay away. That definitely reduced the number of risky events occurring, thankfully!
I’ve never interacted with a Pug before but I was blown away at how intelligent Angie’s dog “Maggy” is. Angie’s taught her dog to read flash cards and do all sorts of tricks!
I let Maggie in the garden and watched her closely.
When Angie arrived Sunday morning, the sun was nowhere in sight and it was a bit cold for this time of year. I had already begun my usual morning mandala practice and invited Angie to join in.
I didn’t realize it was “Earth Day” and Angie had done a piece of art the day before symbolizing “Earth Day”.
She brought it to share with me and I thought it was cool that we’d planned a day in the garden on Earth Day.
When Angie sat down at my dinner table where I draw, she kept feeling a pull inside from Maggie and said, “I think my dog wants to draw with me.”
I encouraged her to empty herself and let the dog guide her drawing.This photo above is of the piece of art that “Maggie created with Angie’s hands!”
I thought it was pretty cool and it encapsulated the day beautifully too.
By the time we got finished with our art, it was well into the afternoon and we’d hoped the sun would burn the clouds off, but it didn’t.
We suited up with our “get dirty clothes” and headed out to the garden. Angie’s never done a rock stack before, so I created one with her as a means of teaching her the basics one needs to know to stack rocks safely.
I was really impressed with how capable Angie is of not rushing and allowing herself to “feel” through her intuition as opposed to trying to figure things out with her head.
We put together this stack, which is actually very complex for a first time effort from anyone. We were both feeling the joy of our joint creation as you can see in this photo Penny took of us.
After the event was over, I asked Angie if she’d be willing to share a few things she learned in the garden stacking rocks that apply to life in general.
This is what Angie shared with me so I could share it with you today:
Yesterday I had the great opportunity to stack rocks in Paul Chek’s garden.
I must confess, I had never stacked rocks before! But, I have always loved the look of stacked rocks- how they seem to defy gravity in their miniature skyscraper forms.
My initial thoughts about rock stacking were: A) It will be a great workout B) it will be very meditative.
While it was indeed both of these, it was so much more.
What I discovered is that in order to create a balanced stack, you must also be balanced from within. You can literally feel the rocks energy and can sense when two rocks are connecting properly.
If you try to go too fast, the rocks will tumble! So intuition and your sense of touch is more important than your mind.
If you try to think it out, you can become lost in thoughts and find yourself just staring at a pile of rocks! â˜º
As an energy worker, I discovered that rock stacking can make me a better therapist!
I really enjoyed how your sense of touch needed to be heightened to get a feel for any movement in the stack.
If you aren’t feeling the slight movements going on in the other rocks as you place a new stone on the pile, you will soon find yourself with a stack that is going down fast!
Stacking rocks also made me think about our spinal cords and how the vertebrae are stacked upon each other.
You can clearly see how one vertebrae at the top (your neck) can affect another vertebrae towards the base (I.e lumbar spine).
Rocks will show you that if your center isn’t straight (like analyzing someone’s posture using a plumb line), a twisting motion will occur to offset the imbalance.
You may be able to keep stacking on an unstable stack, but any slight ground movement or wind will cause the fragile rocks to crash down too–Which can also help us better understand when a client shows up at our door telling us that they “Just bent over to pick up the newspaper.” and now they can’t walk or stand up straight.
What I found the most intriguing was that if you are patient and take the time to build a strong foundation, it is possible to stack bigger rocks on top of smaller stones; which can be translated into real life with weight lifting – if you have a strong core, you can lift up some pretty heavy weights without hurting yourself.
Spending a day in a rock garden will definitely make you more grounded, more centered. It will heighten your senses and will allow you to feel subtle changes in your environment.
If you are a massage therapist, a chiropractor, holistic lifestyle coach, an energy worker, or are in any field where you are using your hands to feel or understand what is going on in someone’s body, rock stacking is an absolute must!
But don’t take my word for it, sign up for a future “Day in the Garden with Paul”. He will teach the basics, safety tips, and everything you will need to know to become a successful rock stacker.
I am planning on starting a small rock garden in my backyard and I hope that you will consider this too!
