April 2007


I found a couple nice quotes that relate to being happy and content. Here’s the first one:

“If you are not spending all of your waking life in discontent, worry, anxiety, depression, despair, or consumed by other negative states; if you are able to enjoy simple things like listening to the sound of the rain or the wind; if you can see the beauty of clouds moving across the sky or be alone at times without feeling lonely or needing the mental stimulus of entertainment; if you find yourself treating a complete stranger with heartfelt kindness without wanting anything from him or her…it means that a space has opened up, no matter how briefly, in the otherwise incessant stream of thinking that is the human mind” – Eckhart Tolle

In Nova Scotia, we’re big oat cakes eaters, you can find them everywhere.  My mother-in-law gave me her ancient recipe and I’ve altered it, like removing half the butter, to make it more healthy.  I  wondered if I could mess with it again and make a Wild Rose detox version. 

Now first my disclaimers.  This ain’t the best oat cake you’ve eaten, but it is a good portable snack that you can eat while on the Wild Rose detox.  The other good thing about these oat cakes, as my Honeybunny says, is they’re not brown rice.  (A little detoxer’s inside joke there). 

Here’s how to do it: 

Turn the oven on to 350 and make sure your racks are middle to high in the oven.  Dump 1/2 cup dried plums into the food processor.  Whir it up until it’s a paste.  Add 1/2 cup slightly softened butter and 1 egg – whir it up together.  Add 1/4 tsp cinnamon and salt.  Add 4 cups oats – pulse and scrape the edges until it’s combined.  (Flour is a no-no on this detox, so go easy).  

Take handfuls of the dough and flatten each into a hamburger pattie sized oatcake.  Place them on a cookie sheet.  If you like a soft oatcake, keep them 1/2 inch thick.  If you like something crisper, go 1/4 inch thick – I used a rolling pin to flatten them right on the pan.

Bake for 8-10 minutes if they’re thin, 10-12 for the thicker version. 

Slather with butter or almond butter hot out of the oven and you won’t feel like you’re detoxing :-)  Carry around for a snack when you’re tired of almonds.  Or anytime you need a break from brown rice.

I cancelled my yoga classes for two weeks while I galavanted about the continent for work and vacation.  After Power Yoga last night I got an email from a friend who was at the class, she said:

It was so great to get together again for yoga again tonight & I know the other women felt it too.   Missing 2wks really impressed upon me how important this is to me – very positive lesson.

It’s so true for me too – not doing yoga can be as beneficial as doing it.  Noticing how the tension and stiffness regularly builds up in my body is such a great learning.  It reminds me that I regularly clear it out so I can move, feel and think clearly.  Here’s to not doing yoga *just enough* to remind myself how it keeps my life on course.   

There comes a time in the life of every detoxer, where you say – damn, I’ve worked hard! I deserve some pancakes!  So do it, here’s how:

Combine 1 1/2 c of oats and 1/2 c of cornmeal with 2 cups of plain soy milk and let stand 10 minutes.  Add 1/4 c wheat germ, 1 egg, 1 T Baking Powder, 1 T veggie oil and 1/2 tsp salt.  Blend together.

Make sure your pan is good and hot (medium high heat) and oiled if it’s not non-stick.  Drop spoons of the batter into it.  When the edges start to look cooked and you see some bubbles, flip.  Put them flat on a cookie sheet in the oven at 200 until you’ve gone through the batter.

These pancakes are fairly light and have a good texture.  I cooked up some mixed berries to put over top.  They were also good leftovers warmed up in the toaster and topped with almond butter.  Yum.

Kleshas are basically the patterns that drive us nuts in our life.  They’re the automatic things we do, the well-worn patterns and grooves we wear into our life.  They’re usually unconscious.  They usually don’t help the situation but dammit they’re familiar so we keep doing them and use them to justify our opinion that ‘people are always x’, or ‘y always happens to me’.

The best way to find your kleshas?  Take a look at your intimate relationship – past or present.  This is where they *really* come up.  Find the thing that drives you and your lover-buns nuts. 

The key here is that you don’t think it’s you.  Because they’re unconscious, find the issue that you think is *them*.  Think of the issue that makes you say to yourself – if they weren’t so x (dumb, anal, sloppy) I could be a heck of a lot more y (patient, easy-to-live-with or spiritually evolved).  And then turn it to yourself.  Ask, what can I let go so that I can be more patient, easy-to-live-with or spiritually evolved?

This is tough and takes a metric tonne of honesty.

And you’ll want to keep making it about them and their stupid habits, that’s just what we do.  But really think.  What needs to go, to take the heat out of this particular issue.  Maybe it’s part of your world view.  Maybe it’s some standard you hold dearly.  Maybe you need to see their annoying habit as just who they are rather than something that needs to be fixed.  Maybe you were both raised differently and you need to see that as OK instead of wishing they’d go back and re-live their childhood for you. 

Whatever it is, these are your time-worn patterns.  They probably have come up in other relathionships.  These are your own personal kleshas.  And you need to let them go instead of wishing your partner was a different person.

And I know you’re thinking – but Corilee the world will come crumbling down!  It’s going to head straight to hell in a handbasket if I don’t hold up my ‘standards’.  Yeah, it won’t. 

It’s tough to let go of these biggies but think of this hard letting go as something you can do while your honeybunny becomes a more perfect partner ;-) 

I had a very experienced yoga teacher say once that when she stopped focusing on where the students needed to improve in their Triangle pose and focused on what they were doing right and how far they’d come, they all improved.  She let go of her belief that they needed to do a perfect Triangle, now.  Maybe it was just her perspective, who’s to say.  But either way, it sounds like a much more sane way to live.

 

Lovable Control Freaks like myself are better off if there’s something we can *do*.  Here are some ways I’ve learned to manage it for myself:

The Committed Version

1. Try every a.m. to sit in a private quiet spot.  Repeat to yourself stuff like “I let go of this” or “I release this” or whatever makes sense to you.  Sometimes I even make a gesture of pushing it away from me with my hands.  You feel like a dork, but the physical gesture, I find, helps to make it real.  Or do your favourite yoga breath and visualizing yourself exhaling “it” out.

2. Try to be clear that it’s our big fat ego that wants to hold onto stuff.   “This is Who I Am” or we’re attached to “Our Story” or we’ve decided this makes us look good.  Seeing this drama for what it is, is the best way to start giving it up.  You’re more than any story or drama your ego cooks up.  Look for a new, more authentic, story.

2. Let it go with compassion.  Our resistance usually takes the shape of anger or bitterness, or we feel we’ve been wronged etc.  Your mission is to get to the place where you can say “I let it go and wish this person all the best” or “I release this person and hope they find x and y”.  When you can get there and mean it, you’re finished your journey.

The Quickie

There’s a short version of this too.  Don’t you find that if something bugs you your mind keeps coming back to it?  Instead of allowing this crazy-making, notice it and interject every time with “nope, I’m letting go of this”.   You’ll probably have plenty of opportunity to find more creative comebacks for your thought.

The Effects

As you’re doing these techniques try to notice the effects.  Notice any changes in your body.  Do you feel a load-off the shoulders?  Is your belly any softer?  Holding less grudge in your heart?  Use indications like this to help keep you going. 

You’ll be an expert next time Life hands you something to let go of.