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Mindfulness In The Matrix: Finding Your Truth

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Finding yourself can be a lot like finding a needle in a haystack. Sounds impossible? Well, the fact that you're one-in-a-million narrows the search tremendously!

 

While not impossible, it is a challenge. To find your needle is to rediscover your truth and reignite your spark. Don't stop there though. Stoke it until it is a flame, a force of change, creativity, motivation, passion, and power. The flame consumes all distractions and reveals the truth. It a process of self-realization.

When you touch the fine point of the truth, you will know you have found it. It will feel like an irreducible or unalterable premise, fact or knowing. However, finding it requires patience and the ability see and to perceive the fine spatial details of an object against the stationary skin. Spiritually speaking, it requires your ability to attune to and discern the faintest indications of truth within yourself.

Self-realization requires patience, courage and determination. It is a gradual process and on rare occasions you will experience a "suddenly" moment of truth, an epiphany. Unfortunately, many of us will mull over the complexities of life seeking this truth, sometimes without ever finding it because it requires a great deal of soul searching and a willingness to accept the truth when it is revealed.

However, I've found an exercise in mindfulness that has been helpful to me in clearing away the hay of distractions. I call it Mindfulness In The Matrix. It is a mindfulness exercise that I've coined and liken to a ball of yarn which has as many strings of different color yarn as there are aspects of one's life. The strings are intertwined and difficult to unravel and the assignment is to make sense of them, to unravel the strings by color. Keep in mind that the ball of yarn is you and the colors of yarn represent the different aspects of your life and the issues that plague them. The more issues there are, the more colors of yarn.

I used this exercise to sort through the difficulties of a marriage. Being solutions focused by nature and desperate for clarity, I naturally began to dig deeper and dissect with the intention of finding the root cause of the disconnect. If you've ever been married, then you know what a union is and the natural way that you come together as one, or not. The different aspects of each of your lives and issues come together. So you end up with a tangled web of many more strings and colors of yarn than you can make sense of. Making matters worse is having two people come together with little knowledge of their individual truths.

Complex and confused were my thoughts and emotions while going through the ordeal. The mixture of tangible issues and emotions were so tangled that I couldn't make sense of what was rational or irrational; what was right for me to do, feel and think and what wasn't. This exercise helped me get to the truth of what I felt, thought, needed and wanted as an individual and from the marriage.

Since then, I've successfully applied it to other areas of my life, including friendships and career. It is a very effective exercise for sorting through all of the hay. So, I'll begin with a few important terms, then preparation and finally moving into the exercise itself.

Definitions:

Mindfulness - a mental state achieved by focusing one's awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one's feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations; used as a therapeutic technique.

Presence - the state or fact of existing, occurring, or being present in a place.

Self-Awareness - conscious knowledge of one's own character, feelings, motives, and desires.

Preparation:

This exercise is best done during meditation, however, don't feel limited to a certain place and time to tap into yourself. Many times those Aha! (epiphany) moments come when we are in the midst of other things. Somehow...the truth finds its way through all of the hay! Receive it! You will feel a great sense of relief and freedom.

In preparation:

  1. Be aware of self ONLY. Sit or lie down, which ever you prefer. I meditate much better lying down. If lying down puts you to sleep, you may be more effective with criss-cross-applesauce, the traditional meditation posture.
  2. Remain mindful of your thoughts and feelings. Some may slip away from you, but with practice, you will get better at capturing them. Some you will want to keep and others you should let go of, such as those mean hateful ones that will distract you from the truth.
  3. See, hear and be aware of what is being presented to you. Try to maintain a non-judgmental mental posture when searching your heart and your situations. No negative self-talk. No blaming.

Visualization Exercise:

  1. Visualize the ball of yarn as the aspects of your life that you will analyze. Search your heart and mind for what is unclear, confusing and needing clarity. Sometimes emotions will come up first, sometimes thoughts will. They both lead to each other. So deal with which ever comes up.
  2. Be in the now with that part of you.
  3. Acknowledge the thoughts and feelings. Embrace them. Own them because they are a part of you right now. You need to see them for what they are. Don't run away from them. Sometimes we run away from the things we don't want to see or feel.
  4. See the many different color strings of yarn as the issues you'd like to gain clarity about. Some colors will blend into or overlap others. This is what makes it difficult to gain clarity.
  5. Imagine being a puppeteer. You're still connected to the issues, but from a distance you are able to see clearer, to separate and analyze them more truthfully.
  6. Identify each one. Example: In marriage, the issues might be intimacy, fidelity, finances, values, race, culture, etc.
  7. Separate them, so that they are clear and free of the other. As a puppeteer, you may not have enough fingers. However, your imagination will be sufficient.
  8. Study each string, really focusing on the issues and how you feel about them. As you study the issues you may feel a rush of emotions related to hurt, dissatisfaction or annoyance.
  9. Deal with one emotion at a time to be clear about what it is you are feeling and why.
  10. Harness the emotion. Feel it. Analyze it.
  11. Answer the question: Why do I feel this way?
  12. Answer the question: Why do I think this way?
  13. Answer the question: What don't I like about this aspect of my life?
  14. Answer the question: What is it that I need and desire to be manifested, in this area of my life? What would make me happy?
  15. What would solve the problem?
  16. If you are gaining clarity about a relationship, ask yourself these question, based upon the truth you've gained about your needs and desires.
  17. What are my non-negotiable needs and desires?
  18. Can my partner fulfill those non-negotiable needs and desires?
  19. Can my partner make the required changes in order to meet my non-negotiable needs and desires?

This exercise in mindfulness will bring you face-to-face with what is not in alignment with your truth. The clarity that you will gain will be like looking into the eye of the needle. The eye is the heart of the needle, the heart of the matter, the truth. It requires a mindfulness and an attention to your inner workings and its interaction and reactions to the outside world, if that makes any sense. In real-time, everything may be moving as usual, but in mental/spiritual realms, you must slow down in order to analyze the issues.

There is no better conceptual and visual example of this spiritual mindfulness than this movie clip from The Matrix. Neo finds himself in the midst of his issues and they are shooting bullets. He is forced to face-off with them and in doing so, discovers a divine truth about himself. His broaden perception gives him a different perspective of who he is and his relationship to the matrix. He can manipulate it to his advantage. Look at how he slows the bullets down. He recognizes his ability, analyzes the bullets and realizes the power he has over them. This is what you can do with those gray areas of your life!

 

Making time to meditate, slowing down our thought processes and tuning into the heart of the matter affords us the space to focus and attend to the details of our inner workings, our emotions and the sources that spark those emotions. Like Neo, we can find our inner Christ (Anointed One), our “Needle In A Haystack”. When we do, we will have found truth, purpose, fulfillment and a better way to spiritually navigate the physical terrain with skill and precision.