Living the Soulful Life
By Scott Kalechstein
Multi-Tasking And The Inner Journey
Yippee! I just bought a laptop. True to its name, it sits on my lap as I drive home. My thoughts and feelings turn to my recent break-up, a frequent occurrence these days. As of this typing, my partner and I parted six weeks ago. I now live alone, something I both celebrate and grieve. Like being in relationship, bachelorhood is filled with blessings and challenges. The biggest challenge is in facing my mind with fewer distractions. What an incessant chatterbox I have inside my head!
Still Small Voice: This period of aloneness is a grand time to deal directly with that chatterbox ego of yours and transform it into an ally. I will guide you in that process. Your job is to make listening to me your highest priority. That means cultivating a place within where stillness can be welcomed. And that means sitting still.
Ego: Sitting still? What good is that gonna do? I hate meditation . . . What if I fall into a black hole and never come out? Or worse, I could come out all peaceful and stress-free. How would I manage to manage in this crazy world without stress? Come on, now! And another thing: not being in a relationship is making it too obvious where my suffering comes from, and Iíve had enough of this responsibility stuff. God, send me somebody to blame! And till she comes, what can I do? I need to do, do, do... something. I canít just be, for heavenís sake! Burying myself in work is effective, but I did that to some extent last year, and I would be creatively stifling myself if I chose the same addiction over and over.
Big Scott: Yes, yes! This year Iíve pledged to spend more time nurturing myself, having more inner peace and balance in my life.
Ego: Inner peace? Thatís boring as hell! What I want is to jump into a new relationship, pronto! And instant infatuation gratification is getting very hard to enjoy lately, with that loud-mouthed still small voice badgering us to go even deeper on this ridiculous inner journey!
Still Small Voice: Iím only loud-mouthed when you havenít been listening to my whispers. (Little Scott jumps in here and shouts something for everyone to hear, and my censor is letting this one through, for the purposes of venting.)
Little Scott: GROWING UP SUCKS! I REFUSE TO DO ANY MORE OF IT, AND YOU CANíT MAKE ME! (Note the bold font and capitals, two undisputed signs of computer venting. You might say heís word processing! Yuch...)
Big Scott: So what do I do? Please, universe, give me a creative project, an external obsession . . . anything but day to day existence with the shadowy sub-personalities that reside in my head, anything but the task before me of taming my out-of- control mind, loving myself as I am and being present to the present moment!
Still Small Voice: I hear you venting, Scott, and itís good. Highly therapeutic! Let it out until you are spent. Let me remind you, when you have calmed down, that you have called this time of aloneness to yourself for one reason: you are ready to create connection between the various parts of you, solidarity and unification within the Self. All fragments need love to heal. Embrace them, and they integrate into wholeness. Thatís when loneliness transforms into sacred solitude. Thatís when life becomes a joy. However, all this fragmentation has seemingly taken on a life of its own, with some clever survival strategies to safeguard its existence. The latest is multi-tasking, which successfully insures that, with my attention divided, I am not fully present to anything, especially myself. Under the guise of saving time, I was seduced into multi-tasking by the following paid advertisement:
Ego: Why simply prepare dinner, when you can be making a call using your hands-free phone and watching the weather channel at the same time? Why simply run errands, when you can be snacking and returning phone calls while driving?
Still Small Voice: If all these new multi-tasking behaviors are designed to save time, then why are you busier than ever? Where is all the time you are supposedly saving?
Ego: Good point! I promise to devote some time to thinking about that in a few hours while at the gym, on the treadmill, checking my e-mail.
Still Small Voice: When you are letting the ego run the show, Scott, you are always on a treadmill! But let me remind you that even there, you can begin to dismantle your frantic addiction to complexity by breathing slowly and consciously, deliberately and deeply while engaged in whatever multi-tasks you are doing. Your breath will take you back to simplicity, and ultimately back to sanity.
Ego: Sanity? Iíll have you know that Iím a successful entertainer, entrepreneur, and spiritual guide, highly praised in the world I live in. And youíre implying that Iím insane?
Still Small Voice: Yes, you are indeed quite mad, as are most members of this modern culture at the dawn of this brave new millennium. But the good news is that you, and many others, are engaged in the process of waking up. Youíre becoming conscious of your sleeping fragments of self, and integrating them back into wholeness. You have committed on a soul level to the inner journey, which means that the days are over of pretending your happiness and suffering are created by anything other than your own thoughts and beliefs. Keep your sense of humor about all this, and celebrate each step taken towards a freer mind and a simpler life. For instance, you didnít use your car phone once today while writing this article, and you carefully stopped typing to look up while switching lanes. Now, thatís progress!
Scott Kalechstein travels through the world giving humorous and heart-centered concerts, talks and workshops, as well as presenting at conferences. He will be the troubador in residence at the International Conference On A Course in Miracles on June 23-24 in Anaheim. Also, he will be appearing in concert at the Seaside Church of Religious Science in Encinitas on June 16th. For more information, Scott can be reached at (760) 753-2359, or you may e-mail him at email@example.com His website http://www.scottsongs.com is a fun and inspiring place to visit.
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