Like a surgeon, I’ve cut at myself to remove doubt and fear. I liken it to cutting because it takes an utter and relentless, fearlessness to go past your inner comforts, to the place where you lie to yourself over and over and then to stop that lying dead in it’s tracks, by either cutting or fighting it with all you have, to be able to learn calmness and confidence by default.
I’ve done so in three ways.
I learned about my origins and my end.
If you don’t know who you are or where you’re going, you’re never going to have your compass calibrated. Your navigation will always be off. People can poke fun, mock, sneer at religion as much as they want, but nothing aligns a human in the right direction as good as a decent attachment to a religious practise.
Here’s a shortcut, get busy with learning about the unknown so you don’t fear it and are not anxious about it. The unknown is both everything before you ever were and what will subside when you physically pass from this world.
When you do, you relinquish the struggle with control and power and give it back to its rightful owner, and make no mistake, that is God, period.
Secondly, learn how to be alone.
That means occupying yourself with activities that fine tune the frequency of your inner voice, yes even the ones that the quackery of psychiatrists and psychologists have you believing aren’t normal.
We all hear things, we all have inner voices, an ego, a vice that commands at us, entices us to good, evil or both.
Learning how to quell or amplify them is an art and a skill and like all arts and skills they take repetitive engaging in to master. You’ve got grand delusions if you think you can sort yourself out without hours of devotion to your crafts.
Unfortunately, group activities don’t count. Comfort in your own skin and lone time is the only way. Consider it a reset button and dedicate at least 8 to 10 hours a week in total isolation.
Lastly, expose yourself to dire situations where you are pushed and tested. This can be done in groups or done alone.
In my experience people should partake in a 70/30 split, that is 70 percent of the time doing those dire things alone and 30 percent in a group. They should be physical, spiritual, physiological, and mental.
Examples of physical involve training, sporting endeavours or physical activities that require a high level of output.
The best of them where your physical safety is threatened and I have found no better thing than the fighting arts, be it wrestling, traditional martial arts or boxing.
They involve the greatest violation and the most immediate danger to one’s well being. Getting through the hardships and struggles that come with the aspects of sparring or fighting as well as torturous training if one is dedicated and serious enough, is unmatched.
For the spiritual, it means following with utter sincerity and devotion to the principles of a sound religious practise without fail and if one does fail, they make amends, continue to improve, and resort immediately to re-applying themselves wholeheartedly.
Physiologically, I mean depriving the body of its gluttonous nature. That is, water and food and most especially foods which harm the body, mind and soul.
Further to the normal unhealthy foods one should deprive themselves of, they should make two days a week and at least a month a year by which they totally limit to near nothing the nutrient intake for at least half a day not including sleep time. The benefits of fasting in all it’s applications are too numerous to list and science is in total agreement of the simple ability of fasting to have the most immediate health rewards.
This resets the immune and other physiological systems and keeps unwanted weight off and the mind and body free from ailments.
Lastly the mental. Without a healthy appetite for learning and improving one’s understanding of the world around them, we, as a whole, most especially cerebrally, like all created things wither away. The adage of ‘use it or lose it’, applies to every thing that makes you. Your mind is no exception.
We are vaguely worthy beings at all without a concentrated effort to be a being in the first place, but these simple three things will give you calmness and confidence in life and in all your endeavours.
It is what I teach my children and offer to any ear that is sincere enough and patient enough to listen. It is what I teach my students as their minds are ready to give up in training. It is not for the lazy or procrastinating.
I understand that some people just want to surf waves but some like swimming under water. Others are not satisfied until they’ve dived deep enough to see the ocean floor.
Without judgement or prejudice, you are free to do as you will, but if you’re honest enough, at times, you will struggle and these three simple steps will help you get back on track in no time.
Wesam El dahabi