31. Stillness

CANCER-GUIDE-IMAGES.026Now we're going to talk about stillness. We have a tendency to be busy from morning to night. We get up, have breakfast, work, meet with friends, have dinner, watch TV, watch TV, watch TV, and then we crash. We think that those few hours – six hours of sleep – will actually compensate for the stress levels that we have after days like this. It doesn't. It will catch up to you.

When you are completely engrossed in that world, just dragged into that mental activity, you never get a chance to stand back and look at your life from the outside. That's what stillness is for, to move away from the action and look at it. To see it from a detached viewpoint.

Personally, if I get really stuck into work for too long I will usually crash and get sick. But if I catch myself and go away for a few days, I'm able to look at my behaviour and think "Oh my god, it's so much clearer now!" We call this the cave of silence. That separation from the action helps to give you an overview. Going into that silence is really important.

CANCER-GUIDE-IMAGES.027I know that it is difficult to just sit down at home, cross legged, and try to clear you mind. But then you think. You might find that you catch your thoughts and bring them back but then suddenly you're off thinking about something else again. It can be very difficult to keep your mind still and focused. You're not alone, we all have that problem.

That's why focusing on movement is so much easier. If you focus your mind on movement – such as breathing in and out – you will already be able to stay a lot longer in that stillness. If you do things such as gardening, yoga, or tai chi, it will be ten times easier to focus on the movement or on to something that is the stillness within that peaceful place. It's the repetition that transforms it into nothing, into stillness, but it's the movement that keeps you there. It's a really beautiful way to achieve silence, stillness, peace, and separation from your active worldly life.