While Angie and Maggie were creating their art for the day, I was busy creating the mandala you see above.
I am a very visual person and have clear inner-vision, which I often use to determine where people’s imbalances are. Yesterday though, I sat down to draw and had no vision come to me.
When this happens, I just let my soul guide my pen and see what comes out.
This is much like what I do when creating with stones; I just let go and let my inner-guidance system direct me as I let my ego-mind become passive.
My soul guides me by moving my energy inside.
I simply started with a blank page and asked my soul, “What is the first shape you’d like to draw?” My energy then moved in a large circle.
I then ask, “Are you saying you’d like a mandala bordered with a circle?” “Yes”. Then I draw that.
I also ask what color I should use. When I’m given an image or energy form, such as the birds you see flying in the sky, I just ask, “Where should I put the birds and how many do you want?”
Then, I wait for the answer by going into complete emptiness. I suddenly feel as though my pen hand is being drawn to a specific location on the page.
I then ask, “Do you want the birds here? “Yes”. “How many?” “10.” Then I draw them. If I need information on size, I ask that, or any other relevant questions.
After about three hours of this form of artistic meditation, the drawing above is what was created.
At first, I thought this may be a lotus flower, as did Angie. Suddenly, I realized I have several very large succulents in my yard, and their blossoms look just like what I was directed to draw; I also suspected this wasn’t a lotus because I was instructed to color it green instead of blue or purple.
I was directed to crowd the sun with the cactus image and color the sky pink, and then to circle the blue with a dull orange. We were just discussing weather or not the sky would clear.
I looked at my mandala and said to Angie, it looks to me like the clouds will keep the sky dark because I’ve been instructed to use a color other than blue for the sky and the sun is encased within the cactus.
I also noticed that I had the colors that represent the elements essential to the creative forces of earth and here it was, “Earth Day”.
I share how I go about creating these forms of art in hopes that those that are ready to add some new tools to their toolbox will give it a try.
It is very easy to get bound up in our social-programming and forget how to access our inner-guidance only to feel like we are living Groundhog day!
Once we realize that consciousness lives within us, and that the ego operates on the principle of exclusion, we feel much safer knowing that part of us is whole and operates on the principle of “inclusion”.
As we progress on the spiritual path, we often expect life to become easier.
This is a misunderstanding of the nature of spiritual development and one akin to thinking that the more times you go to a gym, the easier your workouts will get!
But, the more times you go to the gym, the stronger you get and the more likely you are to add more weight to the bar!
The same is true of our spiritual development.
The more we practice living congruent with the flow of the Universe (TAO), the more aware we become of when we aren’t.
It is as though the universe begins peeling back the layers of your mind, encouraging you to address all the areas in your life where you’ve convinced yourself of being right, or where you’ve been mislead by others so you can rectify the situation within yourself.
As we become more centered and stable within ourselves, we become more attractive to others that are imbalanced.
Soon, your life seems to be full of people wanting help with almost every predicament you can imagine!
Then, you find that you must establish a clear definition of who you are and what values need to be adhered to so you don’t lose yourself trying to prove that you are valuable by solving everyone’s problems for them (See PPS Success Mastery Lesson 1. How To Find and Live Your Legacy for specific help here).
What does improve the quality of your life on the spiritual path is that through practice methods like I share on my blog and in my teachings, you become confident in your ability to access the Universal Mind or consciousness to help you.
Instead of feeling that you must solve problems alone, you begin to feel as though the universe is living and creating in, with, and through you.
You begin to feel as though you are never alone and that you are part of something much more magnificent and beautiful than an ego could ever imagine.
As I’ve aged, I’ve really enjoyed developing this relationship with Spirit and have been blessed to see that when my students actually practice what I teach them instead of just talking about it, their lives are greatly enhanced; they have a new-found sense of inner-peace and creativity and the confidence that they can make beauty of their life journey.
This is an experience that makes all my own challenges as a person and a teacher worth working through!
Enjoy your day! Hopefully you’ll create from the sanctum of the emptiness of your mind while inhabiting your heart!
Love and chi,