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Prison Experience & Simply Patience

From: Janardhan
Sent on: Saturday, July 6, 2013 7:11 PM
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Hello,
I thought you'd be curious to hear the experience serving in the prison for the first time this past week. I went in truly not knowing what to expect or who'd be in the class.

It certainly lived up to the drama the media makes of it. The entry was a episode in itself, the security clearance, personal screening and the series of heavy metal doors as I made my up the vertically oriented downtown prison. When I got there, there was a room filled with fifteen women clad in bright orange waiting to hear what I've had to say. The official made a quick introduction and exited, with the door open, thankfully.

After some discussion and a couple of meditations, something shifted in me. I became comfortable with the place and the people, just like I'd be in any classroom. Over the next three sessions, we shared a lot of stories, giving a glimpse of where we were in our journey. I began to see them as friends.

After the final session, an officer on duty offered to walk me out of the building. She'd been watching me and could tell I was a novice to this crowd. She shared their backgrounds, which ranged from petty criminals to those fighting murder charges and may never get out. They want me back there to teach and suggested I read the book Games Criminals Play. Friendship, she says, is a mind game they use that could lead to the venus fly trap.

I came away feeling it's a fine balance between teaching mindfulness and staying clear of mind games. I love living on the edge!

Enjoy this week's musing on patience.

Peace & deLight,
Janardhan

Simply Patience


Have you ever played a waiting game?  People sometimes do it in their relationships.  Teams sometimes do it during periods of the 'game'.  Have you ever consciously decided not to hurry something, somehow knowing, deep within, that everything will happen in the right way at the right time?  The older, and mellower amongst us tend to do it.  Have you ever decided not to rush somewhere realizing you cannot make yourself arrive faster than your mode of transport, and you cannot control what gets in the way?   Bus drivers learn to do it.  Even in the midst of a grand prix, race car drivers have to do it.

Patience is one of those virtues which can transform a moment of high anxiety into quiet relaxation, a rush of mental agitation into the smooth flowing river that life can be.  In the presence of a patient person we are surrounded by an aura of calm as we are pulled into the tranquil light of their unhurriedness. Even when they are busy, the quality of their busy-ness still radiates patience.  Perhaps they heard Emerson's advice to, "Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience".  Nature is almost always patiently busy, either visibly or invisibly.

In a recent survey by a national newspaper they set out to discover why levels of anger were rising in the world.  They found the main underlying cause was not having ones expectations and desires fulfilled… fast enough!  In other words, impatience with events, with governments, with other people and with delivery services, are the new variants of 'hurry sickness'.  Perhaps it's not surprising considering the speed of modern life. The email addict is always looking for the next opportunity to access their inbox.

While most people might admit to being impatient in some area of their life, not many know how to free themselves from their quickening anxieties.  Many, if not most, would probably say that they would rather not be so impatient, that they do want to be more patient, but the only problem is they want it now!  Obviously restoring a little more patience to your life will require some … patience!

So how can you be more patient?  Can you just become a patient person?  Can patience be a permanent thread woven through your personality?  How do you create patience?

Visualization

Being patient is a creative process.  It involves bringing together a variety of ingredients in an initial process of visualisation.  The first step is to admit and acknowledge your impatient trait is entirely your own creation.  It's not the late train or failing delivery service, it's you that makes you impatient.  You have created and sustained the 'trait', so you can create and sustain patience.  And like all your other creations the process begins on the screen of your mind.  That is where you conceive, believe and achieve patience 'in rehearsal', before you step onto the stage.  That's where you create both the image and feeling of being patient.  To do that, you will need to draw on a variety of inner resources.

Next week we will look at six of those resources .


©  Mike George 2013

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