The WRATH of RUSHING

A woman I used to live with put up a sign in our kitchen that read The less time I have, the slower I go.” I didn’t think much of it at the time; she had affirmations all over the house and after awhile, they all kind of blended together in a mushy goo of sappy sentimentality and wishful thinking. Often times I would have to move a few post-its around in order to see myself in the mirror. Yes, my housemate was the epitome of what I termed a ‘New Age Californian’. (I think it is safe to say that I would be given that label by many people these days, but at the time, I was still a Texan, fresh off the truck; I just didn’t give much credence to all that California spiritual stuff.) I will call my housemate Amara for the sake of giving her a name and protecting her real identity.

Amara would lie in bed for hours at a time meditating, making orgasmic sounds with her eyes rolled back in her head and her body gyrating about from the ‘downloads’ of energy she would claim to receive. She would have conversations with Jesus, angels and other ascended masters and often tell me what parts I played in her past lives. She would sing spontaneous love songs to her body at the top of her lungs when showering and float about the house singing love songs to herself and to the world. She would make more of those orgasmic sounds every time she ate, no matter what she was eating. One would think by listening denpharma.com – information to her ecstatic outcries, that she was perhaps feasting on amazing and extraordinary delicacies from the world’s most exotic places. On the contrary, I’d walk into the kitchen and upon her plate was nothing more than a few mini carrots, half an aging bell pepper, some lettuce with nothing on it and a few semi-wrinkled grapes. “Okayyyyyy!”

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Her teenage daughter lived with us as well. Before inviting friends over, she would give us very direct and specific instructions to ‘act normal’, refrain from acting like lesbians (which we weren’t), and not to engage in any deep eye contact with her or any of her friends.

At one point I met a man in television who upon hearing about our household, wanted to do a reality show about us. Amara’s daughter and I were totally game, but Amara was fearful people would laugh at us. “Are you kidding? Of course they would laugh at us.” I replied. “We’re so laughable, it’s ridiculous! That’s the whole point!” (To this day, I am quite positive we would all be millionaires by now if I only could have talked Amara into giving her consent! -Sigh-)

I made fun of a lot of what went on in our house, but the truth is, I learned a lot.

Accepting and appreciating ourselves despite what the mirror, or the world, or our own inner critic, has to say – isn’t that exactly what we need to do?  That’s what I believe and do my best to communicate through my art. That’s what the song ‘Older Ladies’ is about. It now has over 7 million views so I guess there are a lot of people who are inspired to go against what our conditioning tells us and rejoice in who we are no matter what we look like.

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And the new video, ‘If I Were Enlightened’ makes light of the long and crazy journey so many of us take to feel better about ourselves only to give up and realize we were fine all along.

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‘The less time I have, the slower I go.”

That is a good and powerful saying. And boy, I wish that sentiment had been tattooed somewhere obvious when I was running around lately creating so many self-imposed DEADlines, making myself stressed and crazy for NO SANE REASON. And rushing? Have you ever noticed how utterly silly it is to rush? Have you ever stopped to see that the increased heart rate, the sense of urgency and the spinning thoughts that accompany rushing do not contribute one iota of benefit to a situation, but actually make things a lot worse? Have you ever stopped in mid-rush and actually examined if it’s worth it?

I did. I stopped. Because I am committed to being good to myself and walking my talk, I actually did stop and look. In doing so, I saw the total ridiculousness of rushing and the total wisdom of slowing down and recognizing the world is not going to end (like my mind says it is going to) if I relax and take my time.

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So… we totally rushed to get the replacement video out after realizing the wrong sound file had been used and the beautiful sound tracks that my engineers had made, sounded tinny and pretty darn lousy. My heart sank and I panicked. There were already 8000K views and the momentum of views was rolling. My engineers graciously said I could put a disclaimer on the video, but I did not want to do that. I wanted to represent their wonderful work in the manner it deserved.

I was worried all those views were going to be lost and felt I needed to rush to get the new version uploaded ASAP! In the rushing, a low resolution version of the video was published and no one on the team noticed. We were 2K views into this second version of the video, when the camera crew notified me of the issue. No. Not again. The more I panicked and rushed, the more things went awry. The more the went awry, the more I wanted to rush to find a solution. It was a circular death trap, for sure.

What a ridiculous joke… rushing to find a solution is as silly as a fish looking for a drink of water!

The rushing itself creates the inability to remember to slow down, breathe and be present with what is. I noticed for me, rushing actually creates more thinking, and solutions never lie in thought! In my experience, solutions happen in stillness and in the silence between thoughts. Questions arise as thoughts. Answers arise as thoughts. Solutions however, from which all answers arise, happen in silent stillness.

So rushing is the very thing that prevented this new creation of mine from fully blooming. A hard and wonderful lesson learned. I think perhaps when the stakes are high, the lessons are more quickly and deeply assimilated.

———- MARK

And now I sit, attempting to breathe life into “If I were Enlightened’ a third time. The momentum may or may not come back and I get to be okay with that. I find it funny that one of the themes of Enlightenment is to let everything be as it is. Ha. Maybe “Enlightened’ was just made to give me the lesson of slowing down, taking my time and not acting out of a place of distress. I don’t know. I don’t know if this video will take flight again or not. I hope so. I will do what I can, let that be enough and feel proud of what I have created and learned.

I mean, in the end, that’s what it’s all about, isn’t it? It’s not about what I do and what I can get, but more about what I learn and what I can give.

If you feel like sharing the video again, that would be awesome. If you don’t, then watch out for the next one and we’ll all do it again, only this time taking our time and enjoying every step of the way… sans rushing.

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‘The less time I have, the slower I go.’

That’s a keeper.